Entertainment behind the scenes
Pete Townshend tips his hat to Obama
Who guitarist performed a solo acoustic version of the 37-year-old anthem in front of a few hundred fans at the Troubadour in West Hollywood on Friday.
Before playing it, Townshend said Obama’s decisive election victory on Tuesday was “the most wonderful result,” a comment that earned the loudest cheers of the evening.
And afterwards, he mused over the song’s cynical parting shot, “meet the old boss, it’s the same as the old boss,” and suggested, “Maybe not.”
Townshend was the main attraction at an all-star jam session organized by his girlfriend, Rachel Fuller, and being taped for a DVD and CD that will be released next March through Best Buy. It was the latest installment of her “In the Attic” series, which she has webcast for the last few years.
“There’s going to be cockups and messups, but it’s all gong to be fabulous,” Fuller said at the outset.
Indeed, her “adorable” boyfriend was a frequent transgressor, not that anyone cared about forgotten lyrics or misplaced spectacles.
Guests such as Jakob Dylan, Ben Gibbard from Death Cab For Cutie, She & Him (Zooey Deschanel and M. Ward) and E from Eels, each played brief acoustic sets. And then Townshend would join them. He and Dylan performed the Who song “The Kids Are Alright,” and he teamed with E and Gibbard for his solo hit “Let My Love Open the Door.” He dueted with Deschanel on the Who obscurity “Blue, Red and Grey.”
He wrapped the evening out in the spotlight on his own, armed only with his acoustic guitar, singing “The Acid Queen,” “Drowned” and “Won’t Get Fooled Again.” Everyone took the stage for a rather limp version of another Who rarity, “I’m One.”
Townshend and Who singer Roger Daltrey are in town for a pair of shows on Saturday and Sunday, the final gigs on their latest North American tour. They begin a five-stop Japanese tour on Thursday.
Reporting by Dean Goodman
Photos by Reuters