So as we all know, I love The Who and a member of the band has been in the news recently with some not so great things to say and I have something to say about that.
Recently, Roger Daltrey did an interview and he talked about all sorts of things on current events. He talked about how he doesn’t like Jeremy Corbyn and claimed that he’s a communist. He said that he was against Brussels, but not necessarily the EU. I don’t agree with his more right wing views, that he has expressed in the past. That’s not going to be addressed here.
No, what really upset me was his comments about the Me Too movement.
The original article says:
At the risk of incurring Daltrey’s wrath further, I ask him about the questionable reputations of certain rock musicians. In the light of the Weinstein scandal in Hollywood, does he believe there might be sexual predators lurking within the music business?
He immediately takes umbrage.
‘Why would any rock star need to push themselves on women?’ Daltrey demands. ‘Usually it’s the other way around. I’d like to have £1 for every woman that screws my ass. Mick Jagger would be a billionaire out of it.
‘If it was going to be in the rock business, it would’ve been out by now. It would’ve been out a long time ago.
‘I find this whole thing so obnoxious. It’s always allegations and it’s just salacious crap. Like the allegations against Pete when he got arrested.’
That’s a lot to unpack. Hollywood is a disgusting place and it’s upsetting that so many of these powerful men got away with what they did for as long as they did. Is it surprising? No. It’s corrupt in Hollywood and people defend each other.
Rock and roll, while it isn’t centred in Hollywood necessarily, also has its share of disgusting people. Many rock stars had sex with teenage girls. Were David Bowie or Jimmy Page on the same level as Bill Wyman?
Lori Maddox claims that she wasn’t assaulted and even mourned the death of David Bowie, calling him an “old friend” and an “amazing man.” She said that she didn’t think of Jimmy Page as a paedophile and she didn’t feel abused.
Is it hard and uncomfortable to listen to Led Zeppelin and David Bowie, knowing this? A bit, yeah. Can I separate the art from the person? Yes. I still like Led Zeppelin and David Bowie. I can’t defend what Page and Bowie did though, even if IDs were easy to fake back then and groupies pretended to be older.
If a teenager approaches an adult and hits on them, it’s on the adult to say no. There’s also a power imbalance with celebrities and fans.
As for what Roger said about rock stars not needing to push themselves on women, that sounds an awful lot like saying, because of their sex appeal, attractive men can’t rape. I’m absolutely disgusted by this. Rape isn’t about looks, it’s about power. So what if someone is good looking? No means no! You need consent. This just feels like a slap in the face.
It only gets worse when Roger says that #MeToo is obnoxious and salacious crap. If a lot of victims are coming out and saying that someone was abusive, like with Bill Cosby and Harvey Weinstein, how is that a lie? When dozens of women come out and say someone is a rapist or abuser, I’m inclined to believe them. How can that many people be lying? Of course, there should be a trial. I believe everyone is entitled to due process.
So… Is Roger Daltrey sexist? These comments seem to point to that. Will I stop listening to The Who? No way. I’m listening to The Who Sell Out as I’m writing this post. That said, I’ve lost respect for Roger Daltrey.