Flashback: The Who
Words By Jon Irvin
Funny, as I sit down to type this week’s flashback the only clean thing I could find is a The Who t-shirt. I find this amusing because like me without the shirt, the music industry without The Who would be stripped and ugly. Often taking a backseat to both The Beatles and The Rolling Stones, The Who: Roger Daltry (vocals), Pete Townshend (lead guitar) John Entwistle (bass) and Keith Moon (drums) laid the rails for some of the most mind blowing rock-n-roll as well as punk artists of all time.
On the heels of their successful rock opera Tommy, The Who decided to record Live at Leeds from their two shows at Leeds and Hull, England February 14-15 1970, what we got is arguably the greatest live rock release in history. The original LP is short and sweet, compared to the future remastered and deluxe editions which contained complete performances. Unless you’re a diehard The Who fan or need a complete live version of Tommy the LP is all you need to rock.
Side one contains some of their best known covers including “Young Man Blues” and “Summertime Blues” along with fan favorite “Substitute”. Side two is where the boys open up with “My Generation” which includes a medley from Tommy. “My Generation” a song penned by Townshend when he was 12, is viewed as one of the greatest rock and roll songs of all time. The short LP ends with “Magic Bus” a song that starts slowly but ends with a thrashing mix of harmonica and guitar that could only finish in instrumental destruction.
Live at Leeds was the only live album released by The Who with all of it's original members. In 2005, it was ranked 170 on the Rolling Stones Magazines list of top 500 greatest albums of all time.