Rock Accountant

Category: The Who

The Who make their move on the Vatican

Keith Moon was out on the street, working as a doorman/bellboy at the Navarro Hotel in New York City between shows at Madison Square Garden because he was running out of money.
I got him that job thinking it might be a character-building experience. It also relieved, for a little while, everybody’s constant anxiety over where he was.
The hotel manager, Mr. Russell, a personal friend of mine, arranged it because he felt obliged. After all, the band had rebuilt three of his hotel rooms over the last two tours. I always turned to the word ” shredded” in reporting what Moon had done to them.
It was August 6, 1978. I think.
We were in one of the suites playing scrabble and waiting for something to happen when Mr. Russell called to warn that Keith and his entourage were heading upstairs and that he was carrying two bags from a new guest that he had forgotten to leave in the lobby.
The initial shock of having their taxi door opened by a rock star wearing a six-foot-long Indian headdress had worked itself out in the manager’s estimation.
He was sharing his gratuities with other regular bellhops conscientiously though he got ill-tempered with the division math. It has, in fairness to our drummer, been my experience that no rock star can count.
In minutes the drummer blasted into our room like a one-person Apache raiding party. Behind him trailed our security guys, five groupies, two hotel porters, and I guessed from their suits and ages the people chasing their stolen bags.
” Have you heard the news?” he was nearly moaning with excitement. “Some Pope is dead! “
Feathers whipping in his breeze, he whirled on Anne Wheldon, our publicist who lives in a barely suppressed nervous hysteria, ordering her to ” get me someone on the line right now from The New York Times and Billboard Magazine!”
He started to wring his hands like an early Adolf Hitler slavering over a defenseless prewar France.
“Go right to the top, Anne, tell them I am throwing my hat into this Papal ring.” His eyes had an almost religious luminescence.
She had the entertainment editor from the Times on the phone within minutes.
He straightened his feathers and hunched over the desk phone. The room grew silent. We hung on his side of the conversation.”
“That’s right; I have wanted to leave the band for years,” he confirmed to the guy. ” “Given this emergency, I believe that moment is ripe.”
He listened, and his face seemed to droop.
“No, I am not Catholic,” he paused, perhaps sensing his tactical error.” “But I am a quick study, ask Pete Townshend,” he attached smoothly.
“And don’t let that motherfucker Mick Jagger hear about this. He is the devil, you know,” cunningly racing to blot any competition immediately.
We were rolling on the floor by this time, and Anne was standing next to him, trying to get his attention, waving her arms and mouthing that she had Rolling Stone on the other line.
He put both hands over the phone and, in confusion, shouted at us,” Fuck, he wants to know what I think qualifies me to be the next Pope.”
Ever quick, Bill Curbishley, his manager, shouted back to him”, Tell him twenty-five platinum albums.”
We learned later that he was not considered. But then neither was Jagger.

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Where was I?

I spent my evenings for twenty-five years in auditoriums, arenas, or stadiums that held between 1000 and 125,000 other people. Every goddamn one of those people remembers the day, and I can’t recall the year.

May be an image of 1 person and text that says 'Entevistle THE WHO PONTIAC SILVERDOME 1979 昌 1 02. Substitute 01. Opening 1 Explain M Me saxpphone trombone trumpet 05. Baba O'Riley MC 07. The And The Boris The Disco 10. Behind Blue 11. Music Change Drowned 13. 14. 5:15 DISC 100 02. 01. See Me Me 05. For 06. Dancing Streets 07. Sparks Won't Get 2000 10. Blues 11. Alone? Live Pontiac Silverdome, Detroit, Michigan; December 7th 1979 Rare & Ambient Master. Enjoy! STANDARD 200 தத்க PRESS PHTIPSH 參'

How I dressed with The Who

Below please find a photo taken of me as I dressed during my years with The Who.

I early on impressed the band with my natural self-discipline.

Though Keith Moon once did confide that he thought the bracelets were “too much,” he spent much of his time aping my understated appearance.

Particularly in his off-stage outfits.

No photo description available.

“The Who” get infected

All that remained of the band’s all-night security detail was Jim Callaghan, who was shifting nervously from foot to foot in front of me. He was wearing one shoe.
I ignored him.
Keith Moon was stretched out in black nylons and a blue silk kimono behind a tea service set for him on a small Victorian table. His hotel suite window showed whichever lake was next to Chicago. It was early morning, sometime in the late seventies. He was wearing Callaghan’s other shoe.
At mid-tour, he was worn and beginning to look like an unshaven Judy Garland during her last difficult years, but I kept this to myself.
“Spot of tea, Regis?” he offered, not caring there was not a second cup. “Did you take in some theater before you rushed here to help me?” he jabbed.
“I wanted to pick up more cash,” I offered, working to deflect him. The band still made me nervous in my first years.”
I learned early that rock stars had no concrete understanding of cash, they liked it, but it stalled and confused them.
This drummer viewed me as a magically tall money fountain and understood vaguely that I needed a refill on occasion. It was our primary working link.
“We have disturbing confidences to consider you and me,” he began slowly, almost like an accusation. “I have met the wrong woman.”
He paused here, investigating our faces for sympathy. None came. But we didn’t laugh either.
Days seemed to pass as I was blank for any response. Callaghan cracked first,” He’s got the clap.”
“Quiet!” Moonie shot at him in a shrill hiss, “this is a grave intrigue; no one can ever know.”
” I’ll find you a doctor,” I swiftly convinced him, and then after brief but genuinely stupid pleasantries, I headed off to solve the problem.

I could make anyone do anything for Who tickets and cash.
An Indian doctor arrived at his suite in under an hour to take a culture. Soon after, Keith understood he had an especially hateful strain of Vietnamese gonorrhea.
That afternoon I headed back up to his room with the doctor and his bag in tow.
We found him with his intimate friend Dougal hunched over the suite’s dining table with pens and paper resembling Hitler and Goebbels plotting a North African tank campaign during WW11.
I made my first mistake while the doctor got ready.
I asked: “Should we let the girl know?”
“Girl?” he sniffed as though I had demanded the definition of a two hundred letter word. They both snickered at me; he said, “Reg, there are constellations of girls, and we are connecting those dots as you can see on our chart, pointing to the table.
With that, he turned back to his diagrams with Dougal, who was now so stimulated about the probable sexual connections he was practically drooling.
They were tracing who they had slept with and who else had been there. The enrollment grew and grew like a virus. No one, at least in the imaginations of these two, could be innocent. ( Except me, of course, because I would be paying the doctor.)
There is nowhere on earth like a rock tour when it comes to women. And yes, occasionally, the odd girl might have a condition of one kind or another. It did happen.
But groupies get a bad whack in music mythology. Commonly they had far higher IQs than the road crews, the traveling staff, and the band members they coveted. Most of the famous ones are ambitious, conniving, and breathtakingly forward advancing. Sometimes it is sad, but only rarely.
I understood that innocents were fingered, caught up as they were in Moon’s fabulously infectious net. Many were wrongly doomed that afternoon.
Dougal and I called nearly everyone on tour that day, and the glum suspects marched in to get their shots. Even some of our lawyers succumbed to the flimsiest of evidence. Still, the English are reliably the last to guess at a lie. They will nearly always misjudge what to do in favor of caution.
It was just good unclean fun, after all. With sick looks on their faces, they dropped their pants.
This doctor was now working for me full time. He made a small fortune and walked away with enough tickets to start another Ticketron in Chicago.
Everyone hung around all day and into the night—a major party.
A photograph exists of everyone standing or kneeling together in that suite at night’s end.
It resembled a U.S. baseball team card.
The Indian doctor was sitting in the center, holding a lap-full of Who tickets and syringes. I don’t know who has that photo today.
I would pay for it.

r/OldSchoolCool - Twin sisters and rock groupies Laura and Lynn Sanchez in San Francisco, January 1968.

Pete Townshend and me

From a letter: written by Jackie Curbishley, (Bill’s wife) about me and Pete Townshend. “You’re right. He was easy to love, but so difficult to trust. I never quite knew whether he was about to spit at me or kiss me. He was totally in awe of you and so jealous of you that he could hardly articulate when you were around. I have vivid recollections of the night you poured the whole jug of orange juice over his head. I’m pretty certain that nothing like that had ever happened to him before. I had to admire the way he recovered – getting his stash out of his top pocket and with those big hands spread out in front of him saying “Look what you’ve done!” as he held out the dripping little package. It was in Salt Lake City. Remember that? Jackie

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Bill Graham and The Who


I saw this picture of Bill Graham posted by Lisa Seckler- Rhode this morning, and it grabbed a memory from that section of my mind that is usually only aroused by drugs.
We were doing a deal with him for The Who to play San Francisco sometime in the 1970s. He was bawling that we were cheating him.
Predictably his negotiating tactics relied chiefly on shouting or screaming. When doing deals with him in the old day’s, Bill Curbishley, the Who’s manager, would be on his suite’s phone, and I would be in the bathroom on an extension. In Graham’s case, and there are pictures, we put the phone on a coffee table between us and still hear him screeching.
He stubbornly believed he was singled out for disadvantageous treatment by God himself every minute of his day. He was a formidable adversary. Few promoters dared to stand up to certain bands — the Who had become too big to lose. That said, when I started with Genesis, he did me endless favors, which he did not have to do.
The other variable was that the band (The Who) loved him, so we never really tried to fuck him. No doubt, he did them favors too, early on.
We had settled on the particulars for one show, maybe the Cow palace in San Francisco.
After the contracts were issued, Graham returned his signed copy.
His shows represented at least 100,000 tickets per performance ( most likely far more, I can’t recall), to be sold at an agreed ticket price. Graham would get his percentage cut from that.
He raised the face ticket price ( which he printed) one dollar, hoping to keep the money without telling us.
When confronted, he responded, “but you were stealing from me” — We didn’t let him keep the money but with our admiration.

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Pete Townshend : “Did you steal my Money?”

“Can I have a word?” Townshend says by hotel phone around midday.

Like some rare birds, Pete was rarely sighted before late afternoon. It was not an inherently settling experience to talk to him one on one before then. In fact, it was fair cause for dread. He made me uneasy and I him at first. It took years to work that out.
A couple of us were having fun working out a logo/poster for the upcoming Canadian leg of a Who tour when his call came.
Canada is big and mostly settled by moose. So far we had a drawing of a frog with a big piece of Canadian​ bacon in its​ mouth hopping from city to city outlining where they would play. He was dressed in a Royal Canadian Mounted Police uniform. He appeared to be chasing​ a beaver. The bacon was my touch because I grew up eating it.
But that phone call had dampened me, so I headed down to his room.
He did not look well. He had his tea.
”Did you give me money last night?” he said without really looking up. I got the feeling that if I lied to him he would be pleased. ” Yes”, I said.
“How much?” He actually gutturally​ groaned when I told him.
“Fuck,” was all he said
“Who was here?” I asked.
It doesn’t matter I didn’t know them. I must have passed out.” He was hard to read as he answered.
“Want me to put Jim on it,” I said.
“No, it’s gone, thanks.”
And I left.

The Who # 12 Their Money

Much of my career, such that it was, depended upon the reasoning that rock bands needed their money defended. It would be hard to argue that I was not good at it.
I watched ticket prices grow over the years. I can remember shouting arguments over raising The Who’s ticket price from sixteen to seventeen dollars, one dollar.
Thinking back on it now, we taxed the kids based on how much they loved art. And it was art.
There was also some formula involved that was always hard to describe. The pain of the price diminished as the size of the venue increased. It was almost as though the fans did not mind getting fucked as long as tons of others did too.
When The Who reached the point when they could play as many stadiums in each city as they wanted, the morality of ticket pricing utterly vanished and was replaced seamlessly with making certain that we did not cheat whole cities out of an opportunity to see them play.
Through it all, I remained loyal to their money.

 

 

 

Perhaps this is what God would do if he really cared.

It is time for another Israel in the Middle East only much bigger. Perhaps in Mexico as well. Life in these two geographic regions has been a miserable proposition for a long time. The West did not cause it. The Kings, Mullahs, and oil-rich chieftains kept their people in poverty and allowed them only God as comfort for hundreds of years. In Mexico, the poor were supported only by our tourism, our insatiable need for drugs and the Catholic Church.
Bringing these people here is moronically ill-advised.
We should use our weapons and military to carve out new Edens for the suffering instead of destroying everything to catch a few.

Perhaps this is what God would do if he really cared.

eden

The Photographers

How can a photograph be copyrighted when it’s confined to the  public domain by definition? A song comes out of nothing.  A painting is as much the hand on the brush as it is anything inherent. Movies manipulate atmospheres and the medium simultaneously. A camera’s image becomes art only when interpreted in the aftermath. Could it be that photographers are more critics than artists? Could it be that there are no artists at all, only reviewers?

Photographers - page 158

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