The Story Behind “Won’t Get Fooled Again” by The Who

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In 1971, The Who released their album, Who’s Next and comes with the song “Won’t Get Fooled Again.” Pete Townshend wrote the song as a reference to a revolution. 

The first verse depicts an uprising, while the middle part, people overthrowing those in power, and around the end, the new regime just repeats the history just like the old one (“Meet the new boss, same as the old boss”). 

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Pete Townshend believes that revolution is and was pointless, and whoever takes over or who put in power they will always be destined to become corrupt. 

Pete Townshend explained that the track is all about anti-establishment in his Townshend: A Career Biography, but that “revolution is not going to change anything in the long run, and people are going to get hurt.”

In the song, there’s a synthesizer that represents the revolution as it builds at the beginning and the uprising starts, and it comes back to the end as a new revolution is reborn.

“It’s interesting it’s been taken up in an anthemic sense when in fact it’s such a cautionary piece.”

– Pete Townshend (Rolling Stone Magazine) 

“Won’t Get Fooled Again” is the last track on the album, and was always the last song they played at their shows for many years. 

Keep going below and listen to the song “Won’t Get Fooled Again:”