Todd Rundgren will pay tribute to The Beatles’ “worst” album in new show
As part of a new touring concert, Todd Rundgren and his band will pay tribute to one of the most iconic albums in rock history. They will be covering the songs from The Beatles White Album, an album Rundgren calls one of their worst.
No stranger to a conflicting opinion, not only is Rundgren saying the album is one of their worst efforts, but that he will gladly be performing the songs for an audience whose enjoyment won’t be compromised because of his feelings. Having taken on similar projects before, Rundgren and his band, featuring Micky Dolenz of the Monkees, Joey Molland of Badfinger, Christopher Cross, and Jason Scheff of Chicago, will undoubtedly provide a worthy show.
It remains to be seen exactly how the show will run but it will no doubt be somewhat levied against Rundgren’s recent statement on the record. It feels a little strange that an album considered one of the best in modern music can be so easily dismissed. He told AZ Central, “I think it’s a contender for the Beatles’ worst album. And it’s not necessarily a judgment about the music on it. I’m talking about a Beatle album, not a bunch of half attempts at solo albums, which is what The White Album is. So as a Beatle album, it’s terrible. Very rarely do all four of them play at the same time on the record.”
Rundgren continues to shed light on why he doesn’t believe it to be a true Beatles record: “It was the first time George had contributed so much material to a single record,” he says. “But again, it was like you could tell that they weren’t writing together anymore that often, they weren’t playing together … The result was not necessarily the best material out of them, even as solo writers.”
Then, as he has done before, Rundgren finds fault with Lennon’s contribution. He takes the gloves off and lets loose, “I mean, a lot of John’s material is just dolorous,” he says. “And much of Paul’s material is pointless. Like, why would he write a song like ‘Honey Pie’ unless he found out that ‘Winchester Cathedral’ had topped the charts and he said, ‘Oh, I can do that?’”
But which is Rundgren’s favourite Beatles, record? “Abbey Road was a terrific comeback, yes, from that record,” he says, “because it sounds like a Beatles record. It’s still got a lot of that whimsy in there, but it isn’t John moaning and weeping through the whole thing. And it isn’t Paul going off on bizarre tangents. And George Harrison continues to contribute some really interesting stuff to the mix.”
Todd Rundgren is, despite his controversial comments, a massive Beatles fan and we’re sure that any performance will be the fitting tribute they wish to make. We just wish they liked The White Album a little more before touring it.