Aging Rockers--When Should They Quit?

Flowing hair. Electric guitar. Boundless energy.

It wasn't the 25-year-old lead singer of some 80s hair band. It was musical legend Prince singing in Philadelphia for his Musicology tour six years ago at age 46. Despite being middle-aged, the pint-sized performer pranced around in platforms, switched guitars and costumes a dozen times and sang strong and clear for the better part of three hours.

Prince is one of those aging legends who, for whatever reason, still "has it." Others in his league: Bruce Springsteen, who still plays three-hour sets and is in good shape for someone five years from Medicare eligibility, and the Rolling Stones, whose lead singer Mick Jagger can still hop around the stage like he did 40 years ago (sans the illicit drugs, we hope).

But there are other aging musical legends whose performances in recent years have garnered less than stellar reviews, such as Bob Dylan (one concert reviewer said his voice sounded like it had been "dragged through tobacco fields." Ouch.). Then there are other band members, such as former Aerosmith frontman Steven Tyler, who may still be clinging to their earlier wild child ways of abusing drugs. But even if the band can still play and the singer can still croon, do you really want to hear someone old enough to be your grandpa sing about sex and drugs? Cringe.

The ladies at Yahoo! Shine also recently pondered the questions of when musicians should fold 'em. Here are some signs that a band might want to consider hanging up its guitars:

1) Their voice has gone to crap.
2) One or more band members is still struggling with addiction.
3) They can barely play for two hours.
4) They don't have the energy. They don't have to do gymnastics or big leaps like David Lee Roth, but they can't stand there like a plant either.

Here's IGN's list of the top 10 aging rockers for you to agree or disagree with.

What are other signs that a band should call it quits? What bands still have it in your opinion, and which ones don't?

Read more: http://music.ign.com/articles/934/934663p1.html

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  • Rocker Rocker 2011/06/23 20:45:34
    Rocker Rocker
    Check out www.rockerzine.com, we are the only Music and Lifetsyle mag for Mature Hipsters 35+
  • sammy 2011/01/27 20:40:40
    Why would anyone want them to quit, they are the best of the best, the cream of the crop!
  • Webmaster B. javamanmonk 2010/01/25 08:24:54
    Webmaster B. javamanmonk
    I agree with the rest of you, I'll quit when I drop! Rock On!
  • Brisername 2010/01/24 22:14:47
    Ya know, I think Lemmy from Motorhead once said that he'd stop playing music when he drops DEAD. Lemmy says it all. :)
  • Lori Gains 2010/01/24 20:39:57
    Lori Gains
    Keep going until no one shows up for the concerts. Why not? ;) Love those hair bands!
  • the dude 2010/01/24 02:40:03
    the dude
    i dont want them to retire. i think they should tone down on the partying and age gracefully.
  • GoreGirl 2010/01/23 19:56:31
    when they start to look like they're melting and when the years of smoking and drugs makes their voices raspy as hell (the drugs don't apply to all but you know who i'm talking about). Or you know, when they're needing knee replacements and such...
  • B 2010/01/23 19:25:09
    They should keep on rocking until they wind up in a box. That's it.
  • eva-fate 2010/01/23 19:02:17
    i don't really care if they're mobile, what they're on, etc. when the music stops being fresh, alive, and awesome to listen to and starts sucking or they can't play as long or sing as well as they used to, it's time to stop. as long as the music is still good, they can keep playing til the day they die.
  • Edward 2010/01/23 00:39:42
    i'd say this
  • Nuke Dukem 2010/01/22 23:04:24
    Nuke Dukem
    When they can't control their bowel movements.
  • The One Who Questions 2010/01/22 22:34:53
    The One Who Questions
    I say put them on the endanger list until they blow their eardrums then shoot them -- put them out their misery.
  • ThEternalSinnerâ„¢ 2010/01/22 22:28:37
    most should quit before they are able to be labeled "aging rockers" most aren't even as good as they get credit for... but if rolling stone says so, it must be true... LMAO... "LEGEND" should be reserved for those who have truly moved the music world not for those who have been able to fake it until they fall over...
  • pipaltree 2010/01/22 22:17:46
    Never! It's not a job, it's a way of life for them. Members of The Rolling Stones are a perfect example.
  • Ragdoll 2010/01/22 18:57:13
    I'm sorry, but I don't care how old Steven Tyler gets, he still kicks ass and will continue to do so until he's dust.
  • B Ragdoll 2010/01/23 19:23:54
    damn right! :D
  • Brisername Ragdoll 2010/01/24 22:25:42
    I agree with you 100%, Steven rocks. =)
  • the_old_coach 2010/01/22 04:33:26
    Geez, you ARE an idiot.

    The FANS decide when it's time to quit.

    Are you an ageist or what? Got something against people making a living the best (maybe only) way they know how? When the fans stop going to their shows, they will have signaled that it's time to give it up.

    Until then, "it's their show."

    Damn, maybe you're why some animal species eat their young.

  • Don't y... the_old... 2010/01/22 04:47:49
    Don't you ever tell John Locke what he can't do (AKA: Clown)
    And you're a prick.

    Dude. The fans don't decide, the band decides. The fans can be mindless crackheads sometimes. The fans comes first musically but there's much more behind the music than just the music itself. What if your favorite band said, "sorry guys, we're going to quit now because you guys told me my voice sucks and our drummer left our band". No dude, screw that.

    Pearl Jam for example hates alot of their fans, because fans don't get into any of their work beyond the album "Ten". The Pumpkins would have to play their acoustic guitars twice as loud because their audience is screaming. When a band makes an album, songs are spawned out of the album and some of them or atleast one of them becomes a single. Some fans will ignore the album.

    The fans are A JOKE. Most of them DON'T play an instrument, DON'T play in front of an audience and certainly DOESN'T know anything about the music buisness and what it can do to them.
  • the_old... Don't y... 2010/01/23 03:10:00
    "The fans are A JOKE. Most of them DON'T play an instrument, DON'T play in front of an audience and certainly DOESN'T know anything about the music buisness and what it can do to them."

    Really? Well, okay. I don't believe that. I love playing gigs, and I love playing for people who come to have a good time. The attitude that Pearl Jam has doesn't have anything to do with anything other than them. Do they still tour? If so, do they do it for free? I mean, since "the fans are a joke," why make them pay?

    It's MY opinion that you don't know shit.

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Lauren Fritsky

Lauren Fritsky

United States

2009/10/23 23:30:01

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