MUSIC: The Who Puts The Dunk In A State Of Quadrophenia

Wednesday, February 27, 2013


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Roger Daltrey and Pete Townshend shows how it's done on stage at the Dunk last night, when The Who came to town. Photo: The Who

On Tuesday at The Dunkin' Donuts Center in downtown Providence, rock & roll legends The Who rocked the joint for the last show of the United States leg of The Quadrophenia and More Tour that has been sweeping the globe since last year.

Opening the night were Los Angeles' rock & roll souls Vintage Trouble and it was bound to be one of the memorable shows in Providence's music history. There are rock bands and then there's The Who, it was very clear that the best way to enjoy the first half of your week was to be at The Dunk on Tuesday.

Vintage Trouble

A band that has everyone talking about them these days, Vintage Trouble featuring this century's second coming of James Brown in Ty Taylor kicked the show off with their fusion of old-school rock & roll, R & B and soul that had the audience getting into it right from the start. "Nancy Lee", "Total Strangers", "Nobody Told Me" and "Strike Your Light" highlighted an energetic performance that had Ty jumping and walking through the crowd along with everyone clapping their hands incessantly. Can't get enough of Vintage Trouble? They'll be playing at Fete in Providence a couple days later this Thursday so come and get your double shot that'll keep you grooving.

The Who

You heard the crashing of waves through the speakers and the lights were dimmed, the place was roaring and The Who with the remaining members Roger Daltrey and Pete Townshend along with Ringo Starr's son Zak Starkey on drums, Pete's brother Simon on guitar and virtuoso Pino Palladino on bass proceeded to blow everything up to smithereens. Performing their musical opus of an album Quadrophenia in its entirety starting with "I Am The Sea" then into "The Real Me", "Quadrophenia", "Cut My Hair", "The Punk and the Godfather", "I'm One", "The Dirty Jobs", "Helpless Dancer" "Is It In My Head?", "I've Had Enough", "5:15" which had a unreal breakdown jam session with Starkey tearing it up to a video of late bassist John Entwistle doing a stellar solo right in the middle of the song, "Sea And Sand", "Drowned", "Bell Boy", "Doctor Jimmy", "The Rock" and the classic finale of "Love Reign o'er Me" was simply beautiful.

Quadrophenia is my all-time favorite album and to see it performed live from front to back was incredible. Afterwards Townshend thanked everyone for attending, Vintage Trouble for being the supporting act, the rest of the backing band, Roger Daltrey and The City Of Providence, but they weren't done yet. The festivities continued with a plethora of hits, "Who Are You", "Behind Blue Eyes", "Pinball Wizard", "Baba O'Riley" and "Won't Get Fooled Again" provided an excellent encore that had over 13,000 people singing to every word.

Now at this point I thought it was over, but the unprecedented happened. Daltrey and Townshend remained on stage with Townshend playing an acoustic guitar and proceeded to play "Tea & Theatre" to end one of the best concerts I've ever seen. Quadrophenia from start to finish, a spectacular encore and ended it with an intimate acoustic performance. Pete and Roger have been performing for over 40 years and on this past Tuesday it looked like that despite the tests of time they haven't missed a beat. I'll be in awe of what I witnessed for a long time, log on to and see what's going on at the big arena in Providence.


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