Ringo Starr Gives Drum Kit To Ill Teenager

The Beatles drummer made a wish come true when he met a cancer survivor at the Hard Rock Cafe - before giving him his drum kit to keep.

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Ringo Starr brought one fan's dream to life last week when he gave them his drum kit.

The young fan Alex Kipp, a brain cancer survivor with tourettes syndrome, had asked the Make-A-Wish Foundation to help arrange a meeting with his hero.

Speaking to the LA Times, the teen's father said "Alexx came to me one morning and he said, 'Dad, I had a dream last night and I met Ringo. This was before we knew it was going to happen.

"About a week later we got the call. I told him, 'It looks like your dream came true.'"

They later met at the Hard Rock Cafe in Los Angeles, where the pair talked and played drums on Ringo's kit. Before departing, the famous drummer offered Alexx the kit to keep.

Ringo was himself introduced to drums as a 13-year-old in a hospital battling tuberculosis.

He was humbled by the experience, saying "It's huge. It puts you in your place. You think you've got a cold - you're all, 'Oh, what about me?' Then you help these kids. You think of the families. I've got children too, and it's got to be hard."

76 comments sorted by best / new / date

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    Bag'ed
    Ringo, well done on reaffirming what we already knew... That you are an absolute ****ing dude!
    danterra13
    What a good person! Ringo is a living legend, and didn't have to do this for a sick fan. But it shoes true character and genuine humility to do this. Living legend, musical genius, and a good human being. But, what else can you expect from a Beatle?
    reservedforchoi
    Best story on ug news for a LONG time. Glad to see someone from the biggest band on the world could be so humble. Good inspiration for us all.
    triface
    To me, he used to just be another musician. Now he's a wonderful person.
    Rocketpumpkin
    Ringo probably cured this kid's Tourettes', he probably said every swear word for the rest of his life hahahahaha: "F***! You're gonna F***** give me your F***** Drums?!" ( and then endless happy swearing ) I know I would.
    guitarmazdur
    great man. when i read this it reminded me of Mike Portnoy, how one time he jammed with a kid similar to the one in this story through the make a wish foundation. he also gave that kid some sticks and symbols from the kit they jammed on. its also funny how ringo starr was also Mike Portnoy's first inspiration to start drums (Neal Peart came in later i think)
    ckipp
    Alexx added the second x to his name when he was 9 years old. He discovered the Beatles when I gave him and old cassette tape mix of Beatles songs. They gave him a lot of comfort through his long treatment and continuing recovery. He also likes Led Zeppelin, the Who, The James Gang, and Mickey Hart's Planet Drum, to name a few. Try as I might I could never interest him in The Beastie Boys, The Gorillas or Pokemon. He knows what he likes, and he likes Ringo. The meeting they had was truly wonderful. Thanks for reading about it and remember Make A Wish. Chuck Kipp
    Pukka-VCU
    Wook91 wrote: Glad to hear this, an awesome man he is! Anyway, he won't need his kit anymore, he'll get a bigger one while playing with Dream Theater..
    Hahaha +100 I don't think anyone picked up on this post yet
    smokedhamtaro
    Just because there are better drummers out there doesn't mean that they have to be the only people idolised. The person you idolise doesn't even have to play in the genre that you play. My idol is steve vai, do i play bluesy shred rock? No!!!! I just happen to respect him the most as a guitarist. Opinions are exactly that, OPINIONS!!
    Altitudinous
    pineaple expres wrote: awesome. glad there's still some musicians out there that still give back to their fans instead of taking from them. ringo u are awesome.
    Instead of taking from the fans? Ever heard of illegal downloading? Cause i think that's a thing.
    IUseAPurplePick
    yappapie wrote: Good for Ringo,this kid is more than likely a big Beatles fan and Ringo's drumming did work for the Beatles. Why should anyone care if Ringo is not the type of drummer that Neil Peart,or even John Bonham was? It would be quite boring if everyone played the same,there is room in music for technical and nontechnical players!
    I couldn't agree more. Not many people actually realize that what Ringo was doing was revolutionary. He was the first of his kind to do a lot of what he did. He set up the basic foundation of rock drumming.
    DimebagZappa
    ckipp wrote: Alexx added the second x to his name when he was 9 years old. He discovered the Beatles when I gave him and old cassette tape mix of Beatles songs. They gave him a lot of comfort through his long treatment and continuing recovery. He also likes Led Zeppelin, the Who, The James Gang, and Mickey Hart's Planet Drum, to name a few. Try as I might I could never interest him in The Beastie Boys, The Gorillas or Pokemon. He knows what he likes, and he likes Ringo. The meeting they had was truly wonderful. Thanks for reading about it and remember Make A Wish. Chuck Kipp
    Great story. Hope Alexx stays cancer free. Best of luck to you guys!
    mattiwillohouse
    Forums meke me laugh. So far we've touched on Ringo's inabilty to drum, Steve Vai's shredding, a little Dream Theatre, and even Thomas the Tank Engine (those of you my age will get that last one ;D) This article ios about a guy who was humbled by a sick child's adoration of him, and so he decided to make the kid happy by giving him a drum kit. End of chat. Good on you, Ringo.
    alexmasucci55
    slaveskinJACKET wrote: That's great and all. Good for Ringo. He didn't have to do that. The negative publicity couldn't have really hurt him even if he hadn't done it, but why Ringo? Why not a good drummer? Hopefully the kid will survive long enough to discover some music on his own, since it seems like his opinions could just be a projection of his father's, which is fine, but it's kind of strange to me that a young teenager would want to meet a run of the mill drummer that hasn't done anything hardly relevant in 40+ years.
    Are you kidding me... First of all, maybe we could drop the pretension and elitism for one second and realize that the article is about an act of kindness, not who can drum crazy fills the most proficiently. Secondly, there are plenty of great drummers who consider Ringo a great drummer and an influence... Perhaps most notably, Mike Prtnoy, whose style is nothing like Ringo's. Not to mention I don't understand this whole notion lately of old musicians being "relevant"... I suppose Frank Sinatra, Little Richard, and Buddy Holly are no longer "relevant" either? Nor are those fools Beethoven, J.S. Bach, Tchaikovsky, etc.....
    This1GoesTo11
    Begs the question: Was it the "Ed Sullivan" kit or a cheap piece of shit set up for the event?
    andyscoot
    hudsonstradlin wrote: I bet Ill teenager wishes he dreamt about Neil Peart, not the uncoordinated monkey who wrote "Octopus' Garden"
    I'd rather listen to Octopus' Garden than anything Neil Peart has ever had a hand in.
    Nicolai_Nebel
    The Earth Gods wrote: I bet that lill kid drums better the you Ringo lol
    I lol'd. Even though I think Ringo is one of the best drummers ever to have played rock. Ringo is awesome.
    KsE60
    hudsonstradlin wrote: I bet Ill teenager wishes he dreamt about Neil Peart, not the uncoordinated monkey who wrote "Octopus' Garden"
    Wow, ridiculously horrible comment, but I get the point Ringo is a class act...gets unending amounts of respect from me now.
    -xCaMRocKx-
    rebeltildeth87 wrote: then the kid gave em back and said "dude... yellow subarine sucked"
    Paul wrote Yellow Submarine.
    Metal_Master_0 wrote: A good thing to do, but so much better could be done. I'm sure he has enough money to live 20 lifetimes in wealth, so I doubt a drum kit means that much. Not trying to belittle the guy or anything, but he's still a wealthy musician doing one small thing, opposed to someone in poverty giving everything they have to help, but that just may be my disdain for the beatles talking. Happy for the family and the kid though, hope their futures are bright.
    Ringo supports numerous charities and donates millions every year. This occassion is special because he was making a kid's dream come true.
    Metal_Master_0
    A good thing to do, but so much better could be done. I'm sure he has enough money to live 20 lifetimes in wealth, so I doubt a drum kit means that much. Not trying to belittle the guy or anything, but he's still a wealthy musician doing one small thing, opposed to someone in poverty giving everything they have to help, but that just may be my disdain for the beatles talking. Happy for the family and the kid though, hope their futures are bright.
    guitarrios
    Ringo is a fantastic musician who tought about drums as something that articulates the form of a piece just as much as the melodic instruments/voices other than the rythmic foundation aproach, and it's really sad when a lot of today's musicians don't apreciate the subtleties of his job and only strive for the fast, exhiralating, "in your face" drumming (and this comes from a fan of the likes of Neil Peart, Steve Smith, Antonio Sanchez, Thomas Pridgen, John Bonham, etc). OT, that's a very nice thing to do, thumbs up for Ringo!
    James_Het_Rules
    yappapie wrote: Good for Ringo,this kid is more than likely a big Beatles fan and Ringo's drumming did work for the Beatles. Why should anyone care if Ringo is not the type of drummer that Neil Peart,or even John Bonham was? It would be quite boring if everyone played the same,there is room in music for technical and nontechnical players!
    This. I think what Ringo did was great. I've seen some people that turned down the MAW Foundation. Pissed me off. So it's good to see that someone like him would do such a great thing.
    bustapr
    good thing to know that some musicians who can swim and wipe their asses with benjamins, can also put a smile and give great memories for others who deserve it.
    schirripar
    k90728 wrote: Lol wow i must be the only one who thought Ringo was dead.
    um..... wtf he can't be dead... hes not red yet but yes Richard Starkey the great revolutionary gives sick fan his drum kit. Kind of goes full circle from his life.
    k90728
    Lol wow i must be the only one who thought Ringo was dead. He looks good in that picture which is rare for a UG article. I'm glad he gave him his set and met with him. Make-A-Wish usually means the child is not going to live for a long time after???? im not sure but thats wild. live a good life sick boy.
    manipedro
    danterra13 wrote: What a good person! Ringo is a living legend, and didn't have to do this for a sick fan. But it shoes true character and genuine humility to do this. Living legend, musical genius, and a good human being. But, what else can you expect from a Beatle?
    Yeah I know!
    Iommianity
    It was very nice of him, but you'd be hard pressed to find a lot of musicians willing to alienate CANCER patients and their families. Not exactly good publicity.