Roger Daltrey overcame a “nasally” cold to perform his ‘Tommy Reborn’ show at The Indig02 in London last night (25.07.11).
The rock legend told the audience he had caught the bug when performing in freezing conditions in Norfolk, East England, but was determined to get his voice in shape with some warm-up numbers before launching into The Who’s iconic rock opera – which he is touring without his bandmate Pete Townshend.
He said: “We did a gig up in Norfolk and it was freezing, 49 degrees, it was like winter. So I’m feeling a bit nasally. So I’m gonna do a couple of warm up numbers before I do ‘Tommy’, the voice might sound a bit dull, but that might just be my ears.”
He and his band – which includes Pete’s younger brother Simon Townshend and Frank Simes on guitar – then kicked off with ‘I Can See For Miles’.
Following the rendition of The Who classic one boisterous fan shouted to Roger “you warmed up yet?”, to which another replied “yes!”.
After playing ‘Pictures of Lily’, another rowdy audience member, referring to Roger’s Norfolk anecdote, shouted “you want to get up there again”.
The 67-year-old musician responded by saying: “What, Norfolk? You want to try singing in 49 degrees with the wind blowing in your face.”
After playing two Irish folk covers, Roger then launched into ‘Tommy’ – the concept album about a deaf, dumb and blind pinball wizard who becomes a messianic leader.
Introducing the record, he said: “I rediscovered this piece of music in March and The Who never did it like we do it, this band. We did it as a big spectacular thing with bells and whistles.
“But it isn’t just about Tommy, it’s about all of us, there’s a bit of Tommy in all of us and the things we cope with.”
Highlights included ‘Cousin Kevin’, ‘Pinball Wizard’ and ‘I’m Free’, and Roger recreated the energy of his youth, crashing tambourines together and spinning his microphone high in the air.
After concluding ‘Tommy’, Roger then performed more classic The Who songs, including ‘Who Are You’, ‘Behind Blue Eyes’ and ‘Baba O’Riley’.
At the end of the concert he praised his fans for turning out and supporting him throughout his career, which has spanned six decades.
He said: “People always say how many great memories I’ve given to them, but I want to say I’d like to thank you for what you’ve given to me, so thank you. It’s been amazing.”
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