Roger Daltrey discusses his health, The Who’s future, and Axl Rose ‘karaoke’

rogerdaltreyMaybe this isn’t it for The Who after all.

The Who guitarist Pete Townshend said in an interview with Mojo in 2015 that the band probably would come to an end after the year, saying “I think I will stop after this year.” But they’re still going, and Daltrey says they want to keep it that way, at least for now.

“In our heads we want to go on as long as we can,” Daltrey, 72, said in an interview with the London (Ontario) Free Press last week. “And our bodies, you kind of physically know you’re coming to the end of that type of show. That’s not to say you can’t play your music in different ways. But equally, our music, having got that energy and that kind of urgency that is within it, I’m not so sure whether I want to be involved with singing in that way. I don’t think it’s the kind of music you could ever cruise through. When you get to a certain age [that] would be the only way you could do it. So I just hope I have the wisdom to stop when I feel that coming.”

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Daltrey had a bit of a scare last year when a bout with viral meningitis caused the band to postpone their North American tour, but now he’s going strong.

“I’ve been very lucky, incredibly lucky [given] last year, got very close to the wire, for a few days there … I love what I do which is important, but I seem to have come out of that illness, and meningitis is a serious illness, I’ve come out of it, my body’s a bit wobbly in places but my voice seems to be better than ever,” Daltrey said. “I don’t understand why but it happened.

“It was agony. My blood cell count was flat. They thought I had leukemia. … I was in hospital for three and a half weeks. It was not fun.”

Daltrey says he and Townshend are “having a great time” on their current “The Who Hits 50!” tour and have even left the door open to record new music.

“We always talk about it and it’s always a dream and it’s always a possibility,” Daltrey said. “It’s finding a new way to present it. … But it’s always a possibility, yes.”

Daltrey also commented on the news that Axl Rose would be replacing Brian Johnson as the frontman of AC/DC. Daltrey doesn’t seem to be a fan of the move.

“I mean I really feel badly for Brian,” Daltrey said. :It must be heartbreaking for him after all the service he’s given that band over the years. I thought their farewell statement to the press and to Brian was fairly curt to say the least. I felt for him. That must have hurt. I’ve spoken to Brian. He’s got loads of other things he wants to do in his life. I think AC/DC will miss Brian much more than Brian will miss AC/DC. There you go. What do you expect from Australians? (laughs) … And he’s such a lovely guy, Brian. I’ve known him for 40 odd years, more. … I mean, go and see karaoke with Axl Rose? Give me a break. (Laughs).”

Click here for the full interview at the London Free Press.

Photo Credit: By Mike Kubacheck ( [CC BY 2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

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