Pete Townshend of The Who acknowledges the awe-inspiring talent of young guitarists flooding platforms like Instagram, suggesting that these prodigious players can be intimidating to seasoned musicians. In a recent discussion with Guitarist via Guitar.com, Townshend emphasized his respect for the technical prowess displayed by these emerging artists, many of whom began honing their skills at an incredibly young age.
While Townshend recognizes the allure of mastering flashy guitar runs, he takes pride in his distinctive style, prioritizing originality over mere technical showcases. Reflecting on The Who’s recent U.K. tour, he highlighted the band’s commitment to leveraging the guitar’s potential for innovation, emphasizing evocative solos, intricate chord work, and audacious improvisations.
Additionally, Townshend touched upon a conversation with Leslie West, who once favored Townshend’s unique riffs over Eric Clapton’s, noting Clapton’s occasional reliance on familiar bluesy motifs. Although Townshend acknowledges Clapton’s soaring live performances, the distinction underscores the essence of each guitarist’s approach.
Looking ahead, The Who’s trajectory remains uncertain. Townshend expressed the need for dialogue with bandmate Roger Daltrey regarding future endeavors following their concluding orchestral tour date at the Sandringham Estate. While Townshend believes that this shouldn’t mark a definitive endpoint, he views it as a pivotal moment, prompting discussions about the band’s next chapter in their illustrious journey.