Ringo Starr is dad to three kids: Zak, Jason and Lee
Ringo Starr has plenty of love for his family.
The former Beatle is the father of three adult kids — Zak, 58, Jason, 56, and Lee, 52 — whom he welcomed with his late ex-wife Maureen Cox. The two were together from 1962 to 1975, but separated following Starr's affair with American model Nancy Lee Adams and Cox's affair with George Harrison.
In 1981, Starr (born Richard Starkey) married actress and model Barbara Bach. These days, the famed drummer considers his kids, Bach and his grandkids, the greatest blessings in his life.
"I have many blessings, family blessings, my children are blessings. I've got eight grandkids now and a great grandson. They're all blessings. I'm an only child and I look around the table and I go what? All these people are related to me. It's far out. And Barbara's in my life, that's another blessing," he told the Manila Bulletin.
However, fatherhood didn't always come easy to him. "I learned from being a father that I could have been a better father," he told the outlet, admitting that he's a better grandfather: "And I love being a grandfather because you can have all that fun and just give them back."
In addition to having families of their own, Starr's children also went on to have their own successful careers, and some of them even followed in their father's footsteps and pursued music.
When it comes to how the large Starr clan keeps in touch, the music legend told PEOPLE they have an active text thread, packed with photo updates and lots and lots of emojis. "We've got a family text. It's so great. We're that sort of a family in the modern age," he said.
Keep reading for everything there is to know about Ringo Starr's children.
Zak Starkey, 58
Starr's oldest child, Zak Richard Starkey, was born on Sept. 13, 1965. Like his dad, he is a talented musician. The Grammy-winning drummer has played and recorded with the legendary rock band The Who since 1996.
A wildly successful musician and co-founder of the record label Trojan Jamaica, Zak has also performed with the likes of Oasis, Johnny Marr, Paul Weller, Yoko Ono and Steven Van Zandt, among many others. He started to play in English pubs at age 13 with a drum kit gifted to him by The Who's Keith Moon, who he says "was like an uncle" to him due to Moon's close friendship with his father.
Zak and his father are very close, and their shared love for music might be what bonds them above all. "When I was very young there was music all around me in my parents' house," he told Modern Drummer. "You would go into the living room and find stacks and stacks of LPs. I would spend my days listening to records." Zak also credits his dad for sparking his interest in becoming a professional musician, recalling a T. Rex concert the two attended in 1971 as the defining moment that cemented his dream. "That was it for me," he told the outlet.
Over the years, the father-son duo have collaborated and performed together a handful of times. In 1985, they both took part in Artists United Against Apartheid's protest song "Sun City." Zak then joined Starr and the All-Starr Band on tour in 1992 and 1995.
When he was 19, Zak married his teenage sweetheart Sarah Menikides in a secret ceremony, per the Los Angeles Times. Although the two separated in 2006, they share a daughter, Tatia Jayne Starkey. Her birth in 1985 officially made Starr the first Beatle to become a grandfather, and at the time, he said he was "absolutely delighted" and that "the baby was a little beauty."
Zak and his current partner, Sharna "Sshh" Liguz, have been together for nearly two decades, and they share a young daughter, Luna Lee Lightnin Starkey. Luna was born on March 21, 2021, and her parents got married exactly a year after her birth. "After 18 years together, Luna's umbilical cord kinda tied the knot", the couple joked in a statement to PEOPLE, "but we wanted to make it official and share with our friends and family in the U.S., before doing the same in Jamaica and the U.K.."
Zak was given away by his father, while Pearl Jam's Eddie Vedder served as his best man. "Great to be solid with the greatest girl in the world," his wrote on Instagram. "And to celebrate Luna's no1 birthday. Thanks to everyone who came from near far wide abstract and online. Our dearest friends in da USA- great to see u at our wedding and experience true party stamina. Feels great to be wed to the woman I have loved for 18 years."
Jason Starkey, 56
Born on Aug. 19, 1967, Jason followed in his dad's and older brother's musical footsteps. As a drummer, he performed with various indie bands and even briefly formed his own group with his brother Zak called Musty Jack Sponge and the Exploding Nudists. He later retired his drum kit in favor of being a road manager, and then a photographer.
In 2010, Jason married his longtime girlfriend Flora Evans. Evans is a fashion and floral designer and co-founder of the jeans brand Superfine, which lists celebrities like Kylie Minogue, Kate Moss, Kim Kardashian, Victoria Beckham, and Drew Barrymore among its fans. The two share four sons: Louis, born in 1999; Sonny, born in 2002; Rock, born in 2009; and Budy, born in 2011. Louis is an actor, with credits in Billie Piper's Rare Beasts, Worse Than Family and Ringo Starr's Big Birthday Show!.
Jason prefers to stay out of the limelight, and he and his family rarely make public appearances, nor do they have public social media profiles.
Lee Starkey, 52
Starr's only daughter, Lee Starkey, was born on Nov. 11, 1970, just months after the Beatles broke up.
In 1990, Lee appeared alongside Starr in an Oldsmobile ad, in which she played herself and said one line: "Hello, Daddy." She also sang backup vocals for "La De Da," a track on Starr's 1998 album Vertigo Man. She currently works as makeup artist and fashion designer, and co-founded a short-lived retail boutique in Los Angeles called Planet Alice, which paid homage to her father's legacy and catered to '60s-inspired fashion.
Lee has been in a relationship with musician Jay Mehler, who plays the bass for English rock bands Kasabian and Beady Eye, since 2006. The two live in London, and welcomed triplets Smokey Mehler, Jakamo Mehler and Ruby Tiger Mehler in 2009, according to the Daily Mail.
Lee and Mehler like to keep their personal life rather private. However, it appears that the triplets are already following in their dad and grandfather's musical footsteps; they've even been receiving lessons from the former Beatle.
"They're all taking after dad in the music department," Lee told the Daily Mail in 2017. "They started learning a couple of years ago. Jakamo's doing drums, Smokey's doing drums and guitar, and Ruby's doing piano."
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