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The Who's Roger Daltrey: 'There's no better rock guitarist than Pete Townshend'

The Who's Roger Daltrey and Pete Townshend © REX/Shutterstock

Roger Daltrey has hailed his band mate of 54 years Pete Townshend as the ‘ultimate guitarist’.

Roger appeared on Paul Anthony’s breakfast show on Wednesday morning ahead of the release of his new studio album ‘As Long As I Have You’ on Friday 1st June.

The Who vocalist started work on the record in 2014 and says he wouldn’t have finished it without Pete Townshend spurring him on.

“Yeah it was Pete really that encouraged me to finish the album,” Roger told Planet Rock. “I had started this thing four years ago and then Pete got to hear it and phoned me up and said ‘this is fantastic, you’ve got to finish this and I’ll play guitar on it’.

“Well that was the encouragement that I needed. Because he’s my ultimate guitarist. In my mind, there’s no one better than Pete Townshend on rock guitar.”

Roger Daltrey and Paul Anthony

As well as Pete lending his idiosyncratic guitar playing to seven tracks, there are guest performances on ‘As Long As I Have You’ from Mick Talbot on keyboards (Dexys, The Style Council) and Sean Genockey on lead guitar.

The album melds original compositions such as ‘Certified Rose’ and the soulful ballad ‘Always Heading Home’ together with covers of tracks by artists including Steve Wonder (‘You Haven’t Done Nothing’), Nick Cave (‘Into My Arms’) and Stephen Stills (‘How Far’).

Title track ‘As Long As I Have You’ is a cover of a song originally recorded by Garnet Mimms in 1964; the year that Daltrey, Townshend, Entwistle and Moon changed their name from The High Numbers and became The Who.

Elsewhere in his chat with Paul Anthony, Roger said he has no plans to retire after more than half a century in the music business as he thrives off his job.  

“I love what I do and I just love singing,” Roger said. “I love being with the band, I love being with the lads out on the road, the camaraderie of a band is great. I’ve always been a band person – that to me is what it’s all about.”

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