September 21, 2020

1994-02-24 – Courier Post

1994 02 24 Courier_Post_Thu__Feb_24__1994_

EOPLE

EX-Who singer doing next best thing to band reunion

By CHUCK DARROW
Courier-Post Staff

If it was up to Roger Daltrey, the
Who would still be recording and
touring. But until guitarist-composer
Pete Townshend has a change of heart
and decides to resurrect the legendary
rock ’n' roll band, the Who will live on
only in the collective memory of millions
of fans.

But Townshend’s stubborness on the
subject hasn’t totally handcuffed Dal-
trey. Wednesday, the Who’s microphone-
twirling lead singer staged the first of
two star-studded ‘Daltrey Sings Town-
shend' concerts at New York's Carnegie
Hall. The second show is set for tonight,
with a tape of the festivities airing via
pay~per-view television Saturday at 8:30
pm. and midnight.

According to Daltrey, the program —
which features Townshend, 4 Non-
Blondes, the Spin Doctors, Lou Reed,
Who bassist John Entwhistle and the
Irish folk band the Chieftans as well as
a 65-piece orchestra — is as much the
marking of a personal milestone as it is a

P0P ’N’ ROCK

tribute to his long-time collaborator.

“My 50th birthday (which is Tuesday)
is approaching,” says Daltrey, who spoke
with reporters during a recent conference
call.

“A lot of rock ’n’ rollers had good lives
in music and go through their 50th
birthday. It's a big event for us. We’re
the generation that never thought we’d
see 50. It’s the one everyone celebrates.”

“I’m the guy who sang ‘Hope I die
before I get old’ (in the Who's 1965
classic, My Generation). It’s important
to me. Fifty years is a landmark in
anyone’s life, and rock 'n' roll has given
me a fabulous life.

“And I love the music of Pete
Townshend. That’s what I love to sing
most."

Daltrey promises the program will
highlight more obscure tracks as well as
the Who’s most familiar works. But, he
added, “We just don’t want to recreate
the Who. That’s why I decided to do it
with the orchestra (under the direction

of veteran rock conductor Michael
Kamen) and guest stars.”

The idea to present a concert of
reworked Townshend tunes stemmed
from the time in 1992 that Daltrey
attended a Chieftans’ show and heard
the band’s version of Behind Blue Eyes
in traditional Irish folk style.

“What a breakthrough to do that. to
make familiar songs fresh. That’s the
challenge of it.”

And that’s what’s going to have to
satisfy Daltrey and the world’s Who fans
for the foreseeable future. For his part,
Daltrey — who says he’s completely
recovered from stomach surgery stem-
ming from a muscle condition that
developed during the band’s 1989 re-
union tour — pretty much stopped
breaching the subject of another go-
round with Townshend.

“It's not down to me, it’s down to
Pete. He says he doesn’t want to do it
anymore. He’s a Broadway producer
now,” he says referring to the Tony-win-
ning theatrical version of Tommy.

Still, there’s always a glimmer of
hope.

r 5‘

ROGER DALTREY
. ‘Sings Townshend“ at Carnegie Hall

“(Townshend’s) a very changeable
person," he notes. “He tends to change
his mind a lot. If it was up to me, I’d do

it tomorrow. If he changes his mind, he
knows my number."

Almanac

Feb. 25, 1965: The Beatles begin
filming their second movie, Help. The
original title was Eight Arms to Hold
You.

Feb. 26, 1983: Michael Jackson’s
Thriller LP begins its unprecedented
37-week run as number one on Billboard
magazine’s album chart.

Feb. 27, 1977: Keith Richards of the
Rolling Stones is arrested in Toronto
after Mounted Police find heroin in a
hotel room registered in his name. He is
subsequently convicted, given probation
and ordered to perform a benefit concert
for the blind.

March 1, 1969: Jim Morrison of the
Doors is busted for “1er and lascivious
behavior" after exposing himself during a
concert in Miami. Morrison died in Paris
in July 1971, before the case could be
adjudicated.

Chuck Darrow covers pop music for tho
Courlor-Post.