The Who were undoubtably the most explosive band to emerge from the sixties. They burst onto the scene in a cacophany of sound and equipment demolition. Whatever you thought of the band you just couldn't ignore them.
But they had much more going for them than just a hyperactive and aggressive stageshow. They had songs: gloriously melodic three minute slices of pure and powerful pop. 'I Can't Explain', 'My Generation, 'Substitute', 'I'm A Boy', and 'I Can See For Miles' all became top ten hits and established the band as a major worldwide force.
As the sixties came to a close, Pete Townshend had a vision of something much more daring and inventive. He had initially toyed with the idea of a 'rock opera'in 1966 with the track 'A Quick One While He's Away'. But now it was 1969, and Pete had an even grander idea. A conceptual story that would last a whole album: the story of a deaf, dumb and blind boy - a boy called 'Tommy'.
The band were now firmly established as a stadium headlining act, a heady status that they would maintain for the rest of their career.
This report prepared by Oliver Bayley