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The Who’s Pete Townshend clarifies controversial comments on Keith Moon and John Entwistle

"No one can ever know how much I miss [them]"

The Who‘s Pete Townshend has elaborated on the controversial comments he made about his late bandmates Keith Moon and John Entwistle.

The iconic ‘My Generation’ group are set to release their twelfth studio album on December 6, with the project’s third single ‘I Don’t Wanna Get Wise’ arriving earlier this month.

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In an interview with Rolling Stone about the upcoming self-titled LP, guitarist Townshend was asked whether he ever felt nostalgic looking back at footage of Moon and Entwistle, which plays out on-screen during the band’s current tour.

“It’s not going to make Who fans very happy, but thank God they’re gone,” he replied.

Pressed on why he feels this way, the musician reasoned: “Because they were fucking difficult to play with.

“They never, ever managed to create bands for themselves. I think my musical discipline, my musical efficiency as a rhythm player, held the band together.”

Keith Moon, Roger Daltrey, John Entwistle, and Pete Townshend in 1965 (Credit: Getty)

Going on to criticise the late members’ musical abilities, he added: “John’s bass sound was like a Messiaen organ. Every note, every harmonic in the sky. When he passed away and I did the first few shows without him, with Pino [Palladino] on bass, he was playing without all that stuff… I said, ‘Wow, I have a job’.

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“With Keith, my job was keeping time, because he didn’t do that. So when he passed away, it was like, ‘Oh, I don’t have to keep time anymore’.”

With these words having been widely reported online, Townshend has now posted a statement via his official Facebook page to offer his apologies to those he may have upset.

“No one can ever know how much I miss Keith and John, as people, as friends and as musicians,” Townshend explained.

My interview with Rolling Stone. Headline: 'Pete Townshend says “thanks God” Moon, John Entwistle are dead; they were…

Posted by Pete Townshend on Wednesday, November 27, 2019

 

The guitarist went on to say that he’s still “angry” over Moon and Entwistle’s untimely deaths. “Sometimes it shows. It’s selfish, but it’s how I feel,” he added.

“To those family members of Keith and John, especially Chris Entwistle and Mandy Moon, I apologise for the headlines – and for carelessly providing the words that were used – but in the past three months I have done so many interviews I am losing focus and patience.

“I forgive myself. I hope they can forgive me too. I loved their dads and still do.”

You can read Townshend’s full statement in the above post.

The Who’s drummer Moon passed away at the age of 32 back in 1978 due to overdosing on a drug used to treat alcohol withdrawal. In 2002, bassist Entwistle died as a result of suffering a cocaine-induced heart attack.

Townshend, meanwhile, has claimed that his “affectionate relationship” with frontman Roger Daltrey is to thank for the band’s longevity. “…We have very little in common but we really care about each other deeply,” he said.

Earlier this month, The Who were honoured with the founding stone in London’s new Music Walk of Fame.

 

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