All things must pass, but some pass too soon. John Entwistle, the stoic and pioneering bassist for the legendary rock band The Who, died today in his Las Vegas hotel room of an apparent heart attack at the age of 57.
He was born in Cheswick, England on October 9, 1944. In the mid-1960s The Who - with original members Entwistle, guitar phenom Pete Townshend, energetic lead singer Roger Daltrey and legendary late drummer Keith Moon - started on the road to become one of rock n' roll's greatest bands. As the British Invasion swept across the sea The Who, along with fellow U.K. sensations The Rolling Stones and The Beatles, helped put British pop on top of the American charts. In the seventies the band scored again with audiences by creating the groundbreaking rock opera Tommy, about a boy and his love for pinball. Entwistle was known for his statuesque stage presence, and even the most talented bassists found it difficult to imitate the rhythmic and exploratory baselines he so effortlessly created. The band was scheduled to start a three-month tour on June 28 at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas.
[Updated 6/30/02] The Who will begin their tour of the U.S. on Monday, July 1st at the Hollywood Bowl with Pino Palladino playing bass. Pete Townhend wrote on his Official Website: "I made it clear we do not expect him to attempt to emulate, parody or copy John Entwistle in any way. Pino is a master in his own way, but the one request I made was that - at first - he play as loud as he can bear!"