Saturday, November 28, 2009
Hey, Let Me Tell You How Great The Who Is
I know you don't need me to tell you how great The Who is. I'm sure you've witnessed their sonic glory in video clips - and the very lucky experienced it in person at live performances. No doubt, you have heard or read the stories and tributes of this legendary rock group from rock journalists, die-hard fans, and of course the band itself. Of how they revolutionized the rock music game over 40 years ago. Of the antics both onstage and off of their late, lascivious, psychotic and hillarious drummer Keith "The Loon" Moon. He was proof that it takes a mad man to play the drums like well, a mad man. Of how John Enwistle who died in 2002 was not only an impressive singer and songwriter but also broke the constraints of what the bass not only sounds like; he also brilliantly demonstrated that if played properly the bass can make you both outplay and outshine the guitar player a.k.a. be a BAD MOTHERFUCKER. (Did you know that he gave the group Led Zeppelin its name? ) Of how Roger Daltrey brought the sleek, athletic fitness and prowess (and hotness) of a U.K. football player to the stage as their lead singer. AND GOD HELP YOU IF YOU GOT HIT BY HIS TWIRLING MICROPHONE! And then there is Pete Townsend. The man with the blue eyes that can stop you in your tracks and a nose as big as his ego. The guitarist as force of nature. The composer of rock operas big and small, including the one about a deaf-dumb-and-blind kid with a pinball jones. The man who penned "Substitute," "Baba O'Riley" and "Won't Get Fooled Again." Townsend, Enwistle, Daltrey and Moon. This quartet was edgier than The Fab Four. (You have to admit that one group's drummer was scarier than the other.) About as naughty as The Rolling Stones. And like The Beatles and The Stones, they did their part in making popular music more interesting. They are number 3 on my list of All-Time British Groups I'd Be A Groupie For.