|Roger Daltrey and Pete Townshend of 'The Who' gesture after performing at the halftime show for the NFL's Super Bowl XLIV football game between the New Orleans Saints and the Indianapolis Colts in Miami, Florida February 7, 2010. (Mike Segar/REUTERS)
The Who's back - and taking Quadrophenia back on the road.
Singer Roger Daltrey and guitarist Pete Townshend are reuniting for a 37-city North American tour based around their 1973 rock opera, the pair announced during a live webcast Wednesday.
"We've been trying to find something we can do together, Roger and I,"
67-year-old Townshend said, seated beside Daltrey in London.
"Quadrophenia was something that we both felt we could get together on and look at again. The last time we did it (on tour) was in 1997. We've been anxious to work together before we drop dead."
The Quadrophenia & More Tour includes four Canadian shows: Nov. 20 at Montreal's Bell Centre; Nov. 21 at Ottawa's Scotiabank Place; Nov. 23 at Toronto's Air Canada Centre; and Feb. 19 at Hamilton's Copps Coliseum.
Tickets for the Ontario shows go on sale Friday July 27 at Ticketmaster, priced between $53.25 and $143.25 (tickets for the Montreal show go on sale Saturday July 28). The tour - which will also include a selection of Who classics like Baba O'Riley and Won't Get Fooled Again - will be the pair's first North American trek in four years.
Daltrey said he hopes to incorporate visual and dramatic elements into the tale about a disaffected Mod youth. "What's great about doing it now, is that it's still a work in progress," the 68-year-old singer said. "Hopefully, it'll keep developing into something new. I don't know how many more years I'm going to be able to sing this music."
On a similar note, Townshend - who has dealt with hearing issues for years - said "long periods of being careful about exposure to sound"
have helped his tinnitus.
"I'm all right at the moment," he said. "I don't actually protect my ears. I don't go on with earplugs (and) I can't actually wear in-ear monitors because they actually give you very bad tinnitus. One of the things I like about Quadrophenia is that it tends to be a bit more controlled."
Their backing band will include longtime players Zakk Starkey (Ringo's
son) on drums, Townshend's brother Simon on guitar and Pino Palladino on bass. Townshend admitted that while he and Daltrey still miss late drummer Keith Moon and bassist John Entwistle, he has found it "liberating" to perform with different musicians. And don't expect to see hologram versions of Moon or Entwistle, Daltrey says. "We thought about it, but everybody's doing it now. It's very expensive to carry, I don't know if we need it - there's other things you can do. It's only a gimmick."
Along with the tour, a documentary on the album - The Who: Quadrophenia
- Can You Still See the Real Me? - is being released this month, while the original 1979 film is being reissued on DVD and Blu-ray. Townshend said he hasn't seen the documentary. "You get to a certain age the and last thing you want to do is look at yourself looking 105, going on about being 15."
But he is continuing to work on his autobiography Who I Am, slated for release this fall. Unlike Keith Richards' infamous memoir Life, it won't include any references to his singer's crotch - but it will include a reference to Mick Jagger's, he joked.
"What I remember of the size of Mick Jagger's penis - I remember it as being huge and extremely tasty," Townshend cracked as Daltrey laughed.
"I don't remember anything about Roger's ... and wouldn't dare to mention it. Let's hope that makes the Internet."