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November 14, 2012

TOUR DIARY – November 14, 2012



Wow! Roger did such a powerful and passionate presentation yesterday at the National Press Club Luncheon in Washington, DC that it brought tears to my eyes. Much of what he said was as new to me as it was to the audience. For me, Teenage Cancer has always been about raising money through shows and personal donations to buy and run head and body scanners. The emphasis has now shifted.


Two young people I met within minutes of arriving at the event were Sarah Sterner TCA’s first ‘ambassador’, and Hunter Brooks, who is keen to sign up. They both confirmed what Roger was saying. They both had brain tumours, and were brilliantly treated medically speaking and are both on the way to the healthy future. But they each had stories to tell about being treated in paediatric wards (with young children) and how different it could have been had they known each other. Sarah’s funniest story was the fact that one day – for live music – a clown came into the ward and played a ukelele. (That was Eddie Vedder in disguise we think!)


What is clear is that dedicated wards for teenagers from 14 through to 24 or thereabouts should be made available wherever possible. We can’t preach to the USA about its cancer successes. Their statistics are significantly better than ours in the UK. But we now do better caring for our teenagers, and that was Roger’s message last night.


His plea is that the music industry in the USA swings behind this work, doing what we started for Teenage Cancer Trust in the UK with the concerts at the Royal Albert Hall ten years ago. My first donation to Teenage Cancer Trust was in 1996 when Broadway Tommy opened in London to fairly dismissive reviews (read about it in my book, available in all good bookshops, on eBay, Amazon, skips, dumpsters and trashcans all over the world.) Since then Roger has driven the concert series, and raised awareness and money at the same time. He deserves his gong for all this – he is tireless and convincing. I’m glad to be by his side on this.


For those of you coming to the shows, we are in the groove now. Thanks for your support, and I hope you enjoy Roger’s Quadrophenia spectacle. I’m enjoying standing in front of it wondering what the fuck is going on behind me.


Pete Townshend – November 14th 2012

for thewho.com


24 Responses to TOUR DIARY – November 14, 2012

Lydia says: December 2, 2012 at 4:20 pm

Pete Hi! We met at your book signing in Philly. I gave you the scarf. I will be at Wells Fargo Center 12/8 to see you. I put my concert information behind the bow on the scarf. I’d be honored to meet you, just to say Hi! Lydia

Stephanie Thoma says: December 1, 2012 at 1:58 am

Dear Mr. Townsend: Thank you for all you do for young people with cancer. My 12 year old joy of my life is a cancer survivor, having taken 2.5 years at chemo from ages 4-6 1/2. Along the way, we met many friends in the hospital, who were teens embarking on a tough road and of course, many who would never bring the welcome angst of the teen years to their parents.

Tonight, I dropped her and a friend at a middle school event, and was glad to give her the 7th grade boy primer. Many thanks to you and Mr. Daltry.

(Great book, btw, reading presently…remembering your leaping picture in my locker in high school is one memory I can savor from a time in life a friend desribed to me as “The Wallpaper Years”. Good to laugh now!


Steph Thoma

Barbara Jacobs says: November 18, 2012 at 9:57 pm

Miss Bee:
That is quite a touching story and my condolences to you in memory of your dad.

The Who’s music has the power to heal your soul during times of tragic loss.

Their music has done so for me many times during my 54 years of life.

Rock on, for your Pop!

James Marceda says: November 18, 2012 at 7:59 pm

I caught the DC show this past week and I was so impressed and uplifted. I have seen you guys five times and this was simply the best. Quadrophenia has always meant so much to me because I understood it even as an American kid of a – slightly – younger generation.

I grew up on Staten Island a block up from the beach and I and my friends spent so much time there. Quadrophenia spoke to me and my teenage experience. Now at 47, I heard it as I always imagined it and I remembered – again – what is now gone. Yes, there is a bit of sadness in those memories but I made it and I am doing alright. In some small way you helped make that possible, fun and interesting. Thank you and God Bless!

Alyssa Bee says: November 18, 2012 at 12:13 am

Hello there,

I am not sure where to post this but I see this journal appears to be upkept and this particular entry is somewhat on the same page as what I am about to say. Our Dad was diagnosed with cancer and died 6 weeks later during the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy which hit our home state New Jersey pretty badly. Once we had the diagnosis he was already too sick to do anything one would wish to do before they die. However he was hopeful that with treatment he would get better so, when he found out that The Who was playing the Quadrophenia live it made him absolutely giddy and happy and he was so excited to purchase 3 premium tickets- for himself, my brother, and I- for the Atlantic City show. The only other time I saw him smile in the last days was when he got his Medical Marijuana card in the mail, he died before the first treatment center opened and was too proud to start smoking the stuff off the street;) and sadly he never got the chance to blaze. but, anyways, The reason I’m saying all this is cuz I just wanted to let u’s know that he was really excited and has loved The Who his whole life (he was born in 1949) and it was his last wishes that if he did not make it to the concert date, that us kids go anyhow so thanks for playing and doing your thing… you guys make people more happy than u may imagine <3 see u's in A.C.


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