The Who concert was to start at 6:30 on a Friday night in Boston at Fenway stadium. We didn’t have tickets because we didn’t know if we could make it thru traffic from what should be 1.5 hours away. The ever changing traffic signs in MA displayed “Bob said not to speed”. Don’t know Bob but with traffic we had no choice. Halfway up we jumped on the subway to Fenway.
As we made our way to find the ticket office I spoke with people who came just to see the orchestra. I told them The Who were great to see also.
The place was packed inside and out. After we bought our tickets we stood in line to enter. Security came over and told us we had to move because the band was coming thru. As we moved, 2 motorcycle cops came thru with 2 black cars behind them. They must have been in the back seats, We waved.
I always end up somewhere in the arena of my 25+ Who shows just not in front. So here is my overview from the back of the stadium. The full moon was rising as The Who hit the stage. The song list was the same as most other nights. A few changes included YBYB. At one point Pete was was talking about 1967. He looked around and asked for anyone to raise their hand if they were born before 1967. Yes there were.
Since I saw them in Philly a few months ago where I also sat midway, I noticed that at both shows many, many people left for a beer or restroom break(?) when Imagine a Man or one of the 2 new songs came on. I don’t drink anything in fear of needing to leave while The Who is playing. Not to worry they were in place for the big hits. I thought they sounded fantastic as always. The screens showed Pete, Roger and Pete’s fingers the most.
Simon played great as ever hidden by his baseball cap. Loren Gold’s intro confused some around me until the one key that made them jump and cheer. Zak celebrated his birthday and the others did great as always. Pete did his his windmills and a small trip.
I have no criticism and am grateful I was able to get in to see them. The Boston fans are strong and I still have the word “Substitute” ringing in my ears by all the singers around me. Katie Jacoby adds more charm to the stage as she smiles with happiness and seems to have a baseball shirt for every stadium. I also loved that after The Who left the stage and the lights came on, Sweet Caroline played and the fans would stop to sing their part.
Many years ago I saw John Entwistle play at a club called Mama Kin, a small rock club under the shadow of the Green Monster of Fenway Park in Boston. I remember talking to several Boston area Who fans that night and mentioning how great it would be to see The Who perform in Fenway Park. The general consensus was, it would never happen.
I had similar conversations when I saw Roger Daltrey at the House of Blues in 2009 in the location where Mama Kin used to be. Again, it would never happen.
I grew up in a town about 10 miles north of Boston and have been an avid Boston Red Sox fan throughout my entire life. I love the Red Sox almost as much as I love The Who. And so I was ecstatic to hear last January that The Who would be performing live at Fenway Park in Boston on September 13, 2019! The combination of The Who and the Red Sox to me is the greatest combo since Reese's combined chocolate and peanut butter!
Throughout the spring and summer of the 2019 Red Sox season, the TV network that carries the Sox (NESN) showed a commercial advertising the Who gig at Fenway Park 2 or 3 times during every Red Sox game. It was a cheap thrill to see that commercial all summer!
Friday September 13, 2019 was an absolutely spectacular late summer day in Boston. Bright blue skies but almost brisk with temperatures in the high 60's. There was a buzz in the air as we approached Fenway Park for the afternoon soundcheck. And after successfully getting through security and getting in the line that meandered under the bleachers of the old ballpark I had that satisfaction of knowing I was about to see my favorite band again in a ballpark that is very special to me!
After waiting a while, the line for the soundcheck started to move and we were now headed onto a ramp that led over the visitor bullpen at Fenway. The sun was very bright but on my right was the bullpen and out in center field was the stage where Roger, Pete, and the entire band were already prepping for the soundcheck. Roger was wearing a T-shirt, shorts, and sneakers while Pete was in a suit. We got to our seats and got to witness a sun-soaked Who and the Boston Symphony Orchestra struggling to see the music on the pages. But they forged on and it was great.
We got to hear several songs in the soundcheck and I kept thinking to myself how I'd be going out of my mind if I was outside of Fenway Park and hearing this soundcheck.....so wanting to witness it. A few minutes into the soundcheck, Red Sox owner John Henry and his wife walked towards the front and enjoyed the pre-show.
At one point in the soundcheck, Roger simply looked out at all of us watching the performance and had a classic, authentic Roger Daltrey smile. He then gave us all a salute.
After the soundcheck, we all went to a reception in a part of Fenway Park that I didn't know existed, out behind the bleachers. It was setup almost as a Who Hall-of-Fame with many items from Who tours past on display. My favorite item was a pair of shoes Roger Daltrey wore back in the early 70's.
After the reception we headed back to the seats down in front of the stage as a Boston legend Peter Wolf took the stage and performed several J Geils songs as well as a few solo songs. Peter was as energetic as ever as he closed out his performance with the very appropriate "House Party".....because on September 13, 2019......there was most definitely a House Party at Fenway Park with Peter Wolf followed by The Who!
The sun started to go down and it felt a little bit chilly after Peter Wolf completed his set. I suspect quite a few Who sweatshirts were sold in the few minutes between Peter Wolf's performance and the beginning of The Who on Friday night. I was almost stunned when I turned around and saw almost no empty seats just a few minutes before 7:20pm when the Boston Symphony Orchestra was scheduled to take their positions on the stage.
The Fenway lights went down and Roger, Pete, and the band took the stage to a huge ovation. It was funny to see Pete wearing something that resembled a bathrobe and a very long red scarf. And then they kicked in to Overture from Tommy.
The crowd was very engaged on Friday night......one of those nights when the band fed off the energy of the crowd and the crowd fed off the energy of the band. It was magic.....as a full moon started to rise over Fenway Park!
During Overture, the Governor of Massachusetts, Governor Charlie Baker arrived in the seat directly in the row in front of me. I was pleasantly surprised that he is a huge Who fan and sang the lyrics to every song....including Imagine A Man. He was not faking it....Governor Baker is a true Who fan!!! I captured several video's of Governor Baker singing and dancing and I've posted them to youtube.
The Tommy section of the show was phenomenal and the Fenway crowd was totally rocking out to it. I turned around and there were no empty seats. The Who sold out Fenway Park!!!!
To me one of the best parts about the Who show at Fenway Park is how happy everyone was. I didn't see any out of control drunkenness or stress.....I only saw smiles and people enjoying a great Friday night at Fenway Park in the late summer of 2019.
Roger's voice was incredible and towards the end of the show he thanked the Mass General Hospital surgeon that saved his voice.....who was in attendance. Pete joked and asked the doctor if he felt like he made the right decision to do the surgery.
Pete was clearly excited by the sold out Fenway Park as he even mentioned it at one point. Pete was windmilling and leaping often all night long......just like the old days in his red boilermaker suit!
It was great to hear 2 songs from the new album: Hero Ground Zero and Ball and Chain. The band seems very proud of both songs and I can't wait for the album to be released in November.
I've seen many Who shows over the years all over the country and the world, but Friday night at Fenway Park was one of the greatest concerts I've ever been to. It was magic. I know The Who is touring in the UK next spring.....I hope they continue to tour with the new album and play the United States next summer. A Who gig at Fenway Park on a hot, humid July night (or two) would be off-the-charts amazing!!!!
The Who at Fenway Park......I'm having a hard time coming down from that high I experienced last Friday night. But it's all good!!! Please come back to Fenway Park next summer!
God bless you Roger and Pete.......you magnificent bastards!!!!
Who Knew I'd Be Lucky on Friday the 13th?
Friday the 13th's Who show at Fenway was the best I've seen so far! They sounded amazing with the BSO, especially on the TOMMY material, "Behind Blue Eyes", "Love Reign O'er Me" and "Baba O'Riley"!
The crowd was so ecstatic! I was with a host of Who friends!
Petey made quite a fashion statement with his red boiler suit! And Roger could not be any sexier in his navy T-shirt, blue jeans & khaki jacket...and those shades!
Big disappointment: no "Tea & Theatre"! But "You Better You Bet" made up for that!
We then partied at the Lucky Strike. The atmosphere was amazing.
Peter Wolf (J. Geils Band) was the best opener they had since the Pretenders in 2006! Really warmed up the crowd!
The full moon over the park must've been Keith, John and other departed friends watching over us.
Be lucky indeed!