Four Decades of The Who

My Generation Baby

The Who are an English rock band formed in 1964 by Roger Daltrey, Pete Townshend, John Entwistle and Keith Moon. The fist time I saw the Who in concert was August 27 1967 at Music Hall, a venue in Cincinnati, Ohio that is well known worldwide as the home for the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra. It seats approx. 3500 and is acoustically superior to most any place in the world. The lineup for that show was strange. The opening act was another British band called Herman's Hermits and if you know their music you'll totally understand me when I say WTF? The second act was psych. band The Blues Magoos, a real good band that made a bit more sense being on the same bill as The Who. Really it didn't matter, most everyone was there to see the Who. I don't remember how long they played but it was one of the most kick ass shows you could ever imagine. They ended, as they did back then, with My Generation and for all of you that know, at the end of that song all hell breaks loose and they destroy all the equipment. It was amazing to see that live and the one thing that I really loved is seeing Keith Moon pull back both feet and just kick both bass drums right off the stage. I've found a video of the song from back then, It'll give you the idea but you really had to be there. The second time I saw them was also in Cincinnati at the Riverfront Coliseum on Dec.3 1979 and while that too (as were all Who shows) was a great one it was overshadowed by what turned out to be a night that would never be forgotten worldwide. It was the night that 11 of my brothers and sisters were trampled to death. You may know the story, while everyone waited outside for the doors to open the crowd pushed toward the doors in an effort to be among the first to get through the door because it was festival seating (meaning first come-best seats). You can go to Wiki and read how the fact that it was festival seating is blamed for the deaths but I was there and I'm telling you that only two doors were opened and the band was doing a sound check leading us all to believe the show was starting soon. Everyone surged forward and it was crazy. After being shoved I finally got to the door, where I tried to tell the security guard (well it was more like I yelled at him) that this was crazy and they needed to open more doors. He payed no attention so I finally got in and enjoyed the show and while leaving I saw a lot going on outside but had no idea what had happened until I got back to my van and turned on the radio. The news was stunning and all I could think at that time was did I trample anyone because if you had there was no way to have known. I immediately drove home where my family was in a frenzy knowing I was there. Like the fine city of Cincinnati is the blame was laid on the festival seating, which was banned until finally sometime in the 80's Bruce Springsteen had the first show where it was allowed. Now they open the doors 2 hours before the shows, good thinkin', just too late! The third time was July 19 1989 at the old home of the Cleveland Browns, Municipal Stadium. I took my business partner, Daren who'd not had the pleasure of enjoying The Who live. Road trip, big fun. The final time I saw them was Nov.4 1996 at a venue called The Nutter Center, in Dayton Ohio on the campus of Wright State. This one was with my good friend John who I've been to many concerts with over the 40+ years we've been friends. After all those years they still kicked ass doing the Quadraphenia album with Billy Idol and Gary Glitter appearing in a couple of tunes (Billy playing the roll of the "Bellboy"). Four decades of the Who, the only other bands I saw in four decades were The Rolling Stones and Pink Floyd and really the last Floyd show was actually a Roger Waters show but to me that counts. Thanks for reading this, I hope you enjoyed a part of my music life, I sure did! (and still do:-D Peace!! Tom

The Sadness Dec, 3, 1979

Pete Townshend A Heart To Hang On To

Comments 29 comments

moncrieff profile image

moncrieff 5 years ago from New York, NY

I didn't know about the tragedy at a Who concert. The stadium management is to be blamed for not allowing more doors to open. The police also should have kept their eyes open to what was happening. It's awful that you happened to be right there. Herman's Hermits were a nuisance indeed in 1967 to open for The Who. But then Jimi Hendrix opened once for The Monkees and Engelbert Humperdinck.

Great 'My Generation' video! These outfits... I think the kids in the 60s were avenging for the dullness of 50s fashion and were playing with styles from all epochs. Very cool time, indeed!

Thanks.


Darlene Sabella profile image

Darlene Sabella 5 years ago from Hello, my name is Toast and Jam, I live in the forest with my dog named Sam ...

OMG This was my first concert and I was wearing an afro wig, nickers high boot, and a fringe vest it was around June or july at the Anaheim statum with was pro baseball. So cops were surround up around the entire wall of the a huge area. We filled the place, and my room mate worked for the radio station so we go to hang back stage whenever, I really can remember the music, however I do remember sitting the the center of a huge crowds. The food was being passed around, standwishes, oranges, bananas, then the brownies. The cops were scared to cause a riot, then you could see the hippies smoking a joint and blowing into their faces throught this concert. I think all the cops were more stoned then any of us.

Wow, that was a flash memory....fantastic and wonderful hub, I love it...peace & love your girlfriend rate up


Darlene Sabella profile image

Darlene Sabella 5 years ago from Hello, my name is Toast and Jam, I live in the forest with my dog named Sam ...

This hub is awesome and my life was those memories. Love even more now...love & peace darski

rate upup up


G-Ma Johnson profile image

G-Ma Johnson 5 years ago from NW in the land of the Free

Wow you were there? how awful and what a sad, terrible thing to experience...what a shame in the name of show business. Yet once it began you can understand why it couldn't be stopped.

give me heart to hang on to. great hub Tom...:O) Hugs G-Ma


Wesman Todd Shaw profile image

Wesman Todd Shaw 5 years ago from Kaufman, Texas

Bet that 67' show was kick ass.

That concert rush for seats and trampled to death thing. . . .yuck. Of course that same phenomenon still happens at the strangest places, and big soccer matches in other countries.

The Who is an awesome band, I bet there are all sorts of "hidden gems" in their albums that I don't even know about yet.

I remember when the Scorpions re made "I Can't Explain," I didn't even know that song at that time, and that's a classic.


Micky Dee profile image

Micky Dee 5 years ago

The who?


jandee profile image

jandee 5 years ago from Liverpool.U.K

Why ! What a waste ! Always wrong people in the jobs.

I wonder just how many people have died at concerts ? not even thinking about football deaths !jandee

p.s isn't music for happiness ?


justom profile image

justom 5 years ago from 41042 Author

Hey moncrieff, they never took responsibility. Yeah, Jimi as an opening act was funny enough. I actually saw a Monkees concert (if that;s what you wanna' call it). Glad you enjoyed this hub. Thanks for checking it out!


justom profile image

justom 5 years ago from 41042 Author

Thanks Dar, glad you liked it. It was a fun time!


justom profile image

justom 5 years ago from 41042 Author

It was a crazy thing Merle Ann and those were crazy times. Peace and Love!!


justom profile image

justom 5 years ago from 41042 Author

Hey Todd, that 67 show is one of the best I've seen. Maybe I'll do another hub on The Who just about some of those tunes of which you speak.


justom profile image

justom 5 years ago from 41042 Author

Hey Micky Dee, indeed. Who's on first:-D!!


justom profile image

justom 5 years ago from 41042 Author

Hi jandee, music is about happiness but unfortunately the folks running the venues back then were not there for that reason (and truthfully that's probably still the case). Thanks for checking out my hub!


twentyfive profile image

twentyfive 5 years ago

Thanks for giving us free passes for The Who :-D


justom profile image

justom 5 years ago from 41042 Author

You're welcome :-D


gr82bme profile image

gr82bme 5 years ago from USA

justom, The Who for me was ok. I am not a real beg fan of them. The hub was well done. Thank you for the story and the videos


justom profile image

justom 5 years ago from 41042 Author

gr82bme, glad you enjoyed the hub, they were amazing but if you don't like this kind of music I understand. I like all kinds of music. Peace!!


daydreamer13 profile image

daydreamer13 5 years ago

This is cool! I really learned alot and was entertained at the same time. Excellent writing!


justom profile image

justom 5 years ago from 41042 Author

Thanks again daydreamer! Peace!!


gr82bme profile image

gr82bme 5 years ago from USA

justom, I do not care for Pink Floyd either. It must be me. LOl


justom profile image

justom 5 years ago from 41042 Author

Really? Maybe I should just ask what kind of music you do like :-P


Eiddwen profile image

Eiddwen 5 years ago from Wales

Hi justom,

A great hub and one I am bookmarking for my partner Dai who has always been a great fan of The Who.

A lot of hard work went into this one and it shows.

Thank you for sharing

Take care

Eiddwen.


justom profile image

justom 5 years ago from 41042 Author

Hi Eiddwen, I'm glad you enjoyed the hub. It's funny but it doesn't seem like hard work when it's something you've loved for so many years. Thanks so much for taking time to read it. Peace!! Tom


izettl profile image

izettl 5 years ago from The Great Northwest

exciting experience (trampling- whoa). I love The Who. I bet their concerts were thrilling. I always say...they just don't make em' like they used to. Great band, great hub! voted up.


justom profile image

justom 5 years ago from 41042 Author

Hi izetti, glad you enjoyed the hub, thanks! Peace!!


Jean Bakula 5 years ago

It's so great reading about these bands I loved. Once disco, rap, and hiphop came along, we just kept on playing all the great bands you are writing about. It's the only music our son knows, and he's a good guitar player now. He & my hubby love Pink Floyd, but the real early stuff, when Syd Barrett was there. He really made the band. It's so sad about him. I sometimes wonder if it really was all the drugs, or if he was just so fragile he realized he couldn't take the lifestyle. I saw a video of Roger Waters--I can't even say singing--See Emily Play--and it was disgracefully bad. He has an awful rep, we saw Ian Anderson a few months ago, and he even made a nasty comment about Waters!


justom profile image

justom 5 years ago from 41042 Author

Hey Jean, I'm not stuck in those days but the music was great. Funny, Justin plays too and Pink Floyd is by far our favorite band. I loved all the stuff with Syd too but not as anal about what folks consider the "real" Floyd. I've seen them 4 times, in '72-'77-'87 and in '94 with Justin and we saw Roger in 2000. I know Waters has a big ego and a lot of people don't like him but I have no problem with him and especially his music. There weren't many who had the chance to see the band with Syd. His sister said he had some mental issues though the acid probably did not help. Glad to hear you like this stuff, thanks for the great comment! Peace!!


Fossillady profile image

Fossillady 5 years ago from Saugatuck Michigan

That bit with Tommy Smothers was hilarious when Pete grabbed his guitar, wanted to see the rest of it! Pete still sounds great! I certainly enjoyed going down memory lane with you! Thank you so much for sharing it with us!


justom profile image

justom 5 years ago from 41042 Author

Glad you liked it, Tommy was like that. Thanks, Peace!!

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