Stuart Sutcliffe. John Lennon's closest friend—the young, immensely talented, fine artist who first played bass guitar for The Beatles. Pete Best. The young man who was The Beatles' first drummer—who played with the band for close on two years. Neil Aspinall. Pete's closest friend, who was The Beatles' roadie, and who later went on to become The Beatles' closest confidante and the head of Apple Corps, in London. Raymond Jones. The young man that legend tells us walked into NEMS and met Brian Epstein and set the whole magical mystery tour rolling are all key to understanding the story of The Beatles.
Art School friend of John Lennon; brilliant fine artist; original Beatles' bass player. Joined the band in time to be auditioned—unsuccessfully—by Larry Parnes and Billy Fury. Went to Hamburg with the band. Played the Indra and Kaiserkeller Clubs on the first, gruelling, 16-week trip. Met and fell in love with the photographer Astrid Kirchherr. Decided to stay on in Germany and take up his art studies again. Died, tragically, of a brain haemorrhage, in Hamburg, on the 10th April 1962.
Original Beatles' 'Roadie'
Originally studied to be an accountant. As a student, he took up lodgings at the West Derby family home of Mona Best and became close friends with her eldest son, Pete. A friendship that ultimately led to him giving up his studies and taking on the role as 'road manager' for The Beatles. He stayed true to the band—after Pete Best left—and years later—ever loyal, trusted, and discreet—was appointed Chief Executive of Apple Corps Ltd, London.
Original Beatles' drummer. Liverpool & Hamburg. August 1960-August 1962. Played drums at the ill-fated 'test session' for Decca in London, on 1st January 1962. Then later at the 'artists test' session for EMI / Parlophone, on 6 June, when the recording manager, George Martin, didn't consider his drumming to be steady enough for recording purposes. After which, he was 'let go' by the other members of The Beatles—justly fearful of losing their last chance at a recording contract—in favour of Ringo Starr.
Original Liverpudlian Dreamer
Legend says it was Raymond Jones who walked into NEMS—a popular record store, on Whitechapel, in Liverpool—on Saturday, the 28th October 1961—and asked for a record called 'My Bonnie'. Brian Epstein, the store manager had never heard of it or the local group with the odd name who had recorded it. But Epstein, who always wanted to ensure that customers never went away empty handed, set out to correct his mistake and went on to discover The Beatles.