The Who by Numbers Tour

  (Redirected from The Who Tour 1976)

The Who by Numbers Tour was a concert tour by the English rock band the Who, in support of their seventh album, The Who by Numbers (1975). It consisted of concerts split between North America and Europe, beginning on 3 October 1975 at Bingley Hall in Stafford, England and ending on 21 October 1976 at Maple Leaf Gardens in Toronto, Canada. The Who's drummer Keith Moon played his last concerts with the band during the tour; he died less than two years after its conclusion. Despite being named after The Who by Numbers album, few songs from that record were performed live during the tour.

The Who by Numbers Tour
Tour by The Who
Associated albumThe Who by Numbers
Start date3 October 1975 (1975-10-03)
End date21 October 1976 (1976-10-21)
Legs8
No. of shows47 in North America
32 in Europe
79 in total
Attendance945,928
Box office$6.478 million ($29.11 million in 2019 dollars)
The Who concert chronology
  • Quadrophenia Tour
    (1973–1974)
  • The Who by Numbers Tour
    (1975–1976)
  • The Who Tour 1979
    (1979)

The band began with a European leg, which introduced a laser lighting display, and a North American leg followed. The leg set indoor concert attendance records, and the Who returned in America in 1976 after playing four shows in Europe. The opening show in Boston came to an end when Moon collapsed on stage after playing two songs. The next day, he seriously injured himself and nearly bled to death. After performing at British football stadiums in the middle of the year, the Who returned to North American for more concerts. After their show in Miami, Moon was hospitalised for over a week. He managed to complete the tour with the rest of the group, but these were his last public concerts before dying of a drug overdose in 1978.

BackgroundEdit

The Who by Numbers Tour started with 20 dates in Europe in October and November 1975. The first concert took place at Bingley Hall in Stafford, England on 3 October 1975, the same day The Who by Numbers album was released.[1] Prior to this, The Who had not performed live since playing four shows at Madison Square Garden in New York City the previous June, having spent much of 1974 working on the film adaptation of their rock opera Tommy and its soundtrack. A laser lighting display was introduced at the concerts at Leicester's Granby Halls shortly into the European leg, which would become a fixture of most of the tour's shows.[2]

The tour continued with a North American leg in November and December 1975, starting on 20 November at The Summit in Houston, Texas.[3] During the leg, the band broke indoor concert attendance records for their 6 December concert at the Pontiac Metropolitan Stadium in Pontiac, Michigan, which attracted at least 75,000 fans.[4] Following the end of the North American leg, the band returned to the UK to play three Christmas concerts at the Hammersmith Odeon, London, due to the high demand for tickets for the earlier British dates.[2]

Following three European dates in early 1976, the Who began a series of shows in the US on 9 March at the Boston Garden. The leg began disastrously, with drummer Keith Moon collapsing on stage only two songs into the Boston concert, causing the show to be postponed until 1 April. The day after the aborted concert, Moon kicked the glass out of a framed painting in his hotel room and seriously injured his heel in the process.[5] He was discovered by manager Bill Curbishley, who took him to a hospital.[6] Doctors told Curbishley that if he had not intervened, Moon would have bled to death.[7] In his book Before I Get Old: The Story of the Who, music critic Dave Marsh suggested that at this point The Who's singer Roger Daltrey and bassist John Entwistle seriously considered firing Moon, but decided that doing so would make his life worse.[8] The rest of the leg went without incident. In recognition of the band's performance at the Dane County Coliseum in Madison, Wisconsin, mayor Paul Soglin proclaimed 13 March 1976 "Who-Mania Day", the day of the concert.[5] The band played the leg's only outdoor show on 21 March 1976 at Anaheim Stadium in Anaheim, California.[9]

The band continued The Who by Numbers Tour with "The Who Put the Boot In", a series of concerts in French arenas and British football stadiums, featuring a 60,000 capacity concert at The Valley in London. The show, which took place on 31 May 1976, was recognised by The Guinness Book of Records as the world's loudest concert, with the sound measuring 120 decibels.[10] The band returned to the US in August to play four shows as a part of the "Whirlwind" leg. The leg was marred by a show in Jacksonville, Florida, which was 25,000 tickets short of a sellout.[11] At the end of the "Whirlwind" tour in Miami, Moon was hospitalised for eight days. Although the group were concerned that he would be unable to complete the last leg of the tour, which consisted of nine dates in the US and Canada throughout October 1976, Moon successfully played the shows, performing for the final time in public at Maple Leaf Gardens in Toronto on 21 October. Moon died less than two years later, on 7 September 1978. Bassist John Entwistle later said that Moon and the Who reached their live peak during the tour.[12]

ReceptionEdit

The tour was well received by critics. Billboard's Gerry Wood gave the band's 20 November 1975 show a very positive review, writing that "they were tight from the start and gave an energetic performance of their new songs and an amazingly fresh treatment to their older material."[13] Jim Melanson from the same magazine was also favorable, describing their concert on 11 March 1976 as "a superb performance by a superb band."[14] Jim Healey of The Des Moines Register praised the band's concert on 2 December 1975, describing it as a show with class.[15] Writing for The Plain Dealer, Jane Scott was positive in her review, writing that the performance on 9 December was "the most exhilarating and dramatic concert seen in this area."[16] Derek Jewell was less favorable in his review for The Sunday Times, noting the lack of new songs the band performed and writing that "the Who are trapped playing ageing music for the ageing young."[3]

Set listEdit

The Who's lineup during this tour consisted of Roger Daltrey (lead vocals, harmonica, tambourine), Pete Townshend (guitar, vocals), John Entwistle (bass guitar, vocals), and Keith Moon (drums, percussion, vocals). Biographers Andrew Neill and Matt Kent wrote in their book Anyway Anyhow Anywhere: The Complete Chronicle of The Who 1958–1978 that the tour had become a "greatest hits" celebration of the band's decade-long career by 1976.[5] Despite ostensibly being a tour supporting the release of The Who by Numbers, few songs from the new album were performed live. Instead, the band opted to perform a mini-set of Tommy material in the middle of the set, thanks to the success of the film generating more interest in the rock opera. Meanwhile, less and less Quadrophenia material was performed compared to the Who's previous tour, with only "Drowned" occasionally finding its way into the set during early dates, before eventually being dropped.[1]

The group would settle into a regular set list by the end of the year, repeating it almost verbatim throughout 1976.[1] All songs written by Pete Townshend unless otherwise specified.

  1. "I Can't Explain"
  2. "Substitute"
  3. "My Wife" (John Entwistle)
  4. "Baba O'Riley"
  5. "Squeeze Box"
  6. "Behind Blue Eyes"
  7. "Dreaming from the Waist"
  8. "Boris the Spider" (Entwistle)
  9. "Magic Bus"
  10. "Amazing Journey"
  11. "Sparks"
  12. "The Acid Queen"
  13. "Fiddle About" (Entwistle)
  14. "Pinball Wizard"
  15. "I'm Free"
  16. "Tommy's Holiday Camp"
  17. "We're Not Gonna Take It"
  18. "See Me, Feel Me"
  19. "Summertime Blues" (Eddie Cochran, Jerry Capehart)
  20. "My Generation"
  21. "Join Together"
  22. "My Generation Blues"
  23. "Road Runner" (Ellas McDaniel)
  24. "Won't Get Fooled Again"

Films and albumsEdit

Over the years, one film has been released of the band's concert performances during The Who by Numbers Tour.

  • The Who: Live in Texas '75 (Houston, 20 November 1975, released 2012)[17]

Additionally, songs recorded during the tour have been released along with other live and/or studio material:

Tour datesEdit

European leg (3 October – 7 November 1975)
Date
(1975)
City Country Venue Attendance Gross Support act(s) Ref(s)
3 October Stafford England Bingley Hall N/A N/A Steve Gibbons Band [21]
4 October [21]
6 October Manchester Kings Hall [21]
7 October [21]
15 October Glasgow Scotland The Apollo 6,600 / 6,600 [22]
16 October [22]
18 October Leicester England Granby Halls N/A [3]
19 October [3]
21 October London Empire Pool 21,000 / 21,000 [22]
23 October [22]
24 October [22]
27 October Rotterdam Netherlands Sportpaleis N/A [3]
28 October Vienna Austria Wiener Stadthalle [3]
29 October Bremen Germany Stadthalle Bremen 6,000 [4]
30 October Düsseldorf Philips Halle N/A [3]
31 October [3]
2 November Sindelfingen Messehalle [3]
3 November [3]
6 November Ludwigshafen Friedrich-Ebert-Halle [3]
7 November [3]
North America leg (20 November – 15 December 1975)
Date
(1975)
City Country Venue Attendance Gross Support act(s) Ref(s)
20 November Houston United States The Summit 18,000 $134,676 Toots and the Maytals [4]
21 November Baton Rouge LSU Assembly Center N/A $112,630 [4]
23 November Memphis Mid-South Coliseum 10,882 $90,355 [4]
24 November Atlanta Omni Coliseum 18,376 $129,297 [4]
25 November Murfreesboro Monte Hale Arena 11,000 $92,000 [4]
27 November Hampton Hampton Roads Coliseum 11,906 $106,855 [4]
28 November Greensboro Greensboro Memorial Coliseum 17,437 $127,241 [4]
30 November Bloomington Assembly Hall 14,841 $108,357 [4]
1 December Kansas City Kemper Arena 13,414 $96,284 [4]
2 December Des Moines Veterans Memorial Auditorium 13,534 $97,747 [4]
4 December Chicago Chicago Stadium 37,479 / 37,479 $330,739 [4]
5 December [4]
6 December Pontiac Pontiac Metropolitan Stadium 75,000 / 75,000 $614,992 [4]
8 December Cincinnati Riverfront Coliseum 18,000 $138,500 [4]
9 December Richfield Richfield Coliseum 19,000 / 19,000 $138,500 [4]
10 December Buffalo Buffalo Memorial Auditorium 11,700 $140,000 [4]
11 December Toronto Canada Maple Leaf Gardens 17,600 $157,879 [4]
13 December Providence United States Providence Civic Center 14,000 $112,324 [4]
14 December Springfield Springfield Civic Center 10,000 $84,000 [4]
15 December Philadelphia Spectrum 19,000 / 19,000 $146,000 [4]
UK leg (21–23 December 1975)
Date
(1975)
City Country Venue Attendance Gross Support act(s) Ref(s)
21 December London England Hammersmith Odeon N/A N/A Charlie [23]
22 December [23]
23 December [23]
European leg (27 February – 2 March 1976)
Date
(1976)
City Country Venue Attendance Gross Support act(s) Ref(s)
27 February Zürich Switzerland Hallenstadion N/A N/A Steve Gibbons Band [5]
28 February Munich Germany Olympiahalle [5]
1 March Paris France Pavillon de Paris [5]
2 March [5]
US leg (9 March – 1 April 1976)
Date
(1976)
City Country Venue Attendance Gross Support act(s) Ref(s)
9 March[a] Boston United States Boston Garden N/A N/A Steve Gibbons Band [5]
11 March New York City Madison Square Garden 19,500 $162,000 [24]
13 March Madison Dane County Coliseum 10,100 $75,495 [25]
14 March Saint Paul St. Paul Civic Center 17,600 $142,000 [25]
15 March Oklahoma City Myriad Convention Center 14,801 / 14,801 $101,028 [24]
16 March Fort Worth Tarrant County Convention Center 13,500 $100,583 [25]
18 March Salt Lake City Salt Palace N/A $87,127 [24]
21 March Anaheim Anaheim Stadium 55,000 $500,000 Rufus
Little Feat
Steve Gibbons Band
[26]
24 March Portland Memorial Coliseum 11,000 / 11,000 $93,000 Steve Gibbons Band [25]
25 March Seattle Seattle Center Coliseum 15,000 / 15,000 $119,760 [25]
27 March San Francisco Winterland Ballroom 10,800 / 10,800 $91,800 [25]
28 March [25]
30 March Denver McNichols Sports Arena 19,000 N/A [24]
1 April Boston Boston Garden N/A [9]
"The Who Put the Boot In" European leg (22 May – 12 June 1976)
Date
(1976)
City Country Venue Attendance Gross Support act(s) Ref(s)
22 May Colmar France Parc des Expositions N/A N/A N/A [10]
25 May Lyon Palais des Sports de Gerland [24]
31 May London England The Valley 60,000 Widowmaker
Outlaws
Streetwalkers
Little Feat
The Sensational Alex Harvey Band
[9][24]
5 June Glasgow Scotland Celtic Park 35,000 £140,000 [9][11]
12 June Swansea Wales Vetch Field 25,000 £100,000 [9][11]
"Whirlwind" US leg (3 August – 9 August 1976)
Date
(1976)
City Country Venue Attendance Gross Support act(s) Ref(s)
3 August Landover United States Capital Centre 30,201 / 37,574 $259,655 Law [11][27]
4 August [11][27]
7 August Jacksonville Gator Bowl Stadium 35,000 / 60,000 N/A Law
Black Oak Arkansas
Labelle
[11][27]
9 August Miami Miami Stadium 17,000 / 17,200 $174,426 Law
Montrose
Outlaws
[25][28][29]
North American leg (6–21 October 1976)
Date
(1976)
City Country Venue Attendance Gross Support act(s) Ref(s)
6 October Phoenix United States Arizona Veterans Memorial Coliseum 11,983 $94,719 Mother's Finest [25]
7 October San Diego San Diego Sports Arena 13,842 $108,041 [25]
9 October[b] Oakland Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum 94,732 / 110,000 $1,042,520 Grateful Dead [25][28]
10 October[b] [25][28]
13 October Portland Memorial Coliseum 11,000 / 11,000 $93,160 Mother's Finest [25]
14 October Seattle Seattle Center Coliseum 15,000 / 15,000 $119,808 [25]
16 October Edmonton Canada Northlands Coliseum 16,000 N/A [28]
18 October Winnipeg Winnipeg Arena N/A [30]
21 October Toronto Maple Leaf Gardens 20,000 [28]

See alsoEdit

NotesEdit

  1. ^ After playing two songs, Moon collapsed on stage and the show ended.[5]
  2. ^ a b The concerts on 9–10 October 1976 were a part of Day on the Green.[28]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c McMichael & Lyons 1997, pp. 166–167
  2. ^ a b Neill & Kent 2002, p. 257
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Neill & Kent 2002, p. 265
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y McMichael & Lyons 1997, pp. 170–172
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i Neill & Kent 2002, pp. 270–271
  6. ^ Marsh 1983, p. 475
  7. ^ Fletcher 1998, p. 457
  8. ^ Marsh 1983, p. 476
  9. ^ a b c d e Neill & Kent 2002, pp. 272
  10. ^ a b Neill & Kent 2002, pp. 273
  11. ^ a b c d e f g h McMichael & Lyons 1997, pp. 176
  12. ^ Fletcher 1998, pp. 464–466
  13. ^ Wood, Gerry (6 December 1975). "Talent in Action" (PDF). Billboard. Vol. 87 no. 44. pp. 30–31. ISSN 0006-2510.
  14. ^ Melanson, Jim (27 March 1976). "Talent in Action" (PDF). Billboard. Vol. 88 no. 13. p. 42. ISSN 0006-2510.
  15. ^ Healey, Jim (3 December 1975). "The Who – They Wow 13,500". The Des Moines Register. p. 10. Retrieved 13 June 2020.
  16. ^ Scott, Jane (9 December 1975). "Jane Scott's 1975 Review of the Who Concert at Richfield Coliseum". The Plain Dealer. Retrieved 13 June 2020.
  17. ^ The Who (9 October 2012). "Live in Texas 75 - The Who". thewho.com (official website). Retrieved 4 June 2020.
  18. ^ View from a Backstage Pass (liner notes). The Who. 2007.CS1 maint: others (link)
  19. ^ Marshall, Townshend & Daltrey 2015, p. 315
  20. ^ Tommy (liner notes). The Who. Decca. 2013.CS1 maint: others (link)
  21. ^ a b c d Neill & Kent 2002, p. 264
  22. ^ a b c d e McMichael & Lyons 1997, p. 169
  23. ^ a b c Neill & Kent 2002, p. 267
  24. ^ a b c d e f McMichael & Lyons 1997, pp. 174–175
  25. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n North American Box Office Data (1976):
  26. ^ "Who Draws 55,000 to Anaheim Stadium" (PDF). Billboard. Vol. 88 no. 14. 3 April 1976. p. 37. ISSN 0006-2510.
  27. ^ a b c Neill & Kent 2002, p. 274
  28. ^ a b c d e f McMichael & Lyons 1997, p. 177
  29. ^ Neill & Kent 2002, p. 275
  30. ^ Neill & Kent 2002, p. 277

BibliographyEdit

External linksEdit