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Off Topic: Favorite Music?

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The Who: one of the best bands of the 60s, or in fact, of any era. I get the feeling that Americans aren't that familiar with them for some reason.


One of their best albums - I think it came right before "Tommy" - is "The Who Sell Out". Every track is clever and melodic and memorable. And some have very funny lyrics.

Here's an example: The poor girl in this song should have used "Odorono":



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The Who played the Super Bowl only a few years back so I believe most Americans at least are aware of them.


The Who Sells Out is an interesting album. Some critics said at the time that Townsend did sell out. I agree the songs are clever but they don't wear too well.

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Sometimes I wonder if this is a "guy thing", this propensity to rate and list and discuss who and what is the "best" and "the most popular" and the "top ten" (of anything.)


I like a lot of different kinds of music. (and believe it or not, I DISlike a lot too, I just don't talk about it here on this thread.)

Lists of "the best" and "the most representative" and "most talented guitarist" and "who was the better singer, John or Paul" and "what decade was the best for rock music" and on and on don't really interest me.


I'm not trying to sound righteous or "I'm above all that" or anything. There are way more people who like the above kind of discussion than those who don't. I'm in the minority here.

If I had to sum up how I feel about this "who's better" business, I'd paraphrase someone who knew how to put things, and say of music in general:

"Age cannot wither it, nor custom stale its infinite variety."


There's nothing more full of "infinite variety" than music.


and james baby, honestly, I'm not trying to "control" this thread. Say what you like.

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You're the one that made this comment: I get the feeling that Americans aren't that familiar with them (The Who) for some reason.


That is saying that The Who isn't very popular in America (or too Americans).


Finance and I just wonder on how you got to this POV since we don't view it the same as you.


I do NOT see where we got into who is better. So yet again, you're reply is confusing to me. It looks like another 'why are people going down XYZ path' when you were the one that started the path (a path you now say doesn't interest you).

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> That is saying that The Who isn't very popular in America (or to Americans).


That's a pretty argumentative reading. She said:


> The Who: one of the best bands of the 60s, or in fact, of any era. I get the feeling that Americans aren't that familiar with them for some reason.


admitting that it was a feeling she has with no obvious explanation.


It could be that she hasn't come across much in the way of 'the Who' discussions - unlike the Beatles or the Stones or the J. Geills Band - nor has there been 'the Who' videos posted previously in this thread (that I can remember). Or it could be that the Who's work that is most often referenced is their arena hits of the 70's, with their 60's output not so much. There's also a case to be made for some British groups having far greater success in Canada at a much earlier stage than in America - Canada has always had a closer cultural compatibility with popular British music. Cliff Richard is a good example of that - he had many, many upper-charted records here that saw negligible placement south of the border. The Who scored better up here in the mid-60's than down there.


Whatever. I know I didn't read her expression of feeling as some kind of challenge - I read it as conversational. Then again, I'm not American.

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Thank you, db (baby.)


james, you and I seem to miscommunicate a lot. I wasn't spoiling for a fight, honest.

Maybe I was still thinking about that recent Beatles thread in "General Discussions" that, as far as I could see, turned into an unproductive and not particularly interesting debate over bands that I have next to no interest in anyway (like the J. Giells band.)


Darkblue is right, I was basing my comment on the fact that allusions to The Who in general (and especially their 60s stuff) are few and far between on these boards.

Also, db is correct when he mentions that, due to the Canada-British connection (a connection that no longer exists, to any significant degree) at the time, there was maybe more airplay of English bands such as The Who and The Kinks in Canada than there was in the States.


And I suppose I was also responding to your reference to "Top Ten" -it's that kind of list making and "rating" that I was trying to say I don't really "do".

But you know what, there's nothing wrong with it, I know it's a lot of fun for a lot of people to do that, and I shouldn't have seized upon it. There was no criticism intended (at least, I don't think so...who knows what goes on in the human heart? the Shadow? sorry, I'm rambling for no coherent reason...)


Only other thing that bugs me -but I recognize it's normal, it's the way people think - is when you mentioned bands that appeal to people "over 40".

And you're absolutely right, a lot of great music, including the Who, is not known to young people today.

All I was responding to with that was the idea of age-differentiation when it comes to music. Which is an undeniable fact, you are right.


But not for me. Even when I was young, I liked classical music, and "old" stuff like Frank Sinatra and Billie Holiday. Even some tunes from the 1920s. Of course, this along with The Velvet Underground, the Who, Bob Dylan, which was a few years "old" (just a few) when I started listening to it. Plus what was contemporary with my age, like Roxy Music and, a little later, the Talking Heads. Just to name a few.


Blahblahblah...I guess this is kind of boring...all I'm trying to say is, I don't care if a piece of music is old, new, or middle-aged. I just judge it by its quality. (Sorry if that sounds pompous - it does, even to me. :l)


ps ;frankohio, thanks for the weird Al vid. It was funny. And timely, in view of the recent death of Harold Ramis (the "Strange Brew" guys from Second City TV, Dave Thomas and Rick Moranis...)

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No harm no foul here. Note that much of my experience is with playing music with other musicians. e.g. when I'm around musicians younger than 40 (or so), it is always an interesting game trying to determine the common songs we know. One can only play La Bamba so many times! (I mention this song because I have found that everyone appears to know the chord changes to it).


So I have tried to learn a few songs from every generation (not just My Generation, ha ha), as a way to increase the odds that when I meet another musician we have some songs in common.


Note that when I said 'top-10' this was related to how popular a band was not now good. Now popular something is, is something that can be 'measured', how good can't.

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If someone could dig up the stats, I would bet that total album and CD sales, and total concert grosses of the Who in the U.S. are greater than that of Led Zeppelin. Virtually all rock fans know the names of all the original members of the Who. I would guess that fewer know the names of John Paul Jones and John Bonham.


Edited by: finance on Mar 3, 2014 3:25 PM

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I don't know about concert grosses, but when it comes to record sales,

Led Zeppelin stomps the Who to pieces. The best selling Who album

was Who's Next which sold 3 million copes. Led Zeppelin's best

selling album, as one might guess, was Led Zeppelin IV, which

sold over 20 million copies. I'm guessing that if you added up the total

U.S. sales of all the Who's albums, that number wouldn't equal 20 million.

This is, of course, not an artistic judgement, just a revenue one.

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My only out here, assuming you are correct, would be if a very large % of Led Zeppelin's album sales took place in such countries as Uruguay, Mongolia, and Liechtenstein.......The fact that I like the Who a lot better than Led Zeppelin must be coloring my thinking.


Edited by: finance on Mar 3, 2014 3:47 PM

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Zeppelin was immensely popular in the U.S. and this is reflected

in their record sales. They are the fourth best selling artists in the

U.S. I won't mention who is number one. :). I like the Who and

Led Zeppelin about equally, so I really don't have a black dog in

this fight. I'm sure most rock fans knew that Bonham and Jones

were in the band, even if they're weren't as well known as Page

and Plant.


Interesting thing about the Who. Their record company released the

same albums in the U.K. and the U.S., though sometimes the

album name and order of the songs were changed and the release

dates were different. Unlike the Beatles and the Rolling Stones, the

record company didn't put out albums that never existed in the


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Oh, what the hell, let's all listen to Black Dog. Just don't shake that thing...




afterthought: I don't usually talk about this kind of stuff, but I have to admit, I always had a crush on Jimmy Page. In his glory days, anyway (I'm afraid he hasn't aged as well as his pal Robert Plant.)

But back in the day, with that black wavy hair, and the way he sort of bent over his guitar, with such an intent look, I thought he was one of the sexiest men I'd ever seen (not that I was ever fortunate to actually see him in real life.) Yup, the young Jimmy Page was what you could call "my type".

...also, he had Robert Mitchum-esque eyes. That can only be a good thing.



a whole lotta love...


Edited by: misswonderly on Mar 3, 2014 5:38 PM

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Peter Grant likely knew Zeppelin's concert grosses down to the last

penny, but he's dead. I imagine it would be hard to find the total

U.S. concert grosses of an act, though it's easy to find the dates they


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Maybe women like guys who wear bell bottoms with occult symbols

stitched on. I can see where Jimmy would be attractive. He was

pretty good looking and did have a certain "vibe" to him. But I think

the most classically handsome member of Zeppelin was John Paul

Jones. And while no one would call Bonzo handsome, he wasn't really

that bad looking. Really.

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Obviously I couldn't care less what Jimmy Page wore, bell bottoms, occult symbols, or fringes (I think he favoured fringed jackets now and then?) It's not what the guy wears, it's what he looks like and as you say, the "vibe" he carries.

In fact, I don't think I said I thought he was "good looking" per sec. I said I thought he was sexy, which is not always the same thing. If you're talking about "good looks" alone, then Robert Plant would have been the Golden Boy for Led Zeppelin. In fact, I guess he was. But not for me. Jimmy's darker, more mysterious looks were more to my taste.


But anyway, it doesn't matter, it was kind of a silly thing for me to bring up. If we don't watch it, this will turn into one of those ubiquitous "who do you think was the best-looking actor/actress?" threads, and we don't want that.


Still, I can't resist...John Paul Jones? Nah.

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My remark about his pants was meant in jest. I just remember a color

photo of them in all their glory, pretty impressive if not very practical for

everyday wear. Daltrey was the one most famous for his fringe jacket.

Later on it became something of a joke. While the music itself is the

most important thing, the clothes and look are in the mix sometimes.

Well, I'm still going with John Paul Jones as the handsomest member

of the band, though I could see Plant as the sexiest. And not to make

too much of secondary matters, but when it comes to looks, Zeppelin

beats the Who, though not as bad as in the matter of record sales. :)

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Where I came from, people did get in conversations about who was their favorite Beatle, but I've never heard one about who was their favorite Zep. Zeppo? Zepper?.....Incidentally, it's possible that Pink Floyd outsold both groups.


Edited by: finance on Mar 4, 2014 2:25 PM


Edited by: finance on Mar 4, 2014 2:54 PM

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