The Who to Launch 'Last Big Tour' in 2015

'We have to be realistic about our age,' says Roger Daltrey

Roger Daltrey and Pete Townshend of the Who perform in Paris.
David Wolff - Patrick/Redferns via Getty Images
Roger Daltrey and Pete Townshend of the Who perform in Paris.
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The Who are planning a massive world tour for 2015 - and it'll likely be your last chance to see them. "That will be the last big tour," Roger Daltrey tells Rolling Stone. "People have read that wrong though. We aren't finishing after that. We intend to go on doing music until we drop, but we have to be realistic about our age. The touring is incredibly grinding on the body and we have to draw a line in the sand somewhere. This will be the last old-fashioned, big tour."

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Contrary to reports, the tour will not be in celebration of the band's 50th anniversary. "Our anniversary is actually right now," says Daltrey. "We were the Who fifty years ago this month. To us, 2015 is just another year."

The Who spent the last couple of years playing Quadrophenia throughout America and Europe, but next time out they will center the show around their vast catalog of hits. "People don't want new stuff," says Daltrey. "The fans might want that, but most people that want to come to a show want to hear what they grew up with. Let's not kid ourselves. We will always sell more tickets if we play the hits. That's a fact. The economics of the road, obviously, demand that you sell a lot of tickets."

Fans hoping to hear the Who break out rarities like The Who by Numbers deep cut "Slip Kid" are going to be disappointed. "It's easy for fans to stick their heads in the sand and not understand the economics of touring," Daltrey says. "It's incredibly expensive to put on a show, so you have to put bums in seats. There might be 40,000 total people in America who want to hear 'Slip Kid.' That won't be enough to put us on the road. That's the problem."

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While there are no firm plans at the moment, the band might record new material next year. "We're hoping to do an album," says Daltrey. "If we play any of those songs, we'll have to do them in separate shows and announce that ahead of time. If people want to buy those tickets in great numbers, fabulous."

After the tour wraps, Daltrey hopes that the Who can find new ways to stage concerts. "Maybe that means sitting down in a theater for a couple of weeks," he says. "That means you travel to once place, but you're stationed there. You aren't touring. It's the touring, the schlepping, that kills you. The music is a joy. The two hours on stage every night is a joy, even though it's incredibly strenuous. The schlepping and changing hotels every day, that can become incredibly hard work."

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