- Released: January 23, 2007
- Label: Hip-O Records
Rolling Stone - 4/1/99, p.1024 Stars (out of 5)
- "...With a spatial blend of acoustic guitars, mandolins and banjos, Townsend and Lane put a spiffy, village pub band spin on American roots rock..."
- 1.My Baby Gives It Away
- 2.Nowhere To Run
- 3.Rough Mix
- 5.Keep Me Turning
- 8.April Fool
- 9.Street In The City
- 10.Heart To Hang Onto
- 11.Till The Rivers All Run Dry
- 12.Only You - (Bonus)
- 13.Good Question - (Bonus)
- 14.Silly Little Man - (Bonus)
Personnel includes: Pete Townshend, Ronnie Lane (acoustic & electric guitars, mandolin, bass, banjo, ukelele); Eric Clapton (acoustic & electric guitars, dobro); Graham Lyle (12-string acoustic guitar); Charlie Hart (violin); Peter Hope Evans (harmonica); Benny Gallagher (accordion); Mel Collins (saxophone); John Entwistle (brass, background vocals); Ian Stewart (piano); Rabbit (piano, Fender Rhodes electric piano, organ); Boz Burrell (bass); David Marquee (double bass); Charlie Watts, Henry Spinetti (drums); Julian Diggle (percussion); Billy Nicholls (background vocals).
Recorded at Olympic Studios in London, England between 1976 and 1977.
The superbly remastered 2007 reissue of Pete Townshend's 1977 solo effort ROUGH MIX provides a welcome opportunity to re-evaluate the album. Townshend's collaboration with former Small Faces' songwriter/bassist Ronnie Lane resulted in one of the finest discs in his catalogue. The two artists mix rock, folk, country, and R&B for a loose, tuneful ride that's appealing back to front. Lane turns in some fine tunes (the gorgeous "Annie," for instance), while many of Townshend's tracks ("Misunderstood," "My Baby Gives It Away") are still showing up on best-of comps decades later. The band--which includes John Entwistle on bass, Charlie Watts on drums, and Eric Clapton on guitar--isn't too shabby either.
Personnel: Pete Townshend (vocals, guitar, banjo); Ronnie Lane (vocals, acoustic guitar, bass guitar); Eric Clapton (ukulele); John Entwistle (brass); Ian Stewart (piano); Charlie Watts (drums).
ROUGH MIX is one of the most relaxed albums of Pete Townshend's solo career. With this release, the Who leader leaves the thundering avalanche of his band to create a rustic pub band atmosphere. It's a damned notable pub band to be sure (with guest performances from Charlie Watts, Eric Clapton, and Ian Stewart, to name a few) and one can only surmise how much the late (and former Small Faces member) Ronnie Lane is responsible for the offhand charm.
On ROUGH MIX, ukelele, dobro, and accordion outweigh the Les Pauls and Marshall stacks that usually attend Townshend's music. The album's best tunes (some of which were written and are sung by Lane himself) rely on warm, homespun invitations rather than riffs played at eardrum-shattering volume. With tunes that are by turn bucolically wistful ("Annie"), sweeping and majestic ("Street in the City"), and playfully grandiose ("Misunderstood"), ROUGH MIX is delightfully out of place in Townshend's catalogue.