Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Meaty, Beaty, Big and Bouncy

I can't think of a better name for a compilation album than Meaty, beaty, Big and Bouncy. Neither could Decca when they launched The Who's Greatest Hits in 1971. As far as compilations go it's hard to fault.

If you are wondering about the origin of the album title?: Roger Daltry was a fitness nut - Meaty; Keith Moon was the irrepressible force behind the drums Beaty; John Entwhistle was a man mountain - his nickname was Ox - Big; and Pete Townsend's habit of cavorting about the stage made him a sitter for the appellation Bouncy.

The name also suggests The Who's emergence as a force when advertising was also become a curiously powerful force in post-austerity, post-war Britain. Meaty, beaty, big and Bouncy sounds like a proto slogan for a readymade dinner or a pie. They also released an album that paid ironic homage to brands of the day - The Who Sell Out (1967) - ironic because The Who's music was featured in ads for brands including this jingle for Coca-Cola (which was features as a bonus track on the Sell Out album)

Advertising and pop culture have gone hand in glove since the 60's. The apparently anti establishment The Who obviously weren't averse to a little extra coin or more exposure to sell albums. Their management team of lambert and Stamp were as entrepreneurial as the Beatle's manager Brian Epstein or Led Zeppelin's Peter Grant, but aren't talked about much (documentary out soon).

To get a feeling for the times what could be better than a French documentary from the era? …

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