After The Fire” – Roger Daltrey (and Pete Townshend)

There are few combinations in rock music better than Pete Townshend and Roger Daltrey.  Much to Pete’s chagrin at times, Roger is often the better singer of his songs.  There is something about this pairing which is both powerful and remarkable at the same time.  You have one of the most thoughtful songwriters in rock & roll music history combined with probably the most potent lead singer.   The creative tension is sometimes palpable and there is a sense that these two make each other better whether they like it or not.  It is sometimes awe-inspiring how Roger can give voice to Pete’s songs.

While After the Fire is technically not a song in The Who catalogue it was written by Pete for Roger’s solo album – Under A Raging Moon.  At the time the band had been split for a few years and this song seemed to mark the beginning of reconciliation on both sides.  Without getting too deep, my sense is that it reflects Pete coming to grips with his Who legacy, his complicated relationship with Roger, the passing of time, and becoming a rock elder statesman.  My further interpretation is that the song is about accepting who we are: our past, our dreams and our limitations, as well as being open to change and what’s still possible.

Sadly, for many years it felt like Pete often struggled with his Who identity instead of embracing it.  The good news is that it feels like this hasn’t been the case for quite some time.  Roger and Pete have long since accepted the special connection they have together and the amazing roster of songs they created as partners in one of top rock bands of all time.  I hope they keep the flame burning for years to come…


About robined

Ed Robinson is an Executive Coach, Management Consultant, Teacher, Writer and Music Lover.
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One Response to After The Fire” – Roger Daltrey (and Pete Townshend)

  1. Pingback: Roger Daltrey at Pacific Amphitheatre

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