Friendship Lessons From The Beatles

What were you doing in 1962? Are you old enough to remember? Were you even alive?

In 1962, Ringo Starr was meeting Paul McCartney for the first time. They were in the process of becoming bandmates. And lifelong friends. Of course, they had their ups and their downs, but it’s 2014, and now, 52 years later… they’re still at least friendly enough to perform on stage together.

Starr McCartney

Still Friends 52 Years Later

Do you count yourself lucky enough to have any friends today from 1962?

Perhaps the Beatles’ most famous friendship was Lennon-McCartney. (Or McCartney-Lennon, as some would have it.) They were close writing partners, unique as far as songwriting collaborative pairs go, in that they wrote both music and lyrics together. Lennon called it “writing eyeball-to-eyeball.”

Lennon and McCartney were so connected, they stood by an agreement they made when they were teenagers that any song either one of them wrote would be credited to both of them, whether or not they collaborated to write it.

McCartney and Starr weren’t “eyeball-to-eyeball” close like that. From what I can tell, they got along as bandmates, minus a few moments of hurt feelings and frustrations, as are bound to happen in any multi-decade friendship.

After Lennon’s murder and George Harrison’s death, fate tested the bond between McCartney and Starr. Would friendship between the two remaining Beatles survive?

It did.

After years of solo careers, McCartney and Starr began to collaborate again. Starr recorded for McCartney’s 1997 album “Flaming Pie.” McCartney contributed vocals on a couple of Starr’s albums. They’ve reunited for several concerts and other appearances since then. As recently as January of this year, the two performed on stage together at the Grammys to celebrate 50 years since the Beatles’ first appearance on American television.

52 years of friendship and counting.

I get by with a little help from my friends
I get high with a little help from my friends
I’m gonna try with a little help from my friends

Lennon and McCartney wrote that song together, but they wrote it in a way that would forever embed Ringo into it. As the story goes, Lennon and McCartney intentionally made the last note of the song one that only Ringo could sing, so that he would be an integral part of the piece.

52 years of friendship. Truly something to celebrate. Someday, I hope I’ll be celebrating 52 years of friendship.

Until then, I think I’ll celebrate the friends I have now. How about you?

Meanwhile —

Caffeinate and Carry On!

Diane Capri

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30 Responses to Friendship Lessons From The Beatles

  1. Marcia Richards February 20, 2014 at 10:13 am #

    I love the Beatles and their tribute was a an amazing expression of their friendship and the friends they made throughout their career. I have 60 yr old friendships with three of the people I grew up with. We talk regularly and get together as often as possible. We’ve seen each other through all of life’s trials and joys. And I have a 26 yr friendship with a woman I met at my daughters 6th birthday party. The richness of these relationships is priceless. Friends who know everything about you, have shared experiences and still like you after all those years are like gold. I wish this for everyone.

    • Diane Capri February 20, 2014 at 11:36 am #

      60 Years! Wow, Marcia! That’s really terrific. Do these friends live close to you now? How have you managed to stay in touch all this time?

      • Marcia Richards February 20, 2014 at 2:33 pm #

        Two are women and one is a man, who was my best friend growing up. The ladies and I stay in touch through FB and a once a year get together as they live in Georgia and Florida. The man, Mike, and I get together regularly. He helped me through my first husband’s passing and I’ve been there for him when he had serious health issues. He lives about 45 minutes from me. He’ll always be my best friend,next to my hubs. He and my husband get along great and are very much alike, coincidentally. My girlfriend for 26 yrs lives 2 hours away but we see each other at least once a month and talk a couple times a week. It’s wonderful having friends who know you well and share a history.

        • Diane Capri February 20, 2014 at 6:55 pm #

          Absolutely, Marcia. You are blessed, indeed!

  2. Gerad February 20, 2014 at 12:02 pm #

    I still have friends from that era. I am 58 years old. The things that mean the most in life are your immediate family and your close friends. Everything else comes and goes. Relationships are the most important part of a persons life. I hope I treat my family and friends with all the respect they deserve. They are the best part of my life.
    Glad to see the two remaining band mates reunited. It was a great show!

    • Diane Capri February 20, 2014 at 12:22 pm #

      You are so right, Gerad. Friends are worth more than their weight in gold. So glad to have you here. Thanks for joining us and for your insightful comments.

  3. Betty Farish February 20, 2014 at 12:11 pm #

    I loved the story as you wrote it— I still have friends that go back to the 50’s and 60’s that I am in touch with on Facebook. Some of my friends from those days have passed away– but that’s part of life when you’re 72. It is so much easier to stay in contact with friends and family since the internet.

    • Diane Capri February 20, 2014 at 12:24 pm #

      That’s great, Betty. I agree that the internet makes it easier to stay connected to friends and family. It’s also great for meeting new people and making new friends. After all, that’s how I met you! Thanks so much for your friendship. As Gerad said in the comment above, relationships are the most important part of life. So good to have you here!

  4. Kassandra Lamb February 20, 2014 at 3:18 pm #

    Cool post, Diane! I remember the Beatles well. I was ten when they debuted in the U.S. But I don’t have any friendships lasting from back then. My oldest surviving friendship is from freshman year of college. And even he and I aren’t extremely close but whenever we talk it’s a “pick up where we left off” kind of feeling.

    To me, friends are the most precious thing in life!

    • Diane Capri February 20, 2014 at 6:55 pm #

      I agree completely. Glad you enjoyed the post, Kassandra. Hope to see you somewhere soon, my friend.

      • Kassandra Lamb February 20, 2014 at 7:59 pm #

        Wish I was able to make Sleuthfest this year, Diane. I’m going to miss seeing you and Shannon and others there. 🙁

        • Diane Capri February 20, 2014 at 9:14 pm #

          We’ll miss you — until we meet again.

  5. doris February 20, 2014 at 7:22 pm #

    In 1962 I gave birth to my second daughter.No,I don’t have a close friend from ’62’ but I do from 1964 when I gave birth to my only son and last child that I met my life long friend Gladys.
    She also was having her last child also a son after two daughters. She was having another ‘c’ section. This was due to an injury with a mail truck as a small child and sustained an injury that prevented her from being able to deliver normally. Our pastor introduced us as I was up and around after delivery but she was confined to bed after the surgery as was the norm in those days.

    • Diane Capri February 20, 2014 at 9:13 pm #

      What a lovely story, Doris. Clearly a strong bond was forged between you and Gladys that’s endured 50 years. That’s a wonderful thing. Thanks for sharing your experience with us.

  6. Anita S February 20, 2014 at 8:22 pm #

    Does it count that in 1962 I was in my mother’s womb to be born later that year? 🙂 I grew up during that era but it was in the seventies in high school that I met my best friend. For forty years we have kept and maintained a bond that transcends all time. Though we live apart whenever we talk to or see each other it is as if we never parted.

    • Diane Capri February 20, 2014 at 9:15 pm #

      Sounds like forty years is likely to become 52 years in due course, Anita. Good for you!

      • Anita S February 23, 2014 at 1:50 pm #

        I pray that it lasts that long or longer. I was really surprised when I thought about how long we had been friends to see that it was that amount of time. The years flew by so quickly and it is hard to see where they have gone. She is a very special person and I am blessed that she is a part of my life.

  7. Janie Junebug February 20, 2014 at 9:12 pm #

    I’ve been friends with one person for about 50 years, but it’s been at least 20 years since I last saw her. She’ll always be the first best friend I had.

    Janie Junebug

    • Diane Capri February 20, 2014 at 9:18 pm #

      That’s quite a strong friendship to endure for 20 years of separation. What has kept you apart for 20 years, Janie?

  8. Sandy Smith February 20, 2014 at 9:58 pm #

    In 1962 I was a sophomore in high school. There was a small group that hung out in school together, but we were from different parts of Buffalo and all attended a private all girls school. After high school we all drifted apart and I even moved twice while attending high school. Today my best friend is one I met at the school I taught at and she was the principals secretary. We scrapbook together, attend theater together, movies and once in awhile travel to scrap. The craziest thing was that our dad’s (hers living on Long Island and mine with my family) both died the same day. Hers died in his sleep and mine that night in the hospital. We firmly believe that those two WWII soldiers are spending eternity at a beautiful oak bar with a brass foot rest watching over their girls and sharing some beers. Every Oct 30 we r the first people we hear from that day, because we never forget that remarkable bond. The Beatles and their music give all of us of a certain age another bond with all who shared their fun, music and lives.

    • Diane Capri February 20, 2014 at 11:31 pm #

      Sandy, music definitely bonds and unites us, I think. Your connections are extraordinary. One of my friends of relatively recent vintage compared to yours (20 years) is a WWII vet, now 93. I’ve met several of his army friends over the years. All of them are real characters, too.

      • Sandy Smith February 21, 2014 at 11:44 pm #

        Yes Diane they are characters with character…walking to their own drummer, but with dignity and integrity most of the time.

  9. Patricia Sands February 20, 2014 at 10:19 pm #

    Great post, Diane, on one of my favourite topics! I have shared a friendship with the ladies of my real life Bridge Club for 49 years and it is still going strong. A treasure in so many ways!

    • Diane Capri February 20, 2014 at 11:32 pm #

      Patricia, I gave your book to my mom, a big bridge player. She loved it! She really enjoyed all of your friends, too! Thanks for sharing them with us!

  10. Doreen Parker February 21, 2014 at 3:27 am #

    I met my best friend when we both did the same tour to the USA. She was traveling with her 7 year old grandson who is in his mid forties and a grandfather himself now..I have just turned 60 and she will be 84 in March .We are so much alike we think the same thing at the same time .I call her my other mum as do my brothers .She is more than family.She was meant to be with me for my 60 th but because of ill health couldn’t make it but she now arrives (32 hours by train +6 hour layover in Sydney) in 1month for 2week stay. Her name is Lorna and I want to the world how much I love her .

    • Diane Capri February 21, 2014 at 11:15 am #

      What a lovely tribute to your friend, Doreen! Please give our best to Lorna and tell her we all are jealous of you because you have her!! Thanks for sharing!

  11. Christine Nolfi February 22, 2014 at 1:03 pm #

    Lovely post, Diane. There’s little in life more important than friends–especially friends you’ve known for years.

    Btw, Barry and I also loved the Beatles 50th show. Long live the boys from Liverpool!

    • Diane Capri February 22, 2014 at 8:56 pm #

      Thanks, Christine. Glad you enjoyed the post.

  12. August McLaughlin February 23, 2014 at 5:31 pm #

    Inspiring post! I adore the Beatles, and imagine that their friendship contributed greatly to their success. Thanks for shedding light on that! I hope to have friends for 50-plus years, too. Definitely something to celebrate!

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