There are four members, four distinct personalities in The Who, just as there are four distinct personalities inside Jimmy, the protagonist in “Quadrophenia”, the second rock opera by The Who. In the story, each band member represents one of Jimmy’s personalities. Each of Jimmy’s personalities is represented by a song and musical theme on the album.
Had an album of this depth been undertaken by any lesser band than The Who, it could have easily been a total flop. The Who made “Quadrophenia” one of their crowning achievements; one of the most ambitious, influential, memorable, and iconic albums of the 1970s.
Although “Quadrophenia” came out in 1973 and included a 44 page booklet with photography depicting scenes from the story, it was strictly a photo-story. There was not a “Quadrophenia” movie; at least not until 1979. The “Quadrophenia” soundtrack album, is similar to, but also distinctly different from the original album.
For the record (pun intended) Jimmy’s four personalities represented by the members of The Who and their main respective songs are:
- The tough guy looking for a a fight – Roger Daltry – “Helpless Dancer”
- The hopeless romantic just wanting to share his affection – John Entwistle – “Is It Me?”
- The out of control, unpredictable crazy guy – Keith Moon – “Bell Boy”
- The desperate beggar, con-man, and hypocrite – Pete Townshend – “Love Reign O’er Me”