"I am not a robot!" - Roger Daltrey abandons show to avoid damaging voice

Roger Daltrey onstage
(Image credit: Suzanne Cordeiro)

Roger Daltrey ended a show early on Saturday night in Clearwater, Florida, apparently fearing he might damage his voice by continuing. Daltrey had earlier complained of indigestion, and of not being able to hear his bandmates onstage. 

Daltrey received warm support from the audience after failing to complete The Who's Naked Eye, a dozen songs into his set at the Ruth Eckerd Hall. Guitarist Simon Townshend had taken the vocal on the previous number, Going Mobile, while Getting In Tune, four songs earlier, had to be restarted.

"I’m going to do myself some serious damage here and I’m not going to do it because I’ll never sing again!," said Daltrey, in a moment captured on video (below). "I’m sorry! You’ll have to ask for refunds. I’ll try and make it up to you. I’m really, really sorry. I am not a robot! I am definitely not a robot! I’m not doing this to myself anymore. Thank you so much for coming."

The Clearwater show was the 78-year-old Daltrey's first solo show since he performed at the London Palladium in July 2022. His next scheduled engagement is aboard the Rock Legends Cruise, which sailed from Ft. Lauderdale yesterday. 

Two weeks ago The Who confirmed a series of UK dates for this summer. The band will play nine shows in July, in addition to four mainland Europe shows announced in December. They'll be joined at each show by a full orchestra - full dates below.      

Last week, the band released a live version of Baba O'Riley from upcoming live album The Who With Orchestra Live At Wembley. The album is released on March 31. 

The Who Hits Back European Tour 2023

Jun 14: Barcelona Paulo Sant Jordi, Spain
Jun 17: Florence Visarno Arena, Italy
Jun 20: Berlin Waldbühne, Germany
Jun 23: Paris La Défense Arena, France
Jul 06: Hull Sewell Group Craven Park, UK
Jul 08: Edinburgh Castle, UK
Jul 09: Edinburgh Castle, UK
Jul 12: London The O2, UK
Jul 14: Derby The Incora County Ground, UK
Jul 16: Brisrol Badminton Estate, UK
Jul 19: Durham Seat Unique Riverside, UK
Jul 21: St Helens Totally Wicked Stadium, UK
Jul 23: Brighton The 1st Central County Ground, UK

Tickets are on sale now (opens in new tab)

Fraser Lewry

Online Editor at Louder/Classic Rock magazine since 2014. 37 years in music industry, online for 24. Also bylines for: Metal Hammer, Prog Magazine, The Word Magazine, The Guardian, The New Statesman, Saga, Music365. Former Head of Music at Xfm Radio, A&R at Fiction Records, early blogger, ex-roadie, published author. Once appeared in a Cure video dressed as a cowboy, and thinks any situation can be improved by the introduction of cats. Favourite Serbian trumpeter: Dejan Petrović.