Kenney Jones Recalls Pete Townshend’s Offer To Him To Replace Keith Moon
Kenney Jones was minding his own business when none other than Pete Townshend wanted to catch up. So, as the two rockers sat down and had fun recalling old times, Townshend suddenly decided to invite the drummer to join The Who. However, Jones couldn’t accept this dreamy offer right away since the rocker revealed to Vintage Rock podcast that he had commitments with another band at the time, but Pete wasn’t one to give in.
Surely, it’s not in anyone’s daily routine to meet Pete Townshend and get an offer to join the Who, but the guitarist wasn’t the first person to tell Jones about this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Before Kenney met with Pete, the Who’s manager, Bill Curbishley, decided to let the drummer know that the band wanted to work with him. However, Kenney had another band and initially rejected the manager’s offer. So, soon later, Townshend himself visited him to catch up.
“He said, ‘Well, look, Pete’s coming into the office a little bit later,’” said Kenney Jones as he recalled his phone call with Curbishley and meeting with Townshend. Jones continued, “He said, ‘Why don’t you have a chat with him.’ I said, ‘I am always happy to see Pete.’ So, I said okay. So, I met with Pete a bit later.”
The drummer discussed sitting down with Pete and the guitarist’s eventual offer for his recruitment. Kenney recalled, “And we sat there for two hours, talking about the old times, not the old days [as we had] just literally gone through good times, but about touring together, and God knows, laughing and joking, that’s all. And then Peter suddenly went, ‘You’ve got to join the band. You’re a module, one of us here.’”
Even though Jones didn’t want to pass on this opportunity, he had other plans. The rocker said, “So, I thought, I kept saying to myself, ‘You know what? I’ve got to do this. I know; I don’t want to let my new band down because we’ve come a long way.’ So, I said, ‘Let me go back, and I’ll work with my new band because, luckily, we’re gonna rehearse the next day. They’re all in town.’”
Jones was in luck, however, as his former band supported his decision to join the Who. He disclosed, “So, I said, ‘Look, I had a meet with The Who,’ and I said, ‘Well, they want me to join the band,’ and they said, ‘Kenney, you’ve got to.’ And they were so gracious about it. I said, ‘Oh, thanks.’ I said, ‘Because I’ve got your set of approve.’ That’s how I do; that’s how I ended up in the Who.”
So, that was how Kenney Jones’ decade-long run with the Who started. However, the drummer is not the only rocker who has gotten a surprise call to join an iconic band. Check out how Ricky Warwick was given a phone call by Scott Gorham, who invited him to Thin Lizzy to fill in for the late Phil Lynott.