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The Who sets U.S. tour, Olympics gig

Read a related local report on The Who here.

 

NEW YORK -- The Who's Roger Daltrey and Pete Townshend are taking "Quadrophenia" and other Who classics on the road for a U.S. tour this fall, but first plan what Daltrey calls a great finale for the Olympic Games in London.

"We have recorded a piece of music that is a fabulous ending for the Olympics . . . and just shows the great music that has come out of this country. This country has put some fabulous music out into the world," Daltrey said Wednesday as he sat next to Townshend. Both are British.

The Who's Olympics performance will be a tune-up of sorts for the band's American tour, which kicks off Nov. 1 in Sunrise, Fla., and will end in Providence, R.I., on Feb. 26.

The band will play regionally in Greensboro, N.C., on Nov. 9; in Pittsburgh on Nov. 11; in Louisville, Ky., on Feb. 16; and in Columbus, Ohio, on Feb. 17.

The last time The Who toured the United States was in 2008.

During a wide-ranging video conference, during which they took questions that were sent in ahead of time, the surviving members of the legendary band were asked if they were planning to use holograms, like Dr. Dre did to lifelike effect with the image of Tupac Shakur at Coachella in April, for late members Keith Moon and John Entwistle. Moon died in 1978, Entwistle in 2002.

"I thought about it, but everybody is doing it now," said Daltrey. "I don't know whether we need it. And it's only a gimmick. We were very good on gimmicks in the '70s, but I think we can leave it alone now."

He also said the band did not plan to have guest singers as it did on its previous tour.

The double album "Quadrophenia," released in 1973, was The Who's second acclaimed rock opera ("Tommy" being the first). Written by Townshend, Daltrey called it "Pete's pinnacle."

The band will play the album in its entirety.

A documentary about the making of the album, "The Who: Quadrophenia - Can You See the Real Me?" will be shown Tuesday in theaters across the country (see inset for local screening).

The London Olympics starts July 27 and runs until Aug. 12.

The Who's Olympics gig will put the band on an even bigger stage than its halftime performance at the Super Bowl in 2010. Daltrey said the closing performance "is not about The Who being on a TV show, it's about making great music that is apropos to the end of that event.  . . . I'm extremely proud of it."

Townshend said he is working on new music, but he added: "I don't know whether you can rubber-stamp it as Who music."


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