Randolph Peter “Pete” Best (born Randolph Peter Scanland, 24 November 1941) is an English musician, principally known as an original member and first drummer of the Beatles, from 1960 to 1962.
Best was born in the city of Madras, then part of British India. After Best’s mother, Mona Best (1924–1988), moved to Liverpool in 1945, she opened the Casbah Coffee Club in the cellar of the Bests’ house in Liverpool. The Beatles (at the time known as the Quarrymen) played some of their first concerts at the club.
The Beatles invited Best to join on 12 August 1960, on the eve of the group’s first Hamburg season of club dates. Ringo Starr eventually replaced Best on 16 August 1962 when the group’s manager, Brian Epstein, dismissed Best under the direction of John Lennon, Paul McCartney, and George Harrison, following their first recording session at Abbey Road Studios in London.
After working in a number of commercially unsuccessful groups, Best gave up the music industry to work as a civil servant for 20 years, before starting the Pete Best Band. He has been married for over 50 years to Kathy Best; they have two daughters, Beba and Bonita, and four grandchildren.
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