by Robert Wilkinson
Today would have been the birthday of Keith Moon of the Who, a tragic and self destructive figure, but still the best drummer in rock and roll history.
"Moon the Loon" would have been a mere 65 today, and so it's truly tragic that the world lost his talent in 1978 when he was only 32. He was deadly destructive to himself and countless hotel toilets. His "antics" were the stuff of legend, and he was personally responsible for the Who being banned from more than one hotel chain.
He was reckless in the extreme, a completely besotted mess by the time he died, and yet even 35 years after his death Rolling Stone readers voted him the second best drummer of all time. The video clip at that link gives you only a fragment of his amazing talent. To really get what he was about, please go to you tube and play anything from "Tommy" or "Live At Leeds."
He was truly an amazing force on stage, unlike any other I've seen before or since. Roger Daltry said "Moon's drumming style held the band together; that Entwistle and Townshend "were like knitting needles... and Keith was the ball of wool."
Due to time constraints I could not assemble anything specific to Keith, but since he was the "lead drummer" in the awesome rhythm section of the Who with the equally amazing "lead bass" of John Entwistle, I figure I can just link to the Peter Townshend birthday article if you want to see more of this amazing and tragic talent. So for your enjoyment of what was in an era of sonic sounds, smashing guitars and singular concerts unlike any other, for your enjoyment, here's
A Most Merry 2011 Video Birthday to A Musical Genius, Peter Townshend of the Who complete with over 60 video and audio links to the Who performing with "the DNA of Keith Moon's wild-man drum style," as it was put by Rolling Stone.
RIP Keith. I saw you every time you made it to America, and loved every minute of it. Wish you were still here, but then again, if you were, you wouldn't be Keith Moon. From one of your contemporaries, "See you in the next world and don't be late...."
© Copyright 2011 Robert Wilkinson