THE WHO Guitarist PETE TOWNSHEND Explains Walking Out On Howard Stern Show

October 30, 2006, 13 years ago

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Launch Radio Networks has issued the following report from Howie Edelson:

THE WHO's PETE TOWNSHEND explained why he left a London studio on Wednesday (October 25th), prior to being interviewed by phone on Howard Stern's Sirius satellite radio show. He posted on his official website ( that, "I would not say that I 'stormed out'of an interview with Howard Stern, I would say that I walked away. I am not angry with Howard or his team and they have a perfect right to discuss my sexual past whenever they choose, I am a public person. I decided not to join what was developing into a light-hearted inquisition of sexual subjects that cause widely felt discomfort when not seriously addressed."

Townshend, who was waiting to be interviewed along with his girlfriend Rachel Fuller and bandmate Roger Daltrey, was reportedly incensed after hearing Stern list the various personal topics he wanted to address with Townshend, including the 2003 child porn charges; his admitted, then recanted, bisexual affairs; and his close working relationship with Fuller, whom Stern poked fun of, jokingly saying, "Uh-oh, Yoko (Ono)." After Townshend and Fuller left, Daltrey went ahead with the interview alone with an apologetic Stern.

Townshend, who is working on his autobiography, titled Who He, claims that he was sexually abused as a child, by either his grandmother or one of her boyfriends. He explained that, "I was cleared of all charges brought against me. The caution I received was mandatory because I admitted using a credit card as part of a wider research exercise intended to gather evidence to present to various finance and Internet companies to persuade them to try harder to prevent the use of children in the pornography industry. These are the facts."

He went on to explain that he is not yet comfortable talking in depth about the arrest and the personal damage it did to him: "The story of my life is as yet untold. Until I complete my memoirs I rely on my family, friends, fans and colleagues to believe in me almost unconditionally. Anyone unwilling to wait for my story must address the facts at hand and make their own decision."

Townshend closed by saying: "For the record, I no longer lobby publicly about this issue, but I continue to underwrite organizations that support adult 'survivors'of childhood abuse."

Tomorrow (Tuesday, October 31st), the Who release their first album in 24 years, titled Endless Wire. The album features the band's new ten-track mini-opera "Wire and Glass."

Townshend told us that that he decided to shake his creative process up with the Who's new mini-opera: "What I did with the rock tracks on "Wire and Glass" is I just decided that I was going to write as much of it as I could on electric guitar. I don't do that very often. I usually write on piano or acoustic guitar."

The Who kick off their next set of shows on Saturday night (November 4th) in Los Angeles at the Hollywood Bowl.

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