The son of Ringo Starr, Zak Starkey, was raised in the tradition of the Beatles. Zak disliked the link and thought he would never be able to step out of his father’s shadow, despite the celebrity and wealth that came with it. He made an effort to separate himself from the Beatles.
Starkey has revealed that he resented his father when he was small and it was because he was not around. Also, back then he was not that interested in his music, which changed with time.
Ringo feels that he failed to be a decent parent to his kids. In interviews, Starr has explained that he struggled to be present in his children’s lives due to his celebrity and the demands of being a Beatle. He noted that being a Beatle meant nonstop touring, playing, and partying, which left little time for raising children. Zak has also agreed that Ringo has made mistakes as a father. He revealed,
“To be perfectly honest, being Ringo’s son is the biggest drag in my life, I’m always written about as Ringo’s son, always classed in with him in every single thing I do … And if I do get successful, I don’t want to live like my old man, on a big estate and all that.” He said so in the book Ringo: With a Little Help by Michael Seth Starr.
He even added that Ringo was absent most of the time. “My old man was never there. During my puberty, Moonie was always there with me while my old man was far away in Monte Carlo or somewhere,” Zak said.
According to Zak, Ringo only gave him a single lesson the entire time. It was, “My old man’s a good timekeeper, one of the best, but I’ve never thought of him as a great drummer, not really, Ringo gave me one lesson, just one, when I was young. Then he told me to listen to records and play along with them.”
Starr and his wife Maureen married in 1965 after realizing she was pregnant. Zak was the first child who was followed by Jason, and a daughter Lee in 1970. Back in 2000, while talking with Us Weekly, he reflected on being a dad. He said,
“We never sat there saying ‘Oh, well, you can’t become a dad, or you can’t do this,’ I got married. We had Zak. Two years later we had Jay. And in 1970 we had Lee. We lived. We did have to move out and get a house with a big gate. But, you know, it was not like a lot of the bands today: ‘Oh, we can’t get married. Career first’ We never really thought like that. Of course, we did think of it for a moment with John [Lennon], who was married [to first wife Cynthia] and didn’t want to tell anybody. But there wasn’t as much planning as people might imagine in the Beatles’ career.”
It is an encouraging reminder that it is never too late to do things right that Starr has made amends with his kids and has been honest about his faults. Zak is now happy to have Ringo as his father. As he got older, Zak revealed that he now understands his father’s circumstances. In 2007 during an interview with Modern Drummer, he told.
“It doesn’t get tiring, I kind of rebelled against it when I was a teenager; I said some pretty stupid things. I’ll be honest, it’s great being Ringo’s son. He’s the greatest living drummer as far as I’m concerned.”