The Who’s Roger Daltrey admits he's on his 'way out' after recent 80th birthday

2 April 2024, 11:24

After recently celebrating his 80th birthday, The Who&squot;s legendary frontman Roger Daltrey said he&squot;s on his "way out".
After recently celebrating his 80th birthday, The Who's legendary frontman Roger Daltrey said he's on his "way out". Picture: Getty

By Thomas Edward

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Roger Daltrey only recently celebrated his 80th birthday.

The Who's legendary frontman has been swinging his microphone and wailing anti-establishment anthems for more than sixty years of his life.

Though his recent birthday, like many who reach their 80th lap of the sun, has caused Daltrey to reflect on the twilight of his career and life.

It was one of the primary reasons why he stepped down as the curator of the annual Teenage Cancer Trust concerts, a role he's maintained for over thirty years.

At first it seemed as though he was replaced in his position to inject new blood into the shows which are annually held at London's historic Royal Albert Hall.

Roger has been frank about his own mortality and limitations of his age in an interview with The Times, however, opening up on his reasons for stepping back from his Teenage Cancer Trust duties.

Whilst he's still as fit as a fiddle, Daltrey admitted he's on his "way out" and is at the age when you have to expect things to come to an end.

Roger Daltrey performing with The Who in 2023. (Photo by Katja Ogrin/Redferns)
Roger Daltrey performing with The Who in 2023. (Photo by Katja Ogrin/Redferns). Picture: Getty

Daltrey was joined by his long-time bandmate Pete Townshend performing as The Who for one night of the run of concerts, and was joined by Led Zeppelin's Robert Plant, Pearl Jam's Eddie Vedder and Paul Weller in a star-studded lineup to close out this year's series.

It capped off an impressive stint for Daltrey as the curator of the charity, in what might very well be his final appearance for the Teenage Cancer Trust.

Talking to The Times, Daltrey revealed: "I have to be realistic. I’m on my way out. The average life expectancy is 83 and with a bit of luck I'll make that, but we need someone else to drive things."

He won't be leaving Teenage Cancer Trust, but will be taking up a less demanding role, he explained.

"I’m not leaving TCT – I've been a patron since I first met the charity’s founders, Dr Adrian and Myrna Whiteson, more than 30 years ago - and that will continue."

"But I’ll be working in the back room, talking to the government, rattling cages."

Daltrey has been facing up to the fact that he&squot;s on his "way out". (Photo by Gijsbert Hanekroot/Redferns)
Daltrey has been facing up to the fact that he's on his "way out". (Photo by Gijsbert Hanekroot/Redferns). Picture: Getty

Daltrey keeps himself in great condition, though the physicality of performing one-off concerts like Teenage Cancer Trust are taking its toll, especially after a long winter.

"We haven't done anything for seven months and this winter's been brutal. I've been in hibernation. For the whole of January, I lost my voice completely."

The 'My Generation' singer didn't pour cold water on a return for The Who though, hinting at a return in the near future.

"I live like a monk and if I went on tour for a week I’d be fit as a butcher's dog again, but tonight, for the first time in my career, I think, 'Blimey, this is hard.'"

Townshend also mirrored these comments in another interview, suggesting that The Who still have another major tour left in the tank.

"I do and I think I will," the guitarist said in regards to hitting the road for a final time. "It feels to me like there's one thing The Who can do, and that's a final tour where we play every territory in the world and then crawl off to die."

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