Roger Daltrey planning solo record and book – but he may not release them
The Who frontman says ‘musicians are getting robbed every day’ thanks to music streaming and that he won’t give his music away for free
In October the Who’s Roger Daltrey will appear at the star-studded Desert Trip festival in California. Now he’s adding two projects to his calendar: a solo album and an autobiography – both of which, he says, may never see the light of day.
“I’m working on a solo project, but I don’t know whether I’ll ever release it,” Daltrey said in an interview with Rolling Stone. “I’m working on a biography … [but] I’ll only release it if it’s a good book. I don’t care how long it takes.
“I won’t sign a publishing deal. People sign a publishing deal and they have to put it out because they’ve taken the money. Well, bollocks to the money, I don’t care about the money. I want [to write] a good book.”
He also expressed concern about the way in which people consume music for free online: “The way the internet has come about has been the biggest robbery in history,” he said, “like musicians should work for nothing.”
When asked about whether the Who would put out any of its unreleased songs, he said he wouldn’t pay-to-play. “There’s no royalties, so I can’t see that ever happening. There’s no record business. How do you get the money to make the records? … I’m certainly not going to pay money to give my music away for free. I can’t afford to do that. I’ve got other things I could waste the money on,” Daltrey said.
“Musicians are getting robbed every day,” he added. “You notice, the internet is a slowly but surely destructive thing. I don’t think it’s improved people’s lives. It’s just made them do more work and feel like they’re wanted a bit more, but it’s all bollocks.”
A new solo record would be Daltrey’s first lone venture since 1992’s Rocks in the Head. The Who frontman has released eight solo studio albums so far, kicking off in 1973 with Daltrey.
He says he has collected “five great tracks” for a proposed solo record, and is “looking for another five”. What musical direction might he take? “I started off as a soul singer. I’ve never done a soul album. I’m playing some stuff like that. I’ve got ranges in my voice that people have never, ever heard.”