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Keith Moon

Keith Moon (August 23, 1946 - September 7, 1978) was the drummer of the rock group The Who. He was born in London in 1946, although he would later claim to have been born a year later.

He is considered one of the most unusual and yet original drummers of all rock and roll history.

Early in the Who's career, the band acquired a reputation for destroying their equipment at the end of each show. Moon showed a particular zeal for this activity, wildly kicking and smashing his drums, and on one occasion loading a drum with fireworks which he detonated at the finale of My Generation. His antics earned him the nickname "Moon the Loon".

Moon quickly gained a reputation as being highly destructive. He was known to lay waste to hotel rooms, the homes of friends, and even his own domicile, often throwing furniture out of high windows and destroying the plumbing with firecrackers. While he never actually drove a car into a swimming pool, it's not hard to imagine how such a story originated.

Moon had a style all his own and laid down some of the tightest drum tracks in rock and roll. Contemporary drummers such as Mitch Mitchell, Ginger Baker, and John Bonham could all point to him as a major influence, and Moon's anarchic, out-of-control style remains an influence on popular music today.

Although his work with the Who dominated Moon's career, he participated in a few minor side projects. In 1966, he teamed up with Yardbirds guitarist Jeff Beck and future Led Zeppelin members Jimmy Page and John Paul Jones to record an instrumental, Beck's Bolero, released as a single later that year. Moon is also said to have named Led Zeppelin, remarking that the supergroup would "go over like a lead balloon". In 1974 he released his first and only solo album, a collection of pop covers entitled Two Sides of the Moon. In 1976 he covered the Beatles tune When I'm Sixty-Four for the soundtrack of the documentary All This And World War II.

Moon died in his sleep at the age of 32, having overdosed on anti-seizure medication. He was replaced by Faces drummer Kenney Jones, and in recent tours by Zak Starkey.