Last night I found myself watching some of the Concert For NYC, in particular The Who’s performance. I’m still not going to splurge out on their forthcoming concert (dubbed rather cruelly by one friend as “Who’s left?”). But this four song performance from 2001 is great music. And remembering it in context, very moving, a gesture across the Atlantic, reaching out to a shattered city.
What I found fascinating is the set ends in the seminal protest song “Won’t Get Fooled Again”. If you’re familiar with the lyrics, you’ll know that many interpret it as a rallying cry against politicians of all sides pulling the wool over the populace’s eyes, justifying painful wars and revolutions for the same reasons as before.
Ring any bells?
And the world looks just the same
And history ain’t changed
‘Cause the banners, they all flown in the last war
Sitting here in 2004, as what many would claim is an unjust war we should never have got involved in continues to stagger towards an ever-distant conclusion, the lyrics have more relevance today than in a long time.
Let’s just hope that last week’s handover of Iraq to the Iraqis can help bring a lasting peace.
PS. On a more superficial note, how come it’s only blokes who ever like The Who?