As someone who's never been a big fan of The Who (although "We Won't Get Fooled Again" is a mighty fine song), I couldn't tell you much about their history. And after seeing Lambert and Stamp, I'd be willing to wager even their die-hard disciples don't know everything.
That's because they were 'discovered' almost by accident. Two aspiring filmmakers, Kit Lambert & Chris Stamp were hoping to include a band in a project dedicated to the English Mod movement of the early 1960s. Instead, they became so enamored with this band, named The Detours at the time, that they essentially abandoned the film to become their full time managers, and would remain so during The Who's glory years.
|"Oh, I get it...Who's on first!"
Lambert & Stamp were an oddly-paired duo who played a huge part in, not only cultivating the band's image (which included a few name changes before settling on The Who), but creative aspects as well. For example, Pete Townsend's legendary rock opera, Tommy, was apparently a disjointed musical mess before Lambert himself used his screenwriting skill to shape it into cohesive concept (with hopes of someday turning it into a movie). The film features numerous candid interviews with Townsend, Stamp, his brother Terrence (yes, the actor) and Roger Daltrey. Lambert himself died in the 70s, but is featured in numerous archival interviews.
While The Who are prominently featured, this documentary is primarily about these two iconic and influential managers, whose hands-on approach not only guided the band's career, but eventually formed one of the first independent record labels, recording such acts as Jimi Hendrix, Arthur Brown and Golden Earring. As such, Lambert and Stamp tells a fairly interesting behind-the-scenes tale. Since it goes on far longer than necessary (especially during these guys' pre-rock days), it definitely helps to be a Who fan. I'd bet even the staunchest die-hards will discover something they didn't previously know about the band's formative years.
- Director Commentary
- Q&A with Henry Rollins & the director
- Archival Footage of The Who
- The Who Promotional Film from 1967
NOT BAD...FANS OF THE WHO, OR THIS ERA, WILL DEFINITELY WANT TO CHECK IT OUT