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Keith Moon

Keith John Moon (23 August 1946 – 7 September 1978) was an English drummer who played with the English rock band the Who. He was noted for his unique style and his eccentric, often self-destructive behaviour.  His drumming continues to be praised by critics and musicians. He was posthumously inducted into the Modern Drummer Hall of Fame in 1982, becoming only the second rock drummer to be chosen, and in 2011, Moon was voted the second-greatest drummer in history by a Rolling Stone readers' poll.

Moon suffered a number of setbacks during the 1970s, most notably the accidental death of chauffeur Neil Boland and the breakdown of his marriage. He became addicted to alcohol, particularly brandy and champagne, and acquired a reputation for decadence and dark humour; his nickname was "Moon the Loon." After moving to Los Angeles with personal assistant Peter "Dougal" Butler during the mid-1970s, Moon recorded his only solo album, the poorly received Two Sides of the Moon. He moved back to London in 1978, dying in September of that year from an overdose of Heminevrin, a drug intended to treat or prevent symptoms of alcohol withdrawal.

Moon is widely acclaimed as the greatest drummer in the history of rock. Brashly confident, he played quite differently to his peers, turning his massive kit into a lead instrument, and his up-front technique was crucial in establishing the Who’s passionate style.

Keith Moon (MOON004JDMA)

Keith Moon

Keith Moon with Oliver Reed on the set of Tommy in early 1974.

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Who, The (WH005BW)

The Who

Keith Moon from The Who playing the drums in London in 1968

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