"I don't know why, he just picked me up!": Ringo Starr describes iconic 1964 photo-op with Muhammad Ali

Starr told Rolling Stone the story behind The Beatles' meeting with Ali at the 5th Street Gym in Miami

Published June 6, 2016 4:18PM (EDT)

Muhammad Ali, Ringo Starr   (AP)
Muhammad Ali, Ringo Starr (AP)

Rolling Stone published an interview with Beatles drummer Ringo Starr on Monday following the passing of 74-year-old boxer-activist Muhammad Ali on Friday.

In the interview, Starr, 75, details the story behind The Beatles' 1964 meeting with Ali — then still known as Cassius Clay — at the 5th Street Gym in Miami, one week prior to his knockout win over Sonny Liston to become the world heavyweight champion. The resulting images became "some of the most enduring images of the 20th century."

"I don't know why, he just picked me up!" Starr told Rolling Stone. "It wasn't like, 'OK, pick him up now!' He just suddenly did ... What was I gonna say? 'Hey, come outside. …'"

"We only got out of the ring because he put me down," Starr added.

Read the full interview over at Rolling Stone.

By Brendan Gauthier

Brendan Gauthier is a freelance writer.

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Muhammad Ali Ringo Starr Rolling Stone The Beatles