Rod Dreher

I was watching the Super Bowl with some co-generationalists, all of whom were eagerly awaiting The Who’s halftime show. In the end, we all thought it was hugely embarrassing for Townshend and Daltrey. Wheezing your way through a greatest-hits medley? Lord have mercy. It felt like Branson with laser beams, or like a Simpsons parody of geezer rock bombast. Hard to believe these were the same blokes who once sang, “Hope I die before I get old.” I assume they were well paid for that little episode, but boy, was it painful to watch. Note to REM and other bands of my generation: never, ever do this. I told my son last night, “They used to be great. They really did.” For an antidote to last night’s Metamucil cabaret, watch how they blew the roof off the place at the 2001 Concert for New York. Man! If you don’t have time to watch this entire performance of “Baba O’Riley,” fast-forward to the 2:00 mark and watch about 35 seconds. It’ll send chills down your spine:

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