Perhaps this is the perfect topic for my new focus on boomers in my writing. After all, I’m fond of saying that “pretty much, the only good thing to come from MY generation is rock ‘n’ roll.”
The other night I attended a concert at a local, wonderful venue – The Egyptian Theatre – in Park City, Utah. B.J. Thomas – 73 – was closing a three-day stint. I looked around the audience and wondered why there were so many “old people” there. Then I remembered that I was one of those “old people.” Not in spirit, certainly, but in birth date!
As B.J. Thomas began his show, I thought at first “is he too old to be doing this?” I hated that that thought popped into my mind. I wondered, also, what his life and those of his four-man band, was like living on the road and touring at their age. One of the band-members, according to B.J., had been touring with him for 40 years.
His voice was still solid. He looked good and his repertoire is truly impressive. As the concert continued, I simply enjoyed the good music and laughed at his comment, “unlike the music today.”
Boomer concerts – Reunion Tours – are successful because we can afford to pay to see The Eagles and The Stones and even (ugh), Barbra Streisand; can our kids?
In recent years I’ve attended: Neil Young, CSN&Y, B.J. Thomas, Paul Anka, Neil Sedaka, The Rolling Stones, Bruce, Paul McCartney, The Turtles, Herman’s Hermits (Peter Noone), Neil Diamond, The Four Seasons, Johnny Mathis, Herb Alpert, Tom Jones, Simon & Garfunkle, The Monkees, The Who, Willie Nelson, Tony Bennett, Bob Dylan, Wayne Newton, The Grass Roots, and many more…
Did I really put Bob Dylan and Wayne Newton in the same sentence? Truly, Wayne Newton is an incredible performer!
In my parent’s generation, their idols were singing until the very end. Sinatra had truly lost his voice but he only pretended to stop. The rest of the crooners, such as Bing, Perry, and Dino never stopped. Tony (Bennett) is still going at 89.
It’s so sadly typical for every generation to venerate the music of “their” generation. Yesterday at the gym, I asked that the station be switched from contemporary to the sixties and I really had fun singing to that “good music” while working out (I was largely alone so don’t worry that my singing and dancing “distracted” others).
Today’s music seems so produced and, as sexist as it may seem, maybe too many female artists. I grew up with the great guy bands of the sixties and I still prefer their rocking to most of the gals, though I certainly appreciate the voices of Beyonce, Rhianna, and both the voices and song-writing of Lady Gaga and Meghan Trainor (and others).
Thanks to my boys, I haven’t totally become an old fart.
So, is there any time when they or we are too old to rock ‘n’ roll?