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January 1999

New music releases: ...Baby One More Time - Britney Spears; "My Name Is" - Eminem; 14:59 - Sugar Ray; Live at Luther College - Dave Matthews & Tim Reynolds
Moon Fletcher book U.S. Moon Fletcher book U.S.

On the 5th, Tony Fletcher's excellent biography of Keith Moon, Moon: The Life And Death Of A Rock Legend, is published in the U.S.

On the 9th, Pete Townshend plays a secret show to eighty people in Oxford, England to commemorate the closing of the Museum of Modern Arts exhibition on Gustav Metzger.

VH1 begins running an ad for their Storytellers series that has Pete talking to young people about seeing Mick Jagger for the first time: "It was the first time I realized I wanted to f*** a man!"

On the 20th, In her "Ask Camille" column in Salon, intellectual Camille Paglia states: "I would cite the Who's magnificent, rumbling "Eminence Front" (from the 1982 It's Hard album), with its penetrating insights into psychology and politics, as an example of what an evolved punk can and should achieve. Anarchism is glorified thumb-sucking. Off with the diapers, and on to business! Construction, not destruction, is the name of the human game."

Alice Cooper Tribute CDAlice Cooper Tribute CD

Humanary Stew: A Tribute to Alice Cooper is released in the U.K. Roger sings "No More Mr. Nice Guy"

February 1999

New music releases: "No Scrubs" - TLC; The Slim Shady LP - Eminem; FanMail - TLC; "It's Not Right But It's Okay" - Whitney Houston

On the 7th, The Times of London reports that the BBC has commissioned Pete to complete his rock opera Lifehouse for presentation as part of Britain's millennial celebrations

Pete Townshend: The Minstrel's Dilemma Pete Townshend: The Minstrel's Dilemma

On the 26th, Larry Smith's Pete Townshend: The Minstrel's Dilemma is published. Shamefully, it is to date the only book-length analysis of Townshend's songwriting.

March 1999

New music releases: Performance and Cocktails - Stereophonics; "Man! I Feel Like a Woman" - Shania Twain; "Livin' la Vida Loca" - Ricky Martin; Now That's What I Call Music! 42 (U.K.) - Various Artists
The Buzzard 2 The Buzzard 2

On the 3rd, Status Graphite reports that John has designed the Buzzard 2 bass that will premiere at the upcoming MusikMesse '99 in Frankfurt.

On the 4th, at a party in Santa Monica, California celebrating the completion of the movie Romantic Moritz, Roger Daltrey performs a set with Carmine Appice, Denny Laine, The Firm's bassist Tony Franklin and Steve Stevens. They play "Pinball Wizard," "Band On The Run" and "Radioactive." The movie is subsequently released under the title Chasing Destiny.

On the 6th, Gateway Computers premiers a TV ad in the U.S. featuring "Who Are You."

Daltrey sings Townshend DVD Daltrey sings Townshend DVD

Roger Daltrey: A Celebration – With Pete Townshend and the music of The Who that was shot five years before during the February 1994 Carnegie Hall concerts.

Guitar World May 1999 Guitar World May 1999

In Guitar World, Pete says that he is working on Lifehouse for the BBC and is "engaged in talks" with Roger and John about performing.

On the 19th, Pete Townshend goes on British VH-1 to pick his Top Ten Videos. They are "Wonderwall" by Oasis, "Outside" by George Micheal, "Kashmir" by Puff Daddy/Jimmy Page, "Go West" by the Pet Shop Boys, "Teardrop" by Massive Attack, "Teardrop Girl" by Tori Amos, "Parklife" by Blur, "Virtual Insanity" by Jamiroquai, "Like a Prayer" by Madonna and "Shiny Happy People" by REM.

On the 22nd, The New York Daily News announces that Pete is intending to bring Psychoderelict to Broadway.

Bernie Torme Punk or What Bernie Torme Punk or What

Punk Or What by Bernie Tormé is released. It features a previously unreleased cover of "Anyway Anyhow Anywhere" from 1977.

On the 27th, Dell Computers premiers a TV ad in the U.S. featuring "Magic Bus."

April 1999

New music releases: "I Want It That Way" - Backstreet Boys; Sogno - Andrea Bocelli; "Mambo No. 5 (A Little Bit of...)" - Lou Bega; I Am... - Nas
The Who This Month logo

On the 1st, this website is launched.

The Who Millennium Collection CD The Who Millennium Collection CD

On the 6th, MCA Records release, for the U.S. market, the budget-priced best-of CD, The Best Of The Who: The Millennium Collection.

May 1999

New music releases: Millennium - Backstreet Boys; The Man Who - Travis; Ricky Martin - Ricky Martin; Play - Moby
Executive Privileges Executive Privileges

On the 4th, Paul Shanklin releases the Anti-President Clinton comedy CD Executive Privileges with a parody version of "My Generation."

On the 8th, Pete travels to La Jolla, California to meet with Ted Waitt of Gateway Computers to discuss the Lifehouse Method software development. While there he pens the poem "I Want To Get Through The Fall."

On the 18th, Roger Daltrey appears on the ABC-TV (U.S.) show Politically Incorrect broadcast from London.

On the 22nd, the John Entwistle Band plays at a private function at the Marriott Marquee in Atlanta for the Association For Independent Music convention. Who fan Shanon Dell attends and films the show.

Spells EP Spells EP

On the 24th, The Spells (Mary Timony of Helium and Carrie Brownstein of Sleater-Kinney) release the EP The Age Of Backwards featuring a cover of "I Can't Explain".

Also on the 25th, Pete writes the lyrics for another song "I Lose The Thread."

On the 26th, Who manager Bill Curbishley writes to Pete, asking if he would agree to a Who tour to help John Entwistle whose finances, once again, are in dire shape.

June 1999

New music releases: Supernatural - Santana; No Angel - Dido; Californication - Red Hot Chili Peppers; Significant Other - Limp Bizkit
The Spy Who Shagged Me CD The Spy Who Shagged Me CD

On the 1st, the soundtrack to Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me is released containing the first official release of a live at the BBC recording of The Who performing "My Generation" in 1965. The soundtrack peaks at #5 in the U.S. charts and #6 in the U.K. charts.

Lisa Marsh Lisa Marsh

On the 3rd, New York public relations executive Lisa Marsh tells the New York Post about her affair with Pete during the mid-1990's.

Pete, meanwhile, writes back to Bill Curbishley, agreeing to the reformation of The Who to get John out of debt. What must have sounded at the time like a short-term reunion continues without breakup to this day, long after John's death.

Early in the month, Roger travels to Los Angeles to shoot an appearance for the Showtime cable television program Rude Awakenings.

British Rock Symphony CD British Rock Symphony CD

On the 21st, the British Rock Symphony CD is released in Germany on Point Music. Roger sings "Kashmir" and "Let It Be" with the symphony.

British Rock Symphony ad British Rock Symphony ad

On the 28th, Roger begins the British leg of the British Rock Symphony tour at the Royal Albert Hall in London.

July 1999

New music releases: The Writing's on the Wall - Destiny's Child; On How Life Is - Macy Gray; A Little Bit of Mambo - Lou Bega; Now That's What I Call Music! 43 (U.K.) - Various Artists
Summer Of Sam poster Summer Of Sam poster

On the 2nd, Spike Lee's movie Summer Of Sam, about the "Son Of Sam" murders in 1977, is released in the U.S. One of the main characters is a punk rocker played by Adrian Brody who is obsessed with The Who and the film contains sequences edited to "Baba O'Riley" and "Won't Get Fooled Again".

British Rock Symphony 3 July 1999 ad British Rock Symphony 3 July 1999 ad

Meanwhile Roger Daltrey continues his U.K. tour with the British Rock Symphony performing at Powderham Castle, Kenton, Exeter on the 2nd followed by Ragley Hall, Alcester, Warwickshire on the 3rd, and Liverpool Docks on the 5th. The performance at Ragley Hall makes up the bulk of the British Rock Symphony video released the next year.

Also on the 2nd, The John Entwistle Band begins their third U.S. tour at The Compound in Deerfield, Ohio. From there, they go to Pine Knob Music Theater in Clarkston, Michigan (5th), Cubby Bear in Chicago (7th), Club Bene in South Amboy, New Jersey (9th), Joyous Lake in Woodstock, New York (10th - cybercast live on Radio Woodstock), The Sound Cafe in So. Norwalk The Equator Bar in Manchester, Connecticut (17th), Stephen Talkhouse in Amagansett, New York (20th), The Lucky Dog Music Hall in Worcester, Massachusetts (21st), The Call in Providence, Rhode Island (22nd), and the Entertainment Center in Medina, Minnesota (23rd).

Pete spends the 9th writing lyrics to the as-yet-unreleased songs "Time to Think" and "I Lost Interest."

On the 11th, The John Entwistle Band is interviewed on WRAT's The Electric Ballroom in South Belmar, New Jersey.

Left For Live CD Left For Live CD

On the 12th, the John Entwistle Band holds a cyberchat on Yahoo! The following day J-Bird Records releases their CD Left For Live.

Grace Slick Roger Daltrey 1999 Grace Slick Roger Daltrey 1999
Photo: Barry King

On the 18th, Roger attends an event for PETA in Los Angeles.

ESP Ep 1999 ESP Ep 1999

On the 20th, ESP (Eric Singer Project) releases the CD ESP with a cover of "Won't Get Fooled Again".

Roger Daltrey The Bill Roger Daltrey The Bill

On the 22nd, Roger makes a guest appearance playing a crack dealer on the ITV TV program The Bill. The episode is titled "Cracked Up".

On the 24th, VH1 in the U.S. does a segment on Pete for their show Where Are They Now?

John Entwistle Band Woodstock 99 John Entwistle Band Woodstock 99

On the 25th, the John Entwistle Band plays the Emerging Artist's Stage at the Woodstock '99 Festival in Rome, New York (25th). The band will fortunately miss a notorious riot that concludes the controversial festival as they continue to Upstairs at Nick's in Philadelphia (27th), and the Voodoo Lounge in Bayside Queens, New York (29th).

Times article 26 July 1999 Times article 26 July 1999

On the 26th, The Independent confirms that Lifehouse will appear as a radio play on BBC Radio 3 December 6 with a cast including Geraldine James, David Threlfall, Kelly McDonald and 11-year-old Philip Dowling.

Eddie Vedder Pete Townshend on Letterman Eddie Vedder Pete Townshend on Letterman

On the 28th, Pete performs at the Supper Club in New York City as part of a release party for his forthcoming new CD Pete Townshend Live: A Benefit For Maryville Academy. It is by invitation only with a meet and greet prior. Pete performs a solo set and then is joined by Eddie Vedder who also appears on the CD. The John Entwistle Band is in the audience. Earlier in the day Pete and Eddie tape an appearance on Late Night With David Letterman performing "A Heart To Hang Onto" and "Magic Bus". During a radio broadcast on this day Pete announces that The Who will reunite for a benefit show for the Maryville Academy at the Chicago House Of Blues on November 19th.

On the 29th, Pete and Eddie travel to Chicago for a concert at the Chicago House Of Blues. Earlier in the day Pete holds a press conference where he makes the official announcement of The Who's upcoming charity show there. Earlier in the day, Pete and Eddie show up at WCKG-FM for an interview with DJ Steve Dahl but after he has to wait several minutes before being interviewed, Pete gets angry and cuts the interview short after less than a minute and storms off.

From Chicago Pete travels on to Los Angeles where, on the 31st, he attends the premiere of the movie The Iron Giant. The movie is based on Ted Hughes' children's book The Iron Man. Pete had been trying for years to get a movie made of his musical based on the book but allowed director Brad Bird to take over who jettisoned all the songs. Pete receives an executive producer credit on the film. The Iron Giant fails to find an audience at the time but its reputation grows over the years and it is now considered a classic.

On the 31st, Roger again appears on the Showtime cable-TV show Rude Awakenings playing an alcoholic rock star.

August 1999

New music releases: Fly - Dixie Chicks; Christina Aguilera - Christina Aguilera; Mary - Mary J. Blige; "Heartbreaker" - Mariah Carey

On the 1st, Allan Brown writes a long catcall of Pete's upcoming radio play of Lifehouse in The Times under the headline "Pete Townshend sure plays a mean crystal ball."

John Entwistle Itchycoo Park 1999 John Entwistle Itchycoo Park 1999

The John Entwistle Band continues their North American tour performing at Freedom Fest in Columbus, Ohio (1st), Sub-Culture in Grand Rapids, Michigan (2nd), the Adams County Fair Ground in Brighton, Colorado (7th), the Hi-Tone Cafe in Memphis, Tennessee (12th), Itchycoo Park in Manchester, Tennessee (13th), Leelanau Sands Casino in Sutton's Bay, Michigan (14th), The Black Cat in Washington, D.C (17th), and finishing at The Turning Point in Piermont, New York (18th). The Itchycoo Park set is later released on DVD as The John Entwistle Band Live.

NYC Ska Mob and Friends

On the 4th, the compilation CD NYC Ska Mob & Friends is released with a ska version of "Rough Boys" called "Rude Boys" by The Stubborn All-Stars.

On the 12th, the press reports that Pete will be one of the star's participating in U2's Bono's NetAid event to ease Third World debt. Pete later cancels.

On the 27th, Pete and Roger meet to discuss what they are going to play as The Who at the Nov. 13th House of Blues show.

September 1999

New music releases: Human Clay - Creed; Reload - Tom Jones; Brand New Day - Sting; Marc Anthony - Marc Anthony

On the 4th, Roger appears on his second episode of Showtime's Rude Awakening, "Bosses, Burglars, & Back Street Babes" playing addiction-challenged rock star Nobby Clegg.

Audio Adrenaline CD Audio Adrenaline CD

On the 14th, the Christian rock band Audio Adrenaline releases their CD Underdog featuring a cover of "Let My Love Open The Door."

Put Downs And Send Ups Put Downs And Send Ups

Put-Downs and Send-Ups, a CD containing two 1967 Who interviews, is released.

Roger Daltrey at 1999 PETA event Roger Daltrey at 1999 PETA event
Photo: Lucy Nicholson

On the 18th, Roger attends a PETA event honoring the Animal Rights Movement at Paramount Studios, Los Angeles.

Maryville Academy Live CD Maryville Academy Live CD

On the 20th, Pete Townshend Live: A Benefit For Maryville Academy is available as a free download in Windows Media format at The next day, the two-CD set, featuring duets with Pearl Jam's Eddie Vedder, is released by Platinum Records in the U.S. Billboard calls it "an unassuming crowd-pleaser that does its job with style." It does not reach the U.S. Billboard charts.

On the 29th, all the 90's reissue Who CD's, except the boxset but including the as yet un-reissued The Kids Are Alright soundtrack, are released in Japan as CD-sized duplicates of the original albums.

On the 30th, actor Peter Gallagher appears on NBC-TV's Late Night With Conan O'Brien. Gallagher says he has recently been working with Pete in New York on Saturdays. The two have been workshopping a stage version of Psychoderelict.

October 1999

New music releases: "Say My Name" - Destiny's Child; Steptacular - Steps; Rise - Gabrielle; "Sandstorm" - Darude

Pete continues working with actor Peter Gallagher in New York on a possible Broadway production of Psychoderelict. During this stay he begins work on a film treatment called The Boy Who Heard Music.

Rolling Stone asks various rockers where they will be on the coming New Year's Eve. Roger's reply: "Probably on the toilet."

On the 11th, BBC2 Radio begins broadcasting an 8-week series called Rave On With Roger Daltrey where Roger plays his favorites rock & roll songs.

Little Demon CD Little Demon CD

On the 12th, Little Demon with the Yucatan Grave Robbers release their CD Sacred Monster featuring a cover of "Squeeze Box."

On the 18th, Roger tells Reuters that The Who are presently working on their first studio album since It's Hard. He says Pete is writing some tracks while he, Roger, is writing with Gerald McMahon. On the next day John Entwistle confirms the new album report on the Wall Of Sound website.

Pixelon backstage pass Pixelon backstage pass

On the 29th, The Who returns as a five-piece unit, the first time since Live Aid fourteen years before, when they play iBash for the Pixelon Corporation in Las Vegas. Pete is on loud electric guitar as songs long unplayed, such as "Anyway Anyhow Anywhere," are revived. The show is later released for home video as The Vegas Job. None of this helps Pixelon. Within a year the Pixelon Corporation goes out of business after its founder is discovered to be a fugitive wanted for bilking elderly investors of $1 million during the 1980s.

On the same day, Pete opens his website and announces an upcoming Lifehouse 6-CD boxset and planned Lifehouse concert.

The Who Bridge School Flyer The Who Bridge School Flyer

On the 30th and 31st, The Who go acoustic for two concerts at the Bridge School benefit at Shoreline Auditorium in Mountain View, California. The 31st show is performed in the afternoon so Pete can take his son Joseph trick-or-treating for Halloween.

November 1999

New music releases: 2001 - Dr. Dre; All The Way... A Decade of Song - Celine Dion; Breathe - Faith Hill; Now That's What I Call Music! 44 (U.K.) - Various Artists

On the 1st, John Entwistle has a sale of his drawings at the San Francisco Art Exchange.

Roger Daltrey as King Boric Roger Daltrey as King Boric

On the 7th, NBC-TV premiers the mini-series The Magical Legend of the Leprechauns starring Roger Daltrey as Boric, King of the Fairies. Pete's daughter Emma Townshend sings the love theme "We Can Fly Away".

Darrin's Coconut Ass Darrin's Coconut Ass

On 9th, Goldfinger releases the EP Darrin's Coconut Ass with a cover of "The Kids Are Alright."

During rehearsals for their upcoming Chicago shows, Roger and Pete get into a heated argument and Roger walks out of the reunion. Pete gets him to return by writing Roger a letter telling him their friendship is the most important thing they share.

The Who and Eddie Vedder 1999 The Who and Eddie Vedder 1999

On the 12th, The Who perform for the first of two nights at the House Of Blues in Chicago. Tickets for the event, held to raise money for the Maryville Academy, are $300. The opening band is Pearl Jam's Eddie Vedder and his other band C Average. Pete suffers with painful tinnitus due to the proximity of Zak Starkey's drums. Also, for the first time after Pete Townshend had written the song for The Who to perform at Live Aid in 1985, The Who finally get around to playing "After The Fire.". It is later released on the short-lived CD From The Blues To The Bush.

The next day Pete is interviewed live on WXRT-FM Chicago. He claims that his touring days with The Who are over. Both that night's show and the first night are professionally videotaped and recorded.

Pete Townshend Q magazine Nov 1999 Pete Townshend Q magazine Nov 1999

Pete answers questions posed by fans in Q magazine. He takes exception to someone calling Roger Daltrey "a wanker" saying, "He made me who I am. I owe him a lot and I love him".

Nissan Motors begins using "Won't Get Fooled Again" in their commercials for the Nissan Maxima.

On the 29th, Pete appears on The Jan Payne Show on BBC Radio 5 for a live interview promoting his upcoming radio play version of Lifehouse. On the same day, The Radio Times prints an interview with Pete in which he says he's not gay, he has a girlfriend, and he and his wife Karen are currently separated.

On the 30th, Pete is interviewed on Front Row (BBC Radio 4) and Nightwaves (BBC Radio 3).

December 1999

New music releases: ...And Then There Was X - DMX; "Otherside" - Red Hot Chili Peppers; Vol. 3... Life and Times of S. Carter - Jay-Z; Born Again - Notorious B.I.G.
1999 Pete Townshend BBC interview 1999 Pete Townshend BBC interview

In the run-up to the premiere of his radio play of Lifehouse, Pete does a couple of interviews, appearing on Radio 2's The Steve Wright Show on the 2nd and BBC Hard Talk on the 3rd.

1999 Messiah concert 1999 Messiah concert

On the 4th and 5th, Roger performs in a rock 'n' roll version of Handel's "Messiah" in Dublin. Chaka Khan, Gladys Knight and actor Adian Quinn also participate and the show airs on Ireland's RTE. A storm of controversy swirls around it due to the amount of government grant money used to stage the production. In fact, the cost is so high, the production fails to raise projected money intended for charity.

Also on the 4th, ITV airs an episode of its Classic Albums series focusing on the recording of Who's Next. The excellent documentary is made with the participation of Pete, Roger and John who discuss the album's background and revisit the master tapes. The show is subsequently released for home video.

1999 Radio Times 1999 Radio Times

On the 5th, Pete's radio version of Lifehouse premieres on BBC Radio 3. Heavily re-written by Pete and Jeff Young from Pete's 1971 conception, the story is now set at the millennium as a farmer leaves his wife to search for his runaway daughter in London. He is accompanied by himself as a young boy and an imaginary playfriend from childhood on a voyage that takes them through the scarred landscape of a post-World War II and post-Thatcher Britain. His daughter, meanwhile, hooks up with a "hacker" who leads her and many others to the Lifehouse where they vanish, leaving the farmer alone, stripped of his family, in an teenage-less wasteland. The musical accompaniment is a mix of Pete's demos and orchestrated versions of tunes from Who's Next and Vivaldi. The script is published the next day by Simon & Schuster in the U.K. and the play is sold first as a two-cassette tape from the BBC then included in Pete's Lifehouse Chronicles boxset.

On the 6th, an exhibit of the artwork connected with Pete's Avatar boxset is exhibited at the Corningsby Gallery in London through the 11th. Also on the 6th, Pete places two messages on his website, the first asking for understanding about his changing his mind about the existence of The Who. "I am doing it out of love, friendship and because I think I'm really going to enjoy it." He also clears up the confusing credit for his song "North Country Girl" on his solo album All The Best Cowboys Have Chinese Eyes explaining he adapted the song after hearing it on a Roy Harper album where it was credited as "Traditional: arr by Roy Harper".

Guitar Dec. 1999 Guitar Dec. 1999

On the 7th, John is voted Bass Guitarist of the Millennium by readers of the British magazine Guitar. On the same day a press report is released that details Pete's 3-year relationship with the 26 year-old musician Rachel Fuller.

On the 15th, Pete premeires his commercial website where he will begin selling his solo albums.

The Who at Shepherd's Bush 1999 The Who at Shepherd's Bush 1999

On the 22nd and 23rd, the new edition of the five-man Who makes its British premiere as The Who play their home ground at the Shepherd's Bush Empire.

Roger is scheduled to perform with the British Rock Symphony on New Year's Eve as the 1900's turn into the 2000's at a charity event at The Ronald Reagan Building in Washington D.C. but it is canceled because of lack of ticket sales blamed on fears of a Y2K terrorist attack.

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