SXSW 2007 Keynote Interview: Pete Townshend Page 5

SXSW 2007 Keynote Interview: Pete TownshendIf I can watch, for 50 bucks, a boxing match on a cable show, live from Vegas, and watch two poor motherf---ers beat the shit out of each other, why can't I watch my buddy Ian McLagan around the corner with the Bump Band live? Why do I have to wait? I wanna be there when he's there, I want to share it when he shares it. ... When I exchange e-mail or I'm in a chat experience or I'm on a blog and I send a message and immediately get a message back, I think, f---, they're sitting at their computer now. I'll switch on my mike and play them a song! I've done it. I've played songs for one person. It's possible today.

Why is it that the industry that controls the Web, that controls the commerce, that controls the credit-card streams, that controls everything now - they're the new boss - why is it that they're telling us we can't have it live?


Back in 1971, I came up with the "Lifehouse Method," a system where you would go to a computer, enter data about yourself, share some stuff about how you feel, put up a photo, and you'd get back a piece of music. It's like when a painter does a portrait, and you are the sitter. And I thought, if this software could be really fabulous, we could do it. But back then, there was no computer big enough or powerful enough to do what I wanted to do - and there was no Internet. So, of course, everybody that I talked to about this kinda looked at me and went, "Nice idea, but I think you're nuts. You should go and get treatment." It was a huge crash for me. I thought it would be wonderful - but then I had to wait 30 years.

Now you can just log onto the Internet, come to the Lifehouse Method site (, and we give you a piece of music, which is yours, completely unique. In fact, we allow you to own a third of the copyright. So if Coca-Cola decides to use it for their next commercial, you might get rich!

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