The 'Rock Till Ya Drop'... cool idea for retirement?
CAD Man 2012/07/27 16:55:57
Looking for a little input here on an idea for a new kind of retirement community. Being a part-time musician and full-time lover of live music, I've been rolling this idea around in my head for the last 5 years and it's time to set it free... Why not band together with other musicians, artist, and anyone who truly loves live music and the arts to build the 'Rock Till Ya Drop' 55+ community (RTYD for short).
Here's the vision...
Build a small community (800-1000 residents) of various types of dwellings (single family homes, town homes, row homes, lofts, commune homes, and rental apartments) around an old-fashioned town square. The square would be built around a multi-purpose performance venue (concerts, plays, movies, readings, worship, etc.) where we'd bring artist in to perform. Around the square would be restaurants, shops and little studios where members of the community needing to work or simply wanting to pad their retirement savings could be employed. I don't know if you've been staying on top of the looming retirement issues that will be facing our country in the next 5 years or so but there are going to be many baby boomers who will need to work until they die, which isn't a bad thing if you have a job you truly love. With this being the case, why not have them work in a community of wonderful music-loving, open-minded people like themselves.
More importantly, the square would have smaller, live music venues (aka bars/clubs) on each of the four corners where lesser known local and regional artists could perform... possibly having jam bands made up of local folks from the 'neighborhood' open for the newer and younger up and coming bands. While not self-sustaining, this community could employ residents needing to work, giving them the opportunity to have a fun, respectable 'retirement' that would not be possible at most retirement communities today.
This community would be formed as a non-profit cooperative as we will need to screen new members. One out of every five members would need to be a verifyable musician, singer, sound or light tech in order to facilate live music and jams from the residents (yes, auditions to see if they really can play just enough to jam with others). When you think of it in terms of a golfing retirement community, it would be pretty pointless to build a retirement complex for golfers if very few members actually played golf. We plan to have several 'garages' built throughout the community where people could get together to jam or just hang out... a 'different' type of bridge club so to speak.
My wife and I are middle-aged groupies who follow the band Little Feat. As we travel to see Feat shows and other concerts and shows in the Chicago area, we've noticed that these shows, festivals, and concerts are largely attended by baby boomers who still love live music and probably always will. In the last year I've actually taken to running the RTYD concept past total strangers at these shows only to have my gut feeling about this idea strongly reinforced by their enthusiastic responses of “I'm in” or “Sign me up”.
Boomers grew up with the most incredible music that was ever recorded; much from bands that are still touring – some out of necessity, others out of passion, some from a combination of both. And then there are the fans and other musicians who played yet never aspired to the greatness of our rock n roll heroes, that have a similar passion burning within... especially the women who 'loved the boys in the band' back in the day and still do today (hmmm... sound like anyone you know?).
Looking for people to weigh in on the idea...
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