Roger Daltrey Admits He Didn’t Always Get The Who’s Rock Operas
Were you always a little lost within the big-concept narratives of the Who‘s rock operas? Scared to admit that you really had no idea what Pete Townshend was getting at with ‘Tommy‘ or ‘Quadrophenia,’ iconic though they may be? You’re not alone: Who frontman Roger Daltrey, in fact, admits to some initial confusion, as well.
“Did I have to ask him what the hell he was on about? All the time,” Daltrey tells Q333, laughing.
‘Tommy,’ released in 1969, tells the story of a now-legendary deaf, dumb and blind kid, while 1973’s ‘Quadrophenia’ album explores the challenges of adolescence in mid-1960s England. ‘Who’s Next,’ which arrived in between, grew out of another rock opera called ‘Lifehouse.’ Later Townshend solo efforts like ‘White City’ (1985), ‘The Iron Man’ (1989), and ‘Psychoderelict’ (1993) would also boast a narrative bent.
Eventually, it all began to make sense for Daltrey, he says: “There’s always one sentence that comes out of that rambling brain of his that you can grasp. With ‘Tommy’ it was: ‘Imagine living life where you can only feel vibrations,’ and I could latch on to that.”