Pete Townsend loved concept albums. There’s Tommy, of course. Quadrophenia tells the story of a mod during the ‘60s by the name of Jimmy. The title, meaning “four minds,” comes from Jimmy’s multiple personality disorder (but also represents the four members of the band).
The album would be turned into a movie, though without any music (?!?!).
And, yes, that’s Sting
It’s also been turned into a musical and been recorded by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.
As for the album (a double, actually), it’s pretty good. “Love Reign O’er Me,” “The Real Me,” and “5:15” are all great.
The tour was something of a disaster, though, with Moon passing out on stage once and considerable trouble with the equipment.
One of the better moments
The cover was done by Graham Hughes, based on an idea from Roger Daltrey, who often had a say with the covers. Hughes has almost 80 album credits to his name, including more by the Who, a number of the band member’s solo efforts, and some from other acts like Wings, Robert Palmer, and Roxy Music.
The model is Terry Kennett, a 23-year-old paint sprayer Townsend met in a pub. Here's a real mod, though one of a rather extreme variety:
This will have to do for parodies: