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Author Topic: LIVING WITH WAR  (Read 13325 times)
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Charles LePage @ ComicList
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« Reply #75 on: May 29, 2006, 11:52:12 AM »

All the more reason to consider politics irrelevant.  Pete Townshend was right: "Meet the new boss, same as the old boss."  It doesn't matter who is in charge, things go on the same for the most part.  As long as you can paint a pretty picture everyone is happy.

Won't Get Fooled Again has been listed in the UK Independent Newspaper as the number one song with - as I understand it - the political message most often misunderstood - in this case the message is said to be 'conservative', a word that may mean different things in the UK and USA.

Of course the song has no party-allied political message at all. It is not precisely a song that decries revolution - it suggests that we will indeed fight in the streets - but that revolution, like all action can have results we cannot predict. Don't expect to see what you expect to see. Expect nothing and you might gain everything.

The song was meant to let politicians and revolutionaries alike know that what lay in the centre of my life was not for sale, and could not be co-opted into any obvious cause.

This was everything to do with what I believe to be the power of music and congregation and nothing to do with what any individual might do to use the language of modern rock and pop to express their privately held views. I suppose the 'universal' themes behind rock, that I have always espoused, can emerge over time looking vacuous, unspecific, vague and dilletantish. But despite its looseness, and its decadence, rock has lasted a lifetime, and still seems to prevail as the impudent portal for the naive complaints of the hopeful young.

From 1971 - when I wrote Won't Get Fooled Again - to 1985, there was a transition in me from refusal to be co-opted by activists, to a refusal to be judged by people I found jaded and compliant in Thatcher's Britain. Peter Gabriel and I spoke often on the phone about work we were doing with David Astor, Neville Vincent, Donald Woods and Lord Goodman to raise money to help spring Nelson Mandela from gaol in South Africa. We realized quickly that what we were doing was buying guns for the ANC, an organisation that some on the far right believed were no better than the IRA. Nelson was sprung, so everything turned out well. But when in the mid-nineties, one of the very last IRA bombs went off in a theatre in London close to where my musical of Tommy was about to open, I decided my karma had come around full circle.

Not all action to change the world has to be trumpeted from the rooftops by Bono editing the Independent newspaper (though it was a fantastic and audacious stunt equal to Lord Matthew Evans giving me an editorial chair at Faber and Faber in 1985), or from the scaffolding of a rock festival. Roger Daltrey does indeed play rock 'n' roll with Richard "Dirty" Desmond (who owns some big newspapers among other things), but he himself gets down and dirty visiting hospitals where the teenage cancer victims for whom they raise money struggle to survive. He holds them, laughs with them, and gives them hope. This is One-to-One stuff of the kind that I find I am incapable. I can meet and speak with survivors of sexual abuse, drug abuse and the victims of all kinds of domestic violence, but I have what I now know is a quite common problem with those who might suddenly die on me in a hospital, clinic or hospice.

I am just a song-writer. The actions I carry out are my own, and are usually private until some digger-after-dirt questions my methods. What I write is interpreted, first of all by Roger Daltrey. Won't Get Fooled Again - then - was a song that pleaded '….leave me alone with my family to live my life, so I can work for change in my own way….'. But when Roger Daltrey screamed as though his heart was being torn out in the closing moments of the song, it became something more to so many people. And I must live with that. In the film Summer of Sam the song is used to portray white-boy 'street' idiocy; a kind of fascist absurdity, men swinging their arms over air-guitars and smashing up furniture. Spike Lee told my manager that '…he deeply understood Who music….'. What he understood was what he himself - like so many others - had made it. He saw an outrage and frustration, even a judgment or empty indictment in the song that wasn't there. What is there is a prayer.

http://www.petetownshend.co.uk/diary/display.cfm?id=285&zone=diary
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« Reply #76 on: May 29, 2006, 05:00:33 PM »

Right ON!
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« Reply #77 on: May 29, 2006, 05:06:48 PM »

Yeah, a prayer and good analysis.  I see that last line as so very devastating, so very accurate in its capturing of the political and cultural process.  In 1971, everyone thought that the world was going to change.  Townshend was one of the first voices saying, you know what? Different leaders, same old crap.  And he's right -- Daltrey's delivery, while amazing in isolation, totally obscures the true meaning of the song.
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« Reply #78 on: May 30, 2006, 04:31:05 PM »

Just now read this thread.  Some of you know that I do not consider myself to be a religious person, but I have to say that I hope Jeff is right regarding the sovereignty of God.  I hope that there really is a reason that GWB is still allowed to inflict such evil on the world.  I've grown hopeless at times over the last few years as I see the death and destruction caused by Bush for the monetary gain of his cronies, and the sad erosion of our Constitution at the hands of an Administration that doesn't believe in separation of powers. If God has a plan for this, I sincerely hope that we see the good come from it soon. 

I never believed in Satan until Bush was elected again.
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« Reply #79 on: May 30, 2006, 04:32:55 PM »

Just when you thought it was safe to go in the water.
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« Reply #80 on: May 30, 2006, 04:54:52 PM »

Just when you thought it was safe to go in the water.

Not trying to start sh*t, I REALLY hope God has a plan for this.

On another note, I try to separate musicians from their music, but I have a real hard time with Townshend, and even with the Who following his legal troubles.  I just got a great needle-drop of the mono "Who's Next", and I'm having trouble enjoying it.  Do we just enjoy the art, and try not to think about the creator?
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« Reply #81 on: May 30, 2006, 05:28:54 PM »

Pete's 'legal troubles' - by which I take it you mean his caution for looking at Child porn websites - are something that I as a long-term Who fan have no problem with. I have read his web-sit efor years and he has always maintained a VERY strong position against child pornography and had stated ON his web-site shortly before this came to light (but not that shortly...) about his issues with it and that he was going to try to do something about it - he was appalled when he came across a site with hie 9 year old son while they were looking for something else.

I do believe Pete's explanation - he is guilty of arrogance in thinking that the laws against looking at this stuff did not apply to him if he was researching against it. It's because I saw his previous comments as they were made that I think he was telling the truth. I don't think ROger would have worked with him again if he thought this was the case either.

Pete is a man who bears his soul and his thoughts over the internet quite regularly and I thought at the time that he'd better be careful.

He's a good man who made a mistake, not a paedophile or a pornographer.

Why would you want a mono version of Who's Next?  More to the point I can't find any record of there even being a mono version. The last Who LP issued in mono was Direct Hits in the UK and Magic Bus in the US.
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« Reply #82 on: May 30, 2006, 05:41:33 PM »

And, if I remember correctly, the laws concerning what Pete did had either just changed or changed after the fact.  Though that's going by my very faulty memory.
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« Reply #83 on: May 30, 2006, 08:16:19 PM »

Before the war is ended, the war party assumes the divine right to denounce and silence all opposition to war as unpatriotic and cowardly.

~Senator Robert M. La Follette
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« Reply #84 on: May 31, 2006, 12:20:11 AM »


Why would you want a mono version of Who's Next?  More to the point I can't find any record of there even being a mono version. The last Who LP issued in mono was Direct Hits in the UK and Magic Bus in the US.

Absolutely correct.  I must have been thinking about the discussion of "Wont Get Fooled Again" when I typed Who's Next.  It's actually Who Sell Out (the Doc Ebbetts UK mono mix) that I just got a copy of.
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« Reply #85 on: May 31, 2006, 01:56:42 PM »

I only had the mono version for years - total shock when I finally got a stereo copy and found out the difference! Not exactly a matter of just separating the tracks and adding reverb was it!
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« Reply #86 on: May 31, 2006, 02:03:01 PM »

Mono-stereo wars, that's my kind of business!
Overall, have to say I dig the Stereo Sell Out more! Which is rare, because I usually dig the mono better on most any album, due to sonic thickness. But the stereo Sell Out amplifies the trip. Even though the tinniness of the mono prob'ly jibes with the pirate-radio broadcast theme better. Hell, I'll take em both on a twofer.
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« Reply #87 on: May 31, 2006, 02:43:09 PM »

I just wanted to post here because all the other "Threads" I want to post to are deleted or locked.
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« Reply #88 on: May 31, 2006, 03:05:05 PM »

Hard for me to pick a favorite between the mono and stereo.  Very different.  I was only familiar with the Stereo until about a week ago, so the mono version sounds a little foreign to me.  Its growing on me though, and it's nice to hear something old be "new" again.
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« Reply #89 on: May 31, 2006, 04:16:17 PM »

Anyone remember those action films where a huge gangwar or shootout occurs, and afterward, as everyone lies dead, the cops ride in? Just wonderin'.
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« Reply #90 on: May 31, 2006, 04:16:52 PM »

Colors?
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« Reply #91 on: May 31, 2006, 04:18:26 PM »

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« Reply #92 on: May 31, 2006, 04:20:11 PM »

LOL that billy...
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« Reply #93 on: May 31, 2006, 04:54:41 PM »

I think it was easier hearing it Mono first - all the extra stuff was a lovely surprise - I wasn't expecting new guitar licks to pop up hear and there. I don't have a favourite - I tend to think that the stereo version is more what they wanted and it's what is on the CD, which was a well put together package.
The BIG difference of course is the guitar solo on Our Love Was, which are two totally different approaches. Love em both equally.
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