Last updated Feb. 8, 2024

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January 1973

New records: Don't Shoot Me I'm Only the Piano Player - Elton John; Aerosmith - Aerosmith; Greetings from Asbury Park, NJ - Bruce Springsteen; "Daniel" - Elton John
Who Russell Harty Staged Photo

On the 3rd, The Who tape an appearance on Russell Harty Plus at London Weekend Television Studios. After The Who mime (with live vocals) their way through their new single "Relay," Pete "accidentally" tips over his speaker stack and the fun begins as Keith and Pete, with some help from Roger and John, quickly take over the interview. Host Harty later says he learned that "if your body should become a battleground, it is better to lie back and enjoy it." Clips from this show help enliven the movie The Kids Are Alright while "Relay" later appears on the Who's Better Who's Best laserdisc and VCD.

Pop star fined on shotgun charge

On the 10th, Keith appears in Chertsey Court were he pleads guilty to possessing a firearm without a license. The firearm in question is an antique shotgun that Keith says was left at his house by the former owners. He is fined £15, which he offers to pay with his American Express card.

Eric Clapton at Rainbow Concert
Photo: Barrie Wentzel

On the 13th, Pete drags Eric Clapton back into the limelight with two shows at The Rainbow Theatre in London. Pete had discovered Clapton's heroin addiction the previous August and devises a scheme with Clapton's girlfriend's father, Lord Harlech, to force Clapton to work so he can escape his narcotic-induced seclusion. The concerts are staged as part of the celebration of Britain joining the Common Market. Eric and Pete are joined on stage by Ron Wood, Steve Winwood, Jim Karstein, Jim Capaldi and Rick Grech. Clapton is late but manages to make it through both shows that are recorded by Glyn Johns and later released on the album Eric Clapton's Rainbow Concert.

On the 15th, Keith flies to Paris to accept the Grand Prix de l'Académie du Disque Français for Pete. The award is for both the Tommy album and a stage production.

Roger, having recorded an album for Leo Sayer at the studio he has built on his estate, begins recording his first solo album there. Sayer writes the songs for the album with his partner Dave Courtney.

Ellis LP - US

On the 17th, the group Ellis have their album produced by Roger, Riding on the Crest of a Slump, released in the U.S.

On the 19th, Keith is a guest on BBC Radio One's Roundtable. For some reason known only to him, he reads from the book Eating In Africa.

Dave Carlsen - Pale Horse LP

On the 23rd, Keith has another guest spot, this time as a drummer on songwriter Dave Clarke's album Pale Horse recorded under the pseudonym "Dave Carlsen." Recruited at The Speakeasy, Keith plays on "Death On A Pale Horse" and another track that doesn't make the finished album. The session ends abruptly after Keith gets in an argument with the studio manager.

Made in Japan UK 45 label

On the 26th, John and his new solo band Rigor Mortis release the single "Made In Japan" backed with "Hound Dog" in the U.K. The launch party is held in a Japanese steak house in Soho. The single fails to chart.

On the 29th, The Who tape their appearance on BBC-2's TV programme The Old Grey Whistle Test. The show opens with a mimed version of "Relay" with live vocals that runs noticeably longer than the released single. Later they play the as yet unreleased "Long Live Rock." Pete and Roger trade vocals and a high kick from Pete lands him on his back. The audio from the show is released in 2000 on the CD BBC Sessions and "Relay" appears on the DVD The Old Grey Whistle Test, Vol. 2.

February 1973

New records: Aloha from Hawaii via Satellite - Elvis Presley; Billion Dollar Babies - Alice Cooper; 16 Greatest Hits - Steppenwolf; "Tie a Yellow Ribbon Round the Ole Oak Tree" - Dawn featuring Tony Orlando
The Who Relay Dutch picture sleeve

On the 3rd, "Relay" enters the Dutch charts where it peaks at #28.

On the 4th, Keith and Viv Stanshall are last minute replacement performers at the Lanchester Arts Festival. Backed by Nigerian musician Gaspar Lawal and support band Necromandus, the duo perform wholly improvised noise as the angry audience boos and demands refunds.

Spanish picture sleeve of New Seekers 45

On the 10th, Billboard reports The New Seekers' cover of "Pinball Wizard/See Me, Feel Me" as a new single. It ultimately reaches #29 in Billboard, #21 in Cash Box and #16 in Britain. The same issue also reports that John Entwistle's single "I Wonder"/"Who Cares", taken from Whistle Rymes, has been released in the U.S. It does not reach the charts.

Melody Maker 10 Feb 1973

Also on the 10th, Pete tells Melody Maker he is suffering from writer's block that is keeping him from finishing the Quadrophenia project. He also says that to record it properly, The Who may have to build its own studio; In addition, Pete says he does not think highly of Who's Next and admits that the plots in his musical stories are often weak.

Pete was to have appeared with the London Symphony Orchestra at Radio City Music Hall on the 11th for a charity concert followed by three nights at Nassau Coliseum, Long Island. However, Pete could only commit for the charity show and the rest of the London cast was unavailable so the concerts are canceled.

Billy Nicholls Forevers No Time At All 45

On the 16th, Billy Nicholls' "Forever's No Time At All" backed with "This Song Is Green," is released by Track in the U.K. The A-side was previously released on Pete's solo album Who Came First and is the only single released from that album. It features Pete on synthesized flute. The B-side credits Pete as recording engineer. The single fails to chart.

On the 21st, Keith Moon returns from vacation in Gibraltar.

On the 24th comes the start of a two-part interview with Pete conducted by Charles Shaar Murray in New Musical Express. Pete details how he got Eric Clapton to play at the Rainbow Concert the month before.

The Who getting gold for Orchestral Tommy

On the 28th, The Who minus Pete gather in London at the offices of A&M to receive gold records for the orchestral version of Tommy.

March 1973

New records: The Dark Side of The Moon - Pink Floyd; Houses of the Holy - Led Zeppelin; The Best of Bread - Bread; The Captain and Me - The Doobie Brothers

On the 1st, John attends the Melody Maker Awards at the Savoy Hotel in London.

On the 3rd, The Who inspect their newly built recording studio "The Kitchen", or as it is officially known, Ramport Studios. The 16-track mixing console is found wanting and the band arranges for Ronnie Lane's Mobile Studio to be brought in so work on the new album can begin.

On the 5th and 6th, The Who rehearse at the Sundown Theatre in Edmonton for their upcoming festival date.

Ad for Popgala 1973

The festival date arrives on the 10th, at the Popgala festival at Sporthal de Vliegermolen, Voorburg, The Netherlands. They are a last minute replacement for Roxy Music. As the first time they have played together live in 6 months, their performance is erratic. Naturally, this is the concert that gets recorded for Dutch television and becomes one of the few visual records of a Who concert during the 1971-1973 period. Part of "Magic Bus" later appears on the Who's Better Who's Best video and "My Generation" on the 30 Years Of Maximum R&B video.

On the 12th, Roger is back in London taping an appearance on The Old Grey Whistle Test (BBC-2) to promote his first solo album, performing "Giving It All Away" and "One Man Band" The show airs the following day.

Sometime during the month, Pete records the demo for "Bell Boy".

Spanish picture sleeve for Roger Daltrey's Giving It All Away

On the 16th, Roger's first solo single, "Giving It All Away" backed with "The Way Of The World" is released in the U.K. by Track Records. It zooms up to #5 on the charts becoming the first solo success by a member of The Who and giving Roger more power within the group.

On the 17th, Roger does more promotion, interviewed by Anne Nightingale on Radio One's Scene and Heard.

On the 18th, Keith is rushed to St. Peter's Hospital in Chertsey after a "magic wand gun" he is playing with fires a pellet, striking him in the chest.

On the 19th, Pete records Jon Otway and Wild Willy Barrett performing "Bluey Green (Dreams of You)".

On the 20th, Pete records his demo for "Is It Me? (Sorry for Me, Sorry for Him)". On the 25th he finishes the demo for "Finale" for Quadrophenia.

On the 29th, Roger makes a live appearance on Top Of The Pops, performing his new hit single.

Hommy a Latin Opera

Also on the 29th, a new latin/rock opera makes its debut at Carnegie Hall in New York. Hommy, tells the story of a deaf, mute, and blind conga player. Written by Larry Harlow and Jenaro (Heny) Alvarez, it features such songs as "El Dia de Navidad" and "Soy Sensacional".

Keith Moon as Uncle Ernie Australia 1973

On the 31st, Keith becomes the first member of The Who to return to Australia after the disastrous 1968 tour. He is there to play Uncle Ernie in the Antipodean production of the orchestral version of Tommy at the Myer Music Bowl in Melbourne. The show is delayed from the night before because of rain. Roger had been offered the lead role but refused to go.

April 1973

New records: 1967-1970 - The Beatles; 1962-1966 - The Beatles; Behind Closed Doors - Charlie Rich; Desperado - The Eagles

On the 1st, the Australian production of the orchestral Tommy plays at the Royal Randwick Racecourse in Sydney, Australia. For this show, Keith is replaced in his role as Uncle Ernie by Ian "Molly" Meldrum.

Melody Maker 7 Apr '73

On the 7th, Chris Charlesworth interviews Roger for Melody Maker. Roger denies that The Who are breaking up.

Willie and The Lapdog LP

Also on the 7th, Gallagher and Lyle's LP Willie and The Lapdog is released in the U.K. It features Pete playing bass harmonica on the song "Give The Boy A Break."

Keith Moon 8 Apr 1973
Photo: “Dougal” Butler

On the 8th, Keith returns from Australia via Singapore. When he gets home, his wife Kim breaks the news to him that she has miscarried the couple's second child.

Keith and Kim Moon at premiere

On the 12th, Keith and his wife Kim attend the premiere of the movie That'll Be The Day at the ABC-2 cinema in Shaftesbury Avenue in London. Keith has a small role in the film as a drummer named J.D. Clover and Billy Fury, as singer Stormy Tempest, sings a fifties-style version of "Long Live Rock." Pete also attends the premiere and afterwards berates Keith for not telling him that the plot resembles his recently scripted Quadrophenia.

On 13th, Roger appears as a guest on BBC Radio 1's Roundtable promoting his forthcoming first solo album Daltrey. More promotion follows on the 14th as Roger is interviewed in New Musical Express. "I think Pete'd be only too pleased if my album wasn't successful." The article also reports that The Who's new Ramport Studios is near completion and Pete is halfway through writing the songs for the next album, "a concept album."

Keith Moon on Europa

On the 19th, Keith appears in a filmed segment on the BBC-2 TV programme Europa, discussing pinball with Derek Hart.

Daltrey UK LP

On the 20th, Roger Daltrey releases his first solo album, Daltrey, in the U.K. Chris Charlesworth gives the album, a collection of soft-rock tunes penned by Leo Sayer and Dave Courtney, a rave review in Melody Maker. The album reaches #6 in the U.K. charts.

Meanwhile in New Musical Express, Tony Stewart raves for John's third solo album Rigor Mortis Sets In: "The only things stiff about this set were the drinks consumed during the recording."

Murder Man UK 45

Also on the 20th, John Otway & Wild Willy Barrett release their single "Murder Man" backed with "If I Did" on Track Records in the U.K. Pete both produces and plays bass. It also does not chart.

On the 21st, Melody Maker, in an assessment of Britain's major rock groups, gives The Who a "cautious" outlook saying they "said everything with their third single."

On the 22nd, the programme Roadies, featuring The Who and their performance in Stockholm August 23rd, 1972, is shown on Swedish TV.

On Easter Sunday, the 23rd, Keith plays in a charity football match as a member of "The Ducks" against Monty Python's Flying Football Circus at Payne & Co. Sports Ground, Croyden, Surrey. In the second half, Keith drives a Rolls Royce into the opposition's net and sets up a portable bar at the goalmouth. The final score is 4-1 Pythons and £1,300 is raised for a local homeless shelter.

On the 24th, Roger is interviewed at his farm in Burwash for BBC Radio 1's Scene and Heard (broadcast 27 April). John is interviewed for the same programme on the 27th (broadcast 4 May).

May 1973

New music releases: Tubular Bells - Mike Oldfield; Now & Then - The Carpenters; There Goes Rhymin' Simon - Paul Simon; "Smoke on the Water" - Deep Purple
Outside Stargroves May 1973
Photo: Pete Townshend

Who manager and former record producer Kit Lambert meets with The Who at Mick Jagger's mansion Stargroves to structure the story and record demo versions of the songs for Quadrophenia. Pete later recalls he showed up "smashed...he scribbled his usually incomprehensible notes on the tape boxes and stopped our engineer Ron Nevison doing his job. At the end of the second week I sacked him, coming very close to punching him." It is the last time Lambert works directly with The Who.

On the 4th, John's interview on BBC Radio 1's Scene and Heard is broadcast.

Sandy Denny LP

On the 5th, Sandy Denny, former lead singer for Fairport Convention and "The Nurse" on the 1972 Orchestral version of Tommy, goes into A&M Studios in Los Angeles to record her new solo album Like an Old-Fashioned Waltz. One of the tracks, "Friends," tells of her unrequited feelings for Pete.

Also on the 5th, Keith Moon is interviewed in Sounds magazine. He denies he is bored waiting for The Who to start working again and rejects the idea of doing a comedy solo album: "I was a bit dubious about the idea. So much of what I do is purely visual. I just can't imagine doing eight million ways of falling over, for instance, on record. I feel that might get rather lost."

Rigor Mortis Sets In UK LP

On the 11th, John's third solo album John Entwistle's Rigor Mortis Sets In is released in Britain. The album had been delayed because of planned bridges between tracks that would have featured an imitation of BBC children's show character Andy Pandy spitting and vomiting. Melody Maker finds the Pandy-less LP "ideal party music." Nevertheless, the album fails to chart in the U.K.

The U.S. doesn't get John's album this month but does get an advance single, "Made in Japan" backed with "Roller Skate Kate". They don't put it into their music charts.

Daltrey US LP

On the 19th, Roger's solo album Daltrey and accompanying single "Giving It All Away" backed with "The Way Of The World" are released in the U.S. Circus dubs the album "a pleasant surprise" and Rolling Stone calls it "a superbly produced and written album." The album peaks at #45, the single at #83 in the Billboard charts and #60 in Cash Box.

That'll Be The Day Soundtrack LP

On the 25th, the soundtrack to That'll Be the Day is released in the U.K. by Ronco Records. It features a recording of "Long Live Rock" with Billy Fury on vocals, Keith on drums, Pete and Ron Wood on guitars and Jack Bruce on bass. Keith shares a "Music Supervisor" credit with Neil Aspinall. "Long Live Rock" is also released as a maxi-single on Ronco in the U.K.

Also on the 25th, John stops by on BBC Radio 1's show Roundtable.

June 1973

New music releases: Janis Joplin's Greatest Hits - Janis Joplin; "Dream On" - Aerosmith; "Let's Get It On" - Marvin Gaye; Chicago VI - Chicago
Pete Townshend and Keith Moon listen to Quadrophenia playback
Photo: Robert Ellis

On the 1st, primary recording for the Quadrophenia album begins at The Kitchen (later Ramport Studios) in Battersea using Ronnie Lane's Mobile Studio. The first song laid to tape is "Bell Boy."

On the 2nd, Keith arrives at the BBC straight from Ron Wood's birthday party to record his radio show. He has to be carried in by his minder "Dougal" Butler and has some difficulty reading his lines.

Roger Daltrey at Quadrophenia recording
Photo: Robert Ellis

On the 8th, the recording of "Love, Reign O'er Me" is finished after having been left incomplete during the May 1972 sessions. Also recorded this month is "Drowned" for which director Ken Russell is present. Both he and Pete later recall that during the recording of this song, a massive rainstorm led to the flooding of the studio. Guest pianist Chris Stainton was in a glass booth performing while the booth gradually filled with water. At the end of the session, the booth was opened and the water came flooding out. Russell was present to confer with Pete on the script he was then writing for the Tommy movie.

John Entwistle Rigor Mortis Sets In US LP

On the 9th, John's third solo album John Entwistle's Rigor Mortis Sets In is released in the U.S. The cover is inverted from the European release. John and company get thumbs up in Crawdaddy, Zoo World and Stereo Review. The album peaks at #174 in the U.S. Billboard charts. A single, "Made In Japan"/"Roller Skate Kate" is released simultaneously to no avail.

Also on the 9th, The Who gather at the Rainbow Theatre in north London for filmmaker Peter Neal to take stop-frame images of the band to project behind them during their live performances. Pete had hired Neal after seeing his film work projected behind Jethro Tull during the live performance of their concept album A Passion Play.

On the 11th, John and Rigor Mortis tape an appearance on The Old Grey Whistle Test for BBC2 performing "Peg Leg Peggy" and "My Wife." The programme is broadcast the following evening.

Jimi Hendrix movie poster

On the 14th, the film Jimi Hendrix, which begins with a 1972 interview with Pete, premiers at the Warner West End in Leicester Square.

Pete's comic song "We Close Tonight" is recorded on the 20th. It is dropped from Quadrophenia and does not surface until the 1998 re-issue of Odds And Sods. On the 27th, "5:15" is recorded.

Quadrophenia June mix tape box

A rough stereo mix of at least part of Quadrophenia is assembled on the 28th. The album tracks are "Can You See The Real Me?", "Punk In The Gutter", "Drowned", "Dirty Jobs", "We Close Tonight", "Quadrophenia" (a/k/a "Four Faces"), "5:15", "Dr. Jimmy & Mr. Jim", "Russian Dance", "Is It In My Head".

On the 29th, overdubs for "We Close Tonight" and new Roger vocals for "Drowned" and "Love Reign O'er Me" are recorded.

July 1973

New music releases: Elvis - Elvis Presley; "We're an American Band" - Grand Funk Railroad; Foreigner - Cat Stevens; We're an American Band - Grand Funk

From the 2nd through the 5th, The Who begin work on their new live show featuring Quadrophenia during rehearsals at the Sundown Theatre in Edmonton. Meanwhile further recording, mostly of overdubs and vocals, continues unabated throughout the month.

On the 4th, Keith attends David Bowie's 'retirement' party for Ziggy Stardust at the Café Royal in Regent Street.

John Entwistle at Quadrophenia recording
Photo: Pete Townshend

On the 5th, John begins to record his horn overdubs for Quadrophenia, beginning with "Cut My Hair" and "Dr. Jimmy".

On the 7th, Keith tapes his last appearance on the A Touch Of The Moon radio series at the BBC. Melody Maker runs an article about it, telling readers to "Tune To Radio Moon!"

The Who Collection Japan LP

The double LP Who retrospective Perfect Collection is released in Japan.

U.S. Promo 45 of Murder Man

John Otway & Wild Willy Barrett's single "Murder Man" backed with "If I Do," featuring bass and production by Pete, is released in the U.S. It fails to chart.

Quadrophenia thunder tape

On the 17th, Quadrophenia overdubbing takes place at Ramport Studios in South London. Roger completes his vocal for "Love Reign O'er Me." A roaring thunderstorm comes up providing realistic sound effects that are recorded by a roadie standing outside the studio under an umbrella.

On the 18th, Ken Russell's script for the movie version of Tommy is completed.

On the 19th, footage is shot by AIOK Films' Dave Speechly at Shepperton Studios for use as a backdrop during upcoming Who shows.

Roger Daltrey I'm Free German PS

On the 20th, Roger's solo single "I'm Free" backed with "Overture (From Tommy)," both sides from The London Symphony Orchestra's Tommy, is released. It peaks at #13 in the U.K. charts. Shortly after this release, Roger has to take time off from working on Quadrophenia after contracting German measles from a Who roadie. He stays in quarantine at home until he is non-contagious.

Keith spends the 21st through the 23rd in Frankfurt, Germany introducing concerts by The Faces.

MBBB part 2 listing

On the 25th, Mike Shaw of Track Records writes The Who with the lineup for a proposed "Meaty Beaty Big and Bouncy Volume 2" LP for November release. The tracks are: "Join Together", "I'm Free", "Let's See Action", "Baba O'Riley", "Magic Bus (Leeds)", "Heaven & Hell", "Won't Get Fooled Again", "Behind Blue Eyes", "I Don't Even Know Myself", "Relay", "Young Man Blues (studio)". The album is never released, perhaps because of the late release of Quadrophenia.

Yvonne Elliman I Can't Explain PS

On the 27th, Yvonne Elliman's cover of "I Can't Explain," with lead guitar by Pete, is released as a single in the U.K. backed with "Hawaii." It fails to chart at the time but succeeds when it is sampled by DJ Fatboy Slim for his 1997 hit "Going Out of My Head".

On the 30th, photographer Ethan Russell writes a list of requirements for locations to shoot the pictures for the booklet meant to accompany Quadrophenia.

On the 31st, Anne Nightingale interviews Keith for BBC Radio 1's Scene And Heard broadcast on August 2. On the same day "Four Faces" (under the name "Quadrophenia") and "We Close Tonight" are officially dropped from the album.

August 1973

New music releases: Goat's Head Soup - The Rolling Stones; American Graffiti - Original Soundtrack; (Pronounced 'Leh-'nérd 'Skin-'nérd) - Lynyrd Skynyrd; Killing Me Softly - Roberta Flack
Pete Townshend and Ron Nevison mixing Quadrophenia

During the first week, preliminary stereo mixes of Quadrophenia are prepared.

On the 7th, rushes from a film shot in July at Shepperton by AIOK Films' Dave Speechly are shown at De Lane Lea Studios. The Who are considering a film background for the Quadrophenia tour but never manage to find a way to get a screen manufactured that would be large enough.

On the 9th, a demo mix of Side A of Quadrophenia is prepared with "Is It In My Head?" instead of "The Punk and the Godfather". On the 10th the "me, me, me, me" effect at the end of "The Real Me" is created.

Also on the 10th, a promotional film for Roger's performance of "I'm Free" with the London Symphony Orchestra airs on Top Of The Pops. It was shot at Roger's farm.

11 Aug 1973 NME

On the 11th, Barbara Charone files a report for New Musical Express on the recording of Quadrophenia. She says "Tommy can rest quietly in his grave."

Quadrophenia 15 Aug 1973 Side 2

On the 15th, the initial stereo master of Quadrophenia is completed. The track order and names are: Side 1: "Can You See The Real Me", "Cut My Hair", "Drowned", "Quadrophenia", Side 2: "Punk in the Gutter", "Dirty Jobs", "Russian Dance", "I've Had Enough", Side 3: "5:15", "Sea and Sand", "I'm One", "Bell Boy", Side 4: "Dr. Jimmy", "Love Reign O'er Me", "Finale (The Rock)".

John, meanwhile, prepares stereo mixes of "Postcard," "Now I'm A Farmer," "I Don't Even Know Myself," "Water," "Naked Eye," "Pure and Easy," and "Too Much Of Anything" as potential tracks for Odds and Sods at Ramport and Nova Sound Studios.

Daredevil Oct 1973

In the latest issue of Marvel's Daredevil (dated Oct), Matt Murdock speaks up for his favorite opera.

The Who rehearsal Aug. 1973

On the 17th, The Who begin stage rehearsals for the Quadrophenia tour at Emerson, Lake, and Palmer's rehearsal studio, Manticore, at 396-400 North End Road, Fulham, South West London. Filmmaker Peter Neal and his crew take photos also intended to be projected on a screen behind the band as they perform.

On the 21st, Keith's radio series A Touch Of The Moon premiers on BBC Radio 1 at 11:02pm.

Roger Daltrey I'm Free picture sleeve

On the 20th, Roger's solo single "I'm Free" backed with "Overture (From Tommy)," both sides from The London Symphony Orchestra's Tommy, is released. It peaks at #13 in the U.K. charts.

Keith spends the 21st through the 23rd in Frankfurt, Germany introducing concerts by The Faces.

The Who in Quadrophenia booklet
Photo: Ethan Russell

On the 24th, the Who, some "mod girls" models, and Terry Kennett as "Jimmy" assemble at 5am outside the Hammersmith Odeon for the photograph of themselves intended for the Quadrophenia booklet. Kennett is a paint sprayer who got the job of portraying Quadrophenia's hero after Pete spotted him in The Butcher's Arms pub near The Who's Ramport Studios. Ethan Russell takes this photograph as well as the others that appear in the booklet.

Terry Kennett aboard Vespa
Photo: Graham Hughes

From there they go to Graham Hughes' studio to shoot the album's cover. After filming Kennett aboard the Vespa, The Who are treated to individual studio shots to be placed into the mirrors on the bike.

On the 25th, a press release announces that Tommy will be made into a film the next year. It will be directed by Ken Russell and The Who will appear in acting roles.

September 1973

New music releases: "Goodbye Yellow Brick Road" - Elton John; "The Way We Were" - Barbra Steisand; "Let Me Be There" - Olivia Newton-John; "Y Viva España" - Sylvia (Vrethammar)

On the 6th, a group meeting of The Who is held at the offices of Goodman, Michaels, and Rosten at Sparc House, 86 Gloucester Place, London. Roger announces that he has had an independent accounting survey made of The Who's managers Kit Lambert and Chris Stamp and has found significant mismanagement and fraud. Roger follows it with an ultimatum: either they go or he goes. This sparks a three-year financial war between The Who and their management and a long-simmering antagonism between Roger and Pete, the latter trying to delay the severing of ties to The Who's management for as long as he can.

On the 11th, Keith is ordered to appear at the Surrey Petty Sessions in Chertsey to answer why he has yet to pay the fine levied the previous January.

Roger Daltrey Thinking UK 45

On the 14th, the second single from Roger's solo album Daltrey, "Thinking" backed with the non-LP track "There Is Love," is released. "There Is Love" features Jimmy Page on guitar. The single fails to chart.

John Entwistle Do The Dangle PS

John and his band Rigor Mortis release the single "Do The Dangle" backed with "Gimme That Rock 'N' Roll" in France. It comes from their album Rigor Mortis Sets In.

John continues work on the Odds and Sods album. The current line-up for tracks is "Little Billy," "Postcard," "Join Together" (a six-minute version), "Don't Know Myself," "Pure And Easy," "Long Live Rock," "Water," "Naked Eye," "Now I'm A Farmer," and "Put The Money Down."

On the 19th, Roger records his appearance on Top Of The Pops miming a performance of "Thinking" while playing an acoustic guitar.

On the 16th, the final stereo mix of Quadrophenia is put on 15ips tape.

On the 27th, Keith is invited on this date to make a personal appearance at the Fender Soundhouse opening on Tottenham Court Road. "THE AIM IS TO STOP TRAFFIC IN TOTTENHAM COURT ROAD - I thought this would appeal to you."

Eric Clapton's Rainbow Concert LP

On the 28th, Eric Clapton's Rainbow Concert, recorded live that January with Pete on rhythm guitar, is released. It is mixed and produced by The Who's soundman Bob Pridden. In the Billboard charts it reaches #18, but fails to chart in the U.K.

Mandy and Kim Moon 1973
Photo: Peter Butler

On the 29th, Keith's wife Kim, finally having had enough of his insane way of living, leaves him and takes their seven year old daughter, Mandy. It makes the London papers the next day.

October 1973

New music releases: Goodbye Yellow Brick Road - Elton John; "The Joker" - The Steve Miller Band; "Jolene" - Dolly Parton; Jonathan Livingston Seagull - Neil Diamond

On the 2nd, The Daily Mail breaks the story of Keith and Kim's separation. On the same day The Who record a new backing track for "5:15" for their Top of The Pops appearance. The Musician's Union insists on a new recording and goes so far as to send a representative to the session to make sure The Who do not cheat.

The Who on Top of the Pops 1973
Photo: Chris Walter

On the 3rd, The Who record the visual part of their appearance for the following evening's broadcast of Top of The Pops 500th Edition. The audience is made up of celebrities and industry people. Angered at the bureaucracy imposed on their performance, Pete smashes his guitar and gives the BBC industry people in the audience the finger while Keith throws wigs from the prop department. A lifetime BBC ban on The Who is imposed until a letter of apology is sent and accepted. An edited version of the taping airs the following night.

515 PS
German picture sleeve

On the 5th, "5.15," from the new album Quadrophenia, is released in the U.K. The flip side is a 1970 studio recording of "Water" that John had recently mixed for the Odds and Sods project. Roy Carr in New Musical Express calls it the "most dynamic single of the year" while Chris Welch in Melody Maker say it "sounds a lot like The Stones, vocals aside." The single will ultimately reach #20 on the charts.

On the same day Pete is interviewed about his involvement in the recently released Eric Clapton's Rainbow Concert LP on BBC Radio 1's Rockspeak.

On the 6th, in New Musical Express, Roger discusses the upcoming release of Quadrophenia and preparations for the Tommy movie. He also talks about problems with The Who's business affairs. The next day Roger picks his favorite dozen songs on BBC Radio 1's My Top 12.

Alfred Moon

On the 9th, Keith's father, Alfred "Nobby" Moon, dies of a heart attack at the age of 53.

On the 10th, scheduled rehearsals for the Quadrophenia stage show were to take place for the next three days at D Stage at Shepperton Studios but are postponed. Meanwhile 4-track backing tapes for additional instruments needed for the live Quadrophenia presentation are prepared at the Ronnie Lane Mobile Studio.

On the 15th, an additional five days of rehearsals at Shepperton begin.

Guitar Magazine Dec. 1973

In an interview in Guitar magazine, Pete says that he is not a very good guitar player. On the 19th, Pete again appears on BBC Radio 1's Rockspeak this time discussing Quadrophenia.

Also on the 19th, Quadrophenia is given its airplay premiere on 28 U.S. FM radio stations. It is accompanied by a taped interview with Pete explaining the storyline.

On the 20th, Chris Welch gives an advance review of Quadrophenia in Melody Maker: "...more than an LP, it's a battle cry, and a hammer of heartbeats. For this is a masterpiece - The Who at their greatest yet, sap flowing from the roots of their creation... so real, you can almost taste the HP sauce and smell the fag ash... the kind of project that progressive British rock is all about... like Wagner's 'Ring' cycle, it is exhausting, but richly rewarding."

On the 24th, filmmakers Richard Stanley and Chris Morphet arrive to film that day's Quadrophenia rehearsals at Shepperton. When Roger discovers that, after a run-through of half the show, the cameras have not been rolling, he explodes at the movie crew. A drunken Pete goes after Roger, poking him in the chest with his finger. Knowing his reaction to physical threats, the roadies grab Roger before he can respond, but Pete tells them to let Roger go. When they do, Pete hits Roger in the arm with his guitar. Roger responds with an uppercut, knocking Pete out cold on the floor. Roger accompanies Pete to the hospital, terrified that he has killed him. The attempt to film The Who performing Quadrophenia is canceled permanently.

Also on the 24th, Quadrophenia is played in its entirety on New York radio.

Quadrophenia LP

The massive Quadrophenia double album is released in the U.K. on the 26th. However the initial run sells out quickly and, due to a shortage of vinyl caused by the OPEC oil embargo, additional copies are not pressed for another week and a half.

Also on the 26th, part two of Pete's interview about Quadrophenia is broadcast on Rockspeak.

Love Reign Oer Me US ad

On the 27th, Quadrophenia is released in U.S. at the same time as a single version of "Love, Reign O'er Me" with a different mix from the album. The B-side is "Water." The album peaks at #2 in the U.S. charts but the single reaches only #76 in the Billboard charts and #54 in Cash Box.

On the same day Charles Shaar Murray reviews Quadrophenia in New Musical Express: "...musically, some of it jars. A few of the more extravagant production touches, even after a half-dozen listens, sound about as comfortable as marzipan icing on a cheeseburger. Also, the band have dubbed on so much synthesizer, keyboard and brass that, at times, one aches just to hear some unalloyed guitar, bass, drums and vocals... isn't intensive listening to two-years-in-the-making double albums antithetical to the spirit of true rock 'n' roll? Personally, I couldn't care less... If you're going to sling it on at a party or walk in and out of the room while it's playing, then you're not going to get a damn thing out of it and you might as well save your £4.30 for other purposes. But if you're prepared to work at getting into Quadrophenia, and let it work at getting into you, then you might just find it the most rewarding musical experience of the year... it's by no means unflawed, but it's a triumph, certainly."

NME 27 Oct 1973

The review is followed by part one of a long interview with Pete about the recording and meaning of Quadrophenia: "...I think the first seed was that I thought that if we couldn't get someone to make a film for us, then, like Frank Zappa, I'd like to do it myself. I'd like to either buy a camera and direct it myself or alternatively, do a kind of movie without pictures..."

The same issue reports that the Royal Albert Hall has again refused to be the venue for that Christmas' all-star orchestral production of Tommy.

Melody Maker 27 Oct 1973

Chris Welch interviews Pete in the Melody Maker of the 27th. Townshend talks about how the failed 1972 album with Glyn Johns led to Quadrophenia, what happens at the end to its hero Jimmy, and lathers praise on John for working "14 hours at a stretch on each number, multi-tracking horns."

On the 28th, The Who open their U.K. tour at the Trentham Gardens in Stoke-on-Trent. For the first and only time with Keith Moon, The Who perform the entirety of Quadrophenia live. Pete has to change guitars twenty times for all the different capo settings the work requires. While The Who are performing, John's white leather jacket is stolen from backstage as well as the flying lady emblem off his Cadillac.

The Who at Wolverhampton 1973

On the 29th, the press are invited to review the new work along with the audience at the Civic Hall in Wolverhampton. Pete tells the crowd that the previous night's performance of Quadrophenia was "bloody horrible" and starting with this show "The Dirty Jobs," "Is It In My Head," and "I've Had Enough" are dropped. Roy Carr in New Musical Express says The Who are just as energetic as when he first saw them eight years before. Chris Charlesworth in Melody Maker finds the Quadrophenia performance a little rough but otherwise successful.

Quadrophenia goes gold

Also on the 29th, the RIAA announces that Quadrophenia has reached gold record status in the U.S.

On the 31st, Pete sends a letter to Mike Shaw at Track requesting that all copies of Quadrophenia for anywhere in the world be mastered in Los Angeles with the original master tapes.

November 1973

New music releases: John Denver's Greatest Hits - John Denver; The Singles 1969-1973 - The Carpenters; "Piano Man" - Billy Joel; Piano Man - Billy Joel
Backstage at Manchester 01-11-73
Photo: Robert Ellis

The British Quadrophenia tour continues on the first and second at King's Hall, Belle Vue, Manchester. Part of this show and backstage material are shot by Richard Stanley and aired the following evening on BBC-1's regional programme Nationwide - Look North. The support group for these shows and the rest of the U.K. tour is pub-rock band Kilburn and The High Roads featuring future star Ian Dury.

On the 2nd, Quadrophenia finally gets a wide release in the U.K. with the second pressing.

David Bowie - Pin Ups

On the 3rd, David Bowie's album Pin Ups hits the British charts. Made up of songs he loved from his early days in the London music scene, it includes covers of "I Can't Explain" and "Anyway, Anyhow, Anywhere." The album reaches the top of the U.K. charts, co-incidentally keeping Quadrophenia from that position.

The Who at Newcastle 1973

On the 5th, the wear on the band caused by the complicated Quadrophenia material explodes into violence on stage. During the performance at the Odeon Theatre in Newcastle, Pete loses it during "5:15" when the tapes come in too slow. He attacks road manager Bobby Pridden, drags him over the soundboard, starts ripping up the tapes, before announcing to the audience that he will never play live again and stalking offstage. The curtain drops only to go back up ten minutes later as The Who with Pete come back onstage, perform a ten-minute jam of "Sea and Sand", and walk off for good.

The next morning's local paper, the Newcastle Evening Chronicle, is headlined: "The Who - A Ridiculous Display Of Unwarranted Violence"

Pete Townshend and Keith Moon on Look North
Photo: Graham Hughes

That evening Pete and Keith appear on the local TV show Look North to apologize for Pete's actions the previous night and to declare that the tour will continue, as it does that evening and the next at Newcastle's Odeon Theatre. The Chronicle, not content to let the matter drop, runs an interview the next day with four girls who felt insulted by Pete's behavior.

In Listener magazine, on the 8th, John Peel declares that Quadrophenia is as much an advance over Tommy as Tommy was of A Quick One.

The Who at Lyceum 1973
Photo: Robert Ellis

On the 11th, the Quadrophenia tour moves to a three-night run at the Lyceum in London. Problems continue as the venue proves to be too small for The Who's gigantic stage rig, eliminating good seats in a venue that already had too few decent sightlines of the stage. This causes a crush to the front resulting in some twenty fans passing out from the pressure. The Who are forced to stop temporarily after the first three numbers so order can be restored.

On the 12th, in Newsweek, Hubert Saal declares Quadrophenia to be one of rock's four great milestones. John Rowntree in Records and Recording calls Quadrophenia The Who's greatest lyrical achievement.

It's a Hard Life picture sleeve
Netherlands picture sleeve

Roger's third single from his first solo album Daltrey, "It's A Hard Life" backed with "One Man Band" is released. It fails to chart.

Dave Carlsen - Pale Horse

Dave Carlsen's LP Pale Horse, featuring Keith drumming on "Death On A Pale Horse," is released. It also fails to chart.

17 Nov 1973 Melody Maker

On the 17th, Melody Maker carries an interview with John in which he discusses his abilities on brass instruments. In the same issue Michael Watts reviews the Nov. 13th show and says audiences seemed unsure during Quadrophenia, with most of the applause given for the old standards. Also, there is a report that both Mick Jagger and David Bowie have turned down roles in the upcoming Tommy film. Eric Clapton is listed as one of the possible stars.

In the beginning of a backlash against the album, Dave Marsh pans Quadrophenia in Creem, wondering how The Who can still remain such a great band while putting out so few successful albums.

Pete Townshend Smash
Photo: Annie Liebowitz

On the 19th, The Who arrive in San Francisco for the start of the North American leg of their tour. Rolling Stone photographer Annie Liebowitz shoots a series of pictures showing Pete smashing a guitar to bits in her photographic studio then showing off the debris and his secret under-pants kneepads.

On the 20th, what Rolling Stone will later dub "The Spooky Tour" begins at the Cow Palace in San Francisco with Lynyrd Skynyrd as the opening act on the tour. Beginning with this show "The Rock" is dropped from the already truncated Quadrophenia set list. They are lucky to get that much done as, before the show, Keith gets dosed with PCP and, after playing groggily throughout the concert, passes out, is revived after a half-hour break, returns and passes out for good during "See Me Feel Me".

Scott Halpin
Photo: Michael Zagaris

Pete calls out for a drummer to replace Keith and 19-year old Scott Halpin is chosen from the audience to take his place. The Who plus Halpin play "Smokestack Lightning," "Spoonful" and "Naked Eye" before calling it a night. The show is simulcast on radio stations KSAN, KOME and KZAP and unofficially videotaped in black and white by promoter Bill Graham.

Cameron Crowe in the 70s

After the show The Who and a still-comatose Moon fly to Los Angeles. Accompanying them is a 16-year old freelance rock writer who interviews Roger in first class. That 16-year old, Cameron Crowe, will later write and direct a fictionalized version of this time called Almost Famous and becomes one of the world's most famous Who fanatics.

On the 21st, Keith spends his free day in Los Angeles sleeping in his hotel room for 10 hours.

The Who at The Forum 1973
Photo: Neil Zlozower

Recovered, Keith and The Who seize the Forum in Los Angeles for two nights beginning on the 22nd. Trying to give fans a break from scalpers, The Who limit tickets to two per purchase. After the show on the 22nd, the concert promoters present the band with a full Thanksgiving dinner backstage.

After the show on the 23rd, The Who are given a "Fallout Shelter Party" at the Universal commissary.

On the 24th, a short letter from Pete appears in Melody Maker. "To all the people who inevitably will complain about the organization at the Lyceum, the Who say, please, please hang on. Next year we will be playing larger, more suitable places, with cheaper seats. And to those who were hurt, or even just disgusted at not being able to see, Nobody feels as bad about it as ourselves."

The Who backstage Chicago 1973
Photo: Graham Hughes

On the 25th, The Who head into the interior, playing the Dallas Convention Center, followed by The Omni in Atlanta on the 27th, the Checkerdome in St. Louis on the 28th, Chicago International Amphitheater on the 29th and Cobo Arena in Detroit on the 30th. Backstage in Chicago, Graham Hughes puts The Who in football helmets to shoot the sleeve for Odds And Sods. John later says it was his idea and was his comment on the then constant fighting backstage. Due to size problems, Pete and Roger switch helmets.

Lenny Kaye reviews Quadrophenia for Rolling Stone, deeming it more of a Townshend solo album than a Who album, with songs "vastly similar in mode and construction, running together with little differential to separate them."

December 1973

New music releases: Band On The Run - Paul McCartney & Wings; "I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday" - Wizzard; Sabbath, Bloody Sabbath - Black Sabbath; "Seasons in the Sun" - Terry Jacks

On the 1st, Quadrophenia receives a Gold certification and Daltrey a Silver from the British Phonographic Industry.

On the 2nd, The Who arrive in Montreal, Canada, disembarking from the plane wearing paper hats made out of French in-flight newspapers and singing the French national anthem. That evening they perform at the Montreal Forum.

1973 Montreal Hotel damage

Early the next morning The Who and twelve members of their entourage are jailed in Montreal after Pete and Keith wreck their hotel suites. They manage to post bail at 1:15pm when the local promoter pays $5,995.34 in cash to the police station and they perform that night at the Boston Garden where they rail to the audience about the Montreal police. John will go on to commemorate the arrest in the song "Cell Number Seven" on his solo album Mad Dog.

The Who at Boston Garden 1973

The Boston Garden show of the 3rd sees yet another song dropped from the live Quadrophenia. "Helpless Dancer," which had featured a live mellophone performance by John, is excised for the rest of the tour.

1973 Philadelphia Who ticket

On the 4th, The Who perform at Spectrum in Philadelphia. The show is recorded and later broadcast in quadraphonic sound on The King Biscuit Flower Hour syndicated radio show in the U.S. from which it is widely bootlegged. "Won't Get Fooled Again" has a commercial release on the 1998 CD King Biscuit: Best Of The Best and on the 2007 fan club CD View From A Backstage Pass along with "The Punk and The Godfather."

On the 5th, The Who take the train to Washington, D.C, finishing the North American tour on the 6th at The Capital Centre. This show is also recorded by The King Biscuit Flower Hour and remains in their vaults although it is never broadcast. The photograph used for the poster insert in the Odds and Sods album is taken at this show and "5:15" and "Won't Get Fooled Again" are commercially released in 2010 on The Who Greatest Hits and More

Pete Townshend Dec. 1973 interview
Photo: Neal Preston

Before the show John Swenson interviews Pete who says Quadrophenia now seems "incredibly calculated; a winding up of Who affairs in that era," and adds that he as a writer and The Who as a band will have to find a new direction. "I don't want to wave the rock 'n roll flag for the rest of my life."

On the 7th, in an interview in the Washington Post, Roger says that Dallas was the only weak show of the North American tour.

Rolling Stone Jan 3 1974

Rolling Stone carries their article on The Who tour, "Who's spooky tour: awe and hassles." Pete and Roger comment on the friction between them during the recording of Quadrophenia. Pete says the band tried to accomplish too much and admits that the lack of audience reaction was not what he expected.

1973 Orchestral Tommy programme

As soon as Pete comes home from the tour, he begins work in his home studio on the soundtrack for Tommy: The Movie. This keeps him from participating in the second all-star concert version of the orchestral Tommy at the Rainbow Theatre on the 13th and 14th. Roger as Tommy is, in fact, the only Who member to perform although Keith is there supporting his friend Viv Stanshall playing Uncle Ernie. Keith had just returned from an audition for the movie Stardust, the sequel to That'll Be The Day. He tried to get Ringo Starr's role from the first film but had to settle for the same role as in the previous movie, that of drummer J.D. Clover. David Essex, star of both movies, does appear in this production of Tommy as does Roy Wood.

Richard Harris Go To The Mirror

On the 14th, Richard Harris' performance of "Go To The Mirror" from the Orchestral Tommy backed with "Underture" is released in the U.K. It fails to chart.

In Popular Music and Society, William J. Scheick writes: "Who's Next: a reappraisal." He provides a scholarly analysis of the album and says it is also a concept album.

The Real Me Japan PS

"The Real Me," backed with "Water," is released as a single in Japan.

Lester Bangs gives a more positive review of Quadrophenia in Stereo Review than had Dave Marsh or Lenny Kaye, but he questions whether any rock 'n roll band should be doing rock operas no matter how successful. Meanwhile Mike Jahn in High Fidelity pans Quadrophenia saying it has no plot, but it would have been a masterpiece if it contained "words that one could follow."

The Shadows Rockin with Curly Leads

The Shadows release their LP Rockin' With Curly Leads featuring a cover of "Pinball Wizard/See Me, Feel Me."

The Who at Edmonton 1973
Photo: Robert Ellis

On the 18th, 19th, 22nd and 23rd, The Who make good on their pledge to replay London after the problematic Lyceum shows of the previous month by performing at the Edmonton Sundown. The only problem is that Roger is suffering from a throat ailment. Despite this, Pete later says these were the best live Quadrophenia shows. On the second night, "Pinball Wizard" and "See Me, Feel Me" are dedicated to director Ken Russell. The supporting act is Babe Ruth.

Pop Star Keith's Rolls in a Smash

On the 27th, Keith, who is not supposed to be driving anyway, has a collision with another car in a roundabout, sending his Rolls into a ditch and through a hedge near Keith's home. Keith and his passenger Pattie Bygraves, niece of singer Max Bygraves, are left shaken but unhurt.

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