Pete Townshend of The Who

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Pete Townshend's First Solo LP Gets 45th Anniversary Reissue


February 15, 2018

The WHO's leader/songwriter/guitarist/(sometimes) singer PETE TOWNSHEND issued his first solo album, Who Came First, in 1972, and it marked the beginning of the English musician's parallel universe to that of the already impressive output of The Who. There would be 10 more Townshend solo albums to follow over the years, and now, that first solo outing is set for re-release this April in expanded form.

It should be noted that Townshend was a participant in two other solo works before this album—those two were performed with other musicians as a tribute to (Townshend's) "spiritual Guru," Meher Baba. Two of the songs from those albums were repurposed to appear on Who Came First as well as a few songs from the aborted Lifehouse project. (The Lifehouse project eventually morphed into the bulk of what became The Who's landmark album, Who's Next.)

The Who Came First reissue will be released in mid-April and will boast the original, remastered recording and a second bonus disc that features eight previously unreleased songs, as well as alternate versions, new edits, and live performances. Also featured are "restored and expanded artwork," a poster that was originally included with the LP, a book of rare photos, and new liner notes from Mr. Townshend.

This is not the first time Townshend's solo debut has been reissued, although the fanfare for the upcoming release is noticeably more high profile than the previous reissues in 1992 & 2006. For those versions, there was a total of nine unreleased songs added to the album, and while there's no track listing available yet, it will be interesting to see/hear what other material has been unearthed and added to the upcoming 45th anniversary release. In the meantime, after a triumphant three-year tour with The Who, Townshend is enjoying a previously announced year-long sabbatical. Rock on, Pete Townshend!