Pete Meaden

pete meaden modPeter Alexander Edwin Meaden (November 11, 1941-July 29, 1978) was a publicist and manager for The Who.

As a teenager, Meaden worked in a restaurant before embracing the mod subculture and establishing himself as a face. He was often seen around The Scene, a night club in west London.

PETE MEADEN: "Yeah, I was a Mod. It was my life. There was as little club called The Scene, just a Ham Yard, off of Great Windmill Street, and there, on several nights a week the greatest records you can imagine were being played. There were records like “Ain’t love good, ain’t love proud” by Tony Clarke; Major Lance’s stuff; Smokey Robinson, early Curtis Mayfield’s Impressions stuff, you know, which was eminently danceable by people who where not emotionally involved with other people. There was a lack of women in those things. I mean we all dig women, but if you are in the West End, you know that you pay for your women, and well, you don’t get them, ‘cos the girls that come up are mysteries, right. You get girls that come up and dance around, little girls that just dance around in the pubs, just having a little dance, just having a little groove.

"I was the feller who saw the potential in Modism, which is the greatest form of life-style you can imagine – it’s so totally free – totally anti-family London – In so much as that there were lonely people having a great time. Not having to be lonely, not having to be worried about relationships, being able to get into the most fantastic interesting, beautiful situations, just out of music. You could dance by yourself, you could groove around. I saw this as a weekend. I mean, imagine this, on a Friday night I would go to Ready, Steady, Go! groove around there, and one weekend I had three people on there: I had The Crystals, Chuck Berry and The Rolling Stones – doing publicity for those three people. There’d be all the faces and people I knew. A face is just someone you recognise, you might not even know his name, but he’s known as a face".

After years of drug abuse and a nervous breakdown, Meaden died at his parents’ home in Edmonton of a barbiturate overdose in 1978. He is buried in Southgate cemetery, North London and his funeral was fully paid by The Who, even though they were unable to attend. Three years before his death he gave an interview with Steve Turner of NME, in which he made the legendary quote, “Modism, Mod living, is an aphorism for clean living under difficult circumstances.