The Who To Launch First Major World Tour In 20 Years

Band will play 17 arenas in U.S., beginning with September 12 concert in Philadelphia.

Four years after the death of bassist John Entwistle, the Who are hitting the road again for their first world tour in over 20 years. On Thursday (July 13), singer Roger Daltrey and guitarist Pete Townshend announced that the tour of arenas and amphitheaters will kick off September 12 with a show at Philadelphia's Wachovia Center.

It is the first major tour the band's two principals have launched under the Who banner since the shock death of Entwistle in a Las Vegas hotel room a day before the band's 2002 U.S. tour (see "John Entwistle, Bassist For The Who, Dead At 57").

The band will play 17 shows in the U.S. and Canada, with more U.S. dates to be added in November and December. They will follow up in 2007 with shows in South America, Japan, Australia and Europe. The Who — which now includes session player Pino Palladino on bass, Zak Starkey on drums, John "Rabbit" Bundrick on keyboards and Simon Townshend on guitar — have been playing European gigs since June 17 as a warm-up to the world outing.

The upcoming dates will feature performances of songs from their new short rock opera, Wire & Glass, along with their hits and rare tracks, according to a press release announcing the tour. The band's first new album in nearly 25 years, Who 2, is slated for release on October 23. "For the first time in 25 years we are returning to the U.S.A. with great live music — the entire catalog of our old stuff — and new music," Townshend said in a statement. "I don't think I've ever looked forward to a tour as much as this one. Roger and I are both fit and well, ready to rock."

Tickets for some of the U.S. dates will go on sale July 17, with each one containing a free Virtual Ticket membership to the Who Tour Club, which will include backstage audio and video, downloads, set lists, news and video streams.

Who tour dates, according to the band's spokesperson:

  • 9/12 - Philadelphia, PA @ Wachovia Center
  • 9/13 - Wantagh, NY @ Nikon at Jones Beach Theater
  • 9/15 - Ottawa, ON @ Scotiabank Place
  • 9/16 - Boston, MA @ Banknorth Garden
  • 9/18 - New York, NY @ Madison Square Garden
  • 9/21 - Holmdel, NJ @ PNC Bank Arts Center
  • 9/25 - Chicago, IL @ United Center
  • 9/29 - Auburn Hills, MI @ Palace of Auburn Hills
  • 9/30 - London, ON @ John Labatt Centre
  • 10/3 - Winnipeg, MB @ MTS Centre
  • 10/5 - Calgary, AB @ Pengrowth Saddledome
  • 10/6 - Edmonton, AB @ Rexall Place
  • 10/8 - Vancouver, BC @ General Motors Place
  • 10/10 - Portland, OR @ Rose Quarter
  • 10/11 - Seattle, WA @ KeyArena at Seattle Center
  • 11/5 - Los Angeles, CA @ Hollywood Bowl
  • 12/4 - Toronto, ON @ Air Canada Centre