The amazing journey continues

The amazing journey continues
Reviewer: mdurshimer
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Tommy at 50:
The Mood, the Music, the Look, and the Legacy of The Who’s Legendary Rock Opera
176 pages
May 21, 2019
ISBN 10:
ISBN 13:

The definitive, illustrated guide to The Who’s legendary rock opera album provides interviews throughout the retrospective, which showcases original art and rare photos.

I’m almost 13 and I’m on sensory overload, which is bit ironic considering I am watching Tommy, the story of a young man who seemingly has no senses. My older sister has taken me to the movies, probably without my parent’s approval, to see the film version of The Who’s legendary album. At almost 57, I can still vividly picture Eric Clapton “preaching,” with a larger-than-life Marilyn Monroe statue and people in various stages of handicap, mental and physical, drinking a miracle cure. My musical tastes, primarily based on Top 10 AM radio hits, were forever changed that day and so began a lifelong love for Roger, Peter, John, and Keith.
Six years prior to that moment, the boys released Tommy the album and cemented their rock gods status. Most of the credit belongs to Mr. Townshend, who conceptualized the rock opera about a deaf, dumb, and blind kid who could sure play a mean pinball. The spiritual journey, at least in part derived from Pete’s involvement with Meher Baba and his teachings, was oh so perfect for the year that saw Woodstock, Altamont, and a man walking on the moon.
In honor of its 50th anniversary, music journalist Chris Charlesworth and Mick McInnerney, who designed the art for the cover of the album, have written and illustrated (mostly through photographs) Tommy at 50: The Mood, the Music, the Look, and the Legacy of The Who’s Legendary Rock Opera. It’s the kind of book that can sit on your coffee table for your hip(pie) guests to peruse while you’re making cocktails or for a leisurely read on a Sunday afternoon.
As always, for me, it’s the “I didn’t know that!” moments that keep the pages turning, like finding out Jim Morrison was the inspiration for Sally Simpson or that there’s a bluegrass version of the ENTIRE album, recorded by The Hillbenders. (If you’re so inclined in, you can watch a Youtube video of the whole thing, live!)  Guarantee you will learn something new in this extensive look at the impact of Tommy, which is far more reaching than you probably realize. It’s just a fun read and a great trip, with or without the acid queen in attendance.
I’m waiting for you to follow me.