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Won't Get Fooled Again: The Who from Lifehouse to Quadrophenia (Genuine Jawbone Books) Paperback – April 1, 2011
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About the Author
Richie Unterberger is an acclaimed author and music historian, renowned for his meticulous research. A regular contributor to the All Music website, Mojo, Record Collector and many other publications, he has also written hundreds of liner notes for CD reissues of classic albums of the 1960s and 1970s. His previous books include Unknown Legends of Rock n'n Roll; the two-part 1960s folk-rock history Eight Miles High and Turn! Turn! Turn!; White Light/White Heat: The Velvet Underground Day-By-Day; and The Unreleased Beatles: Music and Film, which won a 2007 Association for Recorded Sound Collections Award for Excellence in Historical Recorded Sound Research.
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Top Customer Reviews
I'm not a big reader of rock histories but I really had trouble putting this book down. Mr. Unterberger did a great job explaining Townshend's inspirations and aspirations, the challenges the band faced both technically and personally at the time, and how their efforts were received by the press. If not for the footnotes and attributions you'd think you were reading a compelling novel.
An earlier reviewer lamented that Pete was not directly interviewed for this work and that is true. I don't see this as a great loss though as Unterberger reminds us time and again that the band's predictions & recollections changed and morphed through many interviews over time. The author uses previous interviews and statements to support the narrative. I can't see how yet another rehash 40 years later would produce anything other then another hindsight-enabled perspective.
If you are a Who or Pete Townshend fan buy this. If you're looking for an entertaining read I'd recommend it as well.
Note: I got the kindle edition and in some spots in the middle "wordsrantogether" which kept making me think of the title of Pete's first best of album.
It's too bad Ritchie Unterberger didn't just interview Townshend as a lot of the book deals in supposition and archival material to try to piece together the past.
There are many more details presented here which are not in any other book I've read about Pete Townshend or the Who. Maybe too much for the casual reader.
That said, anyone fascinated with Pete Townshend's music for The Who during the band's fertile middle period should enjoy this. After "Tommy," Townshend was seeking to write another rock opera, but "Lifehouse" never made it to record as he intended. Part of the problem was the plot, one element of which has the Who finding the "eternal note" and, with its audience, simply disappearing into musical bliss.
Instead, the Who ended up with "Who's Next," perhaps the greatest single album of its career, and Townshend reloaded to compose "Quadrophenia," a two-disc set about mods, rockers and, yes, the transcendence of music in the mid-1960s in England.
The author does a great job of covering the events that led through these recordings, though again, I found his prose to be choppy at times. More importantly, he gets into the band's collective head to find out why one rock opera was rejected and another ultimately recorded. As much as anything, this book is a fascinating depiction of the collective creative process.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Not as much detail on the recording as I would like, a little too much detail on other thingsPublished 2 months ago by Kinny Landrum
Very enjoyable read of an intensely creative time in the amazing journey of Pete Townshend and the Who encompassing the trials and tribulations behind Lifehouse the unfinished... Read morePublished 10 months ago by DrRichie
This is FAR and AWAY THE definitive book on the Who 70-74. This might just be one of the best rock and roll books I have ever read. Read morePublished on January 20, 2014 by paisley pop
It is very informative and well written. I love the Who (especially Pete Townsend and I would recommend this book to any true Who fan!Published on July 8, 2013 by I luv red
I just got through the beginning...this book was about how each song was produced and very technical, I thought I was getting a book on the band. Read morePublished on December 19, 2012 by Karen L. Cameron