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An issue for critics has always been that of distinguishing inspiration and meaning from the routine lyrics of desire and indulgence. Townshend proved innovative, devising means of increasing his guitar sound. The Who were in sufficient demand to support The Beatles, whose "audience was almost entirely young girls who seemed lost in their own fantasy world while the music played" (p. I did myself attend a Beatles concert in 1964, during which it was almost impossible to hear what was being sung, the music being drowned by incessant female screams verging on hysteria.He preferred "powerful, slab chords" and acquired an amplifier system which "was so loud it shook most of the small halls in which we performed" (p. The Who went in the opposite direction, so that a few years later, the front row spectators might reel back in pain at the sheer volume of sound devised by maestro Peter Townshend."I was also becoming a recreational drug user, smoking [marijuana, alias cannabis] several times a week" (p. He joined Roger Daltrey's line-up called The Detours, a pop group in the early 1960s, sharing the same milieu as The Rolling Stones and The Kinks.Roger Daltrey (born 1944) was originally "a brash street fighter from working-class Shepherd's Bush," (1) and became a guitarist.He now clarifies what the generation divide amounted to.He did react to the wealthy establishment in Belgravia ("women in fur coats"), but he pinpoints the factor of class rather than age group. The problem being that pop music is rarely an adequate communicator of sufficient detail on social/political issues.
His sense of affiliation with Meher Baba has sometimes aroused scepticism and incredulity, but is acknowledged in the present article. In the acknowledgments, Townshend writes that his American publisher "has been forthright and meticulous, keeping me alert to the fact that he and I both want this book to entertain, but also to convince" (, p. So entertainment and conviction are evidently priorities. The recent autobiography of rock star Pete Townshend is promoted as "the most eagerly awaited music memoir of the century." The expectation is evidently one of commercial success.Unless otherwise specified, all references below are to the pagination in Townshend, (London: Harper Collins, 2012). Early Years of The Who Born in West London in 1945, Pete Townshend had a family background of musical performance.His father was a saxophonist in a Royal Air Force dance band; his mother was a singer.