Jimmie Nicol filled in for Ringo Starr when he had tonsillitis. For 10 days he traveled with The Beatles on tour throughout Australia. Here he is photographed after the tour, departing Melbourne Airport, on the cusp of returning back to his bland, normal life. [1964] Read more at: https://tr.im/Tit0g

But when tonsillitis laid Ringo Starr low on June 3, on the eve of the Fab Four’s world tour, he wouldn’t have been top of many lists to replace him.

If George Harrison had got his way, Nicol wouldn’t even have had two weeks at a Beatle.

Feeling a strong loyalty to Ringo, George told Beatles manager Brian Epstein and producer George Martin he wasn’t going on stage with anyone else and they would have to replace him for the imminent tour as well. They had to beg him to accept Nicol who had been chosen by Martin as he was familiar with most Beatles songs.

Even Ringo was unsettled by developments. “It was very strange, them going off without me. They’d taken Jimmy Nicol and I thought they didn’t love me any more — all that stuff went through my head,” he said later.

Nicol’s first concert with The Beatles took place the very next day on June 4 in Copenhagen, Denmark.

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