August 2012 (5 years ago)
New music releases: "Thrift Shop" - Macklemore & Ryan Lewis ft. Wanz; "Can't Hold Us" - Macklemore & Ryan Lewis ft. Ray Dalton; "We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together" - Taylor Swift; "I Will Wait" - Mumford & Sons
On the 1st, Pete Townshend is one of a group of musicians who send a letter to The Times protesting charges against the Russian musical act Pussy Riot who are facing years in prison after staging a performance in a Moscow cathedral where they called on the Virgin Mary to remove Valdimir Putin from power. The letter comes the day Putin is to meet with U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron in London.
On the 3rd, Roger Daltrey attends Steven Berkoff's 75th birthday party at the Ivy Club in London.
On the 12th, The Who perform a six-minute medley of "Baba O'Riley", "See Me Feel Me" and "My Generation" for the London Olympics Closing Ceremony at the Olympic Stadium in London. Earlier The Kaiser Chiefs play "Pinball Wizard" as the lead singer arrives on a Union Jack decorated scooter. NBC-TV in the U.S. fumbles The Who's performance, delaying it until after midnight to show the premiere of a soon-to-be-cancelled sitcom and local news. The album A Symphony of British Music, including The Who's performance, is available for download the following day. Over the next week, "Baba O'Riley", "Pinball Wizard" and "My Generation" all enter the British Top 200 singles.
On the 14th, The Guardian reports that The Who turned down the closing slot for The London Olympics twice before agreeing to help promote their upcoming tour.
On the 21st, Pete writes a long blog on a variety of subjects. His big announcement is that he has finalized the release version of his memoirs: "I hope to tell some of the more dodgy stories that my publisher's legal department have removed from the book. One thousand pages cut to five-hundred. There are a lot of dodgy stories left over."
Also on the 21st, Roger attends a re-launch party for the newly revived Dallas in London. Star and former Keith Moon drinking buddy Larry Hagman also attends.
And also on the 21st, John Basil publishes his novel Let Me Wear Your Coat about a teen Who fan in 1980.
On the 28th, The Criterion Collection in the U.S. releases their DVD of Quadrophenia. It also includes the first official home video release of Seize millions de jeune, the 1965 French documentary that shows The Who performing at the Marquee Club early in that year.
Also on the 28th, Juliana Hatfield releases her self-titled album featuring a cover of "My Wife".
August 2007 (10 years ago)
New music releases: "Low" - Flo Rida ft. T-Pain; "Paper Planes" - M.I.A.; High School Musical 2 (An Original Walt Disney Soundtrack) - High School Musical Cast; "Kiss Kiss" - Chris Brown ft. T-Pain
On the 6th, Uruguayan rock band El Testaferro de los pordioseros releases their CD Viven featuring a Spanish-language cover of "I Can't Explain".
On the 14th, Brave Combo releases their CD Polka's Revenge featuring a polka version of "I Can See For Miles".
The Who: Fragments DVD, a retrospective of the 2006 Who tour, is sent out to fans by thewhotour.com. It is directed by Justin Kreutzmann, son of the Grateful Dead's drummer, Bill Kreutzmann.
EQ Magazine has an interview with Pete called "Tracking Townshend" about his pioneering work in home audio recording.
On the 17th, Pete and his girlfriend, musician Rachel Fuller, walk on stage at the end of a packed concert by Martha Wainwright at the Shepherds Bush Empire to the surprise of the audience. Pete and Rachel sit in with Wainwright's band for four songs.
On the 21st, the SXSW Live 2007 DVD is released featuring Pete and Rachel performing "Sunrise".
On the 22nd, Pete is the subject of Steve McGarry Sunday comic strip "Biographic".
August 2002 (15 years ago)
New music releases: Home - Dixie Chicks; A Rush of Blood to the Head - Coldplay; October Road - James Taylor; Undaground Legend - Lil' Flip
The Who continue their stand at New York's Madison Square Garden on the 1st, 3rd and 4th, then take another break.
On the 6th, Eric Thompson releases his CD Manic + Organic featuring a cover of "I Can't Explain".
On the 8th, Genesis Publications put out their second expensive volume of Who photographs compiled by Ross Halfin, Maximum Who: The Who In The Sixties. This one concentrates on The Who's publicity photos.
Red London releases its CD The Soundtrack Of Our Lives featuring a cover of "The Kids Are Alright." Another release this month contains a re-write of "My Generation" called "Regeneration" from the Christian rock group Apologetix on their CD Grace Period.
On the 23rd, The Who return to the U.S. for a show at The Palace of Auburn Hills in Detroit. Starting with this show, soundboard CD's of the shows are sold as mementos over the Internet. The tour continues to the Tweeter Center in Tinley Park, Illinois (24th), the Verizon Wireless Music Center in Nobelsville, Indiana (25th), Van Andel Arena in Grand Rapids, Michigan (27th), the Polaris Amphitheatre in Columbus, Ohio (28th), the PNC Bank Arts Center in Holmdel, New Jersey (30th) and at Tommy Hilfiger at Jones Beach Theatre in Wantagh, New York (31st).
On the 27th, the long-awaited CD My Generation: Deluxe Edition double CD is released by MCA in the U.S. The Who's first album is taken from the surviving three-track tapes and is mixed into stereo by the original producer, Shel Talmy.
On the 30th, in an interview in The Times, Keith Richards of The Rolling Stones has this to say about The Who continuing without John Entwistle: "...I was glad they carried on. It's real showbiz, like a vaudeville tradition. I find it intriguing that old 'trousers' Townshend and Daltrey still have a certain desire to get out there and do it. And good fucking luck, they're not shabby at what they do."
August 1997 (20 years ago)
New music releases: Backstreet Boys - Backstreet Boys; My Own Prison - Creed; The Dance - Fleetwood Mac; You Light Up My Life: Inspirational Songs - LeAnn Rimes
The multimedia concert presentation of Quadrophenia starring The Who continues across North America. On the 2nd, they stop at the Meadows Music Theatre in Hartford, Connecticut followed by the PNC Bank Arts Center in Holmdel, New Jersey (3rd). Pete later says that at the Holmdel show some girls upfront start chanting "Be The Who! Be The Who!"
The Who continue to "be" at the Darien Lake P.A.C. in Darien Center, NY (5th), the Blockbuster - Sony Ctr. In Camden, New Jersey (6th), the Nissan Pavilion in Bristow, Virginia (7th), the Virginia Beach Amphitheater (9th), the Walnut Creek Amphitheater in Raleigh, North Carolina (10th) and the Blockbuster Pavilion in Charlotte, North Carolina (12th).
On the 12th, Blockbuster releases Ringo Starr and His Third All-Starr Band Volume 1 CD featuring performances by John Entwistle and a version of "Boris The Spider."
Quadrophenia carries on to Lakewood Amphitheater in Atlanta (13th), the Ice Palace in Tampa, Florida (15th), and ending at the Coral Sky Amphitheatre in West Palm Beach, Florida (16th). At the West Palm Beach show Roger Daltrey sings "It's A Small World After All." Drivin' and Cryin' are the opening act at most of these shows.
As soon as the tour is over, Roger is off to act in the episode "Unusual Suspect" of Highlander: The Series. Pete's task is to write an introduction to the British musical The Fix.
AintItCoolNews.com reveals that Pete's project for a musical film of The Iron Man has been taken over by young ex-Disney animator Brad Bird. Bird has decided to drop Pete's songs, re-set the movie in America in the 1950's and rename it The Iron Giant. Pete will be credited as executive producer on the finished film.
On the 24th, Roger hosts the documentary Pirate Tales on TBS. Part two airs on the 31st. It is later issued on VHS.
August 1992 (25 years ago)
New album releases: Unplugged - Eric Clapton; New Miserable Experience - Gin Blossoms; Beyond the Season - Garth Brooks; "Rump Shaker" - Wreckx-n-Effect ft. Teddy Riley
On the 1st, Roger's solo song "Days of Light" from his album Rocks in the Head peaks at #6 on Billboard's list of Album Rock Tracks.
On the 8th, Billboard has an interview with Roger about Rocks in the Head. He says Pete told him "I'm really proud of you. You've done great lyrics."
On the 25th, Naked Soul releases their CD Seed containing a cover of "So Sad About Us."
August 1987 (30 years ago)
New album releases: Hysteria - Def Leppard; Dirty Dancing - Various Artists; Bad - Michael Jackson; Permanent Vacation - Aerosmith
On the 1st, the soundtrack for the movie The Lost Boys enters the U.S. charts and peaks at #15. It features Roger's recording of "Don't Let The Sun Go Down On Me."
On the 5th, Roger appears on Good Morning America this day and the next to promote his solo LP Can't Wait To See The Movie. He says he did an album of love songs because it is the only thing that now gets played on European radio.
On the 14th, during an ITV special showing Elvis Presley's movie Love Me Tender, Roger and Carl Perkins perform "Hound Dog" and "Mystery Train" together.
On the 15th, Billboard reports that John Entwistle and his new group The Rock are about to release their self-titled album that will be followed by a tour. Having finished the album almost a year before, John blames the delays on his former band. "I think the Who has become an albatross to us all. It feels like I'm trapped within The Who, and it doesn't even exist anymore." The tour with The Rock never happens and the album is not released for another eight-and-a-half years.
August 1982 (35 years ago)
New records: Upstairs at Eric's - Yaz; If That's What it Takes - Michael MacDonald; Vacation - The Go-Go's; Shangó - Santana
In the break between recording It's Hard and beginning the North American tour, Pete vacations in Cornwall. While there he demos "Baroque Ippanese" on his TEAC Portastudio. It ultimately appears on Another Scoop.
More Townshend confessionals appear as cover stories in Musician and Record.
On the 14th, Billboard runs an ad for the release of the album Music and Rhythm, a compilation assembled by Peter Gabriel to raise money for the first WOMAD (A World of Music, Arts and Dance) festival. Pete supplies the track "Ascension Two" that features all of the current Who members except Roger.
On the 20th, Roger, without the other members, holds a press conference in New York to announce The Who's upcoming North American tour. He says it will "probably" be the group's last tour because touring is "getting too big" and takes too much time "to make them profitable". However, The Who are not breaking up and will continue to record together.
August 1977 (40 years ago)
New records: Foghat Live - Foghat; Barry White Sings For Someone You Love - Barry White; "It's Ecstasy When You Lay Down Next to Me" - Barry White; Livin' On The Fault Line - The Doobie Brothers
On the 2nd, The Who finalize their control of Shepperton Studios in Surrey for around £350,000. The biggest movie made during The Who's time will be Alien (1979) where the set designers will borrow The Who's stage lasers for a scene in the aliens' nest.
On the 8th, filming of The Kids Are Alright resumes at Keith Moon's Malibu, California home. Shot this day is Keith's refusal to tell the truth. "As you want to hear it? You couldn't afford me", Keith in biker gear with a blow-up sex doll and a scene of Keith and Rick Danko of The Band playing cards. The latter sequence is cut out of the movie at the last moment due to a rights issue.
The 9th is taken up with more Keith interviews and the 10th with views of Keith taking in the nightlife of Los Angeles. The crew ends up at The Pleasure Chest, a sex equipment shop, where Keith dons a leather mask and is interviewed while being whipped by Mary Ann Zabresky.
On the 11th, filming takes place at a pre-birthday celebration at Trancas Restaurant and Bar in Malibu. A stripper pops out of cake and somehow Keith ends up on his back, covered in cake, trying to get his trousers down.
The final day's shooting on the 12th sees Keith wearing a variety of costumes parading up and down the beach followed by a return to his house where Ringo Starr both interviews him and shoots an introduction for the film's trailer.
The shoot goes well except for 'Dougal' Butler who sparks a major row with Keith when he gets a job as a production assistant on the film. Dougal leaves Keith's employ and sees him for the last time.
Late in the month, Keith is videotaped at CBS Studios in Hollywood for Rolling Stone...The Tenth Anniversary special. Keith tells some of his hotel exploits then participates in a sketch in which Steve Martin helps him destroy a hotel room. The later part also appears in the movie The Kids Are Alright.
On the 28th, John produces a session at Ramport Studios for the 74-member Newport Male Voice Choir including his father, Bert. They record "Yesterday," "Bridge Over Troubled Water," "Love Me Tender" and "The Battle Hymn of the Republic." John plays bass on three tracks accompanied by Rod Argent on piano and Moog.
August 1972 (45 years ago)
New records: Summer Breeze - Seals & Crofts; Rock of Ages - The Band; Back Stabbers - The O'Jays; "Everybody Plays the Fool" - The Main Ingredient
Eric Clapton asks Pete to mix the uncompleted tapes of the second Derek and The Dominos album. Pete travels to Eric's home at Hurtwood Edge but finds the tapes too unfinished to complete and Eric too strung out on heroin to finish them. While he tries to think of a way to get Eric clean again, Pete turns Eric's tapes over to Bobby Pridden for cataloging.
On the 3rd, the three-record set Revelations ('A Musical Anthology For Glastonbury Fayre') is released in the U.K. with one Pete solo track, "Classified."
On the 5th, John is interviewed in Record Mirror: "Why the WHO play better in the U.S."
Also on the 5th, Billboard reports that "Join Together" has peaked at #9 on the Swiss charts.
On the 7th, The Who and Glyn Johns go back into the studio to record the last song of the aborted 1972 session, Keith's composition "Waspman."
On the 9th, a Variety article: "Unlicensed doubleheader of Tommy and Superstar blocked in fed court." Track Music had taken legal action to prevent a group of Catholic priests from organizing a live performance of Tommy.
On the 11th, Andy Newman's solo LP Rainbow is released in the U.K. by Track Records. Pete is listed as "overseer" and executive producer.
Also on the 11th, The Who and opening act Golden Earring travel to the Festhalle in Frankfurt, Germany to begin a European tour. It is The Who's first concert in seven months, their longest time off the stage to that date. The as-yet unreleased songs "Long Live Rock" and "Relay" are premiered. Pete does his leap and slide across the stage, only to find he has forgotten to put on his protective kneepads.
The next night, a less mobile Townshend performs with The Who at the Ernst-Merck Halle in Hamburg on the 12th. Black-and-white footage from backstage is shot by RAI television and a sequence is used in the finale of The Kids Are Alright.
Keith flies back to London the next day to film a brief cameo in a warehouse at the Surrey Docks for Ringo Starr's comedy-horror film Count Downe, later retitled Son Of Dracula. Keith is seen miming drums to Harry Nilsson's studio version of "Jump Into the Fire."
Dave Edmunds produces a recording session for the garage band The Flamin' Groovies at Rockfield Studios in Wales. During those sessions, a cover of "I Can't Explain" is recorded but it will not be released until 1977.
On the 12th and 19th, Pete is heard on BBC Radio One's Scene And Heard discussing his forthcoming solo album Who Came First. He also talks about it in a New Musical Express interview on the 19th called "Townshend: pill head mod turned accursed intellectual."
Also on the 19th, Melody Maker prints an interview with Pete entitled "The Eternal Mod." In it, Pete gives the first description of the project that will ultimately become Quadrophenia. He also discusses the 1968 plans for The Who and The Rolling Stones to tour the U.K. on a train in the guise of a carnival that led to the then-unreleased television special The Rolling Stones' Rock 'n' Roll Circus.
The European tour resumes at the Forest National Stadium in Brussels (16th), Oude Rai Auditorium in Amsterdam (17th), KB Hallen in Copenhagen (21st) and the Kungliga Tennishallen in Stockholm (23rd). The press reports The Who come down with food poisoning on the flight to Amsterdam. In Stockholm The Who and their support crew are interviewed and part of the concert is filmed for a Swedish television documentary entitled Roadies.
After this The Who head to the Sandinavium in Gothenburg, Sweden (24th) then back to the KB Hallen in Copenhagen (25th). The two KB Hallen dates in Copenhagen were originally scheduled as a double show on the 21st but the second show was moved to the 25th. At this show Pete plays an early version of "However Much I Booze." Also in Copenhagen, Keith punctures his waterbed, while trying to drag it out of his room, flooding an entire floor of his hotel.
On the 26th, "Join Together" enters Sweden's Tio I Topp charts where it will peak at #16.
August 1967 (50 years ago)
New records: The Byrds' Greatest Hits - The Byrds; "Never My Love" - The Association; "The Letter" - The Box Tops; Vanilla Fudge - Vanilla Fudge
On the 1st, The Who leave their Holiday Inn rooms in Jackson, Mississippi to accompany Pete's friend and now official band photographer Tom Wright for a promotional shoot. Garbed in their stage outfits, the band strikes poses while Tom sets off smoke bombs for atmosphere.
That night at the Mississippi State Coliseum, The Who continue their tour opening for Herman's Hermits. In honor of their location, they do a one-time-only cover of Nancy Sinatra's hit song "Jackson." After the show, Tom takes Pete to a local doctor who stitches up his finger that he had sliced to the bone doing windmills. The doctor says Pete won't be able to play for a month. Pete replies that he'll just glue his pick to the bandage.
From there it's off to the Dane County Memorial Coliseum in Madison, Wisconsin (3rd), Rosenblatt Stadium in Omaha, Nebraska (4th) and International Amphitheatre in Chicago (5th).
The 6th and 7th is spent in New York at Talentmasters Studio. Al Kooper joins The Who on organ to record two versions of "Mary Anne With The Shaky Hand." One is released on the B-side of the U.S. "I Can See For Miles" while the other remains in the vaults until the 1995 edition of The Who Sell Out. Also recorded is a studio version of "Summertime Blues," an organ overdub on "Relax" performed by Pete and new vocals to replace the guide vocals on "I Can See For Miles." One song that hasn't yet been released is "Bob Sings Soul," featuring a lead vocal by Bobby Pridden.
From the studio, The Who head out to Long Island on the evening of the 7th to rejoin the tour at the Westbury Music Fair followed by the Maple Leaf Gardens in Toronto (9th), the Civic Center in Baltimore (11th) and the Convention Hall in Asbury Park, New Jersey (12th). Before the show Keith jumps off a pier into heavy surf and almost drowns.
Meanwhile, in England, The Who face their first competitor in the race to record the first rock opera. On the 12th, Keith West's single "Excerpt from a Teenage Opera" enters the U.K. charts and becomes a surprise hit, peaking at #2.
Also on the 12th, Billboard reports that Atco is re-releasing "Substitute" backed with "Waltz For A Pig" to capitalize on The Who's tour. The 17 month-old single doesn't work as it again fails to hit the U.S. charts.
Back down the coast The Who play Constitution Hall in Washington, D.C (13th). Afterwards, Pete and John race to the nearby Ambassador to catch Jimi Hendrix's set. When Hendrix spies Pete and John in the audience, he launches into a cover of "I Can't Explain".
It's then on to the Rhode Island Auditorium in Providence (14th) and then fly down to Chattanooga, Tennessee. The flight turns into a nightmare as one of the plane's engines catches on fire. The plane nose-dives before righting and lands in Chattanooga on a foam-covered runway. Supposedly, Pete writes the song "Glow Girl" while waiting to land.
As soon as their hands stop shaking, The Who are sent up to Bradley's Barn studio in Nashville. On the 15th they record brass overdubs onto "Someone's Coming" and some vocal overdubs, possibly on "Our Love Was" and "Relax".
On the 15th, the Marine Broadcasting Act becomes law making it illegal to operate offshore "pirate" radio stations like Radio London.
Meanwhile Beat Instrumental magazine begins running a column written by Keith in every month's issue until November.
On the 17th, The Who return to Chattanooga to perform at Memorial Auditorium. Also on the bill is Neil Diamond. Who manager Kit Lambert is that day at Columbia Recording Studio in Hollywood, California mixing the mono masters for "Mary Anne With The Shaky Hand" (U.S. single version), "Summertime Blues," "Someone's Coming" and "Relax."
On the 18th, The Who were supposed to play a headlining show at The Big Moose Showcase in Lorain, Ohio. It is canceled by Dick Clark, who didn't want The Who appearing near Cleveland so close to the Herman's Hermits date on the 31st.
On the 20th the tour makes a 2:30pm stop in Fargo, North Dakota and another show 235 miles away at 7:30pm in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Back across the border on the 21st to the New Edmonton Gardens in Edmonton, Alberta then on the 22nd to Winnipeg Arena in Manitoba. Finally the 23rd brings them to Atwood Stadium in Flint, Michigan.
During the afternoon of the 23rd Keith and The Who are photographed outside the Holiday Inn which is advertising the fact that Keith is this day 21 years old. Keith then stops by WTAC-AM to bring birthday cake to the local DJ's. The Who apparently get into a mood onstage that evening, describing Flint as a "dump" and cursing in front of the attending teenyboppers.
The night that follows the show becomes one of the most famous and notorious nights in The Who's history. Unfortunately the reality doesn't quite match the legend. Premier Drums and Decca Records provide a cake for a celebration of Keith's 21st birthday at the Holiday Inn. The revelries turn into a food fight with the cake and then extends to the parking lot as cars are sprayed with fire extinguisher foam. When a sheriff comes to stop the shenanigans, Keith slips on some of the cake (or, according to Tom Wright, falls off the diving board into an swimming pool surprisingly empty in the middle of August) and knocks out a tooth.
The sheriff takes Keith for emergency dental surgery accompanied by Pete and John. With time and imagination Keith amplifies this story into a full-scale bacchanalia highlighted by his deposit of a Cadillac into the hotel swimming pool and a lifetime ban on The Who's presence in Holiday Inns worldwide (if this happens it is quickly rescinded; The Who will stay at Holiday Inns on their 1968 tour). The only confirmed results are some cars with paint damage, a ruined carpet, and a $5000 bill (or $50,000 depending on the source) paid by Decca as a blanket coverage for damage.
The night of the 24th, a groggy Keith climbs back into the drum seat at the Civic Center Convention Hall in Philadelphia. The next night the tour is at the Kiel Opera House in St. Louis, Missouri followed by another double header on the 26th at Fort William Gardens, Fort William, Ontario and a night time concert at Duluth Arena in Duluth, Minnesota 200 miles away. Off to the east on the 27th to play the Music Hall in Cincinnati, Ohio then ping-ponging back to Sioux Falls Arena in Sioux Falls, South Dakota on the 28th. Get to the plane for a 1200-mile trip to play two shows at Municipal Auditorium in Atlanta (29th), then back on for another 1000 miles to the War Memorial Auditorium in Rochester, NY (30th). The month ends at the Public Music Hall in Cleveland, Ohio (31st). The last show features as opening act local band The Choir. Three of the members will later form a group highly influenced by the early Who, The Raspberries.
August 1962 (55 years ago)
New records: "Telstar" - The Tornados; "Sherry" - The Four Seasons; "Teen Age Idol" - Rick Nelson; "You'll Lose a Good Thing" - Barbara Lynn
The Paradise Club in Peckham is "broken up" by members of a rival club and The Detours lose their bookings there.
On the 9th, Pete's mom Betty reads an article in the Ealing and Acton Gazette about Bob Druce's successful dances at Acton's White Hart Hotel. She pressures Druce for an audition for her son's group. Druce agrees and The Detours audition for him at the Oldfield Hotel in Greenford. They pass the audition and are signed to the Druce agency.
Got anything wrong?
E-mail me by clicking HERE
JANUARY FEBRUARY MARCH APRIL MAY JUNE JULY 2011 2010 2006 2005 2001 2000 1996 1995 1991 1990 1986 1985 1981 1980 1976 1975 1971 1970 1966 1965
Tweets by @BrianInAtlanta
The Who 2017
The Who Live at the Isle of Wight 2004
The Who are going South!
The My Generation LP gets the Super Deluxe treatment 5 CD's, hardcover book, previously unreleased Pete Townshend demos
The Who In The City by Ian Snowball. In depth look at The Who's history and locations within the City of London.
Who Are You? The Life & Death of Keith Moon by Jim McCarthy and Marc Olivent. The life of Keith in graphic novel form.
There Is No Substitute: A Tribute To Keith Moon by Ian Snowball. The art and style of The Who's irreplacable drummer.
The Who's Official Website
As always, thanks to
A note about photographs: