Rock star: A job with no retirement age
I went to a live music show this weekend, where the band was made up of four guys in their 60s (in other words, my peers). During the show, that group of aging rockers, with their gray hair, creased faces and even a couple of potbellies, had just as much swagger and animal magnetism, and whipped the receptive crowd into a frenzy just as quickly, as any young, agile boy band strutting across the stage.
It occurred to me (and pleasantly so) that music might be the last public bastion for aging men to be viewed as sex symbols. Sure, there are still some silver-haired gentlemen on the silver screen, but they’re typically not given leading man status anymore, i.e. parts designed to make women swoon. Whereas, the part of surly and seductive heartthrob that these aging rockers are playing hasn’t changed one iota over the past 40-plus years. Actually, their acts have probably gotten a whole lot better with time!
Take musicians like 71-year-old Rod Stewart and Mick Jagger, 72, for example. I dare you to name a single young artist who has the stage presence and charisma of either one of these seasoned performers. Why else would Adam Levine claim to have “moves like Jagger”?
However, these guys are certainly not the only ones who’ve still got it. At 66, Bruce Springsteen, still commands the stage like “The Boss” and Sweet Baby James, 68, continues to have that quiet, unassuming charm when he strums out “Don’t Let Me Be Lonely Tonight” to women of all ages. Then there are Bob Dylan, Neil Diamond, Paul Simon and “old friend,” Art Garfunkel, all now septuagenarians and all still holding audiences captive with their energy and chemistry.
Don’t get me wrong. I am sure there are aging female performers you could add to this list, like Bonnie Raitt and Aretha Franklin. But I’ll let a male writer make the final call on that one!