At 59 Roger Daltrey, lead singer of The Who, is going mobile as
host of Extreme History, a weekly series that re-creates some of
the greatest adventures of all time, including the Lewis and
Clark expedition. The show airs on Sunday nights on The History
SI: What experience does a rock icon have with the world of
Daltrey: I own a 400-acre ranch in East Burwash, England. I've
been a farmer for 30 years. That keeps me pretty close to the
dirt. I've also stuck my arm up a cow to help pull out a calf
when it was in breach.
SI: Is that why, in the segment on the Plains Indians, you agreed
to wear a wolf skin and hunt wild buffalo by shooting
rubber-tipped arrows from 30 yards away?
Daltrey: Looking back, that was bloody crazy. I've been around
animals for 30 years, but buffalo are not exactly cattle. There's
no way I would have outrun the buffalo. I was in stupid cowboy
SI: If you had to sing about John Wesley Powell, how would it go?
Daltrey: The man was mad. He must have had an ugly wife to want
to do the expedition down the Colorado River twice, so the lyrics
would start with something like that.
SI: What was your favorite tale of survival?
Daltrey: I learned valuable things on the episode we did about
prehistoric man. It made me think of the way we've evolved.
SI: How so?
Daltrey: Three million years ago the cavemen adapted to their
environment. They became smart because they had to. They had to
invent fire and the wheel in order to survive. Then Homo sapiens
arrive 100,000 years ago. And suddenly Homo sapiens need all this
technology [to adapt to their environment]. It's like, 'I arrived
home last night dragging my wife in by her hair, and tomorrow
I'll drive out in my Cadillac.' There's no environmental reason
for why we had to change. Maybe some people think [my view] is
crazy. Of course, I'm the kind of person that believes the alien
came before the monkey.