The original Beatles drummer Peter Best, who was replaced by Ringo Starr, is to be honored by two Liverpool streets being named after him. The honor comes in the wake of a campaign on Facebook supported by more than 10,000 people.
The roads, Pete Best Drive and Casbah Close, will be on a new estate to be built on Everton's former training ground at Bellfield in West Derby. The housing development was chosen as Best hails from the area and the Casbah Club, where The Beatles began their career, is less than half a mile away.
Casbah Club was owned by Best’s mother, Mona. Pete said in a statement to the press , "The Cashbah Coffee Club was the catalyst for the Merseybeat sound. It was the original birthplace of The Beatles on August 29 1959 and it is great that I've been associated with that as well.”
Best, now 69, said: "I feel very humbled, very flattered and very honored that the city of Liverpool, council members and the people of Liverpool have thought to honor me in such a fantastic way."
Pete Best, the ‘forgotten Beatle’, was replaced in 1962 by the Beatles and their manager Brian Epstein just before they hit the big time. He played with them on the first recordings for their Parlophone audition, an early version of "Love Me Do", and the track "Besame Mucho”.
Pete was unceremoniously dumped by the Beatles and their manger just before they went on a tour to Hamburg. It is believed that his drumming was not considered good enough, that his style did not fit in with the Beatles. Some even suggested that he was too popular for Lennon to swallow and also that he rejected Epstein’s advances.
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Peter Best has dismissed all of these suggestions over the years. Lennon, McCartney, and Harrison all later stated that they regretted the manner in which Best was sacked. Lennon admitted that "We were cowards when we sacked him." (Source: The Beatles, The Beatles Anthology. Chronicle Books)
In an interview to Daily Mail a few years back, Peter Best claimed that he had moved on and was no longer bitter.
After he left the band he entered the civil services and worked in the government. He started his own band, the Pete Best Band in 1988.
He released an album , Best of the Beatles, and still attracts a good crowd at his concerts. At a recent gig in Brazil, nearly 30,000 people attended the show.
A number of recordings he made with the Beatles featured on Anthology 1. They are said to have brought him more than $1.5 million.
Stuart Sutcliffe was another original Beatles member, who till date does not have the honor of any street named after him. He was a painter and John Lennon’s best friend and room-mate at Liverpool Art College.
Stuart was the bassist of the group. He was the one to come up with the name ‘The Beetles” for the band which was later changed to Beatles. Stuart is credited with the Beatles getting their sartorial and quintessential fashion sense and their mop-head hairstyle. He died in Germany in 1962.