McCartney brother originally drummed for the band
Alexandra Pollard

14:01 18th April 2014

Paul McCartney's brother Mick has said that he feels "lucky" that a broken arm meant he couldn't be in The Beatles.

When Paul McCartney first started collaborating with John Lennon, it was his brother Mick, and not Ringo Starr, who acted as the band's drummer. However, following a broken arm that affected the nerves in his wrist, Mick was replaced by Starr, and the band went on to become, infamously, "bigger than Jesus."

In an interview with The Daily Mail, Mick McCartney said: "I was nearly in The Beatles. I was The Beatles' drummer, but I broke my arm in the Scouts."

Listen to The Beatles' 'Hey Jude' below

He added: "It was when John [Lennon] used to come to the house with The Quarrymen, before George [Harrison] was even there. I broke my arm at camp and it affected the nerves that control the wrist. They were dead. If I hadn't broken my arm, I'd have been a Beatle. But I did break my arm and I'm not a Beatle. You always have to deal in reality, not dreams."

Mick, who went on to achieve comparatively minor fame with the band The Scaffold, was quick to look on the bright side of his situation though, saying: "You could look at this another way. If I hadn't broken my arm, if I had joined The Beatles, maybe we'd have ended up fighting like Liam and Noel Gallagher in Oasis. So, it's fortuitous and lucky I didn't join. I have a nice, close, stable relationship with my brother."

Mick McCartney is currently touring his comedy one-man show 'Sex, Drugs & Rock 'n' Roll (I Wish!)'

Below: 11 US artists that wouldn't exist if it weren't for The Beatles


  • The Killers: "I owe everything to The Beatles," frontman Brandon Flowers once told the Liverpool Echo. "When I was in Liverpool last, I went on a real tourist pilgrimage. It blew me away, seeing the houses they lived in. Just being in Liverpool was a humbling experience for me. The UK was the first place to open their arms to us and we are still grateful for that. In a lot of senses it’s home for us musically. A lot of the music we heard that made us want to be in a band came from the UK."

  • Nirvana: Kurt Cobain would often cite The Beatles as one of his favourite bands of all time. They formed his earliest musical memories, and the song 'About A Girl' is said to have been written after listening to Meet The Beatles on repeat.

  • Foo Fighters: Yup, Dave Grohl once famously wrote: "If it weren't for The Beatles, I would not be a musician. From a very young age I became fascinated with their songs, and over the years have drowned myself in the depth of their catalogue. Their groove and their swagger. Their grace and their beauty. Their dark and their light. The Beatles seemed to be capable of anything."

  • The Beach Boys: Stunned by the sheer quality of Rubber Soul while recording Pet Sounds, Brian Wilson rushed to his wife and shouted: "Marilyn, I'm gonna make the greatest album! The greatest rock album ever made!"

  • Panic! At The Disco: Discussing the more eclectic and psychedelic nature of their recent albums, drummer Spencer Smith once told Rolling Stone: "In the past couple of years we were listening to stuff that was a little bit different than what we were on the first record, and the Beatles would be an example of that."

  • Prince: His Royal Badness loves classic pop and rock n' roll and is like a musical sponge - of course The Beatles are an influence. He also does a pretty mean cover of 'Come Together'.

  • Green Day: With an insatiable love of a good hook and pop anthem, frontman Billie Joe Armstrong once famously said: "I think that some of the Beatles’ songs are way more punk rock than most punk songs written today."

  • Smashing Pumpkins: Bald-headed alt-grunge hero Billy Corgan said that The Beatles were the first band to inspire him to pick up a guitar, saying: "They set the rock pop paradigm we are in. If you go from 'Love Me Do' to 'Helter Skelter' that covers about 85-90 percent of popular rock music."

  • PIXIES: Not only were Black Francis and co once referred as 'the Psychotic Beatles', but their seminal Doolittle was heavily influenced by the noise and variety The White Album. Of course it was.

  • St Vincent: She does a pretty awesome cover of 'Dig A Pony', showing the true influence of John Lennon's guitar mastery on her own firecracker style.

  • Flaming Lips: Being the modern masters of mind-bending psychedelia and experimental noise, it should come as no surprise that The Beatles are one of Flaming Lips' main influences. Not only have they covered them countless times, but Wayne Coyne once said: "The Beatles and Pink Floyd didn't just make records, they stood for something."

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