Brian Kehew's Backstage Blog

The Who Hits Back! Tour: Edinburgh, 9 July 2023

Photo by Dougie Souness

And again, we have our second show here today. Not bad – waltz in, no soundcheck, no setup, no rehearsal. Our crew come in many hours early just in case. Better to be safe than sorry. Besides we always have things to do, clean, polish, make better, sort out the drawers of the tool boxes. And the fantastic castle just behind us. We’ve made friends with some of the groundskeepers and guards yesterday, so they’ve given us some nice access.

Cathy and Judy meet Pete

Judy, Pete and Cathy

Judy, Roger and Cathy

Before the show, we have two special guests coming in from the USA today. Cathy Cervenka and her mother had won a contest; a charity fund-raiser for Teen Cancer America. They won tickets and a meet-and-greet with Roger and Pete. But this was for the UK tour back in 2019! And that was canceled due to Covid. So finally, at long last, they are coming to a show, and they hand-picked the second Edinburgh Castle show (probably the best choice ever, as you’ll see.) We showed them around the stage, they met most of the band, got a free tour of the castle, and two sets of tickets – one down in front, and one pair back in the Royal Boxes where there is a bar, snacks, bathroom. We take care of our guests whenever possible!

Kenney Jones, Roger and Mick Double play the girls at hockey, Orlando, Florida, November 1982

Kenney, Doug Clarke and Roger

Both Rog and Pete were generous with their time and very chatty with them, as Cath and Judy are very likeable folks. They’d asked Roger about a photo they’d found in a newspaper, which I can post here. It made Rog laugh out loud! It was in Florida, circa 1980. They found themselves in the middle of a dozen field-hockey teams, all female! So some of the band and crew borrowed some of the girls’ uniforms, Roger ordered wigs brought in, and they played against one of the girls teams; “They smashed us!” says co-manager Bill Curbishley! In the photos we can spot Kenney Jones, Rog, John The Ox, Mick Double, Doug Clarke (you met him in the last blog, and he sent me another of the photos from that day) and Glyn Johns even.

Keith Levinson and Katie Jacoby at the castle

Photo by Tanya Ross

Photo by Aubrey Q Snyder

Today, everyone’s in a good mood. A fabulous town, a full day of rest here, no setup/rehearsal – no reason to expect tonight will be any different. In fact, it’s an old show-biz adage that the second of two shows is usually the best. Either the evening after a matinee or the second of two nights in a venue. Maybe it’s to do with familiarity or possibly that the first one gives everyone a chance to ‘dial-in’ all the best settings and options of that room. Not always true, but often. We’ll see . . .

Simon Townshend opens the show again, and his show is better today. Even the audience clap along and sing some of the songs! Nice. Since his setup is not complex, it’s an easy changeover to The Who show next.

Video courtsey of the Gazzas 

Pete starts off with “We had such a great time yesterday and we’re gonna try to do better today; so great to be back.”

Video courtesy of Stuart Garden 

A Scots lassie tells it straight from the heart!

Video courtesy of Stuart Garden 

Video courtesy of Stuart Garden 

Video courtesy of the Gazzas 

Onward! . . .

Tonight’s Set List

With Orchestra
Amazing Journey
The Acid Queen
Pinball Wizard
We’re Not Gonna Take It
Who Are You
Eminence Front

Band Only
The Kids Are Alright
You Better You Bet
My Generation
Cry If You Want
Won’t Get Fooled Again
Behind Blue Eyes

With Orchestra
The Real Me
I’m One
The Rock
Love, Reign O’er Me
Baba O’Riley
Tea & Theatre