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Sunday Classics: ‘Baba O’Riley’ turns 50

Revisit the genius of The Who with this iconic track

Published 24.10.21, 12:07 AM
Image courtesy: YouTube

The opening track to The Who’s fifth studio album Who's Next is considered to be one of the greatest songs of all time. Baba O’Riley was released on October 23, 1971, and the song’s title is actually an amalgamation of the names of Meher Baba and Terry Riley who were both inspirations in frontman Pete Townsend’s life. Townsend is said to have written this song after his experience of attending Woodstock. 

“A self-sufficient dropout family group farming in a remote part of Scotland decide to return south to investigate rumours of a subversive concert event that promises to shake and wake up apathetic, fearful British society…There are regular people, but they’re the scum off the surface; there are a few farmers there, that’s where the thing from ‘Baba O'Riley’ comes in,” Townsend had said while describing the idea behind the track. This rainy weekend is perfect for listening to this number on loop.

— Aatreyee Mohanta

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