The Fire Still Burns: Roger Daltrey Continues to Warm the Hearts of his Fans

It’s a beautiful summer evening under the stars and you start to feel something.  It begins like a soft, cool breeze slowly washing over you, tickling your senses.  You have been here before, but you are not longing for the past. The sound is a warm embrace.  An old friend returning to wrap his arms around you, letting you know that while time marches on, the soundtrack of our lives never grows old.

Roger Daltrey has been the voice to that soundtrack for over 50 years. It’s a voice that still touches you today as those fans who attended the closing night of his recent tour at Ravinia Festival, the outdoor music venue nestled on the grounds of the 36-acre park sitting north of the City of Chicago, can certainly attest.  

Playing a nearly two-hour set of 19-songs that covered his solo career – (“Waiting for a Friend,” “After the Fire” and “Days of Light”), Pete Townshend (“Let My Love Open the Door”), The Who (“Who Are You,” “Substitute,” “Tattoo,” “The Kids Are Alright,” “Squeeze Box,” “Won’t Get Fooled Again” and “Baba O’Riley”) and covers of Taj Mahal (“Freedom Ride”), Paul Simon (“The Boy in the Bubble”), Creedence Clearwater Revival (“Have You Ever Seen the Rain?”) and Mose Allison (“Young Man Blues”) – Daltrey proved that his voice can still traverse the paths from the soft and tender to iconic rock.  True, he is older and explained to the crowd that the days of the “Won’t Get Fooled Again” scream are behind him, but the crowd lovingly filled in for him at his request. It was a beautiful moment, highlighting the intense connection between Daltrey and his fans.  

The fire clearly still burns in Daltrey.  As long it does, it will continue to warm the hearts of his fans who see him live. And based on the smiles coming from Daltrey himself all night at Ravinia, it seems as if the fans continue to warm his heart, too.

Although there are no upcoming tour dates scheduled, fans looking to connect with Daltrey should check out some of his most recent work: Going Back Home (the 2014 collaboration with Wilko Johnson), As Long As I Have You (his 2018 solo release) and WHO (The Who’s 2019 release). All three albums are sadly underrated, containing many gems worthy of continued listens by an artist worthy of our continued affection.

All images: © Derek Smith / High Voltage Concert Photography for American Blues Scene

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