Andy White, shown in a 1992 photo, was humble about his early musical days, his widow said.
Michael Brennan/Hulton Archive/Getty Images
Andy White, shown in a 1992 photo, was humble about his early musical days, his widow said.

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Ringo Starr played tambourine on the U.S. version of the Beatles' first hit

Andy White moved to New Jersey and taught music

He died after having a stroke last week, his widow says

CNN —  

The man who played drums on the U.S.-released version of the Beatles’ song “Love Me Do” died this week, his wife told CNN.

Andy White, 85, had a stroke last Thursday and died on Monday, Thea White said.

She said she was thankful that her husband didn’t suffer long and was grateful for a long marriage.

“God was good to us. He gave us 42 wonderful years together,” she told CNN.

Andy White, originally from Scotland, played drums when the Beatles recorded “Love Me Do” for a third time in 1962. Ringo Starr played the tambourine but had been the drummer for the single that later was released in Europe.

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The song was originally recorded during the Beatles audition for record label EMI with Pete Best on drums.

According to Rolling Stone, White was paid £5 for three hours of work and received no royalties.

“Love Me Do” was the Beatles first single. The song went to No. 1 when it was released in the United States in 1964. The B side was “P.S. I Love You.”

White is one of the musicians referred to as a “Fifth Beatle.” The list includes White, Best, Jimmie Nicol, Stuart Sutcliffe, Billy Preston and others.

Four lives and the Fab Four

While he still lived in England, White often was a session drummer for EMI at the Abbey Road Studios.

He reportedly was the drummer on Tom Jones’ “It’s Not Unusual.”

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White settled in New Jersey, where he taught music and was active in Eastern United States Pipe Band Association.

White’s wife said he judged Scottish-style pipe and drum band events up and down the East Coast and was “so incredibly humble” about his early success.

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