Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Film Shows Who Created the Who

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Film Shows Who Created the Who

Article excerpt

Talk about a circuitous route to making movies.

"Their idea was they would find a rock 'n' roll group, they would find a really good rock 'n' roll group, and they would manage them and they would make them so successful that they would be able to direct a film about them, and then that film would be their showpiece," actor Terence Stamp recalls. "That film would be their entree into the world of film directing."

As it turned out, Terence's younger brother, Chris Stamp, and Kit Lambert learned on the fabulous fly how to manage a little group by the name of The Who and guide them to riches and rock-god status. But the musicians and their managers were not immune to bitterness over business decisions, addiction, estrangement, mental health problems and, in some cases, premature death.

The documentary "Lambert & Stamp" isn't so much the story of The Who as the men who made them. Director James D. Cooper was blessed with all that footage the aspiring filmmakers shot. He supplements it with new interviews of the Stamps along with singer Roger Daltrey, guitarist-songwriter Pete Townshend and others.

During his later solo tour, Mr. Daltrey called the managers the fifth and sixth members of the band that also once counted John Entwistle on bass and Keith Moon on drums.

"They formed the shell of the egg that we know as The Who these days," he said, although that egg suffered through its share of cracks.

Mr. Lambert and Mr. Stamp were like opposites paired for a buddy comedy.

Mr. Lambert was the posh, Oxford-educated son of a composer and godson of famed ballerina Margot Fonteyn, while Mr. Stamp was the working-class child of a tugboat captain.

"We were both marginalized, me in my class, him in his gayness," at a time when homosexuality was illegal, Mr. Stamp said of his business partner.

They looked for months for a group to steer and followed the line of scooters and mods outside a sordid, jam-packed West London club where The Who (once known as the High Numbers) were performing, and the seeds of a successful partnership were planted. …

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