The Who return to Leeds University!

They kick off their world tour this weekend.

(Now, I know this may illicit yawns and comments like “why bother, they should’ve hung it up when Keith died”, and I understand completely.)

For THIS fan, though, these are exciting times. There’s a new CD in the can, with a single (“Mirror Door”) being played on the BBC. The worn-out setlist is getting revamped, with promises of “rarities” being sprinkled into the mix.

And Pete has what he calls his “master plan”: the first concert tour to be available on on the Web—every show. Proceeds will be going to charity; they hope to donate $10,000,000 when it’s all said and done.

It’s a year-long venture, Og only knows if Roger’s voice will hold out. But, when my favorite guitarist starts pounding the stage again, it’s cause for celebration.

Link to The Who Live TV

I just emailed a bunch of friends about that. Thanks.

I was lucky enough to recently see Mike Portnoy’s “Amazing Journey” band in a 400 seat theater. This is part of Mike’s series of basically getting to realize every teenage air band dream, and pretend to be his rock and roll heros. He’s “been in” Led Zeppelin and Rush before, and this time he got to be Keith Moon. Billy Sheehan was John, Gary Cherone was Roger, and Paul Gilbert was Pete.

The show ROCKED. They did one set of hits, had an intermission, did all of Tommy, and an encore of a few other hits. Paul put on an English accent, dressed a bit like Pete, made a comment about needing his good ear to tune up, and wore headphones the entire show. Only in the second set did I notice that the cord didn’t connect to anything. Mike chipped in with inturrupting jokes, like Keith, and they counted in like on the Live at Leeds record: “79!”. Paul broke off the headstock on his guitar, Mike really trashed the drums, someone finally took Billy’s bass and smacked it around, and being the odd man out, Gary finally dove over the drum mess. It looked like it hurt him more than he had figured on.

I also got Nuno Bettencourt’s autograph on my ticket, as he was sitting in the front row at the show.

I had to come back and bump this. The webcasts from Leeds and Brighton this weekend could properly be described as kick-ass.

The only drag is that for the moment, they’re only showing 3-4 songs per concert. But, for a $.99 donation to charity, I’d call that a (ahem) bargain.