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Kid's still all right: Daltrey plays LI

Roger Daltrey of the band The Who performs

Roger Daltrey of the band The Who performs on stage at the North Harbour Stadium in Auckland, New Zealand. (March 21, 2009) Photo Credit: Getty Images

The Who was Roger Daltrey's band, at first, when they were playing R&B covers in London clubs in the early '60s. Of course, Pete Townshend would take over, relegating the singer to No. 4 in a quartet of explosive talents. Early on, Daltrey made up for this by defining the role of classic-rock front man, swinging his microphone, dominating band photos as the curly-haired sex symbol, starring in movies and personifying the lead role in the band's signature, "Tommy."

But over time, he would develop his voice and transform himself into the layered blues singer he always wanted to be -- check out his work on B.B. King's "80" album in 2005. Dal- trey sings "Tommy," again, on his solo tour; we hope he considers six of his best career performances to round out the set list tomorrow at Nassau Coliseum.

 

1.'The Good's Gone'

 

In The Who's early days, the feisty Daltrey hoped to be a tough R&B singer in the mold of James Brown, but he lacked the moaning and screaming talent, so he settled on a sort of beefy monotone. He's effective on this one from The Who's 1965 debut album, "The Who Sings My Generation."

 

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2.'My Generation'

 

Daltrey was no Wilson Pickett, but his flat, stuttering delivery of Pete Townshend's immortal lines perfectly fit the explosive music and articulated generational warfare in the '60s.

 

3.'Won't Get Fooled Again'

 

Daltrey's out-of-nowhere, throat-shredding, five-second-long "Yeah!" scream humanized this synthesizer-heavy Who classic and forced the singer to reproduce it in hundreds of concerts for the next four decades.

 

4.'The Real Me'

 

For the first time, Daltrey's lungpower challenges Keith Moon's drumming, Townshend's power chords, a horn section and, especially, John Entwistle's rapid-fire bass lines for supremacy during the course of an entire song (from 1973's "Quadophenia").

 

5.'Giving It All Away'

 

On the best track from his 1973 solo debut, largely co-written by Leo "You Make Me Feel Like Dancing" Sayer, Daltrey is in a plaintive mood, allowing himself to express country-western emotions he couldn't get away with in The Who.

 

6.'Music Must Change'

 

The title track to 1978's "Who Are You" is another iconic Daltrey performance, but this largely forgotten deep album cut shows the singer in full comfort zone, starting with low- key supper-club singing and escalating to screechy crescendos.

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