The Who

The Who are an English rock band formed in London in 1964. Their classic line-up consisted of lead singer Roger Daltrey, guitarist and singer Pete Townshend, bass guitarist John Entwistle and drummer Keith Moon. They are considered one of the most influential rock bands of the 20th century, selling over 100 million records worldwide.

The Who developed from an earlier group, the Detours, and established themselves as part of the pop art and mod movements, featuring auto-destructive art by destroying guitars and drums on stage. Their first single as the Who, "I Can't Explain", reached the UK top ten, followed by a string of singles including "My Generation", "Substitute" and "Happy Jack". In 1967, they performed at the Monterey Pop Festival and released the US top ten single "I Can See for Miles", while touring extensively. The group's fourth album, 1969's rock opera Tommy, included the single "Pinball Wizard" and was a critical and commercial success. Live appearances at Woodstock and the Isle of Wight Festival, along with the live album Live at Leeds, cemented their reputation as a respected rock act. With their success came increased pressure on lead songwriter Townshend, and the follow-up to Tommy, Lifehouse, was abandoned. Songs from the project made up 1971's Who's Next, which included the hit "Won't Get Fooled Again". The group released the album Quadrophenia in 1973 as a celebration of their mod roots, and oversaw the film adaptation of Tommy in 1975. They continued to tour to large audiences before semi-retiring from live performances at the end of 1976. The release of Who Are You in 1978 was overshadowed by the death of Moon shortly after.

Kenney Jones replaced Moon and the group resumed activity, releasing a film adaptation of Quadrophenia and the retrospective documentary The Kids Are Alright. After Townshend became weary of touring, the group split in 1983. The Who occasionally re-formed for live appearances such as Live Aid in 1985, a 25th anniversary tour in 1989 and a tour of Quadrophenia in 1996–1997. They resumed regular touring in 1999, with drummer Zak Starkey. After Entwistle's death in 2002, plans for a new album were delayed. Townshend and Daltrey continued as the Who, releasing Endless Wire in 2006, and continue to play live regularly, with Starkey, bassists Pino Palladino (2006–2017) and Jon Button (2017–present), and guitarist Simon Townshend (Pete's brother) serving as touring players. A tour with a complete symphony orchestra, along with a planned studio album, are both scheduled for 2019.

The Who's major contributions to rock music include the development of the Marshall stack, large PA systems, use of the synthesizer, Entwistle and Moon's lead playing styles, Townshend's feedback and power chord guitar technique, and the development of the rock opera. They are cited as an influence by hard rock, punk rock and mod bands, and their songs still receive regular exposure.

The Who
The Who on stage, standing and waving to a crowd
The Who in 1975.
Left to right: Roger Daltrey (vocals), John Entwistle (bass), Keith Moon (drums) and Pete Townshend (guitar).
Background information
Also known as
  • The Detours
  • The High Numbers
OriginLondon, England
Years active
  • 1964–1983
  • 1989
  • 1996–present
    (one-off reunions: 1985, 1988, 1990, 1991, 1994)
Past members



TVU Campus St Marys Road
Pete Townshend attended Ealing Art College (pictured in 2010), and his experience there contributed to the Who's career.

The founder members of the Who, Roger Daltrey, Pete Townshend and John Entwistle, grew up in Acton, London and went to Acton County Grammar School.[1] Townshend's father, Cliff, played saxophone and his mother, Betty, had sung in the entertainment division of the Royal Air Force during World War II, and both supported their son's interest in rock and roll.[2] Townshend and Entwistle became friends in their second year of Acton County, and formed a trad jazz group;[3] Entwistle also played French horn in the Middlesex Schools' Symphony Orchestra. Both were interested in rock, and Townshend particularly admired Cliff Richard's début single, "Move It".[4] Entwistle moved to guitar, but struggled with it due to his large fingers, and moved to bass on hearing the guitar work of Duane Eddy. He was unable to afford a bass and built one at home.[5][4] After Acton County, Townshend attended Ealing Art College,[6] a move he later described as profoundly influential on the course of the Who.[7]

Daltrey, who was in the year above, had moved to Acton from Shepherd's Bush, a more working-class area. He had trouble fitting in at the school, and discovered gangs and rock and roll.[8] He was expelled at 15 and found work on a building site.[9] In 1959 he started the Detours, the band that was to evolve into the Who. The band played professional gigs, such as corporate and wedding functions, and Daltrey kept a close eye on the finances as well as the music.[10]

Daltrey spotted Entwistle by chance on the street carrying a bass and recruited him into the Detours.[11] In mid-1961, Entwistle suggested Townshend as a guitarist,[11] Daltrey on lead guitar, Entwistle on bass, Harry Wilson on drums, and Colin Dawson on vocals. The band played instrumentals by the Shadows and the Ventures, and a variety of pop and trad jazz covers.[12] Daltrey was considered the leader and, according to Townshend, "ran things the way he wanted them".[7] Wilson was fired in mid-1962 and replaced by Doug Sandom, though he was older than the rest of the band, married, and a more proficient musician, having been playing semi-professionally for two years.[13]

Dawson left after frequently arguing with Daltrey[7] and after being briefly replaced by Gabby Connolly, Daltrey moved to lead vocals. Townshend, with Entwistle's encouragement, became the sole guitarist. Through Townshend's mother, the group obtained a management contract with local promoter Robert Druce,[14] who started booking the band as a support act. The Detours were influenced by the bands they supported, including Screaming Lord Sutch, Cliff Bennett and the Rebel Rousers, Shane Fenton and the Fentones, and Johnny Kidd and the Pirates. The Detours were particularly interested in the Pirates as they also only had one guitarist, Mick Green, who inspired Townshend to combine rhythm and lead guitar in his style. Entwistle's bass became more of a lead instrument,[15] playing melodies.[16] In February 1964, the Detours became aware of the group Johnny Devlin and the Detours and changed their name.[17] Townshend and his room-mate Richard Barnes spent a night considering names, focusing on a theme of joke announcements, including "No One" and "the Group". Townshend preferred "the Hair", and Barnes liked "the Who" because it "had a pop punch".[18] Daltrey chose "the Who" the next morning.[19]


Early career

Quadrophenia exhibit 2
The Who's aesthetic grew out of mod subculture with its high fashion, scooters for transport, and shaggy hairstyles.

By the time the Detours had become the Who, they had already found regular gigs, including at the Oldfield Hotel in Greenford, the White Hart Hotel in Acton, the Goldhawk Social Club in Shepherd's Bush, and the Notre Dame Hall in Leicester Square.[20] They had also replaced Druce as manager with Helmut Gorden, with whom they secured an audition with Chris Parmeinter for Fontana Records.[21] Parmeinter found problems with the drumming and, according to Sandom, Townshend immediately turned on him and threatened to fire him if his playing did not immediately improve. Sandom left in disgust, but was persuaded to lend his kit to any potential stand-ins or replacements. Sandom and Townshend did not speak to each other again for 14 years.[22]

During a gig with a stand-in drummer in late April at the Oldfield, the band first met Keith Moon. Moon grew up in Wembley, and had been drumming in bands since 1961.[23] He was performing with a semi-professional band called the Beachcombers, and wanted to play full-time.[24] Moon played a few songs with the group, breaking a bass drum pedal and tearing a drum skin. The band were impressed with his energy and enthusiasm, and offered him the job.[25] Moon performed with the Beachcombers a few more times, but dates clashed and he chose to devote himself to the Who. The Beachcombers auditioned Sandom, but were unimpressed and did not ask him to join.[26]

The Who changed managers to Peter Meaden. He decided that the group would be ideal to represent the growing mod movement in Britain which involved fashion, scooters and music genres such as rhythm and blues, soul and beat. He renamed the group the High Numbers, dressed them up in mod clothes,[27] secured a second, more favourable audition with Fontana and wrote the lyrics for both sides of their single "Zoot Suit"/"I'm the Face" to appeal to mods. The tune for "Zoot Suit" was "Misery" by the Dynamics,[28] and "I'm the Face" borrowed from Slim Harpo's "I Got Love If You Want It".[29] Although Meaden tried to promote the single, it failed to reach the top 50[30] and the band reverted to calling themselves the Who.[31] The group began to improve their stage image; Daltrey started using his microphone cable as a whip on stage, and occasionally leapt into the crowd; Moon threw drumsticks into the air mid-beat; Townshend mimed machine-gunning the crowd with his guitar while jumping on stage and playing guitar with a fast arm-windmilling motion,[32] or stood with his arms aloft allowing his guitar to produce feedback in a posture dubbed "the Bird Man".[33]

Meaden was replaced as manager by two filmmakers, Kit Lambert and Chris Stamp. They were looking for a young, unsigned rock group that they could make a film about,[34] and had seen the band at the Railway Hotel in Wealdstone, which had become a regular venue for them.[35][36] Lambert related to Townshend and his art school background, and encouraged him to write songs.[34] In August, Lambert and Stamp made a promotional film featuring the group and their audience at the Railway.[37] The band changed their set towards soul, rhythm and blues and Motown covers, and created the slogan "Maximum R&B".[27]

In June 1964, during a performance at the Railway, Townshend accidentally broke the head of his guitar on the low ceiling of the stage.[38] Angered by the audience's laughter, he smashed the instrument on the stage, then picked up another guitar and continued the show. The following week, the audience were keen to see a repeat of the event. Moon obliged by kicking his drum kit over,[39] and auto-destructive art became a feature of the Who's live set.[40]

First singles and My Generation

By late 1964, the Who were becoming popular in London's Marquee club, and a rave review of their live act appeared in Melody Maker.[41] Lambert and Stamp attracted the attention of the American producer Shel Talmy, who had produced the Kinks. Townshend had written a song, "I Can't Explain", that deliberately sounded like the Kinks to attract Talmy's attention. Talmy saw the group in rehearsals and was impressed. He signed them to his production company,[42] and sold the recording to the US arm of Decca Records, which meant that the group's early singles were released in Britain on Brunswick Records, one of UK Decca's labels for US artists.[43] "I Can't Explain" was recorded in early November 1964 at Pye Studios in Marble Arch with the Ivy League on backing vocals, and Jimmy Page played fuzz guitar on the B-side, "Bald Headed Woman".[31]

"I Can't Explain" became popular with pirate radio stations such as Radio Caroline.[44] Pirate radio was important for bands as there were no commercial radio stations in the UK and BBC Radio played little pop music.[45] The group gained further exposure when they appeared on the television programme Ready Steady Go![27] Lambert and Stamp were tasked with finding "typical teens", and invited the group's regular audience from the Goldhawk Social Club.[46] Enthusiastic reception on television and regular airplay on pirate radio helped the single slowly climb the charts in early 1965 until it reached the top 10.[47] The follow-up single, "Anyway, Anyhow, Anywhere", by Townshend and Daltrey,[48] features guitar noises such as pick sliding, toggle switching[49] and feedback, which was so unconventional that it was initially rejected by the US arm of Decca. The single reached the top 10 in the UK[48] and was used as the theme song to Ready Steady Go![50]

The transition to a hit-making band with original material, encouraged by Lambert, did not sit well with Daltrey, and a recording session of R&B covers went unreleased.[51] The Who were not close friends either, apart from Moon and Entwistle, who enjoyed visiting nightclubs together in the West End of London.[52] The group experienced a difficult time when touring Denmark in September, which culminated in Daltrey throwing Moon's amphetamines down the toilet and assaulting him. Immediately on returning to Britain, Daltrey was sacked,[53] but was reinstated on the condition that the group became a democracy without his dominant leadership. At this time, the group enlisted Richard Cole as a roadie.[54]

The next single, "My Generation", followed in October. Townshend had written it as a slow blues, but after several abortive attempts, it was turned into a more powerful song with a bass solo from Entwistle. The song used gimmicks such as a vocal stutter to simulate the speech of a mod on amphetamines, and two key changes.[55] Townshend insisted in interviews that the lyrics "Hope I die before I get old" were not meant to be taken literally.[56] Peaking at No. 2, "My Generation" is the group's highest-charting single in the UK.[47] The self-titled debut album My Generation was released in late 1965. Among original material by Townshend, including the title track and "The Kids Are Alright", the album has several James Brown covers from the session earlier that year that Daltrey favoured.[57]

After My Generation, the Who fell out with Talmy, which meant an abrupt end to their recording contract. [58] The resulting legal acrimony resulted in Talmy holding the rights to the master tapes, which prevented the album from being reissued until 2002.[59] The Who were signed to Robert Stigwood's label, Reaction, and released "Substitute". Townshend said he wrote the song about identity crisis, and as a parody of the Rolling Stones's "19th Nervous Breakdown". It was the first single to feature him playing an acoustic twelve-string guitar.[60] Talmy took legal action over the B-side, "Instant Party", and the single was withdrawn. A new B-side, "Waltz for a Pig", was recorded by the Graham Bond Organisation under the pseudonym "the Who Orchestra".[61]

In 1966 the Who released "I'm a Boy", about a boy dressed as a girl, taken from an abortive collection of songs called Quads;[62] "Happy Jack";[63] and an EP, Ready Steady Who, that tied in with their regular appearances on Ready Steady Go![64] The group continued to have conflict; on 20 May, Moon and Entwistle were late to a gig having been on the Ready Steady Go! set with The Beach Boys' Bruce Johnston. During "My Generation", Townshend attacked Moon with his guitar; Moon suffered a black eye and bruises, and he and Entwistle left the band, but changed their minds and rejoined a week later.[65] Moon kept looking for other work, and Jeff Beck had him play drums on his song "Beck's Bolero" (with Page, John Paul Jones and Nicky Hopkins) because he was "trying to get Keith out of the Who".[66]

A Quick One and The Who Sell Out

Roger Daltrey -left and Keith Moon-right 1967
Roger Daltrey (left) and Keith Moon, 1967

To alleviate financial pressure on the band, Lambert arranged a song-writing deal which required each member to write two songs for the next album. Entwistle contributed "Boris the Spider" and "Whiskey Man" and found a niche role as second songwriter.[67] The band found they needed to fill an extra ten minutes, and Lambert encouraged Townshend to write a longer piece, "A Quick One, While He's Away". The suite of song fragments is about a girl who has an affair while her lover is away, but is ultimately forgiven. The album was titled A Quick One[68] (Happy Jack in the US),[69] and reached No. 4 in the UK charts.[70] It was followed in 1967 by the UK Top 5 single "Pictures of Lily".[71]

By 1966, Ready Steady Go! had ended, the mod movement was becoming unfashionable, and the Who found themselves in competition on the London circuit with groups including Cream and the Jimi Hendrix Experience.[72] Lambert and Stamp realised that commercial success in the US was paramount to the group's future, and arranged a deal with promoter Frank Barsalona for a short package tour in New York.[73] The group's performances, which still involved smashing guitars and kicking over drums, were well received,[74] and led to their first major US appearance at the Monterey Pop Festival. The group, especially Moon, were not fond of the hippie movement, and thought their violent stage act would stand in sharp contrast to the peaceful atmosphere of the festival. Hendrix was also on the bill, and was also going to smash his guitar on stage. Townshend verbally abused Hendrix and accused him of stealing his act,[75] and the pair argued about who should go on stage first, with the Who winning the argument.[76] The Who brought hired equipment to the festival; Hendrix shipped over his regular touring gear from Britain, including a full Marshall stack. According to biographer Tony Fletcher, Hendrix sounded "so much better than the Who it was embarrassing".[77] The Who's appearance at Monterey gave them recognition in the US, and "Happy Jack" reached the top 30.[77]

The group followed Monterey with a US tour supporting Herman's Hermits.[77] The Hermits were a straightforward pop band and enjoyed drugs and practical jokes. They bonded with Moon,[78] who was excited to learn that cherry bombs were legal to purchase in Alabama. Moon acquired a reputation of destroying hotel rooms while on tour,[74] with a particular interest in blowing up toilets. Entwistle said the first cherry bomb they tried "blew a hole in the suitcase and the chair".[79] Moon recalled his first attempt to flush one down the toilet: "[A]ll that porcelain flying through the air was quite unforgettable. I never realised dynamite was so powerful."[79] After a gig in Flint, Michigan on Moon's 21st birthday on 23 August 1967, the entourage caused $24,000 of damage at the hotel, and Moon knocked out one of his front teeth.[80] Daltrey later said that the tour brought the band closer, and as the support act, they could turn up and perform a short show without any major responsibilities.[81]

John Entwistle in 1967 with The Who
John Entwistle backstage in 1967

After the Hermits tour, the Who recorded their next single, "I Can See for Miles", which Townshend had written in 1966 but had avoided recording until he was sure it could be produced well.[82] Townshend called it "the ultimate Who record",[83] and was disappointed it reached only No. 10 in the UK.[83] It became their best selling single in the US, reaching No. 9.[71] The group toured the US again with Eric Burdon and the Animals, including an appearance on The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour, miming to "I Can See For Miles" and "My Generation".[84] Moon bribed a stage hand to put explosives in his drum kit, who loaded it with ten times the expected quantity. The resulting detonation threw Moon off his drum riser and his arm was cut by flying cymbal shrapnel. Townshend's hair was singed and his left ear left ringing, and a camera and studio monitor were destroyed.[85]

The next album was The Who Sell Out—a concept album paying tribute to pirate radio, which had been outlawed in August 1967 by the Marine, &c., Broadcasting (Offences) Act 1967. It included humorous jingles and mock commercials between songs,[86] a mini rock opera called "Rael", and "I Can See For Miles".[83] The Who declared themselves a pop art group and thus viewed advertising as an artform; they recorded a wide variety of radio advertisements, such as for canned milkshakes and the American Cancer Society, in defiance of the rising anti-consumerist ethos of the hippie counterculture.[87] Townshend stated, "We don't change offstage. We live pop art."[88]

Later that year, Lambert and Stamp formed a record label, Track Records, with distribution by Polydor. As well as signing Hendrix, Track became the imprint for all the Who's UK output until the mid-1970s.[89]

The group started 1968 by touring Australia and New Zealand with the Small Faces.[90] The groups had trouble with the local authorities and the New Zealand Truth called them "unwashed, foul-smelling, booze-swilling no-hopers".[91][92] They continued to tour across the US and Canada during the first half of the year.[93]

Tommy, Woodstock and Live at Leeds

By 1968 the Who had started to attract attention in the underground press.[94] Townshend had stopped using drugs and became interested in the teachings of Meher Baba.[95] In August, he gave an interview to Rolling Stone editor Jann Wenner describing in detail the plot of a new album project and its relationship to Baba's teachings. The album went through several names during recording, including Deaf Dumb and Blind Boy and Amazing Journey; Townshend settled on Tommy[96] for the album about the life of a deaf, dumb and blind boy, and his attempt to communicate with others.[97][98] Some songs, such as "Welcome" and "Amazing Journey" were inspired by Baba's teaching,[99] and others came from observations within the band. "Sally Simpson" is about a fan who tried to climb on stage at a gig by the Doors that they attended[100] and "Pinball Wizard" was written so that New York Times journalist Nik Cohn, a pinball enthusiast, would give the album a good review.[101] Townshend later said, "I wanted the story of Tommy to have several levels ... a rock singles level and a bigger concept level", containing the spiritual message he wanted as well as being entertaining.[102] The album was projected for a Christmas 1968 release[102] but recording stalled after Townshend decided to make a double album to cover the story in sufficient depth.[103]

By the end of the year, 18 months of touring had led to a well-rehearsed and tight live band, which was evident when they performed "A Quick One While He's Away" at The Rolling Stones Rock and Roll Circus television special. The Stones considered their own performance lacklustre, and the project was never broadcast.[104] The Who had not released an album in over a year, and had not completed the recording of Tommy, which continued well into 1969, interspersed with gigs at weekends.[105] Lambert was a key figure in keeping the group focused and getting the album completed, and typed up a script to help them understand the story and how the songs fitted together.[106]

Roger-Daltrey in Hamburg
By the time the Who were touring Tommy, Daltrey's stage image had changed to include long hair and open shirts.[107]

The album was released in May with the accompanying single, "Pinball Wizard", a début performance at Ronnie Scott's,[108] and a tour, playing most of the new album live.[109] Tommy sold 200,000 copies in the US in its first two weeks,[110] and was a critical smash, Life saying, "... for sheer power, invention and brilliance of performance, Tommy outstrips anything which has ever come out of a recording studio".[111] Melody Maker declared: "Surely the Who are now the band against which all others are to be judged."[112] Daltrey had significantly improved as a singer, and set a template for rock singers in the 1970s by growing his hair long and wearing open shirts on stage.[107] Townshend had taken to wearing a boiler suit and Doctor Martens shoes.[107]

In August, the Who performed at the Woodstock Festival, despite being reluctant and demanding $13,000 up front.[113] The group were scheduled to appear on Saturday night, 16 August,[114] but the festival ran late and they did not take to the stage until 5 am on Sunday;[115] they played most of Tommy.[116] During their performance, Yippie leader Abbie Hoffman interrupted the set to give a political speech about the arrest of John Sinclair; Townshend kicked him off stage,[113] shouting: "Fuck off my fucking stage!"[117][115] During "See Me, Feel Me", the sun rose almost as if on cue;[118] Entwistle later said, "God was our lighting man".[117] At the end, Townshend threw his guitar into the audience.[118][119] The set was professionally recorded and filmed, and portions appear on the Woodstock film, The Old Grey Whistle Test and The Kids Are Alright.[120]

Woodstock has been regarded as culturally significant, but the Who were critical of the event. Roadie John "Wiggie" Wolff, who arranged the band's payment, described it as "a shambles".[114] Daltrey declared it as "the worst gig [they] ever played"[121] and Townshend said, "I thought the whole of America had gone mad."[115] A more enjoyable appearance came a few weeks later at the second Isle of Wight Festival, which Townshend described as "a great concert for" the band.[122]

The Who Plaque at University Leeds
A blue plaque at Leeds University, where Live at Leeds was recorded

By 1970, the Who were widely considered one of the best and most popular live rock bands; Chris Charlesworth described their concerts as "leading to a kind of rock nirvana that most bands can only dream about". They decided a live album would help demonstrate how different the sound at their gigs was to Tommy, and set about listening to the hours of recordings they had accumulated. Townshend baulked at the prospect of doing so, and demanded that all the tapes be burned. Instead, they booked two shows, one in Leeds on 14 February, and one in Hull the following day, with the intention of recording a live album. Technical problems from the Hull gig resulted in the Leeds gig being used, which became Live at Leeds.[123] The album is viewed by several critics including The Independent,[124][125] The Telegraph[126] and the BBC,[127] as one of the best live rock albums of all time.[128]

The Tommy tour included shows in European opera houses and saw the Who become the first rock act to play at the Metropolitan Opera House in New York City.[129] In March the Who released the UK top 20 hit "The Seeker", continuing a theme of issuing singles separate to albums. Townshend wrote the song to commemorate the common man, as a contrast to the themes on Tommy.[130]

Lifehouse and Who's Next

Tommy secured the Who's future, and made them millionaires. The group reacted in different ways—Daltrey and Entwistle lived comfortably, Townshend was embarrassed at his wealth, which he felt was at odds with Meher Baba's ideals, and Moon spent frivolously.[131]

During the latter part of 1970, Townshend plotted a follow up Tommy: Lifehouse, which was to be a multi-media project symbolising the relationship between an artist and his audience.[132] He developed ideas in his home studio, creating layers of synthesizers,[133] and the Young Vic theatre in London was booked for a series of experimental concerts. Townshend approached the gigs with optimism; the rest of the band were just happy to be gigging again.[134] Eventually, the others complained to Townshend that the project was too complicated and they should simply record another album. Things deteriorated until Townshend had a nervous breakdown and abandoned Lifehouse.[135]

Entwistle was the first member of the group to release a solo album, Smash Your Head Against the Wall, in May 1971.[136][137]

The Who at Charlotte, NC (1971)
The Who at the Coliseum, Charlotte, North Carolina, 20 November 1971[138]

Recording at the Record Plant in New York City in March 1971 was abandoned when Lambert's addiction to hard drugs interfered with his ability to produce.[139] The group restarted with Glyn Johns in April.[140] The album was mostly Lifehouse material,[139] with one unrelated song by Entwistle, "My Wife", and was released as Who's Next in August.[141] The album reached No. 1 in the UK and No. 4 in the US. "Baba O'Riley" and "Won't Get Fooled Again" are early examples of synthesizer use in rock, featuring keyboard sounds generated in real time by a Lowrey organ; on "Won't Get Fooled Again", it was further processed through a VCS3 synthesizer.[140] The synthesizer intro to "Baba O'Riley" was programmed based on Meher Baba's vital stats,[142] and the track featured a violin solo by Dave Arbus.[143] The album was a critical and commercial success, and has been certified 3x platinum by the RIAA.[144] The Who continued to issue Lifehouse-related material over the next few years, including the singles "Let's See Action", "Join Together" and "Relay".[145][146][147]

The band went back on tour, and "Baba O' Riley" and "Won't Get Fooled Again" became live favourites.[148][149] In November they performed at the newly opened Rainbow Theatre in London for three nights,[150] continuing in the US later that month, where Robert Hilburn of the Los Angeles Times described the Who as "the Greatest Show on Earth".[151] The tour was slightly disrupted at the Civic Auditorium in San Francisco on 12 December when Moon passed out over his kit after overdosing on brandy and barbiturates.[152] He recovered and completed the gig, playing to his usual strength.[153]

Quadrophenia, Tommy film and The Who by Numbers

The Who Hamburg 1972 2
The Who at the Ernst-Mercke-Halle, Hamburg, 12 August 1972[154]

After touring Who's Next, and needing time to write a follow-up, Townshend insisted that the Who take a lengthy break, as they had not stopped touring since the band started.[155] There was no group activity until May 1972, when they started working on a proposed new album, Rock Is Dead—Long Live Rock!,[156] but, unhappy with the recordings, abandoned the sessions. Tensions began to emerge as Townshend believed Daltrey just wanted a money-making band and Daltrey thought Townshend's projects were getting pretentious. Moon's behaviour was becoming increasingly destructive and problematic through excessive drinking and drugs use, and a desire to party and tour.[157] Daltrey performed an audit of the group's finances and discovered that Lambert and Stamp had not kept sufficient records. He believed them to be no longer effective managers, which Townshend and Moon disputed.[158] The painful dissolution of the managerial and personal relationships are recounted in James D. Cooper's 2014 retrospective documentary, Lambert & Stamp.[159] Following a short European tour, the remainder of 1972 was spent working on an orchestral version of Tommy with Lou Reizner.[160]

By 1973, the Who turned to recording the album Quadrophenia about mod and its subculture, set against clashes with Rockers in early 1960s Britain.[161] The story is about a boy named Jimmy, who undergoes a personality crisis, and his relationship with his family, friends and mod culture.[162] The music features four themes, reflecting the four personalities of the Who.[163] Townshend played multi-tracked synthesizers, and Entwistle played several overdubbed horn parts.[164] By the time the album was being recorded, relationships between the band and Lambert and Stamp had broken down irreparably, and Bill Curbishley replaced them.[165] The album reached No. 2 in both the UK and US.[166]

The Quadrophenia tour started in Stoke on Trent in October[167] and was immediately beset with problems. Daltrey resisted Townshend's wish to add Joe Cocker's keyboardist Chris Stainton (who played on the album) to the touring band.[168] As a compromise, Townshend assembled the keyboard and synthesizer parts on backing tapes, as such a strategy had been successful with "Baba O'Riley" and "Won't Get Fooled Again".[74] Unfortunately, the technology was not sophisticated enough to deal with the demands of the music; added to this issue, tour rehearsals had been interrupted due to an argument that culminated in Daltrey punching Townshend and knocking him out cold.[169] At a gig in Newcastle, the tapes completely malfunctioned, and an enraged Townshend dragged sound-man Bob Pridden on-stage, screamed at him, kicked all the amps over and partially destroyed the backing tapes. The show was abandoned for an "oldies" set, at the end of which Townshend smashed his guitar and Moon kicked over his drumkit.[170][169] The Independent described this gig as one of the worst of all time.[171] The US tour started on 20 November at the Cow Palace in Daly City, California; Moon passed out during "Won't Get Fooled Again" and during "Magic Bus". Townshend asked the audience, "Can anyone play the drums?—I mean somebody good." An audience member, Scot Halpin, filled in for the rest of the show.[172][171] After a show in Montreal, the band (except for Daltrey, who retired to bed early) caused so much damage to their hotel room, including destroying an antique painting and ramming a marble table through a wall, that federal law enforcement arrested them.[173]

The Who (1974)
Promotional photograph celebrating the band's tenth anniversary, December 1974

By 1974, work had begun in earnest on a Tommy film. Stigwood suggested Ken Russell as director, whose previous work Townshend had admired.[174] The film featured a star-studded cast, including the band members. David Essex auditioned for the title role, but the band persuaded Daltrey to take it.[175] The cast included Ann-Margret, Oliver Reed, Eric Clapton, Tina Turner, Elton John and Jack Nicholson.[176] Townshend and Entwistle worked on the soundtrack for most of the year, handling the bulk of the instrumentation. Moon had moved to Los Angeles, so they used session drummers, including Kenney Jones. Elton John used his own band for "Pinball Wizard".[177] Filming was from April[178] until August.[179] 1500 extras appeared in the "Pinball Wizard" sequence.[178]

The film premiered on 18 March 1975 to a standing ovation.[180] Townshend was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Original Score.[181] Tommy was shown at the 1975 Cannes Film Festival, but not in the main competition.[182] It won the award for Rock Movie of the Year in the First Annual Rock Music Awards[183] and generated over $2 million in its first month.[180] The soundtrack reached number two on the Billboard charts.[184]

Keith Moon 4 - The Who - 1975
Keith Moon in 1975

Work on Tommy took up most of 1974, and live performances by the Who were restricted to a show in May at the Valley, the home of Charlton Athletic, in front of 80,000 fans,[185] and a few dates at Madison Square Garden in June.[186] Towards the end of the year, the group released the out-takes album Odds & Sods, which featured several songs from the aborted Lifehouse project.[187]

In 1975, Daltrey and Townshend disagreed about the band's future and criticised each other via interviews in the music paper New Musical Express. Daltrey was grateful that the Who had saved him from a career as a sheet-metal worker and was unhappy at Townshend not playing well; Townshend felt the commitment of the group prevented him from releasing solo material.[188] The next album, The Who by Numbers, had introspective songs from Townshend that dealt with disillusionment such as "However Much I Booze" and "How Many Friends"; they resembled his later solo work.[189] Entwistle's "Success Story" gave a humorous look at the music industry, and "Squeeze Box" was a hit single.[190] The group toured from October, playing little new material and few Quadrophenia numbers, and reintroducing several from Tommy. The American leg of the tour began in Houston to a crowd of 18,000 at The Summit Arena, and was supported by Toots and the Maytals.[191] On 6 December 1975, the Who set the record for largest indoor concert at the Pontiac Silverdome, attended by 78,000.[192] On 31 May 1976, they played a second concert at the Valley which was listed in the Guinness Book of Records as the world's loudest concert at over 120 dB.[111] Townshend had become fed up of touring[193] but Entwistle considered live performance to be at a peak.[194]

Who Are You and Moon's death

Daltrey and Townshend
Daltrey and Townshend, 21 October 1976, Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, Ontario—their last ever public gig with Moon

After the 1976 tour, Townshend took most of the following year off to spend time with his family.[195] He discovered that former Beatles and Rolling Stones manager Allen Klein had bought a stake in his publishing company. A settlement was reached, but Townshend was upset and disillusioned that Klein had attempted to take ownership of his songs. Townshend went to the Speakeasy where he met the Sex Pistols' Steve Jones and Paul Cook, fans of the Who. After leaving, he passed out in a doorway, where a policeman said he would not be arrested if he could stand and walk. The events inspired the title track of the next album, Who Are You.[196]

The group reconvened in September 1977, but Townshend announced there would be no live performances for the immediate future, a decision that Daltrey endorsed. By this point, Moon was so unhealthy that the Who conceded it would be difficult for him to cope with touring. The only gig that year was an informal show on 15 December at the Gaumont State Cinema in Kilburn, London, filmed for the documentary, The Kids Are Alright.[197] The band had not played for 14 months, and their performance was so weak that the footage was unused. Moon's playing was particularly lacklustre and he had gained a lot of weight,[198] though Daltrey later said, "even at his worst, Keith Moon was amazing."[199]

Recording of Who Are You started in January 1978. Daltrey clashed with Johns over the production of his vocals, and Moon's drumming was so poor that Daltrey and Entwistle considered firing him. Moon's playing improved, but on one track, "Music Must Change", he was replaced as he could not play in 6/8 time.[200] In May, the Who filmed another performance at Shepperton Sound Studios for The Kids Are Alright. This performance was strong, and several tracks were used in the film. It was the last gig Moon performed with the Who.[201]

The album was released on 18 August, and became their biggest and fastest seller to date, peaking at No. 6 in the UK and No. 2 in the US.[184] Instead of touring, Daltrey, Townshend and Moon did a series of promotional television interviews, and Entwistle worked on the soundtrack for The Kids Are Alright.[202]

On 6 September, Moon attended a party held by Paul McCartney to celebrate Buddy Holly's birthday. Returning to his flat, Moon took 32 tablets of clomethiazole which had been prescribed to combat his alcohol withdrawal.[203] He passed out the following morning and was discovered dead later that day.[204][203]


The day after Moon's death, Townshend issued the statement: "We are more determined than ever to carry on, and we want the spirit of the group to which Keith contributed so much to go on, although no human being can ever take his place."[205] Drummer Phil Collins, having a temporary break from Genesis after his first marriage had failed, was at a loose end and asked to replace Moon, but Townshend had already asked Kenney Jones, who had previously played with the Small Faces and the Faces. Jones officially joined the band in November 1978.[206][207] John "Rabbit" Bundrick joined the live band as an unofficial keyboardist.[208] On 2 May 1979, the Who returned to the stage with a concert at the Rainbow Theatre, followed by the Cannes Film Festival in France[209] and dates at Madison Square Garden in New York.[210]

The Quadrophenia film was released that year. It was directed by Franc Roddam in his feature-directing début,[211] and had straightforward acting rather than musical numbers as in Tommy. John Lydon was considered for Jimmy, but the role went to Phil Daniels. Sting played Jimmy's friend and fellow mod, the Ace Face.[212] The soundtrack was Jones' first appearance on a Who record, performing on newly written material not on the original album.[213] The film was a critical and box office success in the UK[214] and appealed to the growing mod revival movement. The Jam were influenced by the Who, and critics noticed a similarity between Townshend and the group's leader, Paul Weller.[210]

The Kids Are Alright was also completed in 1979. It was a retrospective of the band's career, directed by Jeff Stein.[215] The film included footage of the band at Monterey, Woodstock and Pontiac, and clips from the Smothers Brothers' show and Russell Harty Plus.[216] Moon had died one week after seeing the rough cut with Daltrey. The film contains the Shepperton concert,[217] and an audio track of him playing over silent footage of himself was the last time he ever played the drums.[218]

In December, the Who became the third band, after the Beatles and the Band, to appear on the cover of Time. The article, by Jay Cocks, said the band had outpaced, outlasted, outlived and outclassed all of their rock band contemporaries.[219]

Cincinnati tragedy

On 3 December 1979, a crowd crush at a Who gig at the Riverfront Coliseum, Cincinnati killed 11 fans.[220] This was partly due to the festival seating, where the first to enter get the best positions. Some fans waiting outside mistook the band's soundcheck for the concert, and attempted to force their way inside. As only a few entrance doors were opened, a bottleneck situation ensued with thousands trying to gain entry, and the crush became deadly.[221]

The Who were not told until after the show because civic authorities feared crowd problems if the concert were cancelled. The band were deeply shaken upon learning of it and requested that appropriate safety precautions be taken in the future.[222] The following evening, in Buffalo, New York, Daltrey told the crowd that the band had "lost a lot of family last night and this show's for them".[223]

Change and break-up

The Who in Toronto, 1980

Daltrey took a break in 1980 to work on the film McVicar, in which he took the lead role of bank robber John McVicar.[224] The soundtrack album is a Daltrey solo album, though all members of the Who are included in the supporting musicians, and was his most successful solo release.[225]

The Who released two studio albums with Jones as drummer, Face Dances (1981) and It's Hard (1982). Face Dances produced a US top 20 and UK top ten hit with the single "You Better You Bet", whose video was one of the first shown on MTV.[226] Both Face Dances and It's Hard sold well and the latter received a five-star review in Rolling Stone.[227] The single "Eminence Front" from It's Hard was a hit, and became a regular at live shows.[228]

By this time Townshend had fallen into depression, wondering if he was no longer a visionary.[229] He was again at odds with Daltrey and Entwistle, who merely wanted to tour and play hits[230] and thought Townshend had saved his best songs for his solo album, Empty Glass (1980).[231] Jones' drumming style was very different from Moon's and this drew criticism within the band.[230] Townshend briefly became addicted to heroin before cleaning up early in 1982 after treatment with Meg Patterson.[232]

John Entwisle 1987
John Entwistle performing with the Who at the Manchester Apollo, 1981

Townshend wanted the Who to stop touring and become a studio act; Entwistle threatened to quit, saying, "I don't intend to get off the road ... there's not much I can do about it except hope they change their minds."[233] Townshend did not change his mind, and so the Who embarked on a farewell tour of the US and Canada[234] with the Clash as support,[235] ending in Toronto on 17 December 1982.[233]

Townshend spent part of 1983 writing material for a Who studio album owed to Warner Bros. Records from a contract in 1980,[236] but he found himself unable to generate music appropriate for the Who and at the end of 1983 paid for himself and Jones to be released from the contract.[237] On 16 December 1983, Townshend announced at a press conference that he was leaving the Who, effectively ending the band.[238]

After the Who break-up, Townshend focused on solo albums such as White City: A Novel (1985), The Iron Man (1989, featuring Daltrey and Entwistle and two songs credited to the Who), and Psychoderelict (1993).[239]


In July 1985, the Who performed at Live Aid at Wembley Stadium, London.[240] The BBC transmission truck blew a fuse during the set, temporarily interrupting the broadcast.[241] At the 1988 Brit Awards, at the Royal Albert Hall, the band was given the British Phonographic Industry's Lifetime Achievement Award.[242] The short set they played there was the last time Jones played with the Who.[243]

1989 tour

In 1989, the band embarked on a 25th-anniversary The Kids Are Alright reunion tour with Simon Phillips on drums and Steve "Boltz" Bolton as a second guitarist. Townshend had announced in 1987 that he suffered from tinnitus[244][245] and alternated acoustic, rhythm, and lead guitar to preserve his hearing.[246] Their two shows at Sullivan Stadium in Foxborough, Massachusetts, sold 100,000 tickets in less than eight hours, beating previous records set there by U2 and David Bowie.[247] The tour was briefly marred at a gig in Tacoma, Washington, where Townshend injured his arm on-stage.[248] Some critics disliked the tour's over-produced and expanded line-up, calling it "The Who on Ice";[249] Stephen Thomas Erlewine at AllMusic said the tour "tarnished the reputation of the Who almost irreparably".[250] The tour included most of Tommy and included such guests as Phil Collins, Billy Idol and Elton John.[251] A 2-CD live album, Join Together, was released in 1990.[250]

Partial reunions

In 1990, the Who were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.[252] The group have a featured collection in the hall's museum, including one of Moon's velvet suits, a Warwick bass of Entwistle's, and a drumhead from 1968.[253]

In 1991, the Who recorded a cover of Elton John's "Saturday Night's Alright for Fighting" for the tribute album Two Rooms: Celebrating the Songs of Elton John & Bernie Taupin. It was the last studio recording to feature Entwistle. In 1994, Daltrey turned 50 and celebrated with two concerts at New York's Carnegie Hall. The shows included guest spots by Entwistle and Townshend. Although all three surviving original members of the Who attended, they appeared on stage together only during the finale, "Join Together", with the other guests. Daltrey toured that year with Entwistle, Zak Starkey on drums and Simon Townshend filling in for his brother as guitarist.[254]


Revival of Quadrophenia

In 1996, Townshend, Entwistle and Daltrey performed Quadrophenia with guests and Starkey on drums at Hyde Park.[255] The performance was narrated by Daniels, who had played Jimmy in the 1979 film. Despite technical difficulties the show led to a six-night residency at Madison Square Garden and a US and European tour through 1996 and 1997.[255] Townshend played mostly acoustic guitar, but eventually was persuaded to play some electric.[256] In 1998, VH1 ranked the Who ninth in their list of the "100 Greatest Artists of Rock 'n' Roll".[257]

Charity shows and Entwistle's death

In late 1999, the Who performed as a five-piece for the first time since 1985, with Bundrick on keyboards and Starkey on drums. The first show in Las Vegas at the MGM Grand Garden Arena[249] was partially broadcast on TV and the Internet and released as the DVD The Vegas Job. They then performed acoustic shows at Neil Young's Bridge School Benefit at the Shoreline Amphitheatre in Mountain View, California,[258] followed by gigs at the House of Blues in Chicago[259] and two Christmas charity shows at the Shepherds Bush Empire in London.[260] Critics were delighted to see a rejuvenated band with a basic line-up comparable to the tours of the 1960s and 1970s. Andy Greene in Rolling Stone called the 1999 tour better than the final one with Moon in 1976.[249]

The band toured the US and UK from June to October 2000,[259] to generally favourable reviews,[261] culminating in a charity show at the Royal Albert Hall for the Teenage Cancer Trust with guest performances from Paul Weller, Eddie Vedder, Noel Gallagher, Bryan Adams and Nigel Kennedy.[262] Stephen Tomas Erlewine described the gig as "an exceptional reunion concert".[263] In 2001 the band performed the Concert for New York City at Madison Square Garden for families of firefighters and police who had lost their lives following the September 11 attacks on the World Trade Center,[264] and were honoured with a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award.[265]

The Who played concerts in the UK in early 2002 in preparation for a full US tour. On 27 June, the day before the first date,[266] Entwistle was found dead of a heart attack at 57 at the Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas. Cocaine was a contributing factor.[267]

After Entwistle: Tours and Endless Wire

The Who 2007 -2-
The Who on tour in 2007. L to R: Zak Starkey, Daltrey, Townshend, and John "Rabbit" Bundrick

Entwistle's son, Christopher, gave a statement supporting the Who's decision to carry on. The US tour began at the Hollywood Bowl with touring bassist Pino Palladino. Townshend dedicated the show to Entwistle, and ended with a montage of pictures of him. The tour lasted until September.[268] The loss of a founding member of the Who caused Townshend to re-evaluate his relationship with Daltrey, which had been strained over the band's career. He decided their friendship was important, and this ultimately led to writing and recording new material.[269]

To combat bootlegging, the band began to release the Encore Series of official soundboard recordings via An official statement read: "to satisfy this demand they have agreed to release their own official recordings to benefit worthy causes".[270]

In 2004, the Who released "Old Red Wine" and "Real Good Looking Boy" (with Palladino and Greg Lake, respectively, on bass) on a singles anthology, The Who: Then and Now, and went on an 18-date tour of Japan, Australia, the UK and the US, including a return appearance at the Isle of Wight.[271] Later that year, Rolling Stone ranked the Who No. 29 on their list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time.[272]

Zak Starkey2
Zak Starkey has been the Who's main drummer since 1994, and turned down an invitation to be a full-time member.[273]

The Who announced in 2005 that they were working on a new album. Townshend posted a novella called The Boy Who Heard Music on his blog, which developed into a mini-opera called Wire & Glass, forming the basis for the album.[269] Endless Wire, released in 2006, was the first full studio album of new material since 1982's It's Hard and contained the band's first mini-opera since "Rael" in 1967. The album reached No. 7 in the US and No. 9 in the UK.[274] Starkey was invited to join Oasis in April 2006 and the Who in November 2006, but he declined and split his time between the two.[273]

In November 2007, the documentary Amazing Journey: The Story of the Who was released, featuring unreleased footage of the 1970 Leeds appearance and a 1964 performance at the Railway Hotel when the group were The High Numbers. Amazing Journey was nominated for a 2009 Grammy Award.[275]

Super Bowl 44 South Florida Halftime Show the Who (4344082917) (cropped)
The Who performing the 2010 Super Bowl halftime show

The Who toured in support of Endless Wire, including the BBC Electric Proms at the Roundhouse in London in 2006,[276] headlining the 2007 Glastonbury Festival,[277] a half-time appearance at the Super Bowl XLIV in 2010[278] and being the final act at the closing ceremony of the London 2012 Olympic Games.[279] In November 2012, the Who released Live at Hull, an album of the band's performance night after the Live at Leeds gig.[280]

Quadrophenia and More

In 2010, the Who performed Quadrophenia with parts played by Vedder and Tom Meighan at the Royal Albert Hall as part of the Teenage Cancer Trust series of 10 gigs.[281] A planned tour for early 2010 was jeopardised by the return of Townshend's tinnitus. He experimented with an in-ear monitoring system that was recommended by Neil Young and his audiologist.[282]

The Quadrophenia and More tour started in November 2012 in Ottawa[283] with keyboardists John Corey, Loren Gold and Frank Simes, the latter of whom was also musical director.[284] In February 2013, Starkey pulled a tendon and was replaced for a gig by Scott Devours who performed with less than four hours' notice.[285] The tour moved to Europe and the UK, and ended at the Wembley Arena in July 2013.[286]

The Who Hits 50! and beyond

The Who, Oakland, CA, May 2016
Daltrey and Townshend on the Who Hits 50! tour in 2016

In October 2013, Townshend announced the Who would stage their final tour in 2015, performing in locations they have never played before.[287][288] Daltrey clarified that the tour is unrelated to the band's 50th anniversary—which occurred in 2013—and indicated that he and Townshend were considering recording new material but would be emphasising their hits in their final stadium tour.[289] Daltrey stated, "We can't go on touring forever ... it could be open-ended, but it will have a finality to it."[290]

In June 2014, Jones reunited with the Who at a charity gig for Prostate Cancer UK his Hurtwood Polo Club, alongside Jeff Beck, Procol Harum, and Mike Rutherford.[291] Later that month, the Who announced plans for a world tour with a possible accompanying album.[292][293] In September, the Who released the song "Be Lucky", which was included on the compilation The Who Hits 50! in October.[294] That November, the group released a virtual reality app co-designed by Daltrey's son, Jamie, featuring events and images from the band's history.[295]

In June 2015, the Who headlined that year's Hyde Park Festival, and two days later, the Glastonbury Festival. Townshend suggested to Mojo that it could be the group's last UK gig.[296][297] To coincide with The Who's 50th anniversary, all studio albums, including the new compilation, The Who Hits 50!, were reissued on vinyl.[298] In September 2015, all remaining US tour dates were cancelled after Daltrey contracted viral meningitis. Then Townshend promised the band would come back "stronger than ever".[299]

On 11 June 2016 in Newport, England, The Who embarked on the Back to the Who Tour 51!, a new tour seen as a continuation of the previous year's tour.[300][301] The new tour included a return visit to the Isle of Wight Festival (at the Seaclose Park in Newport, England) on the opening date on 11 June 2016 and ended at the Empire Polo Grounds in Indio, CA on 16 October 2016 after thirteen concerts.[302][303][304] In November 2016, The Who announced that 5 UK dates the following April (previously scheduled for that August and September), would include a full live performance of Tommy. The five-date tour was renamed "2017 Tommy & More", and included the largest selections from Tommy since the 1989 tour.[305] Only the two preliminary concerts at the Royal Albert Hall for the Teenage Cancer Trust on 30 March and 1 April featured Tommy in full, however.[306] The second night was released as Tommy – Live at the Royal Albert Hall.

In January 2019, the band announced the Moving On! Tour and a new album to be released the same year.[307]

Musical style and equipment

The Who have been regarded primarily as a rock band, yet have taken influence from several other styles of music during their career. The original group played a mixture of trad jazz and contemporary pop hits as the Detours, and R&B in 1963.[309] The group move to a mod sound the following year, particularly after hearing the Small Faces fuse Motown with a harsher R&B sound.[310][311] The group's early work was geared towards singles, though it was not straightforward pop. In 1967, Townshend coined the term "power pop" to describe the Who's style.[312] Like their contemporaries, the group were influenced by the arrival of Hendrix, particularly after the Who and the Experience met at Monterey.[77] This and lengthy touring strengthened the band's sound. In the studio, they began to develop softer pieces, particularly from Tommy onwards,[313] and turned their attention towards albums more than singles.[314]

From the early 1970s, the band's sound included synthesizers, particularly on Who's Next and Quadrophenia.[316] Although groups had used synthesizers before, the Who were one of the first to integrate the sound into a basic rock structure.[317] In By Numbers the group's style had scaled back to more standard rock,[318] but synthesisers regained prominence on Face Dances.[319]

Townshend and Entwistle were instrumental in making extreme volumes and distortion standard rock practices.[320] The Who were early adopters of Marshall Amplification. Entwistle was the first member to get two 4×12 speaker cabinets, quickly followed by Townshend. The group used feedback as part of their guitar sound, both live and in the studio.[321][322] In 1967, Townshend changed to using Sound City amplifiers, customised by Dave Reeves, then in 1970 to Hiwatt.[323] The group were the first to use a 1000 watt PA systems for live gigs, which led to competition from bands such as the Rolling Stones and Pink Floyd.[324]

Throughout their careers, the members of the Who have said their live sound has never been captured as they wished on record.[325] Live gigs and the audience have always been important to the group. "Irish" Jack Lyons said, "The Who weren't a joke, they were fucking real, and so were we."[326]


Daltrey initially based his style on Motown and rock and roll,[327] but from Tommy onwards he tackled a wider range of styles.[328] His trademark sound with the band, as noted in 1983, has been a characteristic scream, as heard at the end of "Won't Get Fooled Again".[329]

Group backing vocals are prominent in the Who. After "I Can't Explain" used session men for backing vocals, Townshend and Entwistle resolved to do better themselves on subsequent releases, producing strong backing harmonies.[330] Daltrey, Townshend and Entwistle sang lead on various songs, and occasionally Moon joined in. Who's Next featured Daltrey and Townshend sharing the lead vocals on several songs, and biographer Dave Marsh considers the contrast between Daltrey's strong, guttural baritone and Townshend's higher and gentler tenor to be one of the album's highlights.[331]

Daltrey's voice is negatively affected by marijuana smoke, to which he says he is allergic. On 20 May 2015, during a Who concert at Nassau Coliseum, he smelled a joint burning and told the smoker to put it out or "the show will be over". The fan obliged, without taking Pete Townshend's advice that "the quickest way" to extinguish a joint is "up your fucking arse".[332][333]


Stuff from The Who (14165151158)
A selection of instruments used by the Who, including a Rickenbacker and Gibson SG Special guitar, and Moon's "Pictures of Lily" drum kit from Premier

Townshend considered himself less technical than guitarists such as Eric Clapton and Jeff Beck and wanted to stand out visually instead.[321] His playing style evolved from the banjo, favouring down strokes and using a combination of the plectrum and fingerpicking. His rhythm playing frequently used seventh chords and suspended fourths,[323] and he is associated with the power chord, an easy-to-finger chord built from the root and fifth[50] that has since become a fundamental part of the rock guitar vocabulary.[334] Townshend also produced noises by manipulating controls on his guitar and by allowing the instrument to feedback.[33]

In the group's early career, Townshend favoured Rickenbacker guitars as they allowed him to fret rhythm guitar chords easily and move the neck back and forwards to create vibrato.[335] From 1968 to 1973, he favoured a Gibson SG Special live,[336] and later used customised Les Pauls in different tunings.[337]

In the studio for Who's Next and thereafter, Townshend used a 1959 Gretsch 6120 Chet Atkins hollow-body guitar, a Fender Bandmaster amp and an Edwards volume pedal, all gifts from Joe Walsh.[338] Townshend started his career with an acoustic guitar[4] and has regularly recorded and written with a Gibson J-200.[339]


A distinctive part of the original band's sound was Entwistle's lead bass playing, while Townshend concentrated on rhythm and chords.[15][314] Entwistle's was the first popular use of Rotosound strings in 1966, trying to find a piano-like sound.[340] His bassline on "Pinball Wizard" was described by Who biographer John Atkins as "a contribution of its own without diminishing the guitar lines";[341] he described his part on "The Real Me" from Quadrophenia, recorded in one take, as "a bass solo with vocals".[342] Entwistle's basses include a "Frankenstein" assembled from five Fender Precision and Jazz basses, and Warwick, Alembic, Gretsch and Guild basses.[343]


Moon further strengthened the reversal of traditional rock instrumentation by playing lead parts on his drums.[344] His style was at odds with British rock contemporaries such as The Kinks' Mick Avory and The Shadows' Brian Bennett who did not consider tom-toms necessary for rock music.[345] Moon used Premier kits starting in 1966. He avoided the hi-hat, and concentrated on a mix of tom rolls and cymbals.[346]

Jones' drumming style was in sharp contrast to Moon's. The Who were initially enthusiastic about working with a completely different drummer,[246] though Townshend later stated, "we've never really been able to replace Keith."[255] Starkey knew Moon from childhood and Moon gave him his first drum kit. Starkey has been praised for his playing style which echoes Moon's without being a copy.[255][347]


Townshend focused on writing meaningful lyrics[348] inspired by Bob Dylan, whose words dealt with subjects other than boy–girl relationships that were common in rock music; in contrast to Dylan's intellectualism, Townshend believed his lyrics should be about things kids could relate to.[349] Early material focused on the frustration and anxiety shared by mod audiences,[348] which Townshend said was a result of "searching for [his] niche".[350] By The Who Sell Out, he began to work narrative and characters into songs,[351] which he fully developed by Tommy, including spiritual themes influenced by Baba.[102] From the mid-1970s onwards, his songs tended to be more personal,[189] which influenced his decision to go solo.[352]

Entwistle's songs, by contrast, typically feature black humour and darker themes.[353] His two contributions to Tommy ("Cousin Kevin" and "Fiddle About") appeared because Townshend did not believe he could write songs as "nasty" as Entwistle's.[103]

Personal relationships

The Who are perceived as having had a poor working relationship. In the original band, Sandom had been the peacemaker and settled disputes. Moon, by contrast, was as volatile as Daltrey and Townshend. Entwistle was too passive to become involved in arguments.[355] The group established their live reputation and stage show in part out of insecurity and aggression amongst its members[356] and Townshend recalled that all decisions had to be made democratically "because we always disagreed".[357]

The only genuine friendship in the Who during the 1960s was between Entwistle and Moon. The pair enjoyed each other's sense of humour and shared a fondness for clubbing. Journalist Richard Green noted a "chemistry of playfullness that would go beyond playfullness".[52] Their relationship diminished somewhat when Entwistle got married in 1967, though they still socialised on tour.[77] When Moon was destroying toilets in hotels, Entwistle confessed he "was standing behind him with the matches".[358]

The group regularly argued in the press,[357] though Townshend said disputes were amplified in print and the group simply found it difficult to agree on things.[359] Tommy mutually benefitted Townshend and Daltrey's standing in the band because of the former's songwriting and the latter's stage presence, yet even this did not make them close friends.[360] The pair quarrelled, particularly in the mid-1970s, over the group's direction.[361] During his time with the band, Jones was subject to intermittent criticism from Daltrey.[362]

Entwistle's death came as a shock to both Townshend and Daltrey, and caused them to re-evaluate their relationship. Townshend has said that he and Daltrey have since become close friends.[359] In 2015, Townshend confirmed their friendship was still strong, adding their acceptance of each other's differences "brought us to a really genuine and compassionate relationship, which can only be described as love."[296]

Legacy and influence

The Who are one of the most influential rock bands of the 20th century.[294][364] Their appearances at Monterey and Woodstock helped give them a reputation as one of the greatest live rock acts[365] and they have been credited with originating the "rock opera".[364] The band has sold over 100 million records worldwide.[366]

The group's contributions to rock include the power chord,[367] windmill strum[368] and the use of non-musical instrument noise such as feedback.[33] The band influenced fashion from their earliest days with their embrace of pop art[369] and the use of the Union Jack for clothing.[370] The guitar-smashing incident at the Railway Hotel in 1964 is one of Rolling Stone magazine's "50 Moments That Changed the History of Rock 'n' Roll".[371]

Pink Floyd began to use feedback from their early shows in 1966, inspired by the Who, whom they considered a formative influence.[372] Shortly after arriving in London in 1966, Jimi Hendrix visited Marshall's music shop demanding an amp setup like Townshend's[349] and manipulated electronic noises in ways that Townshend had pioneered.[33] The Beatles were fans and socialised with Moon in particular during the mid-1960s.[373] In 1965, Paul McCartney said the Who "are the most exciting thing around"[373] and was inspired to write "Helter Skelter" in the group's "heavy" style;[374] John Lennon borrowed the acoustic guitar style in "Pinball Wizard" for "Polythene Pam".[375]

The loud volume of the band's live show influenced the approach of hard rock and heavy metal.[376] Proto punk and punk rock bands such as the MC5,[377] the Stooges,[378] the Ramones[379] the Sex Pistols,[196] the Clash[380] and Green Day cite the Who as an influence.[381] The Who inspired mod revival bands, particularly the Jam,[382] which helped other groups influenced by the Who become popular.[365] The Who influenced hard rock bands such as Guns N' Roses.[383] In the mid-1990s, Britpop bands such as Blur[384] and Oasis were influenced by the Who.[385] The Who have also influenced pop punk band Panic! at the Disco.[386]

The Who have inspired many tribute bands; Daltrey has endorsed the Whodlums, who raise money for the Teenage Cancer Trust.[387][388] Many bands have covered Who songs; Elton John's version of "Pinball Wizard" reached No. 7 in the UK.[389]


During the Who's hiatuses in the 1980s and 90s, Townshend developed his skills as a music publisher to be financially successful from the Who without recording or touring. He countered criticism of "selling out" by saying that licensing the songs to other media allows a wider exposure and widens the group's appeal.[359]

The American forensic drama CSI (CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, CSI: Miami, CSI: NY, and CSI: Cyber) feature Who songs as theme music, "Who Are You", "Won't Get Fooled Again", "Baba O'Riley" and "I Can See for Miles" respectively.[390][391] The group's songs have featured in other popular TV series such as The Simpsons,[392] and Top Gear, which had an episode where the presenters were tasked with being roadies for the band.[393]

Rock-orientated films such as Almost Famous,[394] School of Rock[395] and Tenacious D in the Pick of Destiny refer to the band and feature their songs,[396] and other films have used the band's material in their soundtracks, including Apollo 13 (which used "I Can See For Miles")[397] and Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me (which used a take of "My Generation" recorded for the BBC).[398] Several of the band's tracks have appeared in the video game Rock Band and its sequels.[399]

Awards and nominations

The Who have received many awards and accolades from the music industry for their recordings and their influence. They received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the British Phonographic Industry in 1988,[400] and from the Grammy Foundation in 2001.[401]

The band were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1990 where their display describes them as "prime contenders, in the minds of many, for the title of World's Greatest Rock Band",[402][403] and the UK Music Hall of Fame in 2005.[404] Seven of the group's albums appeared on Rolling Stone's list of the "500 Greatest Albums of All Time" in 2003, more than any act except the Beatles, Bob Dylan, the Rolling Stones and Bruce Springsteen.[405]

The single "My Generation" and the albums Tommy and Who's Next have each been inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame.[406] In 2008, Pete Townshend and Roger Daltrey received Kennedy Center Honors as members of the Who.[407] In 2009, My Generation was selected for preservation in the United States National Recording Registry.[408]

Band members

Mod symbol
The Who's mod roundel

Current members

  • Roger Daltrey – lead and backing vocals, rhythm guitar, harmonica, percussion (1964–present)
  • Pete Townshend – lead and rhythm guitar, backing and lead vocals, keyboards (1964–present)

Former members

Touring musicians

  • Zak Starkey – drums, percussion (1996–present)
  • Simon Townshend – guitar, backing vocals (1996–1997, 2002–present)
  • Jon Button – bass guitar (2017–present)
  • Pino Palladino – bass guitar (2006–2017)
  • John Corey – keyboards, backing vocals (2012–present)
  • Loren Gold – keyboards, backing vocals (2012–present)
  • Frank Simes – keyboards, backing vocals, musical director (2012–present)[409]


Tours and performances

Headlining 1960s–1990s

Headlining 2000s–2010s

See also


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  • Aledort, Andy (June 1994). "Maximum Rock 'n' Roll". Guitar World: 57–63.
  • Atkins, John (2000). The Who on Record: A Critical History, 1963–1998. McFarland. ISBN 978-0-7864-0609-8.
  • Campbell, Michael (2012). Popular Music in America:The Beat Goes On. Cengage. ISBN 978-0-8400-2976-8.
  • DiPerna, Alan (June 1994). "Not F-F-F-Fade Away". Guitar World: 40–50.
  • Evans, Mike; Kingsbury, Paul (2009). Woodstock: Three Days that Rocked the World. Sterling Publishing Company. ISBN 978-1-4027-6623-7.
  • Ewbank, Tim; Hildred, Stafford (2012). Roger Daltrey: The biography. Hachette UK. ISBN 978-1-40551-845-1.
  • Fletcher, Tony (1998). Dear Boy: The Life of Keith Moon. Omnibus Press. ISBN 978-1-84449-807-9.
  • Harison, Casey (2014). "Is It in My Head?": The Pleasure and Pain of Listening to the Who, 1964–1973. Volume! / Éditions Mélanie Seteun. ISBN 978-2-913169-35-7.
  • Howard, David (2004). Sonic Alchemy: Visionary Music Producers and Their Maverick Recordings. Hal Leonard Corporation. ISBN 978-0-634-05560-7.
  • MacDonald, Ian (1997). Revolution in the Head: The Beatles' Records and the Sixties (First Revised ed.). Pimlico/Random House. ISBN 978-0-7126-6697-8.
  • Knowles, Christopher (2013). The Secret History of Rock 'n' Roll. Cleis Press. ISBN 978-1-57344-564-1.
  • Marsh, Dave (1983). Before I Get Old: The Story of The Who. Plexus Publishing Ltd. ISBN 978-0-85965-083-0.
  • McMichael, Joe; Lyons, Jack (1998). The Who: Concert File. Omnibus Press. ISBN 978-0-7119-6316-0.
  • Neill, Andrew; Kent, Matthew (2009). Anyway Anyhow Anywhere: The Complete Chronicle of The Who 1958–1978. Sterling Publishing. ISBN 978-0-7535-1217-3.
  • Townshend, Pete (2012). Who I Am: A Memoir. HarperCollins. ISBN 978-0-06-212726-6.
  • Unterberger, Richie (2011). Won't Get Fooled Again: The Who from Lifehouse to Quadrophenia. Jawbone Press. ISBN 978-1-906002-75-6.
  • Whiteley, Sheila (2003). The Space Between the Notes: Rock and the Counter-Culture. Routledge. ISBN 978-1-134-91662-7.

Further reading

  • Barnes, Richard (1982). The Who: Maximum R & B. Eel Pie Publishing. ISBN 978-0-85965-351-0.
  • Halfin, Ross, ed. (2002). Maximum Who: The Who In The Sixties. Genesis Publications. ISBN 978-0-904351-85-9.

External links

Ebola virus disease

Ebola virus disease (EVD), also known as Ebola hemorrhagic fever (EHF) or simply Ebola, is a viral hemorrhagic fever of humans and other primates caused by ebolaviruses. Signs and symptoms typically start between two days and three weeks after contracting the virus with a fever, sore throat, muscular pain, and headaches. Vomiting, diarrhea and rash usually follow, along with decreased function of the liver and kidneys. At this time, some people begin to bleed both internally and externally. The disease has a high risk of death, killing between 25 and 90 percent of those infected, with an average of about 50 percent. This is often due to low blood pressure from fluid loss, and typically follows six to sixteen days after symptoms appear.The virus spreads through direct contact with body fluids, such as blood from infected humans or other animals. Spread may also occur from contact with items recently contaminated with bodily fluids. Spread of the disease through the air between primates, including humans, has not been documented in either laboratory or natural conditions. Semen or breast milk of a person after recovery from EVD may carry the virus for several weeks to months. Fruit bats are believed to be the normal carrier in nature, able to spread the virus without being affected by it. Other diseases such as malaria, cholera, typhoid fever, meningitis and other viral hemorrhagic fevers may resemble EVD. Blood samples are tested for viral RNA, viral antibodies or for the virus itself to confirm the diagnosis.Control of outbreaks requires coordinated medical services and community engagement. This includes rapid detection, contact tracing of those who have been exposed, quick access to laboratory services, care for those infected, and proper disposal of the dead through cremation or burial. Samples of body fluids and tissues from people with the disease should be handled with special caution. Prevention includes limiting the spread of disease from infected animals to humans by handling potentially infected bushmeat only while wearing protective clothing, and by thoroughly cooking bushmeat before eating it. It also includes wearing proper protective clothing and washing hands when around a person with the disease. An Ebola vaccine has been studied in Africa with promising results. No specific treatment is available, although a number of potential treatments are being studied. Supportive efforts, however, improve outcomes. This includes either oral rehydration therapy (drinking slightly sweetened and salty water) or giving intravenous fluids as well as treating symptoms.The disease was first identified in 1976 in two simultaneous outbreaks: one in Nzara (a town in South Sudan) and the other in Yambuku (Democratic Republic of the Congo), a village near the Ebola River from which the disease takes its name. EVD outbreaks occur intermittently in tropical regions of sub-Saharan Africa. Between 1976 and 2013, the World Health Organization reports a total of 24 outbreaks involving 1,716 cases. The largest outbreak to date was the epidemic in West Africa, which occurred from December 2013 to January 2016 with 28,616 cases and 11,310 deaths. It was declared no longer an emergency on 29 March 2016. Other outbreaks in Africa began in the Democratic Republic of the Congo in May 2017, and 2018.

Eddie Vedder

Eddie Vedder (born Edward Louis Severson III; December 23, 1964) is an American musician, multi-instrumentalist and singer-songwriter best known as the lead vocalist and one of three guitarists of the American rock band Pearl Jam. He is known for his powerful baritone vocals. He also appeared as a guest vocalist in Temple of the Dog, the one-off tribute band dedicated to the late singer Andrew Wood. Vedder has been ranked at number 7 on a list of "Best Lead Singers of All Time", compiled by Rolling Stone.In 2007, Vedder released his first solo album as a soundtrack for the film Into the Wild (2007). His second album Ukulele Songs and a live DVD titled Water on the Road were released in 2011.

In 2017, Vedder was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a member of Pearl Jam.

Freddie Mercury

Freddie Mercury (born Farrokh Bulsara; 5 September 1946 – 24 November 1991) was a British singer-songwriter, record producer and lead vocalist of the rock band Queen. Regarded as one of the greatest lead singers in the history of rock music, he was known for his flamboyant stage persona and four-octave vocal range.Born in 1946 in Zanzibar to Parsi parents from India, he attended English-style boarding schools in India from the age of eight, and returned to Zanzibar after secondary school. In 1964, his family fled the Zanzibar Revolution, moving to Middlesex, England. Having studied and written music for years, he formed Queen in 1970 with guitarist Brian May and drummer Roger Taylor. Mercury wrote numerous hits for Queen, including "Bohemian Rhapsody", "Killer Queen", "Somebody to Love", "Don't Stop Me Now", "Crazy Little Thing Called Love", and "We Are the Champions". He also led a solo career and served as a producer and guest musician for other artists. Mercury died in 1991 at age 45 due to complications from AIDS. He confirmed the day before his death that he had contracted the disease.

As a member of Queen, Mercury was posthumously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2001, the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2003, and the UK Music Hall of Fame in 2004. In 1990, he and the band Queen were awarded the Brit Award for Outstanding Contribution to British Music. In 1992 a tribute concert was held at Wembley Stadium, London. In 2002, Mercury ranked as number 58 in the BBC's 2002 poll of the 100 Greatest Britons. The 2018 film about Mercury and Queen, Bohemian Rhapsody, is the highest-grossing musical biographical film of all time. Rami Malek won the Academy Award for Best Actor for his performance as Mercury in the film, among critical praise and other accolades.


Human immunodeficiency virus infection and acquired immune deficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS) is a spectrum of conditions caused by infection with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). Following initial infection, a person may not notice any symptoms or may experience a brief period of influenza-like illness. Typically, this is followed by a prolonged period with no symptoms. As the infection progresses, it interferes more with the immune system, increasing the risk of developing common infections such as tuberculosis, as well as other opportunistic infections, and tumors that rarely affect people who have uncompromised immune systems. These late symptoms of infection are referred to as acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). This stage is often also associated with unintended weight loss.HIV is spread primarily by unprotected sex (including anal and oral sex), contaminated blood transfusions, hypodermic needles, and from mother to child during pregnancy, delivery, or breastfeeding. Some bodily fluids, such as saliva and tears, do not transmit HIV. Methods of prevention include safe sex, needle exchange programs, treating those who are infected, pre- and post-exposure prophylaxis, and male circumcision. Disease in a baby can often be prevented by giving both the mother and child antiretroviral medication. There is no cure or vaccine; however, antiretroviral treatment can slow the course of the disease and may lead to a near-normal life expectancy. Treatment is recommended as soon as the diagnosis is made. Without treatment, the average survival time after infection is 11 years.In 2016, about 36.7 million people were living with HIV and it resulted in 1 million deaths. There were 300,000 fewer new HIV cases in 2016 than in 2015. Most of those infected live in sub-Saharan Africa. From the time AIDS was identified in the early 1980s to 2017, the disease has caused an estimated 35 million deaths worldwide. HIV/AIDS is considered a pandemic—a disease outbreak which is present over a large area and is actively spreading. HIV originated in west-central Africa during the late 19th or early 20th century. AIDS was first recognized by the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in 1981 and its cause—HIV infection—was identified in the early part of the decade.HIV/AIDS has had a large impact on society, both as an illness and as a source of discrimination. The disease also has large economic impacts. There are many misconceptions about HIV/AIDS such as the belief that it can be transmitted by casual non-sexual contact. The disease has become subject to many controversies involving religion including the Catholic Church's position not to support condom use as prevention. It has attracted international medical and political attention as well as large-scale funding since it was identified in the 1980s.


ICD-10 is the 10th revision of the International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems (ICD), a medical classification list by the World Health Organization (WHO). It contains codes for diseases, signs and symptoms, abnormal findings, complaints, social circumstances, and external causes of injury or diseases. Work on ICD-10 began in 1983, became endorsed by the Forty-third World Health Assembly in 1990, and was first used by member states in 1994.Whilst WHO manages and publishes the base version of the ICD, several members states have modified it to better suit their needs. In the base classification, the code set allows for more than 14,000 different codes and permits the tracking of many new diagnoses compared to the preceding ICD-9. Through the use of optional sub-classifications ICD-10 allows for specificity regarding the cause, manifestation, location, severity and type of injury or disease. The adapted versions may differ in a number of ways, and some national editions have expanded the code set even further; with some going so far as to add procedure codes. ICD-10-CM, for example, has over 70,000 codes.The WHO provides detailed information regarding the ICD via its website – including an ICD-10 online browser and ICD training materials. The online training includes a support forum, a self learning tool and user guide.

International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems

The International Classification of Diseases (ICD) is the international "standard diagnostic tool for epidemiology, health management and clinical purposes." Its full official name is International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems.The ICD is maintained by the World Health Organization (WHO), which is the directing and coordinating authority for health within the United Nations System. The ICD is originally designed as a health care classification system, providing a system of diagnostic codes for classifying diseases, including nuanced classifications of a wide variety of signs, symptoms, abnormal findings, complaints, social circumstances, and external causes of injury or disease. This system is designed to map health conditions to corresponding generic categories together with specific variations, assigning for these a designated code, up to six characters long. Thus, major categories are designed to include a set of similar diseases. ICD-11 is a major step forward, because it has the necessary terminological and ontological elements for seamless use in digital health.

The ICD is published by the WHO and used worldwide for morbidity and mortality statistics, reimbursement systems, and automated decision support in health care. This system is designed to promote international comparability in the collection, processing, classification, and presentation of these statistics. Like the analogous Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (which is limited to psychiatric disorders and almost exclusive to the United States), the ICD is a major project to statistically classify all health disorders, and provide diagnostic assistance. The ICD is a core statistically based classificatory diagnostic system for health care related issues of the WHO Family of International Classifications (WHO-FIC).The ICD is revised periodically and is currently in its 10th revision. ICD-10, as it is therefore known, is from 1992 and the WHO publishes annual minor updates and triennial major updates. The final draft of the ICD-11 system is expected to be submitted to WHO's World Health Assembly (WHA) for official endorsement in 2019. The version for preparation of approval at the WHA was released on 18 June 2018.The ICD is part of a "family" of international classifications (WHOFIC) that complement each other, including also the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF) which focuses on the domains of functioning (disability) associated with health conditions, from both medical and social perspectives, and the International Classification of Health Interventions (ICHI) that classifies the whole range of medical, nursing, functioning and public health interventions.

Keith Moon

Keith John Moon (23 August 1946 – 7 September 1978) was an English drummer for the rock band the Who. He was noted for his unique style and his eccentric, often self-destructive behaviour. His drumming continues to be praised by critics and musicians. He was posthumously inducted into the Modern Drummer Hall of Fame in 1982, becoming only the second rock drummer to be chosen, and in 2011, Moon was voted the second-greatest drummer in history by a Rolling Stone readers' poll.Moon grew up in Alperton, a suburb of Wembley, in Middlesex, and took up the drums during the early 1960s. After playing with a local band, the Beachcombers, he joined the Who in 1964 before they recorded their first single. Moon remained with the band during their rise to fame, and was quickly recognised for his drumming style, which emphasised tom-toms, cymbal crashes, and drum fills. Throughout Moon's tenure with the Who his drum kit steadily grew in size, and along with Ginger Baker, Moon has been credited as one of the earliest rock drummers to regularly employ double bass drums in his setup. He occasionally collaborated with other musicians and later appeared in films, but considered playing in the Who his primary occupation and remained a member of the band until his death. In addition to his talent as a drummer, however, Moon developed a reputation for smashing his kit on stage and destroying hotel rooms on tour. He was fascinated by blowing up toilets with cherry bombs or dynamite, and by destroying television sets. Moon enjoyed touring and socialising, and became bored and restless when the Who were inactive. His 21st birthday party in Flint, Michigan, has been cited as a notorious example of decadent behaviour by rock groups.

Moon suffered a number of setbacks during the 1970s, most notably the accidental death of chauffeur Neil Boland and the breakdown of his marriage. He became addicted to alcohol, particularly brandy and champagne, and acquired a reputation for decadence and dark humour; his nickname was "Moon the Loon." After moving to Los Angeles with personal assistant Peter "Dougal" Butler during the mid-1970s, Moon recorded his only solo album, the poorly received Two Sides of the Moon. While touring with the Who, on several occasions he passed out on stage and was hospitalised. By their final tour with him in 1976, and particularly during production of The Kids Are Alright and Who Are You, the drummer's deterioration was evident. Moon moved back to London in 1978, dying in September of that year from an overdose of Heminevrin, a drug intended to treat or prevent symptoms of alcohol withdrawal.


Leprosy, also known as Hansen's disease (HD), is a long-term infection by the bacteria Mycobacterium leprae or Mycobacterium lepromatosis. Initially, a person who is infected does not have symptoms and typically remains this way for 5 to 20 years. Symptoms that develop include granulomas of the nerves, respiratory tract, skin, and eyes. This may result in a lack of ability to feel pain, which can lead to the loss of parts of extremities due to repeated injuries or infection due to unnoticed wounds. Weakness and poor eyesight may also be present.Leprosy is spread between people, although extensive contact is necessary. Spread is thought to occur through a cough or contact with fluid from the nose of a person infected by leprosy. It is not spread during pregnancy to the unborn children or through sexual contact. Leprosy occurs more commonly among those living in poverty. Genetic factors also play a role in susceptibility. The two main types of disease - paucibacillary and multibacillary - differ in the number of bacteria present. A person with paucibacillary disease has five or fewer poorly pigmented numb skin patches while a person with multibacillary disease has more than five. The diagnosis is confirmed by finding acid-fast bacilli in a biopsy of the skin or by detecting the bacteria's DNA using polymerase chain reaction.Leprosy is curable with multidrug therapy. Treatment of paucibacillary leprosy is with the medications dapsone, rifampicin, and clofazimine for six months. Treatment for multibacillary uses the same medications for 12 months. A number of other antibiotics may also be used. These treatments are provided free of charge by the World Health Organization. At the end of 2016, there were 173,000 leprosy cases globally, down from some 5.2 million in the 1980s. The number of new cases in 2016 was 216,000. Most new cases occur in 16 countries, with India accounting for more than half. In the past 20 years, 16 million people worldwide have been cured of leprosy. About 200 cases are reported per year in the United States.Leprosy has affected humanity for thousands of years. The disease takes its name from the Greek word λέπρᾱ (léprā), from λεπῐ́ς (lepís; "scale"), while the term "Hansen's disease" is named after the Norwegian physician Gerhard Armauer Hansen. Separating people by placing them in leper colonies still occurs in places such as India, China, and Africa. However, most colonies have closed, since leprosy is not very contagious. Social stigma has been associated with leprosy for much of history, which continues to be a barrier to self-reporting and early treatment. Some consider the word "leper" offensive, preferring the phrase "person affected with leprosy". It is classified as a neglected tropical disease. World Leprosy Day was started in 1954 to draw awareness to those affected by leprosy.


London ( (listen) LUN-dən) is the capital and largest city of both England and the United Kingdom. Standing on the River Thames in the south-east of England, at the head of its 50-mile (80 km) estuary leading to the North Sea, London has been a major settlement for two millennia. Londinium was founded by the Romans. The City of London, London's ancient core − an area of just 1.12 square miles (2.9 km2) and colloquially known as the Square Mile − retains boundaries that follow closely its medieval limits. The City of Westminster is also an Inner London borough holding city status. Greater London is governed by the Mayor of London and the London Assembly.London is considered to be one of the world's most important global cities and has been termed the world's most powerful, most desirable, most influential, most visited, most expensive, innovative, sustainable, most investment friendly, most popular for work, and the most vegetarian friendly city in the world. London exerts a considerable impact upon the arts, commerce, education, entertainment, fashion, finance, healthcare, media, professional services, research and development, tourism and transportation. London ranks 26 out of 300 major cities for economic performance. It is one of the largest financial centres and has either the fifth or sixth largest metropolitan area GDP. It is the most-visited city as measured by international arrivals and has the busiest city airport system as measured by passenger traffic. It is the leading investment destination, hosting more international retailers and ultra high-net-worth individuals than any other city. London's universities form the largest concentration of higher education institutes in Europe. In 2012, London became the first city to have hosted three modern Summer Olympic Games.London has a diverse range of people and cultures, and more than 300 languages are spoken in the region. Its estimated mid-2016 municipal population (corresponding to Greater London) was 8,787,892, the most populous of any city in the European Union and accounting for 13.4% of the UK population. London's urban area is the second most populous in the EU, after Paris, with 9,787,426 inhabitants at the 2011 census. The population within the London commuter belt is the most populous in the EU with 14,040,163 inhabitants in 2016. London was the world's most populous city from c. 1831 to 1925.

London contains four World Heritage Sites: the Tower of London; Kew Gardens; the site comprising the Palace of Westminster, Westminster Abbey, and St Margaret's Church; and the historic settlement in Greenwich where the Royal Observatory, Greenwich defines the Prime Meridian, 0° longitude, and Greenwich Mean Time. Other landmarks include Buckingham Palace, the London Eye, Piccadilly Circus, St Paul's Cathedral, Tower Bridge, Trafalgar Square and The Shard. London has numerous museums, galleries, libraries and sporting events. These include the British Museum, National Gallery, Natural History Museum, Tate Modern, British Library and West End theatres. The London Underground is the oldest underground railway network in the world.

New York City

The City of New York, usually called either New York City (NYC) or simply New York (NY), is the most populous city in the United States. With an estimated 2017 population of 8,622,698 distributed over a land area of about 302.6 square miles (784 km2), New York is also the most densely populated major city in the United States. Located at the southern tip of the state of New York, the city is the center of the New York metropolitan area, the largest metropolitan area in the world by urban landmass and one of the world's most populous megacities, with an estimated 20,320,876 people in its 2017 Metropolitan Statistical Area and 23,876,155 residents in its Combined Statistical Area. A global power city, New York City has been described as the cultural, financial, and media capital of the world, and exerts a significant impact upon commerce, entertainment, research, technology, education, politics, tourism, art, fashion, and sports. The city's fast pace has inspired the term New York minute. Home to the headquarters of the United Nations, New York is an important center for international diplomacy.Situated on one of the world's largest natural harbors, New York City consists of five boroughs, each of which is a separate county of the State of New York. The five boroughs – Brooklyn, Queens, Manhattan, The Bronx, and Staten Island – were consolidated into a single city in 1898. The city and its metropolitan area constitute the premier gateway for legal immigration to the United States. As many as 800 languages are spoken in New York, making it the most linguistically diverse city in the world. New York City is home to more than 3.2 million residents born outside the United States, the largest foreign-born population of any city in the world. In 2017, the New York metropolitan area produced a gross metropolitan product (GMP) of US$1.73 trillion. If greater New York City were a sovereign state, it would have the 12th highest GDP in the world. New York is home to the highest number of billionaires of any city in the world.New York City traces its origins to a trading post founded by colonists from the Dutch Republic in 1624 on Lower Manhattan; the post was named New Amsterdam in 1626. The city and its surroundings came under English control in 1664 and were renamed New York after King Charles II of England granted the lands to his brother, the Duke of York. New York served as the capital of the United States from 1785 until 1790. It has been the country's largest city since 1790. The Statue of Liberty greeted millions of immigrants as they came to the U.S. by ship in the late 19th and early 20th centuries and is an international symbol of the U.S. and its ideals of liberty and peace. In the 21st century, New York has emerged as a global node of creativity and entrepreneurship, social tolerance, and environmental sustainability, and as a symbol of freedom and cultural diversity.Many districts and landmarks in New York City are well known, with the city having three of the world's ten most visited tourist attractions in 2013 and receiving a record 62.8 million tourists in 2017. Several sources have ranked New York the most photographed city in the world. Times Square, iconic as the world's "heart" and its "Crossroads", is the brightly illuminated hub of the Broadway Theater District, one of the world's busiest pedestrian intersections, and a major center of the world's entertainment industry. The names of many of the city's landmarks, skyscrapers, and parks are known around the world. Manhattan's real estate market is among the most expensive in the world. New York is home to the largest ethnic Chinese population outside of Asia, with multiple signature Chinatowns developing across the city. Providing continuous 24/7 service, the New York City Subway is the largest single-operator rapid transit system worldwide, with 472 rail stations. Over 120 colleges and universities are located in New York City, including Columbia University, New York University, and Rockefeller University, which have been ranked among the top universities in the world. Anchored by Wall Street in the Financial District of Lower Manhattan, New York has been called both the most economically powerful city and the leading financial center of the world, and the city is home to the world's two largest stock exchanges by total market capitalization, the New York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ.

Pete Townshend

Peter Dennis Blandford Townshend (born 19 May 1945) is an English musician and songwriter best known as the lead guitarist, second vocalist, and principal songwriter for the rock band the Who. His career with the Who spans over 50 years, during which time the band grew to be one of the most important and influential rock bands of the 20th century.Pete Townshend is the main songwriter for the Who, having written well over 100 songs for the band's 11 studio albums, including concept albums and the rock operas Tommy and Quadrophenia, plus popular rock radio staples such as Who's Next, and dozens more that appeared as non-album singles, bonus tracks on reissues, and tracks on rarities compilations such as Odds & Sods (1974). He has also written more than 100 songs that have appeared on his solo albums, as well as radio jingles and television theme songs. Although known primarily as a guitarist, he also plays keyboards, banjo, accordion, harmonica, ukulele, mandolin, violin, synthesiser, bass guitar, and drums, on his own solo albums, several Who albums and as a guest contributor to an array of other artists' recordings. He is self-taught on all of the instruments he plays and has never had any formal training.

Townshend has also contributed to and authored many newspaper and magazine articles, book reviews, essays, books, and scripts, and he has collaborated as a lyricist and composer for many other musical acts. Due to his aggressive playing style and innovative songwriting techniques, Townshend's works with the Who and in other projects have earned him critical acclaim. He was ranked No. 3 in Dave Marsh's list of Best Guitarists in The New Book of Rock Lists, No. 10 in's list of the top 50 guitarists, and No. 10 again in Rolling Stone's updated 2011 list of the 100 greatest guitarists of all time. In 1983, Townshend received the Brit Award for Lifetime Achievement; in 1990, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a member of the Who; in 2001, he received a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award as a member of the Who; and in 2008 he received Kennedy Center Honors. He and Roger Daltrey received The George and Ira Gershwin Award for Lifetime Musical Achievement at UCLA on 21 May 2016.

Rhythm and blues

Rhythm and blues, commonly abbreviated as R&B, is a genre of popular music that originated in African American communities in the 1940s. The term was originally used by record companies to describe recordings marketed predominantly to urban African Americans, at a time when "urbane, rocking, jazz based music with a heavy, insistent beat" was becoming more popular.

In the commercial rhythm and blues music typical of the 1950s through the 1970s, the bands usually consisted of piano, one or two guitars, bass, drums, one or more saxophones, and sometimes background vocalists. R&B lyrical themes often encapsulate the African-American experience of pain and the quest for freedom and joy, as well as triumphs and failures in terms of relationships, economics, and aspirations.

The term "rhythm and blues" has undergone a number of shifts in meaning. In the early 1950s, it was frequently applied to blues records. Starting in the mid-1950s, after this style of music contributed to the development of rock and roll, the term "R&B" became used to refer to music styles that developed from and incorporated electric blues, as well as gospel and soul music. In the 1960s, several British rock bands such as the Rolling Stones, the Who and the Animals were referred to and promoted as being R&B bands; posters for the Who's residency at the Marquee Club in 1964 contained the slogan, "Maximum R&B". Their mix of rock and roll and R&B is now known as "British rhythm and blues". By the 1970s, the term "rhythm and blues" changed again and was used as a blanket term for soul and funk. In the 1980s, a newer style of R&B developed, becoming known as "contemporary R&B". It combines elements of rhythm and blues, pop, soul, funk, hip hop, and electronic music. Popular R&B vocalists at the end of the 20th century included Prince, R. Kelly, Stevie Wonder, Chaka Khan, Whitney Houston, and Mariah Carey. In the 21st century, R&B has remained a popular genre becoming more pop orientated and alternatively influenced with successful artists including Usher, Bruno Mars, Chris Brown, Justin Timberlake, The Weeknd, Frank Ocean and Khalid.

Roger Daltrey

Roger Harry Daltrey (born 1 March 1944) is an English singer and actor. Daltrey is the founder and lead singer of the rock band the Who, which released 14 singles that entered the Top 10 charts in the United Kingdom during the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s, including "I Can't Explain", "My Generation", "Substitute", "I'm a Boy", "Happy Jack", "Pictures of Lily", "Pinball Wizard", "Won't Get Fooled Again", and "You Better You Bet". Daltrey began his solo career in 1973, while still a member of the Who. Since then, he has released eight studio albums, five compilation albums, and one live album. His solo hits include "Giving It All Away", "Walking the Dog", "Written on the Wind", "Free Me", "Without Your Love", "Walking in My Sleep", "After the Fire", and "Under a Raging Moon". In 2010, he was ranked as number 61 on Rolling Stone's list of the 100 greatest singers of all time.

Daltrey is famed for his powerful voice and energetic stage presence.As a member of the Who, Daltrey received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the British Phonographic Industry in 1988, and from the Grammy Foundation in 2001. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1990 and the UK Music Hall of Fame in 2005. The Who are considered one of the most influential rock bands of the 20th century, selling over 100 million records worldwide. He and Pete Townshend received Kennedy Center Honors in 2008 and The George and Ira Gershwin Award for Lifetime Musical Achievement at UCLA on 21 May 2016.Daltrey has also been an actor and film producer, with roles in films, theatre, and television.


Smallpox was an infectious disease caused by one of two virus variants, Variola major and Variola minor. The last naturally occurring case was diagnosed in October 1977 and the World Health Organization (WHO) certified the global eradication of the disease in 1980. The risk of death following contracting the disease was about 30%, with higher rates among babies. Often those who survived had extensive scarring of their skin and some were left blind.The initial symptoms of the disease included fever and vomiting. This was followed by formation of sores in the mouth and a skin rash. Over a number of days the skin rash turned into characteristic fluid filled bumps with a dent in the center. The bumps then scabbed over and fell off leaving scars. The disease used to spread between people or via contaminated objects. Prevention was by the smallpox vaccine. Once the disease had developed, certain antiviral medication may have helped.The origin of smallpox is unknown. The earliest evidence of the disease dates back to the 3rd century BCE in Egyptian mummies. The disease historically occurred in outbreaks. In 18th-century Europe, it is estimated 400,000 people per year died from the disease, and one-third of the cases resulted in blindness. These deaths included those of four reigning monarchs and a queen consort. Smallpox is estimated to have killed up to 300 million people in the 20th century and around 500 million people in the last 100 years of its existence. As recently as 1967, 15 million cases occurred a year.Edward Jenner discovered in 1798 that vaccination could prevent smallpox. In 1967, the WHO intensified efforts to eliminate the disease. Smallpox is one of two infectious diseases to have been eradicated, the other being rinderpest in 2011. The term "smallpox" was first used in Britain in the 15th century to distinguish the disease from syphilis, which was then known as the "great pox". Other historical names for the disease include pox, speckled monster, and red plague.

Tommy (album)

Tommy is the fourth studio album by the English rock band the Who. It was first released as a double album on 23 May 1969 by Decca Records. The album was mostly composed by guitarist Pete Townshend as a rock opera that tells the story about a "deaf, dumb and blind" boy, including his experiences with life and his relationship with his family.

Townshend came up with the concept of Tommy after being introduced to the work of Meher Baba, and attempted to translate Baba's teachings into music. Recording on the album began in September 1968, but took six months to complete as material needed to be arranged and re-recorded in the studio. Tommy was acclaimed upon its release by critics, who hailed it as the Who's breakthrough. Its critical standing diminished slightly in later years; nonetheless, several writers view it as an important and influential album in the history of rock music. The Who promoted the album's release with an extensive tour, including a live version of Tommy, which lasted throughout 1969 and 1970. Key gigs from the tour included appearances at Woodstock, the 1969 Isle of Wight Festival, the University of Leeds, the Metropolitan Opera House and the 1970 Isle of Wight Festival. The live performances of Tommy drew critical praise and rejuvenated the band's career.

Subsequently, the rock opera developed into other media, including a Seattle Opera production in 1971, an orchestral version by Lou Reizner in 1972, a film in 1975, and a Broadway musical in 1992. The original album has sold 20 million copies and has been inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame. It has been reissued several times on CD, including a remix by Jon Astley in 1996, a deluxe Super Audio CD in 2003, and a super deluxe box set in 2013, including previously unreleased demos and live material.

United Kingdom

The United Kingdom (UK), officially the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and sometimes referred to as Britain, is a sovereign country located off the north-western coast of the European mainland. The United Kingdom includes the island of Great Britain, the north-eastern part of the island of Ireland, and many smaller islands. Northern Ireland is the only part of the United Kingdom that shares a land border with another sovereign state, the Republic of Ireland. Apart from this land border, the United Kingdom is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, with the North Sea to the east, the English Channel to the south and the Celtic Sea to the south-west, giving it the 12th-longest coastline in the world. The Irish Sea lies between Great Britain and Ireland. With an area of 242,500 square kilometres (93,600 sq mi), the United Kingdom is the 78th-largest sovereign state in the world. It is also the 22nd-most populous country, with an estimated 66.0 million inhabitants in 2017.

The UK is a unitary parliamentary democracy and constitutional monarchy. The current monarch is Queen Elizabeth II, who has reigned since 1952, making her the longest-serving current head of state. The United Kingdom's capital and largest city is London, a global city and financial centre with an urban area population of 10.3 million. Other major urban areas in the UK include Greater Manchester, the West Midlands and West Yorkshire conurbations, Greater Glasgow and the Liverpool Built-up Area.

The United Kingdom consists of four constituent countries: England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland. Their capitals are London, Edinburgh, Cardiff, and Belfast, respectively. Apart from England, the countries have their own devolved governments, each with varying powers, but such power is delegated by the Parliament of the United Kingdom, which may enact laws unilaterally altering or abolishing devolution (England does not have any devolved power). The nearby Isle of Man, Bailiwick of Guernsey and Bailiwick of Jersey are not part of the UK, being Crown dependencies with the British Government responsible for defence and international representation. The medieval conquest and subsequent annexation of Wales by the Kingdom of England, followed by the union between England and Scotland in 1707 to form the Kingdom of Great Britain, and the union in 1801 of Great Britain with the Kingdom of Ireland created the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. Five-sixths of Ireland seceded from the UK in 1922, leaving the present formulation of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. There are fourteen British Overseas Territories, the remnants of the British Empire which, at its height in the 1920s, encompassed almost a quarter of the world's land mass and was the largest empire in history. British influence can be observed in the language, culture and political systems of many of its former colonies.The United Kingdom is a developed country and has the world's fifth-largest economy by nominal GDP and ninth-largest economy by purchasing power parity. It has a high-income economy and has a very high Human Development Index rating, ranking 14th in the world. It was the world's first industrialised country and the world's foremost power during the 19th and early 20th centuries. The UK remains a great power, with considerable economic, cultural, military, scientific and political influence internationally. It is a recognised nuclear weapons state and is sixth in military expenditure in the world. It has been a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council since its first session in 1946. It has been a leading member state of the European Union (EU) and its predecessor, the European Economic Community (EEC), since 1973; however, a referendum in 2016 resulted in 51.9 per cent of UK voters favouring leaving the European Union, and the country's exit is being negotiated. The United Kingdom is also a member of the Commonwealth of Nations, the Council of Europe, the G7, the G20, NATO, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), Interpol and the World Trade Organization (WTO).

WHO Model List of Essential Medicines

The WHO Model List of Essential Medicines (EML), published by the World Health Organization (WHO), contains the medications considered to be most effective and safe to meet the most important needs in a health system. The list is frequently used by countries to help develop their own local lists of essential medicine. As of 2016, more than 155 countries have created national lists of essential medicines based on the World Health Organization's model list. This includes countries in both the developed and developing world.The list is divided into core items and complementary items. The core items are deemed to be the most cost effective options for key health problems and are usable with little additional health care resources. The complementary items either require additional infrastructure such as specially trained health care providers or diagnostic equipment or have a lower cost-benefit ratio. About 25% of items are in the complementary list. Some medications are listed as both core and complementary. While most medications on the list are available as generic products, being under patent does not preclude inclusion.The first list was published in 1977 and included 212 medications. The WHO updates the list every two years. The 14th list was published in 2005 and contained 306 medications. In 2015 the 19th edition of the list was published and contains around 410 medications. The 20th edition was published in 2017 and comprises 433 drugs. The national lists contain between 334 and 580 medications.A separate list for children up to 12 years of age, known as the WHO Model List of Essential Medicines for Children (EMLc), was created in 2007 and is in its 6th edition. It was created to make sure that the needs of children were systematically considered such as availability of proper formulations. Everything in the children's list is also included in the main list. The list and notes are based on the 19th and 20th edition of the main list. An α indicates a medicine is only on the complementary list.


WikiLeaks () is an international non-profit organisation that publishes news leaks, and classified media provided by anonymous sources. Its website, initiated in 2006 in Iceland by the organisation Sunshine Press, claimed in 2016 to have released online 10 million documents in its first 10 years. Julian Assange, an Australian Internet activist, is generally described as its founder and director. Since September 2018, Kristinn Hrafnsson has served as its editor-in-chief.The group has released a number of prominent document dumps. Early releases included documentation of equipment expenditures and holdings in the Afghanistan war and a report informing a corruption investigation in Kenya. In April 2010, WikiLeaks released the Collateral Murder footage from the 12 July 2007 Baghdad airstrike in which Iraqi journalists were among those killed. Other releases in 2010 included the Afghan War Diary and the "Iraq War Logs". The latter allowed the mapping of 109,032 deaths in "significant" attacks by insurgents in Iraq that had been reported to Multi-National Force – Iraq, including about 15,000 that had not been previously published. In 2010, WikiLeaks also released the US State Department diplomatic "cables", classified cables that had been sent to the US State Department. In April 2011, WikiLeaks began publishing 779 secret files relating to prisoners detained in the Guantanamo Bay detention camp.During the 2016 US presidential election campaign, WikiLeaks released emails and other documents from the Democratic National Committee and from Hillary Clinton's campaign manager, John Podesta. The publication of these stolen emails hurt the Clinton campaign and, for FiveThirtyEight, was "among the factors that might have contributed to her loss". The U.S. intelligence community expressed "high confidence" that the leaked emails had been hacked by Russia and supplied to WikiLeaks, while WikiLeaks denied their source was Russia or any other state.

WikiLeaks has drawn criticism for its alleged absence of whistleblowing on or criticism of Russia, and for criticising the Panama Papers' exposé of businesses and individuals with offshore bank accounts. WikiLeaks has also been criticised for inadequately curating its content and violating the personal privacy of individuals. WikiLeaks has, for instance, revealed Social Security numbers, medical information, credit card numbers and details of suicide attempts.

World Health Organization

The World Health Organization (WHO) is a specialized agency of the United Nations that is concerned with international public health. It was established on 7 April 1948, and is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland. The WHO is a member of the United Nations Development Group. Its predecessor, the Health Organisation, was an agency of the League of Nations.

The constitution of the World Health Organization had been signed by 61 countries on 22 July 1946, with the first meeting of the World Health Assembly finishing on 22 July 1946. It incorporated the Office International d'Hygiène Publique and the League of Nations Health Organization. Since its establishment, it has played a leading role in the eradication of smallpox. Its current priorities include communicable diseases, in particular HIV/AIDS, Ebola, malaria and tuberculosis; the mitigation of the effects of non-communicable diseases such as sexual and reproductive health, development, and aging; nutrition, food security and healthy eating; occupational health; substance abuse; and driving the development of reporting, publications, and networking.

The WHO is responsible for the World Health Report, the worldwide World Health Survey, and World Health Day. The current Director-General of the WHO is Tedros Adhanom, who started his five-year term on 1 July 2017.

The Who
Studio albums
Live albums
Extended plays
Associated places
Related articles
UK singles 1960s
US singles 1960s
UK singles 1970s
US singles 1970s
UK singles 1980s
US singles 1980s
Singles 2000s
Singles 2010s
Live albums w/
majority of Tommy
Tours supporting Tommy
Tribute albums
August 15, 1969
August 16, 1969
August 17, 1969
August 18, 1969
Early influences
(Ahmet Ertegun Award)

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