The Who vocalist Roger Daltrey has announced the forthcoming release of a brand new orchestral version of the band’s famous 1969 rock opera album, Tommy. The re-recorded incarnation of Tommy will hear Daltrey, his backing band, and The Budapest Scoring Orchestra all teaming up to perform every song featured on the classic rock album in celebration of its 50th anniversary this summer.
Titled, The Who’s Tommy Orchestral, the 50th-anniversary reissue will arrive on July 14th via Polydor/UMe. Daltrey took an entire orchestra on the road in 2018 to perform the album in full for audiences around the country. The singer once again teamed up with one of his collaborators from the 2018 tour in Keith Levenson to help co-produce the album alongside him. Levenson’s past accomplishments include conducting/creating arrangements for bands including KISS, Alice Cooper, Peter Frampton, and more.
Daltrey’s backing band on the album consists of Simon Townshend (guitar/vocals), Frank Simes (Guitar), Scott Devours (Drums), Jon Button (Bass), and Loren Gold (keyboards). David Campbell contributed the new compositions and arrangements to be played by The Budapest Scoring Orchestra on the beloved songs on the reissue. The band also shared the new version of “Pinball Wizard” to go with the album’s announcement on Thursday. Fans can listen to the new recording below.
Roger Daltrey – “Pinball Wizard”
“Pete’s [Townshend] music is particularly suited to being embellished by the sounds that an orchestra can add to the band,” Daltrey said about the forthcoming album in a statement via press release. “‘Tommy’ can mean whatever you want it to mean, I use the characters in it as metaphors for parts of the human condition, so it’s a kind of a story of the human spirit. Even though it is 50 years on, I approach it as though I’m singing it for the first time.”
The album’s announcement on Thursday comes just a few days after The Who started their 2019 North American tour in Grand Rapids, MI on Tuesday night. The lengthy tour will keep them on the road throughout the summer and fall months, and could lead up to the arrival of the band’s next studio album, which they hope to release before the end of the year. Fans can head to the band’s website for tickets.
The Who’s Tommy Orchestral.
Performed by Roger Daltrey, with members of The Who band and the orchestra conducted by Keith Levenson will be released on June 14th, and is available to pre-order now. pic.twitter.com/rC4FVAolgk
— The Who (@TheWho) May 9, 2019