Interview: John Lennon and Ringo Starr in Los Angeles

John Lennon: The worst part of it is, apart from me, the others, if they want to go with girls, they should be allowed to go with them. If they don’t go with girls, let’s say they don’t go out, I mean that holiday thing that everybody went on, it’s been something awful over here. Ringo and Paul on holiday with a couple of birds along with another married couple who were about 98.

Ringo Starr: Well, 48.

John: Well, I mean you know, past 30. But if they don’t, what kind of rumour would get around if they don’t get seen with girls? You got one or the other.

Ringo: Yeah, you go with girls or you’re called a queen.

John: Queen!

Ringo: I have it on tape I’ve been called a queen. People have said, you know, if we sort of don’t go with a girl for a couple of weeks, they start saying you’re a queen you know. You can’t win. That’s a drag.

Q: You mentioned another thing, we’ve reported on this quite a bit. Something that’s interesting to me is to watch the hotel room like Derek’s room and to watch the people coming in and out, especially one night in New York I think you dropped in briefly. There were about 40 people in there and most of them were hard core impostors. Does this ever bother you when you have people with no business being around you, pestering you? Does this bother you?

John: Well, all those 40 people who were in Derek, our press agent’s, room originally came up with the intention of getting in our room. And all of them come in and they expect free drinks, free food, free anything, anything that’s going and you get to know them, you can tell them apart from the others. Some of them are good fun because they’re such clever impostors and con men you can admire them, you know, but all of them are just bums.

Ringo: Some of them are silly as well.

John: That’s why they’re in Derek’s room and not in our room.

Ringo: Anyone who comes to see us goes through Derek you know, which is a good thing for as if everyone got to our room we’d have what, a hundred, 200 people in our room all the time which we couldn’t stand, you know.

Q: How about saying hello to the people down in Miamiland?

John: Hello people down in Miamiland, I hope you’re roasting hot and swimming.

Q: Ringo?

Ringo: Hello Miami and Buddy and his wife and children. You remember Buddy? He was the sergeant who looked after us when we were in Miami. He was a great fellow. And I don’t know if you read, we went to his house for dinner and if anyone wants a good meal, go to Buddy Dressler’s, the best cook in the world, his wife.

John: Best cop.

Ringo: Best cop!

John: Yeah, but his wife’s a cook. I know.

Ringo: And also, a little personal message to Buddy. Get a job, cop! Which is a personal joke, it’s nothing terrible, it’s quite funny to us but it may sound terrible on tape and it’s very nice.

Q: Ringo, when you’re in a position, John, when you’re in a position of stardom, a lot of people ask you controversial questions such as a letter I received, they ask ‘what do you think of mixed marriages between religions’?

John: I would think it’s up to the people concerned you know. If they can take it. It’s pretty rough. It’s known to be rougher over here but it’s the same in England. You know, do it!

Ringo: I don’t know, if you love a girl, say you’re a – as we call them – Church of England Protestant and the girl’s a Catholic as long as you love the girl and she loves you. The only thing is that the families get on to you. You’re quite happy with the girl and then her family will start sort of picking on her, saying well ‘what are the children going to be?’ or ‘what religion? Is he going to change for you?’, and your family will say ‘you’ll never have any luck ’cause you’re marrying a Catholic’ and all that. But if you’re just left alone I think there’d be a lot more mixed marriages but they break up because of the other people and they never break up because of the actual pair.

John: See I got married before I even knew what religion me wife was. Anyway, I never asked her. I mean religion is more of a…

Ringo: Personal thing.

John: …a thing in Britain like sort of the colour problem is over here and I just did it without thinking, she could have been anything.

Ringo: But it wouldn’t have bothered you. That’s the thing, you know, like it wouldn’t bother me to marry anyway.

John: People can get away with it more in show business, can’t they?

Ringo: I hate that word, showbiz.

John: Well that’s what it is, isn’t it?

Ringo: Yeah

John: We’re on show all day.

Last updated: 23 August 2012
The Beatles live: Empire Stadium, Vancouver, Canada
The Beatles live: Hollywood Bowl, Los Angeles
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