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  #211  
Old 16th August 2020, 04:46 PM
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'I'm A Boy', released in August 1966, is another song that was not on any albums. Dealing with the topic of transvestism, it pre-dates 'Lola' by the Kinks by four years

It was originally intended to be part of a rock opera entitled 'Quads', a tale set in the future when parents could choose the sex of their children. The family in the story request four girls, but got three girls and a boy instead, and the song is the boy's lament at the error. Well advanced for it's time, and with lyrics unlike anything else of the period, it tips a hat to The Beach Boys with its high harmonies, but the counterpoint between guitar and drums is 100% Who.

An alternate, longer version of the song was included on the 1971 compilation album 'Meaty, Beaty, Big And Bouncy'. This one featured John on the French horn and a whole new verse: "Help me wash up Jane-Marie / You can dry Felicity / Stack the dishes Sally-Joy / Behind those scrub clothes I'm a boy"

Pete:
"This is a longer and more relaxed version of the single which was edited and had fancy voices added. The song, of course, is about a boy whose mother dresses him up as a girl and won't let him enjoy all the normal boyish pranks like slitting lizards' tummies and throwing rocks at passing cars. Real Alice Cooper syndrome. Of course Zappa said it all when he wrote the original Rock Opera. Nobody noticed, so he had to write a satire on the one Rock Opera people did notice. 'I'm A Boy' was my first attempt at a Rock Opera. Of course the subject matter is a little thin, then what of Tommy?"
The vocals are split between Pete and Roger, with Pete acting as the 'narrator' and Roger as 'Bill'


"One girl was called Jean Marie
Another little girl was Felicity
Another little girl was Sally Joy
The other was me, and I'm a boy

My name is Bill, and I'm a head case
They practice making up on my face
Yeah, I feel lucky if I get trousers to wear
Spend evenings taking hairpins from my hair

chorus:
I'm a boy, I'm a boy
But my ma won't admit it
I'm a boy, I'm a boy
But if I say I am, I get it

Put your frock on, Jean Marie
Plait your hair, Felicity
Paint your nails, little Sally Joy
Put this wig on, little boy

chorus

Wanna play cricket on the green
Ride my bike across the street
Cut myself and see my blood
Wanna come home all covered in mud

chorus"


The 'B'-side of the singles was called 'In The City'. It's another Beach Boys pastiche written by Keith and John who apparently didn't tell Pete and Roger that they were in the studio! The guitars and vocals were overdubbed at a later date, but obviously the song suffers as a result of this

It's not to be confused with the song by The Jam with the same title!


"Come along
Into the city
Where the girls are pretty
And you can't go wrong
Take your time
No need to hurry
Don't have to worry
Cause it won't take long

Well you can surf in the city
You can swim in the pools
Do anything you want
Because there ain't no rules
Drive your super-stock carbur to the long highway
And you can drag.

In the city in the falling right
The kids are hip and they can dance all night
In the city all the girls are pretty and they go...

Come along
Into the city
Where the girls are pretty
And you can't go wrong

Well you can surf in the city
You can swim in the pools
Do anything you want
Because there ain't no rules
Drive your super-stock carbur to the long highway
And you can drag.

In the city in the falling right
The kids are hip and they can dance all night
In the city all the girls are pretty and they go...

In the city, into the city..."
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  #212  
Old 16th August 2020, 05:02 PM
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Not being a Who Junkie my first exposure was Meaty Beaty big and bouncy and i always took it as is, either way it's a class song.
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  #213  
Old 16th August 2020, 07:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nosferatu42 View Post
my first exposure was Meaty Beaty big and bouncy
The album is named after the members of the band: 'Meaty was Roger, because he was quite fit at the time; 'Beaty' was Keith, because of his drumming; 'Big was John, who was a large person; and 'Bouncy' was Pete, who jumped about quite acrobatically during performances

The photo on the cover of the album is an exterior shot of the Railway Hotel, which was situated on the bridge next to Harrow & Wealdstone station in north-west London. It was a popular hangout for Mods and soon after Keith joined the band, the Who became a regular attraction there from June 1964, performing every Tuesday night

The Railway Hotel was destroyed by fire in March 2000, after becoming empty and vandalised. The site is now occupied by blocks of flats where the buildings, such as Moon House and Daltrey House, are named after the band members!

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  #214  
Old 16th August 2020, 07:43 PM
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August 16, 1979 - The film 'Quadrophenia' has it's London premier



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  #215  
Old 16th August 2020, 07:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Susan Foreman View Post
The album is named after the members of the band: 'Meaty was Roger, because he was quite fit at the time; 'Beaty' was Keith, because of his drumming; 'Big was John, who was a large person; and 'Bouncy' was Pete, who jumped about quite acrobatically during performances

The photo on the cover of the album is an exterior shot of the Railway Hotel, which was situated on the bridge next to Harrow & Wealdstone station in north-west London. It was a popular hangout for Mods and soon after Keith joined the band, the Who became a regular attraction there from June 1964, performing every Tuesday night

The Railway Hotel was destroyed by fire in March 2000, after becoming empty and vandalised. The site is now occupied by blocks of flats where the buildings, such as Moon House and Daltrey House, are named after the band members!

This is pretty cool, i never knew, nice one.
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  #216  
Old 16th August 2020, 07:52 PM
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I don't even think i've heard the normal version of "I'm a boy" that would freak me out with a whole verse missing.
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  #217  
Old 16th August 2020, 08:01 PM
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I listened to that album as a kid and if i'm really honest i always read it as Meaty Betty big and bouncy, i thought it was about some big bird. cough.

hqdefault (9).jpg
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  #218  
Old 17th August 2020, 05:54 PM
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In November 1966, the band released their first E.P - the five track 7" single 'Ready Steady Who'. The title refers to an episode of the television music programme 'Ready Steady Go!' which had recently done a special on The Who, but the E.P contained different recordings from those that were featured on the show

The lead track on the 'A' side was a new Pete composition entitled 'Disguises'. This was another song that would have been included on the 'Quads' album

It is one of the earliest songs recorded by them that features rather unique instruments. Wood blocks can be heard clicking throughout the track, played by Keith and a weird French horn is featured in a distinct solo played by John. Vocals are split between Roger and Pete

This was the bands first attempt to move in the psychedelic direction that The Beatles were taking on the 'Rubber Soul' and 'Revolver' albums. The song was later covered by The Jam as the 'B' side to the 'Funeral Pyre' single in 1981


"I used to know everything about you
But today when I tried to point you out to one of my friends
I picked the wrong girl again
Don't see you in the crowd anymore
I think it's you but I can't be sure
You're wearing disguises
Occasionally a girl surprises me
When she turns out to be you
Wearing disguises

I don't think you want me to see you ever again
And today I saw you dressed as a flower bed
Last week you had a wig on your head
Directing traffic in the street
And your shoes were too big for your feet
You were wearing disguises
Occasionally a girl surprises me
When she turns out to be you
Wearing disguises

[repeat first verse]
Wearing disguises
Wearing disguises
Wearing disguises
Wearing disguises"


Completing the first side on the E.P was 'Circles', which has already been written about. The second side contained three songs, starting with 'Batman' written by Neil Hefti for the television show of the same name. This was also covered by The Jam on their debut album 'In The City'

During 1966, this was used as the opening number for the bands live shows. Although it is competently played, it is ultimately forgettable


The second song, which was originally recorded by Jan and Dean in 1966, is 'Bucket T' featuring Keith on reasonably well executed lead vocals

The Swedish TV show Popside filmed The Who recording this track. It was released as a single in Sweden shortly after the clip aired, and became one of the few Who singles anywhere to reach #1 in the chart!


"Bucket bucket T T, bucket T bucket T,
Bucket bucket T T, bucket T bucket T,
Bucket bucket T T, bucket T bucket T,

Found her in a barn in Tennessee
I paid five bucks for my Bucket T
Took me three years of sweat and blood
To clean off all that Tennessee mud

chorus:
My Bucket T (Bucket T)
Bucket T (Bucket T)
My Bucket T (Bucket T)
My Bucket T (Bucket T)
T T T... Bucket bucket bucket...

Cruise down the street in front of school
I wanna rev it up but I gotta be cool
Drivin' down the road I'll get my kicks
A'poppin' the clutch and a'slippin' the sticks

[chorus]

I was right, too, she's first in her class
There's nothing on the freeway she don't pass
All the girls want to take a ride with me
But there's only one seat in my Bucket T

[chorus]"


The final song on the E.P is another cover. Surrendering to Keith's love of surf music, the band did their best with 'Barbara Ann'. but try as they might, it's just not their thing, and Keith's vocls cannot match those of The Beach Boys, who recorded the best known version of the song

[Note: The below video is from 1978 and used in the documentary 'The Kids Are Alright']


"Ba ba ba, ba Barbara Ann,
Ba ba ba, ba Barbara Ann,
Barbara Ann, take my hand, Barbara Ann
You've got me rockin' and a'rollin'
Rockin' and a'reelin' Barbara Ann

I went to a dance
Looking for romance
Saw Barbara Ann so I thought I'd take a chance
With Barbara Ann, Barbara Ann
You've got me rockin' and a'rollin'
Rockin' and a'reelin' Barbara Ann

Tried Mary Lou,
Tried Peggy Sue,
Tried Freddie too
But I knew she wouldn't do
Like Barbara Ann, Barbara Ann
You've got me rockin' and a'rollin'
Rockin' and a'reelin' Barbara Ann

Barbara Ann, Barbara Ann..."
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  #219  
Old 18th August 2020, 02:17 PM
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With the E.P still in the charts, The Who released another single, 'Happy Jack' on December 3, 1966. US fans had to wait until March 18, 1967, before it was released in America

When Pete's father played saxophone in an RAF dance band called The Squadronaires, The Isle Of Man was a regular gig, and young Pete would be dragged along, hence the reference to the island in the song

The star of this one is Keith (again), whose remarkable drum patterns carry not only the beat, but also, in a highly original fashion, the melody as well. All the trademarks of the 1960's Who are here: high harmonies, a quirky subject matter, a fat bass and drums that defy description

Pete:
"We had to stop Keith from singing on the song. [Producer] Kit [Lambert] had to make him promise to lay on the floor in the control room behind the glass so nobody could see him. So he lay there on the ground all the way through the number. And just at the very last few bars, his little head comes up and goes down again. And I shouted out, 'I saw ya!'"

The spoken 'I saw ya' remains at the end of the record!


"Happy Jack wasn't old, but he was a man
He lived in the sand at the Isle of Man
The kids would all sing, he would take the wrong key
So they rode on his head on their furry donkey

The kids couldn't hurt Jack
They tried and tried and tried
They dropped things on his back
And lied and lied and lied and lied and lied

But they couldn't stop Jack, or the waters lapping
And they couldn't prevent Jack from feeling happy

But they couldn't stop Jack, or the waters lapping
And they couldn't prevent Jack from feeling happy

The kids couldn't hurt Jack
They tried and tried and tried
They dropped things on his back
And lied and lied and lied and lied and lied

But they couldn't stop Jack, or the waters lapping
And they couldn't prevent Jack from feeling happy

(I saw ya!)"


The 'B'-side of the UK single was 'I've Been Away'. Written by John, this un-Who like country-and-western influenced song is as lightweight as they got in the 60's.

It was quickly recorded by John and Keith while Pete and Roger had stepped out to the pub!


"I've been away so long
Wonder where I went wrong
Spent my last years in a cell
Never ever go away again
I've been so sad and lonely
Never ever ever gonna go away again

It's a waste of time doing time
When you dind't commit a crime
It wasn't me it was my brother Bill
And I'd have to tell never gonna speak to Bill again
He's made me sad and lonely
Never ever gonna speak to brother Bill again

It was no use, they put my brother on the jury
He bribed the others 'cause he owns the local brewery
They let me out today
Brother Bill's gonna pay
No one's ever gonna speak to Bill again
Never ever gonna speak to Bill again
He'll be too cold and bony
Never ever gonna go away again
Never ever gonna go away again
Never ever gonna go away again"
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  #220  
Old 19th August 2020, 09:02 AM
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Album #2:
A Quick One

If 'My Generation' was the Mod / Pop Art album, then 'A Quick One' is the difficult, experimental album, released on December 9th, 1966

By the time the band came to record this LP, they were broke due to the expense of having to replace so much smashed equipment! In view of this, their music publishers suggested that if Pete, Roger, Keith and John all contributed at least two songs each, they would advance 500 to each member – a considerable amount of money at the time. The offer was accepted, and they were all sent off with some paper and a pen to write hits. Creatively speaking, this was an absurd idea, especially at a time when Pete was quite capable of writing material as strong as 'Happy Jack' and 'Substitute', and it's no surprise that the resulting album suffers because of it. It's a rag-tag collection of musical styles of varying quality which lacked any kind of cohesion and sense of purpose. Pete's compositions are infinitely better than anything else on the record, although it did lead to John coming up with his first Who classic. However, even the most charitable fans found themselves scratching their heads at the tracks offered by Roger and Keith!

The album was originally envisioned as containing pop music, and so the cover was designed by the pop art exponent Alan Aldridge. The front depicts the band, as the titles of some of the songs were visualised coming out of the instruments. The back cover of the UK release is black, with the title and track listing across the top, and a colour head-shot photograph of each band member with the letters of "The W H O" superimposed individually over their faces


When released in the US in April 1967, the title of the album was changed to 'Happy Jack' because the UK title was considered to to risque for American sensibilities! The from cover stayed the same, albeit with the name change, while the back cover contained a black-and-white band photo montage accompanied by a short personality sketch of each (infamous among Who fans for Keith's statement that he was keen on 'breeding chickens'), a track listing, a couple of paragraphs touting the band, an ad for their first album, and a technical blurb are also included


1/12: A heavy sounding fuzztone bass riff opens the album. 'Run Run Run', written by Pete, is one of the better songs on offer. There's a whining feedback during the solo which was ahead of it's time, but as an album opener, it's bit of a disappointment

Apparently 'Run Run Run' was originally produced by Pete and recorded by a band called The Cat in May 1966, but I have been unable to find any musical evidence of this


"Run, run, run
Run, run, run
Run, run, run
Run, run, run

Well baby, better take my advice
A black cat crossed your path twice
The moon came out next to the 1
Then you opened your umbrella in a room

chorus:
You better run, run, run
Run, run, run
Run, run, run
Run, run, run

Well you ain't the luckiest girl I know
And you won't get luckier the way you're going
Your horseshoe's rusty and your mirror's cracked
You walk under ladders then you walk right back

(chorus)

When you dropped that little pin
Never thought what a mess it'd get you in
Little pin, little pin, bring me luck
Because I stopped to pick you up

(chorus)

Well now, little girl, I'm helping you
I hope you believe what I say is true
Whenever you run, I'll be running too
Whenever you run, I'll be following you

(chorus)

Run, run, run"


2/12: 'Boris The Spider' was the first song written by John, who also sang it. It quickly became one of the most popular songs in the live set. 'Boris' sets the pattern for the off-beat and darkly macabre songs that he would become notorious for as the years went by. Legend has it, that on the eve of the recording session, Pete asked John how he was getting on with his songwriting. 'No problem,' John replied. 'How does it go?' Pete persisted. 'Like this,' replied John, humming the first few bars that came into his head!

Pete:
"Politics or my own shaky vanity might be the reason, but 'Boris The Spider' was never released as a single and should have been a hit. It was the most-requested song we ever played on stage, and if this really means anything to you guitar players, it was Hendrix's favorite Who song. Which rubbed me up well the wrong way, I can tell you. John introduced us to 'Boris' in much the same way as I introduced us to our 'Generation;' through a tape recorder. We assembled in John's three by ten-foot bedroom and listened incredulously as the strange and haunting chords emerged. Laced with words about the slightly gruesome death of a spider, the song had enough charm to send me back to my pad writing hits furiously."

"Look, who's crawling up my wall
Black and hairy, very small
Now he's up above my head
Hanging by a little thread

Boris the spider
Boris the spider

Now he's dropped on to the floor
Heading for the bedroom door
Maybe he's as scared as me
Where's he gone now, I can't see

Boris the spider
Boris the spider

Creepy, crawly
Creepy, crawly
Creepy, creepy, crawly, crawly
Creepy, creepy, crawly, crawly
Creepy, creepy, crawly, crawly
Creepy, creepy, crawly, crawly

There he is wrapped in a ball
Doesn't seem to move at all
Perhaps he's dead, I'll just make sure
Pick this book up off the floor

Boris the spider
Boris the spider

Creepy, crawly
Creepy, crawly
Creepy, creepy, crawly, crawly
Creepy, creepy, crawly, crawly
Creepy, creepy, crawly, crawly
Creepy, creepy, crawly, crawly

He's come to a sticky end
Don't think he will ever mend
Never more will he crawl 'round
He's embedded in the ground

Boris the spider
Boris the spider"
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Last edited by Susan Foreman; 20th August 2020 at 11:38 AM.
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