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Keith Moon

Keith John Moon (23 August 1946 – 7 September 1978) was an English drummer for the rock band the Who. He was noted for his unique style and his eccentric, often self-destructive behaviour.

Moon grew up in Alperton, a suburb of Wembley, in Middlesex, and took up the drums during the early 1960s. After playing with a local band, the Beachcombers, he joined the Who in 1964 before they recorded their first single. He remained with the band during their rise to fame, and was quickly recognised for his drumming style, which emphasised tom-toms, cymbal crashes, and drum fills. Throughout Moon's tenure with the Who his drum kit steadily grew in size, and (along with Ginger Baker) he has been credited as one of the earliest rock drummers to regularly employ double bass drums in his setup. Moon occasionally collaborated with other musicians and later appeared in films, but considered playing in the Who his primary occupation, and remained a member of the band until his death. In addition to his talent as a drummer, however, Moon developed a reputation for smashing his kit on stage and destroying hotel rooms on tour. He was fascinated by blowing up toilets with cherry bombs or dynamite, and by destroying television sets. Moon enjoyed touring and socialising, and became bored and restless when the Who were inactive. His 21st birthday party in Flint, Michigan, has been cited as a notorious example of decadent behaviour by rock groups.

Moon suffered a number of setbacks during the 1970s, most notably the accidental death of chauffeur Neil Boland and the breakdown of his marriage. He became addicted to alcohol, particularly brandy and champagne, and acquired a reputation for decadence and dark humour; his nickname was "Moon the Loon". After moving to Los Angeles with personal assistant Peter "Dougal" Butler during the mid-1970s, Moon recorded his only solo album, the poorly received Two Sides of the Moon. While touring with the Who, on several occasions he passed out on stage and was hospitalised. By the time of their final tour with him in 1976, and particularly during production of The Kids Are Alright and Who Are You, the drummer's deterioration was evident. Moon moved back to London in 1978, dying in September of that year from an overdose of Heminevrin, a drug intended to treat or prevent symptoms of alcohol withdrawal.

Moon's drumming continues to be praised by critics and musicians. He was posthumously inducted into the Modern Drummer Hall of Fame in 1982, becoming only the second rock drummer to be chosen, and in 2011, Moon was voted the second-greatest drummer in history by a Rolling Stone readers' poll.

Birth and Death Data: Born August 23rd, 1946 (Central Middlesex Hospital), Died September 7th, 1978 (Mayfair)

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1957 - 1971

Roles Represented in DAHR: drums

Recordings (Results 1-25 of 82 records)

Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Decca 116038 1965 I don't mind Who, The instrumentalist, drums  
Decca 116039 1965 Heat wave Who, The instrumentalist, drums  
Decca 116040 1965 Daddy Rolling Stone Who, The instrumentalist, drums  
Decca 116041 1965 Lubie come back home Who, The instrumentalist, drums  
Decca 116042 1965 Out in the street (you're going to know me) Who, The instrumentalist, drums  
Decca 116043 1965 Please, please, please Who, The instrumentalist, drums  
Decca 116044 1965 I'm a man Who, The instrumentalist, drums  
Decca 116045 1965 Leaving here Who, The instrumentalist, drums  
Decca 116046 1965 Motoring Who, The instrumentalist, drums  
Decca 116047 1965 Anytime you want me Who, The instrumentalist, drums  
Decca 116048 5/3/1965 Shout and shimmy Who, The instrumentalist, drums  
Decca 116049 5/3/1965 Anyway, anyhow, anywhere Who, The instrumentalist, drums  
Decca 116915 approximately 12/1/1965-1/31/1966 Instant party Who, The instrumentalist, drums  
Decca 119443 10/10/1967 Bone dry Who, The instrumentalist, drums  
Decca 119518 10/18/1967 I can see for miles Who, The instrumentalist, drums  
Decca 119562 11/10/1967 (Armenia city) In the sky Who, The instrumentalist, drums  
Decca 119563 11/10/1967 Heinz baked beans Who, The instrumentalist, drums  
Decca 119564 11/10/1967 Odorano Who, The instrumentalist, drums  
Decca 119565 11/10/1967 Tattoo Who, The instrumentalist, drums  
Decca 119566 11/10/1967 Our love was, is Who, The instrumentalist, drums  
Decca 119567 11/10/1967 I can't reach you Who, The instrumentalist, drums  
Decca 119568 11/10/1967 Early morning, cold taxi Who, The instrumentalist, drums  
Decca 119569 11/10/1967 Spotted Henry Who, The instrumentalist, drums  
Decca 119570 11/10/1967 I'm a boy Who, The instrumentalist, drums  
Decca 119571 11/10/1967 Someone's coming Who, The instrumentalist, drums  
(Results 1-25 of 82 records)

Citation

Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Moon, Keith," accessed January 27, 2021, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/332327.

Moon, Keith. (2021). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved January 27, 2021, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/332327.

"Moon, Keith." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2021. Web. 27 January 2021.

DAHR Persistent Identifier

URI: https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/332327

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