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Slip Kid by The Who

Album: The Who By NumbersReleased: 1975
  • The Who guitarist Pete Townshend wrote this song, which uses war imagery as metaphor for life in the music business. Much of The Who By Numbers album deals with his frustrations with the industry, and trying to cope with becoming an aging rock star. Said Townshend: "'Slip Kid' came across as a warning to young kids getting into music that it would hurt them - it was almost parental in its assumed wisdom."
  • This was released in August 1976 in Canada and the US with "Dreaming From The Waist" as its flip side.
  • Pete Townshend's original demo was released on his 1999 solo album Lifehouse Chronicles. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Fintan - Manchester, England, for all above
  • The Who played this at a few of their shows in 1976, but rarely thereafter. It was surprising then when it showed up in the setlists for their 50th anniversary tour in 2015. "It feels very new," Pete Townshend told Rolling Stone. "You could put it into the voice of some young Islamic student who decides to go fight in Syria and ends up in ISIS being forced to chop people's heads off, and it would fit."
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Comments: 7

Totally agree with David-Danville. If you want to hear a really great version of this song, check out the Soundtrack of Sons of Anarchy, Slip Kid by Anvil (Franky Perez) Great hard rock version!Valerie Harmocy - Vjharm@comcast.net
I'm pretty sure the lyric should read "soldier of sixty-three", as in 1963.Jim - None, Ny
Slip Kid is not a warning about the music industry. Anyone with any knowledge of the last centuries history in the United Kingdom should be able to discern that this is an anti- IRA song. A 'slip' is a type of traditional Irish folk dance, hence a slip kid is an Irish Kid. A 'kit bag' is a home made bomb. "Second generation, only half the way up the tree" is a reference to kids being born into IRA families, yet held low on the totem pole as pawns. "Keep away old man, You won't fool Me. You and your history won't rule me. You might have been a fighter but admit you have failed " is being spoken towards the older IRA members who recruited young teen boys for violence and public disturbances some 40+ years after a peace accord was signed. .ItDavid - Danville, Pa
Pete once said that as a youth, he saw music as his way of seeing the world, etc. He came from a musical family, I think. Why would he warn others not to do the same?Rat - Chicago, Il
I think this song sort of means that no matter what you do, no matter what you become, that being that thing or doing that thing isn't a straight ticket to freedom. It seems like Pete's saying that people who seek freedom shouldn't seek it through a profession (such as being a musician), and there truly is "no easy way to be free."None - None , Wy
this song is awesome, classicly amazing Who.Rose - Boston, Ma
I love this song!!!!
The piano rocks out!
The heavy Keith Moon drumming; very typical Who but still awesome Mr. Moon was a rarity of superb talent!!!!
Allie - Pine Knob, Mi
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