Print Reviews
Teenage Wasteland: The Who at Winterland, 1968 and 1976

Teenage Wasteland: The Who at Winterland, 1968 and 1976

by Edoardo Genzolini

Schiffer Publishing

I’d like to quote from the frontispiece of this massive book: “Every generation has its idol; every generation must watch them be smashed to earth.” For some of us, that idol would be a band called “The Who.” The irony, of course, was that The Who famously smashed their equipment at the end of every show. You might consider that excess symbolic of the world of the day — rock and roll smashed the past and rebuilt it on top of the rubble. It also created an impressive but expensive and time-consuming gimmick. The gimmick paid off, at the cost of constantly needed to replenish instruments. After all, these instruments DID need to function up until the end of the show. Guitar smashing also reduced the number of encores The Who would perform. If you smashed after the main show, would you need to smash the encore instruments? Inquiring minds want to know.

from Teenage Wasteland: The Who at Winterland, 1968 and 1976,
by Edoardo Genzolini
courtesy of Schiffer Publishing
from Teenage Wasteland: The Who at Winterland, 1968 and 1976,
by Edoardo Genzolini

The Who came out of the first big musical wave of what we now call classic rock. Pete Townsend and his mates played high-energy rock and stuck around for 21 years, and then reunited periodically. This impressive tome follows the history of The Who, with text and storytelling by Edoardo Genzolini. And while the title implies only two venues are discussed, there is extensive material on all The Who’s significant intermediate albums, including the epic Tommy and The Who by Numbers.

from Teenage Wasteland: The Who at Winterland, 1968 and 1976,
by Edoardo Genzolini
courtesy of Schiffer Publishing
from Teenage Wasteland: The Who at Winterland, 1968 and 1976,
by Edoardo Genzolini

The book is packed with pictures of backstage, down in the pit, and just about any angle a rock band deserves, all taken at the Winter Garden in San Francisco. It does tend to lean toward an academically dry tone, and it can be a slow read at times. Still, it’s a must for the anyone interested in that glorious era of classic rock. And as to the smashing the equipment? It really did drag down the profitably of the band. You might notice not many bands do that anymore.

Schiffer PublishingThe Who


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