Quadrophenia: Can You See the Real Me? (2012) - full transcript

The Who's life and times when they were making Quadrophenia.


[SOUND] >> Pete Townshend: The Who

started as a band with four very different individuals with very

very different needs.

Got a few hits, managed to pull off Tommy.

Managed to pull off some kind of amazing live stage energy.



>> Speaker 2: The special TUC conference in London has voted

for militant action and protest against the government.

>> [CROSSTALK] >> Speaker 3: Created by the oil


>> Speaker 4: As the gas situation gets worse


>> Speaker 5: [INAUDIBLE] some

inducement to come to talks.

>> Speaker 6: I think the three day week should be called

off at once.

>> Speaker 7: 10 years on from The Who's first successes comes

their release this weekend of a new double album that could be

a step on even from Tommy, Quadrophenia.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: So when we got to Quadrophenia talking 1973

something strange was happening to the internal politics of

the band.

It was quite clear that Keith Moon was certifiably insane, and

if he hadn't had a drum kit to play with,

he probably would have ended up in jail.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: Jonny just simply wasn't happy,

because he was a song writer, and it seemed as though for

him, the band had become all about me, and my ideas.

Roger wanted something which would mean he could swing his

hair, and look glamorous, and take his chest off, and

be a superstar.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: I had difficulties, as well.

Lifehouse, which followed Tommy, failed.

The accusation was, you failed with your big idea because

you're an arty farty pretentious twat.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: It felt to me as though we were drifting

apart, so my first mission, my first part of the brief that I

gave myself was replace Tommy as a performing vehicle.

That was it.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: So, my story was I bought this riverside


It's actually in a place called Cleeve, or

Cleeve Lock on the river Thames.

And one day I got this call about Eric.

It was wallowing and down at his house in the country,

and would I go down and see Eric.

Eric had done an album and ended up as a heroin user.

I remember going down seeing him.

He was very courteous, very kind, very dignified,

very loving, very friendly, as he always was to me, but

I was affected by it.

I start to think about how we can not rescue Eric,

but just to stimulate him.

Turned to a couple of my mates Ronnie Wood, Stevie Winwood, and

we came here to this house to rehearse.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: And we were in the room over there, and

we all gathered together.

I was nodding off and Ric Grech the bass player says let's try

this, and I said what is it?

He said, oh it's kind of a popper thing.

He said, wakes you up.

And it was amyl nitrate, and I took it and

I went, oh that's fun.

Get a bit of a buzz and then played, and

I didn't get stuck on it but I used it quite a bit.

Once the concert with Eric in January 1973 was over,

I suppose I must have had some sort of come

down from the lack of amyl nitrate.

On a dark, wet winter weekend at the cottage at Cleve,

with the river running faster than usual,

I had a flashback to when I was 19 years old.

The Who'd just played this amazing gig at

the Aquarium Ballroom in Brighton, and

I was with my art school friend Dez Reed.

After the gig, we missed the train home, so we hung out and

we went down under the pier and there were all these boys

in parkas with the fucking tide coming up around their feet.

They didn't seem to understand that they were going to drown.


>> Pete Townshend: Under the

pier, I was coming down from taking purple hearts,

the fashionable uppers of the period.

Sitting there at Cleave that day nine years later,

the same feeling came flooding back of feeling depressed,

lost and hopeless.

And I grabbed a notebook and quickly while I was still in

this sad and lonely mood, I scribbled out a story that is on

the inside sleeve of the original album of Quadrophenia.

This was the story of a mod called Jimmy.

Jimmy was a normal boy with normal needs going passing

through the normal things of childhood.

But what made everything so much more complicated for

him was that he had a bipolar problem.

He was schizophrenic.

>> Ron Nevison: I think that Jimmy is meant to be instead of

schizophrenic, He's meant to be quadrophrenic.

And that's the original concept to have Jimmy have these four


>> [MUSIC]

>> Mark Kermode: So Quadrophenia is a double album in the whole

days of vinyl.

That meant you have two 12 inch vinyl discs.

And it's that difficult dodgy seventies thing,

the concept album.

This sensitive story of a mod on journey of self discovery,

but played by The Who, tough, muscular, physical,

a man's band.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: What I know is that I'm going to be

on a stage with a bunch of yobos with an electric guitar.

I'm going to have to turn it up.

I'm going to have to jump up with Alan.

I'm going to have to stamp.

I'm going to have to tell him to fuck off and shut up.

This is Pete the writer trying to show Keith and John and

Roger giving them really stimulating useful fucking stuff

that they could express their stage personalities through.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Mark Kermode: The Who's sound has got those warring

elements in it.

On the one hand they're a street fighting band, doing all that

physical, visceral side on the one hand, and on the other hand

that spiritual, whimsical, melancholic, lyrical side, and

banging them together, often in one song.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: This bit of paper, is on the top line,

you've got me, Roger, John, Keith.

The next line is good, bad, romance, and

they're joined together with the word sex, insanity.

And then the idea that each of these things would produce

songs, in actual fact, this is just a musical blueprint for

what I wanted to do.

>> Keith Moon: Pete, has been working very hard.

I don't know quite what on, but I think it will be good.

>> Roger Daltrey: The trouble is with Pete, working with him

you've got these wonderful little kernels of ideas, but

then he'd wanna fix them, and make them into stories.

But we got the essence of it.

This guy's got all the personality.

He's of every member of the band, and it's just but

this one guy.

And that was enough for

me to say, great idea, let's go for it.

>> Ron Nevison: This is how the album starts, okay?

>> [SOUND] >> Howie Edelson: No

other Who album starts with ambient noise.

And it very specifically is putting you in a place.

It sets a scene, which none of the other Who albums did.

>> Ron Nevison: Once we had the sea noise going,

we just introduced each theme of the four themes.

>> Pete Townshend: First thing that you hear is I am the Sea,

you hear the breathy sound, I am the sea.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: And

>> [SOUND], >> Pete Townshend: which is

the Helpless Dancer.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: Then you hear Is It Me for a moment,

which is the romantic side, and so on.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Howie Edelson: Instead of having a straight overture,

you get pieces of the songs.

And it comes back as memories.

>> [MUSIC]

[SOUND] >> Howie Edelson: You're

automatically put on that rock.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: And you hear the themes and then bang into

the first track, which is Can You See the Real Me.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: So you see, he's at the doctor,

he's going to the shrink, he's going to the priest,

he's going to his mother.

For advice and I wanted to establish very,

very quickly that this is not just a troubled boy,

this is a boy that has mental illness.

He's bipolar, he's manic depressive.

And this idea of him being doubly schizophrenic.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: Once you hear that track,

you know that this is gonna be the revelation of a condition.

Jimmy gets up in the morning, goes to see a shrink,

goes to see his priest because his mum's a deep, dark,

Catholic, goes up and looks at this girl's bedroom that he's in

love with and who won't shag him.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: You're going right inside the boy's head.

You know where you are.

You come from a piece of the sea, and

then this is a little bit of this, and a little bit of that,

and then bang, you're into the action.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Mark Kermode: When I first heard it,

a friend of mine had it.

And they had the gatefold sleeve and everything.

And I loved it, but it was quite costly.

So they recorded it for me on a, what was back then,

I think a C-90.

And I remember for ages,

thinking that he'd start it on side 2.

Because it begins with, I Went Back to the Doctor.

It's like you've jumped right into the middle of the stream,

it's like you come right into the middle of a riot.

You've come right into the middle of a rush, and

that is brilliant.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Richard Barnes: Pete decided that as part of the album,

he'd have this lavish,

very generous big photo book to sort of illustrate the story.

And also, the other thing is,

I think he thought it would help explain the story,

particularly to the Americans who didn't understand it.

>> Howie Edelson: Ethan Russell's photos put you

in that place.

As an American,

you were able to understand it because you were able to see it.

You were able to see his room.

You saw the life.

And told you this story better than a movie,

better than a video.

It's all there.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Ethan Russell: The first cover I did for

The Who was the album Who's Next, here.

I was back in the United States.

I got a call from Pete.

He was pretty stressed already because he'd

been working on this forever, and you could feel this

tremendous energy of him sort of wanting to birth this thing.

So he played me the material and told me the story.

And we went out to try and sort of build that world.

>> [SOUND] >> Julie Emson: We're here in

Battersea, the Patmore estate.

My sister Maxine and I used to live across the road here in

this block of flats here.

Our foster sister Jane used to live in this block of flats

here, and the three of us used to hang out

generally around on that corner block there.

Along here, which used to be a church hall,

became Rampart Studios,

which was owned by The Who back in the early 70s.

>> Julie Emson: This is myself here.

I would have been just coming up, probably just 15.

That was a partly original mod outfit.

I have my hair cut very short and

cropped and black eyeliner which, obviously,

you can't see through the black and white picture.

>> Maxine Isenman: That's me, and I've got on a pencil skirt,

pinstripe pencil skirt, Hush Puppy shoes, and

a navy blue twinset.

Little jumper underneath, cardigan, and like Judy,

my hair cut very short, mod style hair cut.

>> Georgiana Steele-Waller: The girls came up,

they are too young to go in the pub, but

they knew that I was looking for someone to play Jimmy.

>> Julie Emson: Well, Chad was one of the local guys that lived

near the pub.

We thought he had the look for

the main character in Quadrophenia, so

we introduced him to Georgiana.

>> Georgiana Steele-Waller: I saw the attitude,

I saw the class and the attitude and the sort of,

that his wheels are spinning a bit.

>> Ethan Russell: And he was the real thing.

He had love hate tattooed on his hands.

Well, it was pretty early on in life for that, you know?

>> Maxine Isenman: He was often in bed.

I'd have to go and get him in the flats.

I remember that.

Because he had too much to drink, or maybe drugs,

I don't know what, I won't swear to that either,

but he was often not on location when he was supposed to be.

>> Ethan Russell: About two-thirds of the way through

the shoot, Chad came up to me and says, I gotta go to court,

and I said well, what do you gotta go to court for,

and he says, I stole a bus.

And I said, you stole a bus?

And he said, yeah, I stole a bus.

I said okay.

He walks up to the judge, and the judge says, what did you do,

oh I took it for drive.

I can't do the accent.

And he says, well what are you doing now?

And he says I'm a male model.

[LAUGH] I'm sitting in the back, and

he says, yeah, who do you work for.

I work for the Who.

[LAUGH] And the judge turns to me and

he says, is this true?

And I said yeah.

He says do you need him?

And I said yeah, I absolutely need him.

So he let him off.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Irish Jack: This is the famous Goldhawk Club.

I am opening the door to the dance hall.

Along here and on the other side was a whole bunch of settees,

where a lot of necking went on.

And there was kissing, and French kissing, and

tongues and stuff.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: We'd just done Ready, Steady, Go.

They'd all been there in the audience with a we went to

the Goldhawk Club, we played Can't Explain.

We played it again, we played it again, we played it again.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Irish Jack: And I thought, God almighty, what's going on?

The Who are playing probably my favorite song of all time.

They've played I Can't Explain three times, what's going on?

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: Play it again!

Play it again!

>> [SOUND] >> Pete Townshend: You know this

fucking glorious night at the Goldhawk Club,

that their boys have gone on Ready Steady Go,

which is the big mod program of the day.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Irish Jack: I sort of elected myself as some kind of delegate

and I came here.

I knocked on this door, this very door we're looking at.

>> [SOUND] >> Pete Townshend: Irish Jack

walks forward and he says,

there's something we want to tell you.

>> Irish Jack: And I said look.

This song is exactly what we're trying to say.

You've said it first.

I can't explain because this is what mods were about.

They couldn't explain.

None of us could explain.

We didn't have the articulation.

>> Pete Townshend: So I said to him, quite patronizing,

I said, so Jack, you want me to write more songs for

you about the fact that you can't explain

what it is that you want me to explain.

And I can't explain what it is that you want to explain.

Jack immediately goes, that's it!

>> Irish Jack: So in words, Pete Townshend became the song

laureate of the mods in Shepherds Bush.

Hammersmith, Acton, Ealing.

>> [MUSIC]



>> Pete Townshend: There's a fabulous postcard,

we're about 18, 19.

We look like perfect little girly mods.

That's the band that Jimmy looked at and

kind of went, that's me.

Then he goes into that band and finds that these four people,

each one of them, is a deeply eccentric and complex and

difficult and fucked up individual and

they're each in their own way.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Mark Kermode: All those youth movements are built on

false idols.

They're all built on the idea of loving something and

then that thing, that never meet your idols.

There's that crushing sense of disappointment.

They're not the people that you think they are.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Ethan Russell: This was the only

time The Who are in the entire book.

We shot about 4 AM in the morning so

we wouldn't have any traffic, and

they would play the Hammersmith Odeon.

That was the idea.

In the story it's where Jimmy sees The Who.

Otherwise, they don't intersect in the story.

He's feeling inferior.

His hero's scooter is bust and these guys have a limo.

>> [MUSIC]

[APPLAUSE] >> Pete Townshend: Okay.

>> Mark Kermode: There's this idea of The Who,

who had these kind of mod roots, and

then they later became a kind of great big bloated rock band.

And the distance between them being almost 70s rock stars and

the 60s roots of what they were,

I think is played up in this photograph.

You get this image of Jimmy, the mod,

from the 1960s, clearly, down on one knee, and

out here is the band coming out of Hammersmith Odean, but

the band appear to be like a sort of 70s rock band.

The interesting thing is, it's that thing about,

it's the distance between him and them, that's the time shift.

This is when the album's being recorded,

this is when it's about, and

it's the distance between these two things that's important.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: He just happens to pass His ex-heroes,

The Who.

And just says to them, you bunch of, you fucking let me me down.

That's all it's about, and this one song, Punk and

the Godfather.

That was it.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Mark Kermode: Records traditionally have tracks

with gaps in between them.

What Quadrophenia has is a soundscape.

And, the thing that the soundscape of Quadrophenia is

closest to is it's a film soundtrack.

So between the tracks you get the sound of Jimmy's life,

losing his bike, losing his dirty job,

living rough on the streets, alone.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: The sound of the train in the station, and

the whistle.

>> [SOUND] >> Pete Townshend: You know

the boiling kettle, and the fried egg.

>> [SOUND] >> Pete Townshend: In a sense

it's using sound as music.

For Sea and Sand, for example, I just literally walked down

a beach with a stereo and mic singing sea and sand, you know.

Here by the sea and sand.

>> [SOUND] >> Pete Townshend: But

Quadrophenia had a sound.

And it was one sound from start to finish.

And that sound was the sound of the backing track.

>> [SOUND]


>> Richard Barnes: What had happened was The Who couldn't

find a studio that they liked so they said, right, let's buy

a place and build our own cuz they had some money then.

So they found this church in Battersea in Thessaly Road,


>> John Wolff: Thessaly Road was really a storage facility.

Pete Townsend came down one day to see where all of his

guitars were.

>> Pete Townshend: Blimey.

I'm surprised how spacious it is.

>> John Wolff: He looked around.

>> [SOUND] >> John Wolff: He gave a click

of his fingers and he said, this has got good resonance.

>> Pete Townshend: It had a bright,

it's still got quite a bright sound in here.

>> [SOUND] >> Pete Townshend: But

it was brighter than this, it was quite a bright.

And that was unusual at the time.

You know,

most studios in London were a little bit deader than this one.

>> John Wolff: He said, this would make a bloody good studio.

[LAUGH] So I go, right, turn it into a studio.

>> Pete Townshend: There's a window you can see here, just

there, which would have allowed you to see from this room.

If you were sitting down, you could see into the control room,

which would have been there,

where the doctor's waiting room is.

The main intention was that the control room

should be quadraphonic.

There were no rooms in the UK or in America at the time

that had four speakers, one in each corner.

There just weren't any.

This is an acoustic ceiling designed,

they always designed like this with this dish.

And you can see that that would have been one of the from

which we hung one of the quicker phonics speakers,

another one there, another one.

Now you can see that the room is designed in a quadraphonic


The mixing desk would have been here, tape machines there.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: So I had the idea to do something in

quadraphonic before I was certain about the story of


And the band that were doing the most experimentation with it

were Pink Floyd.

And they'd done a couple of shows where they'd introduced

quadraphonic sound into their live shows.


>> Pete Townshend: Would come out in the back right.

This great bachink, and then it would come out there.

And then it goes round and round and round.

It was very exciting.

>> [SOUND] >> Ron Nevison: So

we had a test unit sent over, and Pete hated it.

The separation wasn't, it was like a big mono.

And Pete said, I am not going to make a quadraphonic album

that sounds worse than the stereo.

>> Pete Townshend: These days on a computer,

you could do this kinda thing in 15 seconds.

Back then it was much harder.

[LAUGH] >> Ron Nevison: We

actually never mixed anything in quadraphonic.

Quadrophenia is strictly a stereo album.

>> Richard Barnes: At the same time as trying to do that.

Everything was up in the air.

They were building a studio and trying to record this thing

in the studio while there were builders in there.

I mean there was people under the desk screwing.

I'm doing things.

Hold on a minute.

Another take.

And then they start.

It was utter chaos.

>> Pete Townshend: What was different about our studio to

everybody else is that we had the bar in the fucking studio.

You kind of go, nah nah nah nah nah, pour yourself a pint of

beer or a pint of brandy, whatever it was right there.

You didn't have to reach out very far.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: The average Who session not for Roger, but

for John, Keith, and I would start.

We'd roll up, you know, it'd be 2 o'clock.

By 4 o'clock we'd would have had enough brandy

to start fiddling around.

You know, and that, you know, we would be telling stories.

Roger hated all that stuff.

He just thought it was time wasting.

We build.

And we didn't know our ass from our elbow.

We didn't know what we were doing.

>> Georgiana Steele-Waller: When the desk did get put in,

Pete said, let's see what it sounds like.

And all of us in the control room.

Our ears and noses started to bleed.

I have a ruptured eardrum, to this day, because of it.

>> Pete Townshend: We measured it.

It was louder than standing by

the four engines of Concord at full throttle.

>> Georgiana Steele-Waller: It was 140 decibels.

And it just, one guitar blast,

just projectile bleeding everywhere.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Howie Edelson: As well as the studio falling apart Townsend

was in danger of losing his longterm creative ally and


By the start of Quadrophenia,

Townsend was still under the illusion that Kit Lambert was

going to be around to help him.

>> Richard Barnes: Kit Lambert and Cris Stamp,

their co-managers got into heroin and stuff.

So, they were kind of not looking after business or so

Roger thought.

Cuz Roger found out that all the money hadn't been accounted for,

and there was some money missing.

>> Pete Townshend: That was a really sad period actually.

Kit sort of wanted to be the producer as such.

Kit Lambert, who had supposed to have been co-producing with me,

had stopped coming.

I took him out.

And in the end I got so angry with Kit over his behavior

that I started to threaten him physically.

And finally enough, Roger came out and

calmed me down and got Kit Lambert away.

And then we never really worked together again.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Howie Edelson: And daddy was long gone,

Townsend was on his own.

>> Billy Curbishley: It was pretty difficult,

I didn't realize the extent of their drug use and

I didn't realize just how much

destructive behavior was going on.

And I guess that Pete felt incredible pressure.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: The local community were really

good to us.

They loved having The Who there, and that was in the days when

you know, the panel station was working.

We had kids from the estate used to come in and

sit down in the front sometimes.

>> Julie Emson: 515 was one of the songs that they let us

listen to which was exciting.

Roger would say things like girls would you buy this song?

We'd either say yes or no but

do you think it would get to number one?

>> Speaker 21: The band, now,

that haven't had a single out for two years.

They're taking a track off the forthcoming LP.

Quadrophenia, I think it's called.

And it's 5:15, and it's The Who.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: The thing about 5:15 was that it was

a sound check riff.

You know, we were just getting the sound together.

And then we moved onto another song, but

we were just riffing away.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: This always built around this riff

coming up.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: And then the horns compliment that.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: If I go back and play you what John plays you

can here that he plays an emulation of the guitar.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: He's playing my guitar part for me.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: With the drowning which I always had in

the background.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: And the ushers are sniffing,

eau de cologning, was a reference to the young girls at

the Beatles concert in Blackpool.

The whole of Blackpool,

this Blackpool theater smelt of urine.

I mean, it was just beyond belief.

Every single girl in the audience must have pissed

themselves from excitement.

And they were sprinkling out cologne on all the seats,

cuz it was apparently what you do, is you sprinkle out cologne.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Mark Kermode: Jimmy's fallen out of love with his idols.

He's been thrown out of his home.

The scooter's been crashed.

Right, now what do you do?

This is the going off into the wilderness because actually what

he's doing is he's going off in search of Xanadu.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Mark Kermode: He's going back to find the thing

that makes sense to him.

You know being on the beach, being down in Brighton,

being part of the whole mod culture thing.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Mark Kermode: And he's going off in search of something that

he already knows he's got.

That I think is why that song is so powerful.

Because it's the sense that something has already been lost.

>> [MUSIC]


>> Mark Kermode: He goes back to Brighton.

But there's that lovely idea that towns encapture very

English idea of going to a seaside town after the fair

has left.

You're off season, but actually there's a strange beauty in it,

and the beauty is that he feels calmed by the sea and

the sand because everything else has passed away.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Mark Kermode: Jimmy is drawn to, and this is the reason he's

not the same as everyone else is he goes and talks to the sea.

The image of him looking at something much bigger than

all of this brightened the mod culture thing is happening

behind him here on the promenade, on the pier,

but actually what he's doing is looking out at the vast expanse

of the sea and the sea is speaking to him.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: That was a song written about the spiritual


>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: It's about let me get back to the sea,

let me get back to the ocean.

Meaning let me get back to God.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: Which is brought on by walking on

the beach by the sea, there's nobody there but him.

He's on his own.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Mark Kermode: It's interesting that out of that

calm and peace comes the story's whole turning point where Jimmy

meets up with his key figure from his past,

the leader of mods, the Ace Face.

The idea is that Jimmy goes back and he finds this character,

the Ace Face that he really, really idolized, but in fact,

the guy he was smashing in the hotel doors with him just

recently is now working as a bell boy.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Howie Edelson: Jimmy sees his hero in the harsh, midday sun,

being nobody.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Howie Edelson: And if this person who was so exalted,

who was so perfect, that he idolized is nothing.

Then Jimmy has nothing, he is nothing.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Mark Kermode: Jimmy's rank disillusion at the idea that

the person that he idolized is a ****ing bell boy.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: It was quite difficult working with Keith as

a singer because he acted rather than sang.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Roger Daltrey: I love the way he did that.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Roger Daltrey: It's the kind of thing you can imagine a bell

boy doing, you know working at a posh hotel.

Going blimey like this with his mates and

then when it's after a tip it's, oh hello sir.


>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: I was uncomfortable with turning

the bellboy into a comedy figure cuz I thought it,

this is the only time that the Ace Face face sings.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: A couple of times I said to him,

it's not a comedy.

>> [MUSIC]

[SOUND] >> Pete Townshend: That

would have gone.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Speaker 22: What was Keith like in 1973?

>> Roger Daltrey: Just a little bit more drunk than he was in



>> Pete Townshend: The extraordinary thing about Keith

is that whatever you felt about him as a drummer, and

I didn't think very much of him at the time.

[LAUGH] Kinda sacrilegious and that but I didn't.

He listened.

>> Roger Daltrey: Pete would call him a sloppy drummer,

and he never was a sloppy drummer.

He had an extraordinary metronome.

He made the music dramatic.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: What he wouldn't do is play.

>> [SOUND]


>> Pete Townshend: And I'd be going boom, boom, bang,

bang, boom.

[LAUGH] Cuz somebody had to.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Roger Daltrey: He was at top of his game in 73.

73, 74 absolute top of his game.

He was magnificent.

They were funny as hell.

>> Pete Townshend: You know I told the funny stories about him

showing up saying come outside and look at my new car.

We'd go out and there'd be a Rolls Royce and

we'd say oh fabulous Keith, great, and

then two hours later we'd heard from somebody from Jack.

Where do I send the invoice for Keith Moon's new car?

He said, do I have to send it to the Who Group,

is it the Who Group?

I said no, you send it to Keith Moon.

No, no, no, no, no.

We have to send it to the Who Group.

And I said no, we're not fucking paying for it, okay?

This is his car, let him pay for it.

No, no, no, you don't understand.

No, you don't fucking understand.

We're not paying for his car.

>> [SOUND] >> Keith Moon: That's better.

>> [SOUND] >> Georgiana Steele-Waller: I

think today you'd say he had ADHD,

and he needed some Ritalin or something.

>> Keith Moon: Hello Hugh.

[LAUGH] >> Georgiana Steele-Waller: But

taking cocaine and manderesk and brandy was exacerbating it.

>> Pete Townshend: It was always a mixture with Keith,

fun one minute and a bit frightening the next.

You never felt afraid of him but for him and people around him.

And he wasn't at his best as a human being at that time.

I don't think any of us were, really.

I shouldn't really single him out.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Mark Kermode: There's a credit on the inside of

the sleeve which says Quadrophenia in it's entirety by

Pete Townshend.

Townshend writes and records the entire album himself in demo

form and then when he brought it to The Who they did it again.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Richard Barnes: Quadrophenia was defiantly

like a Pete Townshend solo project.

It was all Townshend from start to finish.

His own and they probably knew nothing about it until he came

and said, here it is, sort of thing.

So you could see how Roger, and maybe the others,

would feel a little bit resentful because it could be

construed as being used like session musicians.

>> Roger Daltrey: Because I hear it said that Pete produced

the album, which in a sense he did, but one thing he never,

ever produced was the vocals.

He's never there when I record my vocals ever.

I won't have that.

>> Pete Townshend: Roger was always tough, assertive,

masculine, so there is always that sense that you know you

have to be careful what you said around him.

We really did.

>> Roger Daltrey: Pete's a very complicated character.

Very and incredibly complicated,

as you can see by the songs he writes.

>> Billy Curbishley: They had an addiction to friction.

It's almost like they're two jigsaw pieces, and

when you bring them together, they fit together.

It's an absolute love-hate, not hate, but

it's a love-anger relationship.

>> Billy Curbishley: Well I think if you take away the love

anger, you take away the creative source,

you take away the driving dynamic.


>> [MUSIC]

>> Ethan Russell: He steals the boat in the story and

goes out to sea and almost drowns.

It's clearly written as, is this gonna be

what happens to this boy whose life is kind of falling apart,

who's kind of twice schizophrenic, pilled out,

got nothing, doesn't have a girl, doesn't have a bike. Anything.


that's kinda what we're shooting.

And then he's now really adrift.

And then this, which I just kinda love.

Love rain or me.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: And what's interesting about the opening

here is that what you hear from Roger is incredible tenderness.

You know, you don't hear the heartfelt bellowing and

screaming that you hear later on.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: Then you get this impassioned scream.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Howie Edelson: If nothing else Love Rain or

Me shows that Jimmie is a man.

A boy wants to noticed at a club.

Wants a jacket.

Here at the end Jimmy is finally becoming a man and asking for

things that men want.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: Jimmy is the hero, at last.

It's not about The Who, it's not about Roger,

it's not about Pete, not about John, it's not about the monks,

it's not about pace face, it's not about drugs,

it's not about any of that stuff.

It's just about Jimmy, and what it is that he's finally got

to is that he realizes that he's been looking outside himself and

what he has to do now is to try to ask the question internally.

And that's what this song's about.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: The poignancy for

me was that as a composer working with The Who was so

great because they use to give me this unbelievable license.

They didn't share my spiritual beliefs, well that's fine, but

they allowed me to have them and

they allowed me to express them through my work.

And when it came to a song like Love Rain on Me,

which is a spiritual prayer to nothing and everything,

Roger gave it his bullocks.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Ron Nevison: Now this is Roger coming in in a second.

>> Roger Daltrey: I did it as a scream from the street.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Roger Daltrey: I wanted to bring out the ultimate anger,

the ultimate passion, the ultimate orgasm, really.

I wanted to be like every emotion we've ever had.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Roger Daltrey: Because then it's unconditional to the track,

and love should be always unconditional.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: You get a sense of Roger producing this

deep scream from his heart, from Jimmy's heart.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Howie Edelson: The end of Quadrophenia is left ambiguous.

The allusion of drowning and water is throughout

the album and that can be death or rebirth.

>> Pete Townshend: The question of what happens to Jimmy next,

I really like the fact that it's in the hands of the listener.

>> [MUSIC]

[APPLAUSE] >> Keith Moon: We're

gonna go on the road again.

We're doing a tour of Europe, then we do America,

and we come back to Europe, and then we do America again.

We've got two American tours lined up.

>> Pete Townshend: The day that we finished the stereo mix,

our managers booked a fucking tour.

[LAUGH] So I had two weeks to rehearse,

to divert the stage quadraphonic sound, which was impossible.

We didn't have the time.

So they overworked us.

>> Billy Curbishley: I didn't take into account properly,

at that time, the load that Pete had.

What, with the mixing and everything else,

I was trying to help them survive.

>> Pete Townshend: Speaking for

myself, I was dead meat, actually, completely exhausted.

I'm sure Roger was exhausted, too.

>> Roger Daltrey: We had employed a bunch of

people that were our friends to film the rehearsal.

And we played through, I think we got through to Dr. Jimmy.

And they'd been sitting on their boxes of cameras.

And I just say to them,

are you gonna sit on your fucking asses all afternoon?

Cuz I'm not doing this, singing this again.

I thought you're suppose to be filming this.

I don't know why, it was some reason,

just this other side of Pete came over and started poking me.

>> [SOUND] >> Roger Daltrey: He'll do what

I tell him to do.

And doing this to me.

All the while he'd jump on me.

And stop holding my arms.

>> Pete Townshend: I started to scream at him, and

I can't remember the details but

we ended up in a physical grappling and.

>> Roger Daltrey: He pulled his guitar off and

as he brought it down he tried to hit me on the head with it.

And it glanced off my shoulder like that.

Then he threw a punch and it went one way and

I moved that way.

Then he threw the other punch and as he was coming forward

with his right hand this way, well I upper cutted him.

>> Pete Townshend: And he hit me, and I passed out.

>> [APPLAUSE] >> Speaker 23: You know as well

as know, The Who, right.

[CROSSTALK] >> Speaker 24: Here

they are, The Who.

>> Richard Barnes: At the shows you could see they'd introduced

a new work and the audience are going

>> [SOUND]

>> Richard Barnes: starting

>> Roger Daltrey: We'd like to

carry on our present act with our new album, or parts of it.

>> Billy Curbishley: I don't know what they expected, but

the audience, it was new to them.

>> Pete Townshend: And then what started to happen is that Roger

started to tell the story.

>> Roger Daltrey: This one's about his feelings when he

gets down to the seaside.

>> Pete Townshend: So every time we'd play the song he would stop

and say, well now Jimmy is fucked off with his Dad,

he's gonna go and get a job.

>> [APPLAUSE] >> Roger Daltrey: The next song

is about a guy, and he sees an old gang leader,

who's working as a bellhop.

>> Howie Edelson: When somebody's talking onstage,

you can't hear it.

Half the time you're next to the person, say what did he say?

So you had that confusion going on at these Quadrophenia shows.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Roger Daltrey: So I probably gave Pete a lot of problems that

he didn't need.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Howie Edelson: After that things fell apart.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Howie Edelson: It was the first night of the Quadrophenia

US shows, and Moon takes elephant tranquilizer.

And he starts off strong enough, and a few songs in he collapses.

>> [APPLAUSE] >> Pete Townshend: He's

out cold.

I think he's gone and

eaten something he shouldn't have eaten.

It's your foreign food.

>> Speaker 25: Fuck off.

[LAUGH] >> Pete Townshend: I'm afraid

the horrible truth is, that without him, we're not a group.

Yeah, I kinda did that kinda thing all the time,

it's just that this time, the drugs were too powerful for him.


>> Pete Townshend: He's still a bit [INAUDIBLE].

But he'll be all right.

>> Howie Edelson: He is dragged off stage and they take a break

and they come back and he makes it through and

then by the end of Won't Get Fooled Again, he's dead.

He is just lifeless, he is jello.

>> [MUSIC]

[APPLAUSE] >> Pete Townshend: Can

anybody play the drums?

>> [APPLAUSE] >> Howie Edelson: And

then they had this fan, Scott Halpin,

come play drums with them.

>> Pete Townshend: Scott.

>> Howie Edelson: And that's how they kicked off what already was

a difficult tour.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: We managed to kinda soldier on.

You know we could put a brave face on it.

And you know I could tell funny stories about it, and

we could all have a good laugh.

It was tragic.

It was really tragic, cuz Keith was being a fool.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: We got good reviews and

the album sold well but when we came back to Europe

the following year we weren't even playing it.

Went back to playing Tommy.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: And what's interesting about this

album is it kinda worked,

we never really ever made a truly great album again.

>> [MUSIC]

>> Pete Townshend: He pulled this letter out.

It's a painful letter, but this is the man I was at a point.

Ted Album was our lawyer at the time, and

in this last week of recording, here,

I think, I just thought, I've had it with this.

This is not going to happen.

We're not going to get an album.

We're screwed, and I probably had a bad day.

But it says, dear Ted,

I'm writing to you in strictest confidence to ask advice and

to seek guidance on a matter I feel only you can help me with.

I've spoken to my wife and very intimate friends about this, but

I've found the making of this current record a great strain.

The studio building problems, the writing problems and

of course Kenton Case have been aggravations to

an already difficult time.

I've been building up to this for many years now and

I feel that as of now, the record we are making and

the current tours we're undertaking will be the last I

want to be involved with, with The Who as a group.

I'm losing any impetus either to write for

The Who as a vehicle or to play with it's members as a musician.

You know, we were done.

We were definitely done.

And this letter is indicative of the fact that I would have

gone home in that week and taken my wife aside and

said, we haven't had a holiday for fucking two years.

I've hardly seen you.

We probably haven't made love for six weeks.

Six months, god knows what.

You know, I probably missed you at Christmas.

I probably missed our anniversary.

I'm sorry, it was all a fucking complete waste of time.

That's probably what I would have said to her.

And she probably would have said to me,

well if that's how you feel you should stop, sweetheart.

And I write this letter, and I didn't send it.

>> [SOUND]