Brian Kehew's Backstage Blog

The Who Hits Back! Tour: Bethel Woods Center For The Arts, Bethel, NY, 28 May 2022

From one garden in Manhattan on Thursday night to another garden further upstate. We are at the Bethel Woods Center For The Arts in beautiful Bethel, New York. Bethel Woods is set on the site of the 1969 Woodstock Music and Arts Fair, held on 15-18 August 1969 on Max Yasgur’s farm. Both Pete and Roger have appeared here – Roger as recent as June 2018 and Pete in August 1998, but the two of them as The Who, not since the early hours of Sunday 17 August 1969 when they and Keith and John took the stage at Woodstock. It was truly great to be back. Tonight was the last date on the first leg of The Who Hits Back! Tour 2022. Our special guest tonight was Willie Nile.


First thing you have to do when you get here is to take a look around the museum they have set up devoted to those few days back in August 1969 when the Woodstock Music and Art Fair was held here.

Michael Lang, who along with John Roberts and Joel Rosenman organised the festival

Many of these times didn’t run to schedule. The Who were supposed to take the stage on the Saturday night at 11.15pm but didn’t go on until 5.00am the following morning

Richie Havens’ kaftan and beads, his guitar and hand-written set list from 1969


Note: Hmm, must learn to spell Bethel and Orchestra!

Brian Kehew (left) meets his friend Ira Stone. Back in 1969 Ira played guitar at Woodstock, accompanying Bert Sommer in his set on Friday 15 August

Our Lighting Director and Master of All Things Who, Tom Kenny (centre) met up with his namesake, actor Tom Kenny (right) who you will know as the voice of Spongebob Squarepants and on the left, comedian Bobcat Goldthwait

The Fans arrive

And it’s Showtime!

Our special guest tonight, the great Willie Nile and his band

And then we’re on! A full house and a full stage

Back on stage in Bethel after 53 years and playing ‘Amazing Journey’ / ‘Sparks’ again

Video courtesy of Diane Strauss 

Our conductor Keith Levenson leading the orchestra

Video courtesy of Stewart Atwood 

Billy Nicholls (left) and Emily Marshall along with the string section

Video courtesy of Joe Mossbackfan 

Video courtesy of Musical Vision 

All photos © Brian Kehew / Yearhour LLC

Tonight’s Set list

Orchestra Set I
Amazing Journey/Sparks
Pinball Wizard
We’re Not Gonna Take It
Who Are You
Eminence Front
Ball and Chain
Join Together

Band Set
The Seeker
You Better You Bet
Won’t Get Fooled Again

Orchestra Set II
Behind Blue Eyes
The Real Me
I’m One
The Rock
Love, Reign O’er Me
Baba O’Riley

“That’s all folks” as Bugs would say, and we’ll see you again in the fall / autumn! Have a great summer.