Amy Mantis


Pete Townshend I Guess

January 12, 2013

I’m really stumped right now, and I know why.  Some day I’ll tell you.

I’m watching the Who on Palladia.  It’s their 1970 Isle of Wight appearance.  Pete is so arrogant and you can see Roger laughing during his intro to Overture.  I don’t think he could get away with that today.  When I saw the Who in November he was very gracious.  He was always very appreciative of his audience (read his book) and understands where they’re coming from.  I don’t think anyone today can play to 600,000 people and get away with the on-stage demeanor of Pete.  That’s probably for the best.

I love Pete Townshend more than I could ever possibly express.  My favorite musicians are generally songwriting guitarists from the 1960s and 1970s - I count Steve Winwood in there as well because he is a phenomenal guitarist.  Pete’s atop that list.  We have a few things in common:

We both play guitar.
We both write songs.
We both sing when we want to.
We both have big noses (his more so than mine).

I play a red Stratocaster because of Pete.  I’ll never deny the influence the Who and Pete in particular have had on me.  It’s evident in some songs of mine, no doubt, but the energy that the Who create on stage that I try to conjure up more so than the writing styles of Pete. (I don’t have to try - it just happens.  I have to stop myself from writing songs that sound like complete Who ripoffs.  We had very different lives so lyrically we’re very different, harmonically, we’re both blues fans so there you have it.)

I’m quite tired and this post was rubbish.  And I’m going to attribute that last sentence’s Britishness to my watching the Who right now.