- I Can't Explain
- Anyway Anyhow Anywhere
- I Don't Know Myself
- My Wife
- Baba O'Riley
- Naked Eye
- See Me Feel Me
- I'm One
- Pinball Wizard
- The Real Me
- Who Are You
- Magic Bus
- Behind Blue Eyes
- You Better You Bet
- Won't Get Fooled Again
Roger played acoustic on Naked Eye and The Kids Are Alright. Pinball Wizard was started twice because they fell apart in the first verse.
MANSFIELD - Let's get it out of the way: The Who are geezers. Geezers, geezers, geezers. Pete Townshend, John Entwistle, and Roger Daltrey. Geezers.
And, what of it? They also ...
This is what the audience saw during "I Can't Explain," the opening song in last night's 2-hour marathon Who concert: singer Roger Daltrey swinging his mike cord like a la...
MANSFIELD-Pete Townshend said he hoped he'd die before he got old; he didn't keep his word, for which all classic rock fans are lucky. Exhibit A is his guitar-hero performance for Monday's roaring crowd at The Venue Formerly Known as Great Woods. Leaving behind the acoustic guitars he used during the 1996-97 Quadrophenia tour, he is now the centerpiece of a once-again stripped down Who lineup. The five-piece horn section, extra guitarist and background singers featured on that highly-charged, low-grossing tour were also nowhere to be seen. Instead, the trio of Townshend, bassist John Entwistle, and singer Roger Daltrey were augmented only by drummer Zak Starkey (a more powerful drummer than his father, Ringo Starr) and John Rabbit Bundrick on keyboards. This was the first Who tour with a small Rock'n Roll lineup since the first "Farewell" tour in 1982, and the energy produced by the simplicity of the lineup provided a night of highs and no lows for the crowd, whose age range was approximately five years old to one step away from the nursing home. Daltrey's voice was in fine form, better than in '97 and the '89 reunion tour, Entwistle's bass lines were as thunderous as he is unemotional on stage (think cigar store Indian), and Townshend gave us the one thing missing from the incredible Quadrophenia tour: over two hours of electric and electrifying guitar solos. His fingers were moving like wildfire on classics such as Won't Get Fooled Again, The Real Me, and the finale My Generation. The 55-year-old jumped around on stage as if it were still the 70s, and delighted the crowd with windmills throughout the evening, producing a roar each time. He even played the role of comedian a couple times. While tuning his guitar before one song, he got frustrated and said with a chuckle "this guitar's f...ed." He then made a vague comment that the red instrument might be better off destroyed, but did not smash it to pieces as he would have done in his youth. Another time, he and Entwistle began Pinball Wizard, and shortly after the rapid guitar introduction and first bass notes, he stopped and said "that was terrible, let's do it again." The next time it went a little smoother, pleasing himself and the crowd. Other highlights included Baba O'Riley, with its famous synthesizer opening, and the crowd helping Roger sing the line "It's only teenage wasteland." Daltrey ended the song with a surprisingly competent and energetic harmonica solo, replacing the notes played by a violin on the original track. Another high was the medley of Naked Eye and See Me Feel Me. "Take a little dope, walk out in the rain," Roger sang, and there was a little of each going on during the show. It sprinkled for just a few minutes, but the dope part continued from beginning to end. See Me Feel Me featured Roger as Tommy, one of the most memorable alter egos in musical history. "Touch me, heal me," he pleaded, before he and Townshend segued into Tommy's closing lines "listening to you, I feel the music, gazing at you, I get the heat. Following you, I climb the mountain, I get excitement at your feet." The best song of the evening was Won't Get Fooled Again. Townshend's opening guitar chord, followed by Bundrick's synthesizer solo produced an electricity on stage which can be matched by few songs in the entire classic rock canon. Daltrey sang his lungs out on the lines "We'll be fighting in the streets, with our children at our feet, and the marbles that they worship will be gone." But The Who's defiance of authority illustrated by those lines has taken a different turn in their later years. In one interesting moment during The Kids are Alright, Townshend improvised the lyrics "my kids are alright, your kids are alright," showing a different, possibly more mature view of life than he did in writing the line "I don't mind other guys dancing with my girl." The final song My Generation was a good choice if for no other reason than its irony, now that the band members are close to retirement age. "People try to put us down," Roger sang, "just because we g-g-g-get around. Things they do look awful cold; well, I hope I die before I get old." Pete and Roger may be older, but they still provide music energetic as any younger band, especially in Townshend's searing guitar solos and Roger's high-volume singing. Their individual talents are surpassed only by the musical tightness of the band, which is evidence of a 35-year partnership. Daltrey was not quite as animated as he was on the Quadrophenia tour, doing his trademark lasso-swing of his microphone just once. But his voice was stronger than on previous tours, allowing him to belt out the power ballad "Behind Blue Eyes," which got its share of bic lighters from the crowd. The highlight on Entwistle's end, as it was during the Quadrophenia tour, was his long bass solo on 5:15. Showing he didn't earn the nickname Thunderfingers for nothing, he ran up and down the entire fretboard numerous times, his fingers moving as fast as those of Pedro Martinez. Entwistle is clearly the best bass player in rock history, and the only one I have seen who can make jaws drop the way Jimmy Page and Keith Richards do with their guitars. With deceased drummer Keith Moon, he once anchored what is often considered the best rhythm section in Rock'n Roll, along with Led Zeppelin's drummer John Bonham and bassist John Paul Jones. Moon died of his own excesses, but fortunately left a record of his legacy: Zak Starkey, who was taught by Moon. The original Who member's style is echoed by that of the young drummer. He beat his drumkit with remarkable gusto, a living reminder of Moon's insanely fast, often verging out of control stage style, which was matched only by the pace of his personal life. That lifestyle caused he and his bandmates to be banned for life by the Holiday Inn hotel chain. Now far away from the excesses of the past, the band is newly-charged and once again on friendly terms, as evidenced by the many hugs shared by Townshend, Daltrey and Entwistle on Monday. The notoriously rocky relationship between singer and guitarist seems to have been mended, and they are planning a new Who studio album, the first in almost twenty years. So will the Who once again become an active band both in the studio and on stage? Only time will tell, but Monday's show was a reminder of the band's continued greatness which has not been diminished by age.
I was only 18 when I was at this show in Bristow, VA's Nissan Pavilion to see my rock heroes in concert. It was even dark yet when the lights went out and Who else but Pete Townshend running out onstage and grabbing his electric guitar(instead of acoustic!) and starting up the first chords to "I Can't Explain!"
Pete, decked out in sunshades and coat, windmilled and jumped around with Roger, wearing his famous white, rolled-up, collared shirt with his chest hanging out; and John standing off in a bright green leather jacket and grooving out on the bass. It was a very memorable night!
We were all surprised as to the real Who with an all-electric set and only two sessionists helping out with the music: Zak Starkey on drums and longtime Who keyboardist John 'Rabbit' Bundrick off to Townshend's right. Pete seemed very enjoyable and funny onstage, tuning his guitar in between songs and telling stories. It was kinda weird that Roger didn't talk a whole lot. Nevertheless he contributed to the music as music as he could, pulling off some cool microphone work and the crowd roars EVERY TIME Pete does the armswing!
A dream come true, interesting note that Roger dropped his microphone on accident while talking to the sound guy I believe, and when he came back for the encore for "Kids Are Alright," the microphone was off! "I hope that wasn't off all night," Roger said.
The last song of the evening was "My Generation," (Roger added a chuckle to his "Hope I die before I get old" line) and the Who did a great show that seemed like we were in 1979 again. Once again, it was a dream come true for me, being only 18, a HUGE Who fan, and I'm so glad that I saw them before John sadly passed away this past June.