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The Who

A band to take notice of The Who is an English rock band that came together in 1964. Their original line-up was Roger Daltrey lead singer, Pete Townsend guitar, John Entwistle bass, and Keith Moon drums. For much of their career, they were considered among the three most important British rock bands along with The Beatles and The Rolling Stones.

They became known for specializing in auto-destructive art which meant that they destroyed guitars and drums on stage. They got help from pirate radio and TV in the U.K. to bring them into the public eye. Their first single “I Can’t Explain” made it into the Top Ten.

More hits followed like “My Generation”, “Substitute”, and “Happy Jack”. Not only were their singles wildly accepted but also their albums My Generation and A Quick One. The Who achieved great success in the U.S. when they performed at the Monterey Pop Festival singing “I Can See for Miles”. At the end of 1967, they came out with The Who Sell Out and spent a great part of 1968 touring.

Their fourth album was a huge success. Tommy came out in 1969 and was simply a great hit which became a sensation when the film adaptation came out. With such awesome songs like “Pinball Wizard”.

They also gained more popularity by appearing at Woodstock and the Isle of Wight festivals. They also produced a live album Live at Leeds.

Their next albums were Quadrophenia in 1973 with the singles “Love, Reign O’er Me” and “The Real Me” and The Who by Numbers in 1975 with the singles “Squeeze Box” and “Slip Kid” sent them touring and performing before large audiences until they semi-retired from live performances in 1977. In August they came out with the album Who Are You but the release was overshadowed by the death of Keith Moon on September 7th. He was only 32. The album singles included the title song.

Keith Moon was replaced by Kenney Jones who had previously played with The Small Faces. The group went on tour and in 1979 a film adaption of Quadrophenia was released as well as a retrospective documentary The Kids Are Alright. They released two more albums Face Dances in 1981 with the singles “You Better You Bet” and “Don’t Let Go the Coat”.

It’s Hard in 1982 before they finally broke-up. They came together for Live Aid in 1985, had their 25th Anniversary tour in 1989 and a tour for Quadrophenia in 1996. The Who decided to resume regular touring in 1999 with Zak Starkey as the drummer, whose famous father is Ringo Starr of The Beatles. The group was planning on coming out with a new album when the plans were dropped due to the death of John Entwistle. Pete Townsend and Roger Daltry chose to continue on as The Who and came out with Endless Wire in 2006 with singles including “Mirror Door”. The album got into the Top Ten in both the U.K. and the U.S.

All of their many fans are truly happy that The Who continue to rock on.


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