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Pete Townshend Quashes One Direction Fan Feud With Kindness, Perspective

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If you’ve been following along, there’s a new One Direction song out dubiously titled “Best Song Ever.” If you’re big fans of 1D, the you might buy into the title. If you’re more of a classic rock fan, you might find the whole thing ironic or borderline offensive because “Best Song Ever” borrows the chords from one of the best rock songs ever, “Baba O’Riley” by The Who.

You can see where tempers may flare here, namely on Twitter and namely coupled with the #DontTouchBestSongEver hashtag. The AV Club has a nice recap of the communication breakdown that has been occurring.

Because calmer heads prevail, Who guitarist Pete Townshend spoke to Uncut to share his opinion on the song, and pop music in general.

“No! I like the single. I like One Direction,” said Townshend. “The chords I used and the chords they used are the same three chords we’ve all been using in basic pop music since Buddy Holly, Eddie Cochran and Chuck Berry made it clear that fancy chords don’t mean great music – not always. I’m still writing songs that sound like ‘Baba O’Riley’ – or I’m trying to! It’s a part of my life and a part of pop’s lineage.

“One Direction are in my business,” he continued, “with a million fans, and I’m happy to think they may have been influenced a little bit by The Who. I’m just relieved they’re all not wearing boiler suits and Doc Martens, or Union Jack jackets. The funniest thing is that in Canada this year I met with Randy Bachman once the leader of Guess Who who told me that he not only copied Baba O Riley for their hit ‘You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet,’ but he even called his band after us. Why would I not be happy about this kind of tribute?” 

Remember Directioners, it’s only teenage wasteland.

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