Nugs.net, the leading music platform for live concert streams and recordings, has partnered with The Who, UMe and Mercury Studios, for the livestream premiere of their “Classic Albums” documentary “The Who Sell Out”.
The Who is one of the most influential rock bands of the 20th century with over 100 million records sold worldwide, and the documentary explores its groundbreaking record in detail, including a deep dive into the original multi-track recordings, as well as brand-new, exclusive interviews with Pete Townshend, Roger Daltrey, and album producers.
Fans can tune in to the free livestream on Thursday, April 22 at 6 p.m. PT / 9 p.m. ET at nugs.net/thewho. The episode will be available to stream on demand via Nugs.net, the Nugs.net YouTube page and The Who YouTube page through Sunday, April 25 at 9 p.m. PT / 12 a.m. ET. Streaming is available worldwide with the exception of the U.K. and Ireland.
Initially released in December 1967 and described latterly by Rolling Stone as “THE WHO’s finest album,” “The Who Sell Out” reflected a remarkable year in popular culture. As well as being forever immortalized as the moment when the counterculture and the “Love Generation” became a global phenomenon and “pop” began metamorphosing into “rock.” The album was originally planned by Pete Townshend and the band’s managers Kit Lambert and Chris Stamp as a loose concept album including jingles and commercials linking the songs stylized as a pirate radio broadcast. This concept was born out of necessity as their label and management wanted a new album and Townshend felt that he didn’t have enough songs.
“The Who Sell Out” is a bold depiction of the period in which it was made, the tail end of the “swinging-’60s” meets pop-art mixed with psychedelia and straight-ahead pop. It’s a glorious blend of classic powerful Who instrumentation, melodic harmonies, satirical lyrical imagery crystallized for what was only the group’s third album. The album’s ambition and scope is unrivalled by The Who, or any other act from that period. Within the bold concept, were a batch of fabulous and diverse songs. “I Can See for Miles”, a Top Ten hit at the time, is a WHO classic. “Rael”, a Townshend “mini-opera” with musical motifs that reappeared in “Tommy”, and the psychedelic blast of “Armenia City In The Sky” and “Relax” are among the very best material anyone wrote during the 1960s.
In keeping with the spirit of the times, the documentary is a visual representation of the album’s concept as a pirate radio broadcast, coupled with extremely rare archival footage, new interviews with Pete Townshend, Roger Daltrey and a host of others, including John Entwistle and Keith Moon in archive. Additional narrative will be provided by filmed interviews with those who were there at the time, attesting to the importance of pirate radio and how pop music and advertising were beginning to feed off each other during the period the album was recorded. The episode will also cover why 1967 was a pivotal year in popular culture by examining the era’s art, music and social influences, and how “The Who Sell Out” encapsulated that time but still sounds as fresh and vital as it did upon its release over 50 years ago.
“The Who Sell Out” documentary was produced by Mercury Studios and directed by Bob Smeaton, the double Grammy Award-winning director with music documentary credits that include The Beatles, Elton John, The Who, Pink Floyd, The Doors, Queen, Nirvana, Mark Knopfler and the Spice Girls.
To coincide with the “Classic Albums” episode, The Who will release a new super deluxe edition of “The Who Sell Out” on April 23 via UMe/Polydor, featuring 112 tracks spanning five CDs and two seven-inches, 47 of which are unreleased, including 14 unheard Pete Townshend demos, an 80-page, hard-back, full-color book, including rare period photos, memorabilia (nine posters and inserts), track-by-track annotation and new sleeve notes by Pete Townshend with comments from the likes of Pete Drummond (Radio London DJ), Richard Evans (designer) and Roy Flynn (the Speakeasy Club manager). The super deluxe package also includes nine posters and inserts, including replicas of 20″ x 30″ original Adrian George album poster, a gig poster from The City Hall, Newcastle, a Saville Theatre show eight-page program, a business card for the Bag o’ Nails club, Kingly Street, a Who fan club photo of group, a flyer for Bath Pavilion concerts including The Who, a crack-back bumper sticker for Wonderful Radio London, Keith Moon’s Speakeasy Club membership card and a Who fan club newsletter.