The Who Producer Shares The Deal He Made With Keith Moon ‘To Save His Life’

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The Who producer Glyn Johns recently appeared as a guest on BBC Radio 2’s Sounds of the ’70s with Johnnie Walker and recalled his failed attempt to stop Keith Moon from drinking alcohol.

The Who’s late drummer Keith Moon was well-known for his wild personality and lifestyle, which had a hold on him until the last moment of his life. His endless partying, destroying hotel rooms while on tour, deliberately breaking the furniture, and throwing things out of the window were just some of the anecdotes that frequently appeared in the press.

He was regarded among the most talented drummers of all time and was also highly appreciated by his counterparts like Charlie Watts and John Bonham. Unfortunately, Moon passed away in 1978 from an accidental overdose. The pills he was using were intended to combat his alcoholism, which had started to impact his reliability in performing with the band.

During a new conversation, the interviewer reminded Glyn Jones of the deal he made with Keith Moon during the recording of ‘Won’t Get Fooled Again.’ The producer realized that the drummer did not seem well enough to play in the recording sessions, so he eventually found a way to make Moon pull himself together.

Jones told Keith Moon that he would stop smoking if he quit drinking alcohol, hoping it would help him notice his poor health condition and performance and collect himself. Although the late drummer agreed, he failed to stop drinking, while the producer gave up smoking. Glyn thinks this pact probably saved his life, but he wishes it had saved Moon’s life, too.

The interviewer said:

“You did a sort of deal with Keith Moon to try and reduce the alcohol intake.”

Glyn Jones continued:

“Yeah, I did, which of course, he won, and I seriously lost although I benefited. I did suggest that he might try and behave himself a bit while we were recording, a bit more than he was, because he wasn’t as reliable as he might be. He had a go at me and said, ‘Well, you’ve changed my existence since I’ve known you.’ So I said, ‘I’ll tell you what, I will stop smoking if you stop drinking. He said, ‘Alright.’ We shook hands on it, and I stopped smoking which may have saved my bacon.”

You can listen to the whole radio show below.