Legendary record producer Quincy Jones has taken an incredible swipe at the Beatles, describing them as “the worst musicians in the world”.
Jones, attempting to promote a new Netflix documentary and what will become a US television special, heavily criticised Beatles drummer Ringo Starr in particular.
Jones, 84, speaking In a new interview with New York Magazine, frankly opened about his first impressions after meeting the iconic Liverpool band: “They were the worst musicians in the world,” he said.
“They were no-playing motherfuckers. Paul [McCartney] was the worst bass player I ever heard.”
Jones, whose career spans six decades in the entertainment industry and has amounted to a record 79 Grammy Award nominations and 28 victories, decided to single out Ringo Starr for the tough stuff: “And Ringo? Don’t even talk about it,” he began before recalling the arrangement of ‘Love Is a Many Splendoured Thing’ for Starr’s 1970 debut solo album Sentimental Journey.
“Ringo had taken three hours for a four-bar thing he was trying to fix on a song. He couldn’t get it. We said: ‘Mate, why don’t you get some lager and lime, some shepherd’s pie, and take an hour-and-a-half and relax a little bit.’”
Moving on, Jones explained how he called English jazz drummer Ronnie Verrell into the studio while Starr was working: “Ronnie came in for 15 minutes and tore it up. Ringo comes back and says: ‘George [Martin], can you play it back for me one more time?’
“So George did, and Ringo says: ‘That didn’t sound so bad.’ And I said: ‘Yeah, motherfucker because it ain’t you.’ Great guy, though.”