Drowned (Pete Townshend) Fabulous Music, Ltd.

Piano by Chris Stainton

Pete Townshend: "This song, included in Quadrophenia, should actually stand alone. I think in a sense it does. When the tragic hero of Q sings it, it is desperate and nihilistic. In fact, it's a love song, God's love being the ocean and our 'selves' being the drops of water that make it up. Meher Baba said, 'I am the Ocean of Love.' I want to drown in that ocean, the 'drop' will then be an ocean itself. Anyway a tale - when recording this song it rained so hard in Battersea where our studio is that the walls were flowing with sheets of water. Chris Stainton played piano in a booth and when the take was finished he opened the door and about 500 gallons gushed out! Another glorious coincidence. The take on the album is the one."

The most often performed song from Quadrophenia during The Who's live shows probably because it gave the band room to improvise. In the 1996-97 edition it was performed solo by Pete on acoustic guitar. Live versions can be found on the Who Rocks America video (1982), the 30 Years Of Maximum R&B video (1974) andThe Who & Special Guests Live at the Royal Albert Hall video (2000).


There are men high up there fishing,
Haven't seen quite enough of the world,
I ain't seen a sign of my heroes,
And I'm still diving down for pearls.

Let me flow into the ocean,
Let me get back to the sea.
Let me be stormy and let me be calm,
Let the tide in, and set me free.

I'm flowing under bridges,
Then flying through the sky,
I'm travelling down cold metal
Just a tear in baby's eye.

Let me flow into the ocean
Let me get back to the sea
Let me be stormy and let me be calm
Let the tide in, rush over me.

I am not the actor
This can't be the scene
But I am in the water,
As far as I can see...

I'm remembering distant memories
Recalling other names.
Rippling over canyons,
And boiling in the train.

Let me etc.

This song appears on:

Source Length notes
Quadrophenia 5:27
Hooligans 5:06
Live at the Royal Albert Hall 6:38 Live - 11/27/2000
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