Roger Daltrey said his “big mouth” led to playing UK dates for free over the summer. It was WHO the singer’s way of standing up for music industry professionals who lost their livelihoods in a time of COVID.
“I just did a tour in England, for nothing, for the musicians who are passionate about our industry,” Daltrey shared Forbes. “They were treated quite badly during the lockdowns and received very little help from either [British and American] governments.
“I took musicians, nine of them, out just to give them a month’s work,” he added. “We had no expectations. and I hoped the trip wouldn’t be canceled. Some of us got COVID, but we still made it to the end.”
Daltrey said he was “most concerned” about road crews who might be lost to the industry. “Those guys, they’re extraordinary people, incredibly talented,” he said. “Every day they arrive at 10 o’clock, spend all day setting up the stage, lighting the lights, all that. As soon as the band comes off the stage, they take it all down, load it into a truck, travel overnight to the next gig and do then the same.
“To find those kinds of people again, to rebuild that business, would take years. I was worried if they would actually be there when we went back ‘on the road],” Daltrey said. “See me and my big mouth! I made the point that the bands who can afford it – like us who have had privileged careers – should look after their own, try to give them some money and work to help replace what they’ve lost in over the past few years.”
Now 78, Daltrey accepted that touring took a toll on his body, but said “it’s a good toll, gets you in shape, keeps you moving instead of just sitting in a chair watching TV. My summer solo- tour was an absolute pleasure.”
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