Who’s left of The Who?

BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 24: Pete Townshend (R) and Roger Daltrey of The Who perform on stage at the Brisbane Entertainment Centre on March 24, 2009 in Brisbane, Australia. (Photo by Bradley Kanaris/Getty Images)

I just saw something that forces me to veer sharply away from politics for a moment.

The Who is going to play on “The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon” later this week.

The Who? Yes … or what’s left of The Who.

Two of them are deceased. Keith Moon was the wild-man drummer; John Entwistle was the smooth bassist. Zack Starkey, Ringo’s son, has replaced Moon on the drums and from what I understand he does a creditable job with the sticks; don’t know who’s thumping out the bass notes these days.

I guess my point is this: How can a band that has lost two of its four distinct personalities still be called a band by the same name?

Roger Daltrey still sings and screams; Pete Townshend still rips the guitar with that famous “whirlwind move.” They’re great, man.

Keith and John aren’t there any longer.

Other bands have sort of stayed together while key members have been MIA. The Beach Boys without Dennis, Carl and Brian Wilson tried to hang together; Brian came back and then got into a serious spat with Mike Love. Creedence Clearwater Revival has a new name because their front man, John Fogerty, got mad at his bandmates and won’t have anything to do with them.

Think of The Beatles “reuniting” without John Lennon and George Harrison. Can’t imagine it? Neither can I.

Nor can I imagine The Who without Keith Moon and John Entwistle.

I’m out.

Back to the other stuff …

 

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