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<I>Alright:</I> The Definitive Who

18 Jul, 2003 By: Jessica Wolf

The Who, one of the seminal rock groups of all time, is getting a seminal DVD release that serves both hard-core Who fans as well as the casual collector/general music lover.

Pioneer Entertainment Sept. 30 (prebook Aug. 26) bows The Who: The Kids Are Alright in a dual strategy. The single-disc The Kids Are Alright Deluxe Edition ($22.98) includes the DVD debut of the 1979 documentary featuring concert footage and interviews with the band remastered and remixed in Dolby Digital 5.1 and DTS, as well as optional commentary from director Jeff Stein. The movie has been re-edited to include scenes deleted from the theatrical release and subsequent VHS offerings.

The $29.99 double-disc special edition release adds the original production, Won't Get Filmed Again, which includes three hours of rare interviews, including one with lead singer Roger Daltrey, never-before-seen footage, multiple camera angles and more.

“It's been two years we've been working on this, and we've spared no expense in putting this thing together,” said Rick Buehler, SVP of sales for Pioneer. “It's going to be huge, it's going to be an event. It's going to be one of those have-to-have DVDs.”

Pioneer enlisted The Who recording engineers to master the music for the release, and the associate producer of the project, Martin Lewis, has worked with Pete Townshend for three decades, having produced the singer/songwriter/guitarist's first live solo performance on stage, for recording and on film.

The Kids Are Alright the film is a fan's labor of love.

“The film came about basically because Jeff Stein was such a huge Who fan and he kept following the band around bugging them to let him film them, when Townshend finally said, ‘Oh, just go ahead and do it,’ Buehler said.

Initial reception for the upcoming release from retail accounts has been “overwhelming,” Buehler said.

“I think they [retailers] had a real surprise with the [success of] Led Zeppelin DVD,” Buehler said. “I think a lot of the music retailers that were so CD-oriented have really found that there is a new business out there, and that is DVD music.”

Surviving Who band members have been behind the Kids project from the beginning and are fully on board to support the release, Buehler added.

“As far as promoting it and whatnot, they're willing to do whatever it takes,” Buehler said. “[The Who] are timeless, and this is a timeless DVD. This will have a long, long shelf life.”

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