Customer Reviews for

Who I Am: A Memoir

Average Rating 3.5
( 52 )
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

Check it out! I think you'll like this one.

Just finished the book, "Who I Am" by Pete Townshend, 2012, Harper Collins books, New York, 500p.

For those of you who may not remember, Pete Townshend is one of the founding members of the band, The Who. The book is not really an autobiography; it's more a memoir....
Just finished the book, "Who I Am" by Pete Townshend, 2012, Harper Collins books, New York, 500p.

For those of you who may not remember, Pete Townshend is one of the founding members of the band, The Who. The book is not really an autobiography; it's more a memoir. I was big fan of
The Who during my younger days, from about 1967 on into the days of "Tommy" and "Quadrophenia." I was fortunate enough to have seen them perform in concert, twice.

Pete was born in 1945. His mother was a singer in swing bands and his father was a musician (clarinet and sax) in the swing band era in London shortly after WWII. He is 5 years older than me, he's 67, the same age as Eric Clapton, and a bit younger than George Harrison and the rest of the Beatles. He has 2 younger brothers, Paul (1957-) and Simon (1960-). He has 3 children, Emma(1969-), Minta (1971-), and Joseph (1989-). He is a grandfather of a boy as of this book's
publishing. Both Keith Moon and John Entwisrle, original members of The Who, are deceased. He is barred for life from Holiday Inns.

I was impressed by all the artistic endeavors of Pete Townshend over the years. He was the main songwriter of nearly all the material performed by The Who. He was heavily involved in the management of The Who, as well as all their financial affairs. He experimented early on with multi-track recording, digital recording, synthesized music, and theatrical and musical production. He was a publisher, a promoter, and a producer. He was a sailor and owned several boats.
He owned (or owns) several houses. He was the quintessential rock star and has lived the life in all its gory details as covered in the book. He has been an addict and he has been in therapy for years. He is partially deaf. He invented "the Marshall stack" made famous by many bands in the 60's and 70's, including Jimi Hendrix. He is a follower of Meher Baba ( I'm not sure who Baba was or what following him means.)

My take on the book is that Pete Townshend has presented a memoir describing who he is, and from his perspective, who is The Who. Pete Townshend is an artist in the sense a musician creates and performs his art. But he is also much more, especially in the realm of writing, recording, and producing music. If that interests you, so will reading the book.

posted by TucsonTommy on November 19, 2012

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Most Helpful Critical Review

3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

Good, not great. It certainly lives up to its title as it is ver

Good, not great. It certainly lives up to its title as it is very introspective. I think that Townshend wants the reader to understand that he is first and foremost, an artist. I appreciate this, but I was hoping for more information about his songwriting. He does conve...
Good, not great. It certainly lives up to its title as it is very introspective. I think that Townshend wants the reader to understand that he is first and foremost, an artist. I appreciate this, but I was hoping for more information about his songwriting. He does convey just how personal most of his songs are, but most of us already knew that. The most interesting theme of the book is his strange relationship with his wife. I don't believe I've ever heard of such a disconnected and public marriage lasting so long. I'm still trying to figure out if it is a testament to a strong family or patience for a really mixed up and stressed-out workaholic. Regardless, Karen Townshend comes across as a saint. I imagine that was the author's intention. I also enjoyed the fact that him and Daltrey were always friends and fierce co-workers. A much different perspective than that which we got through media outlets.

posted by Frostillicus on November 15, 2012

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  • Posted November 15, 2012

    Good, not great. It certainly lives up to its title as it is ver

    Good, not great. It certainly lives up to its title as it is very introspective. I think that Townshend wants the reader to understand that he is first and foremost, an artist. I appreciate this, but I was hoping for more information about his songwriting. He does convey just how personal most of his songs are, but most of us already knew that. The most interesting theme of the book is his strange relationship with his wife. I don't believe I've ever heard of such a disconnected and public marriage lasting so long. I'm still trying to figure out if it is a testament to a strong family or patience for a really mixed up and stressed-out workaholic. Regardless, Karen Townshend comes across as a saint. I imagine that was the author's intention. I also enjoyed the fact that him and Daltrey were always friends and fierce co-workers. A much different perspective than that which we got through media outlets.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 23, 2012

    Good and Bad

    This memoir is both awful and good. Townshend is completely full of himself; so much so that it distracts from his stories. But it's his memoir, his story, his life.

    3 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 14, 2014

    headline headline

    review review

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 25, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted November 23, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

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