Pete and Bowie in The Who?
Sroundtable at aol.com
Sroundtable at aol.com
Wed Aug 18 23:37:11 CDT 2004
In a message dated 8/18/2004 2:26:25 PM Central Daylight Time,
thewho-request at igtc.com writes:
> One can only imagine the riches
> we'd have gotten if we had, say, two songwriters the
> caliber of Bowie and Townshend in the same band.
UGH!!! This would have been an absolute disaster. As good of friends as
they might be, they NEVER could have co-existed in one band. Pete's insecurities
wouldn't have allowed it. The best thing to happen to The Who and Pete
Townshend was NOT having another major songwriter in the band. Both Tommy and Quad
would not have happened. Here's how the Tommy idea would have gone down:
Record company exec: "A rock opera? Continuous music with a story? Will
never work. How are we gonna get radio play out of that? Where are the hits?"
Who manager: "Well, we have Pinball Wizard which can be a radio hit, and we
might be able to re-work some of the Tommy material to work for radio, and we
have some real nice material from David and a song or two from John to complete
Record company exec: "That's a plan I'll back. It'll make money. This rock
opera idea is destined to flop. What is the public gonna do with a rock
opera, for god's sake?"
No Tommy, no Quad, and probably no Who's Next because after Tommy's rejection
Pete would never have tried Lifehouse. With Pete alone, there was nothing
for the record company to fall back on. If they wanted new Who material, Tommy
was it. This was what Pete wrote, and The Who was about what Pete wrote. Not
only that, but Roger is a much more versatile vocalist than Bowie with
considerably more power and range. Having such an incredible vocal talent as
Daltrey to write for helped Pete's creativity. I speak from experience as a lead
singer in a classic rock trib band. The Who songs are the toughest to sing
because of the complex vocal arrangements of Pete Townshend. He could do that
because he knew Roger could handle it.
Had Bowie been lead singer of The Who, the band wouldn't have survived past
1970, if that. There would have been a few hits then a major meltdown. In
fact, Led Zeppelin probably would have had Moon and Entwistle, because they would
have jumped ship amidst the Bowie/Townshend turmoil to join a band they could
More information about the TheWho