Welcome to RingosBeatleKits.com.
If you love Ringo Starr's music and the instruments he used to make it,
you're in the right place.
Dear fans of Ringo Starr and his music,
The website you've discovered was created by Gary Astridge, a sincere and dedicated Ringo fan from childhood and the world's leading authority on Ringo's Beatles era gear.
Gary originally launched ringosbeatlekits.com back in 2006 as a gift to drum enthusiasts and collectors everywhere. His goal was to help others make more informed decisions when collecting and researching Ringo Starr and his Beatles associated instruments. For years he's conducted photo forensics, researched books and articles, visited websites, viewed videos, conducted interviews and compiled his findings on a site that has become the primary resource for Ringo enthusiasts, collectors and fans. All of this work was done for no reward other than the satisfaction of helping others. Yes, he's really that nice a guy.
In 2012 things changed for Gary when The Grammy Museum in LA announced a major exhibit honoring the unparalleled career of Sir Richard Starkey, aka Ringo Starr. They would host displays featuring memorabilia from Ringo's long and storied career. There would be stage clothing, documents, awards, photographs, art, music AND DRUMS, amazing, beautiful, iconic, goose-bump-inducing Ringo drums!
Of course, over the years, Mr. Starkey had surrounded himself with a dedicated and professional support team who immediately began cataloging the massive inventory of artifacts from his career so that they could be organized for the Grammy Museum exhibit. That's when Gary Astridge got the unexpected and almost unbelievable call from Team Ringo inviting him to come to LA in support of this massive project. He later related that he thought he was being pranked, but it was very real and was the beginning of a fascinating relationship with the Ringo Starr organization that continues to this day.
I've had the pleasure of watching his work with them grow over the years. You see, I met Gary at the Grammy Museum exhibit while covering it as Publisher of Classic Drummer Magazine and Director of The Classic Drummer Hall of Fame. I immediately loved the guy, and you would too. Soon his informative articles began gracing the pages of our publication and others.
I've been on hand sitting in several of his many international audiences and seen attendees enthralled by his live multi-media presentations. He and I have also worked together on a series of once-in-a-lifetime Ringo-focused projects, including the production of the rare and hyper-collectible Starr Festival tribute snare drum. Such hard work, such a joy.
Gary's about as solid a guy as anyone could hope to know and he's created this site for your information and your enjoyment. There are no ads and no sponsors, just accurate, fascinating content. I hope you find it as valuable as I have and that you share it with others who also appreciate the music, equipment and persona of the one and only Ringo Starr.
To quote Sir Richard himself,
"Peace and Love . . . Peace and Love".
Publisher, Classic Drummer Magazine
Click the icon for a feature article
Ringo plays his '63 Ludwig Downbeat kit for the last time
before it is auctioned for $2.1 million
in support of his and Barbara's Lotus Foundation charity.
Special thanks to Team Ringo
Dear Visitors to RingosBeatleKits.com,
One could say that I'm living my dream. I've been entrusted with access to the most important and valuable drums in the history of popular music. I've had the honor of inspecting, organizing, assembling, displaying and helping secure them for future generations of music lovers. None of this would be possible without Ringo Starr's authentic affection and youthful enthusiasm for drums and drumming.
I've had the privilege of working with Ringo's most trusted and professional team members for years. They tend to operate quietly behind the scenes and would probably find it distasteful to be mentioned by name here, but you'll see some of their names associated with images and information throughout this website. They know who they are and I hope they know how much they are loved, respected and appreciated.
With my sincere thanks,
President, Astridge International, Inc.
Photo: Scott Robert Ritchie
Astridge International, Inc.
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