Smith explores Pete Townshend's artistic struggle between his own creative impulses and those of the commercial public. Faced with a modern version of the minstrel's dilemma, Townshend, early in his career, ignored his creative instincts to satisfy ...
commercial agendas. After his success, he slowly withdrew to resolve his conflict between creativity and commercialism. Townshend's creative vision unfolds against the conflicts and compromises battled with the entertainment industry. A common theme, that of the seeker, weaves throughout the various phases of Townshend's career and highlights his own quest for complete artistic expression free from compromise. In "The Minstrel's Dilemma", Townshend is shown as a musician confronting the same battles begun by early minstrels and later fought by composers such as Beethoven and Mozart. He is referred to as a "rock auteur", creating music that reflects his personal experiences and creative views. He is called a "seeker", in search of artistic freedom toward personal expression. And at the end of his 30-year struggle he is a true artist, able to live up to audience expectation while attending to his own artistic impulses.
Number of pages: 320
Date of publication: 30/03/1999
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