THE WHO - 'So Sad About Us' (Polydor 2383 147) December 1966

My somewhat irregular trip through my album collection continues with The Who's second studio long player "A Quick One" released on the 3rd December 1966. It more or less coincided with the release of their EP "Ready Steady Who" which came out on 11th December 1966 on Reaction Records.

My copy of the album is the limited edition stereo re-issue released in West Germany on Polydor  during 1981. The LP sleeve was designed by Alan Aldridge who was an exponent of the Pop Art movement.

The album has been reviewed hundreds of times over the years and information exists in music guides, online sites, blogs and magazines. My aim is to focus on one particular song from the set and provide as much information about it here as I can. My song of choice and one which has been one of my very favourite Who songs is the Pete Townshend composed "So Sad About Us", his poignant pop song about a break up and the emotions he experienced, common with us all during such a moment.

"Apologies mean nothing
When the damage is done
But I can't switch off my loving
Like you can't switch off the sun."

Pete Townshend actually wrote "So Sad About Us" for The Merseys and they duly recorded the song at IBC Studios on the 13th July 1966. Townshend produced and mixed their version although the credit for this went to Kit Lambert.

A couple of weeks later, at the back end of July 1966, The Merseys baroque pop edged version of "So Sad About Us" was released backed with "Love Will Continue" (Fontana TF.732). John Entwistle added french horn.

It should be noted that The Who recorded their studio version of "So Sad About Us" three months later during October/November 1966. However, an earlier stripped down version was recorded on the 13th September. The Who performed the song as part of their session for the Light Programme's "Saturday Club" at The Playhouse Theatre, London.

The songs recorded at this session also included "Disguises", "I'm A Boy", "Heatwave" and a cover of The Lovin' Spoonful's "On The Road Again."
I have a bootleg album called "The Who - Maximum BBC" (Mod-1) that compiles three of the songs from the 'Saturday Club' session, "So Sad About Us", "Disguises" and "I'm A Boy". The sound quality is decent and the front cover is awesome. The information on the back of the album cover claims that all cuts were taken from the original master tapes.    

During February 1977, Polydor invited The Jam into the studio to record a demo session before signing them. One of the songs they laid down was a version "So Sad About Us." The song was a popular live staple at their gigs. The song was re-recorded during September 1978 as a tribute to Keith Moon, who had died earlier in the month.

The Jam released their version of "So Sad About Us" on the B-Side of their October 1978 hit single 'Down In The Tube Station At Midnight' (Polydor POSB 8). The back of the single sleeve showed a moody picture of Keith. I can still remember when I first heard of his death back in September 1978. All very sad or should I say so sad about him.

"So Sad About Us" was also released as a single by Swedish group The Mascots on Hep House Records in 1967....


  1. Such a brisk uptempo tune to be a Sad Song … also one of my favorites too.
    Moon shines on this song slapping away on his drum kit. With quintessential obligatory la-la-la-la-la’s by the lads.
    Thanks for the back story.


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