At what point should famous rockers hang it up?

Ben R

Member
With this question, I'm referring to the rock and roll bands who hang on into their 60's, 70's, and (gulp!) beyond. Your "Rolling Stones", "Queen", "Aerosmith", "Paul McCartney" types of acts. At what point should they say, "OK. Enough. I'm embarrassing myself and look/sound ridiculous. I am officially retiring from performing music for money." ???

Personally, I feel that once you sound much worse than you used to and are no longer overly entertaining, you should hang it up and enjoy spending your money in retirement. You can't hide your flaws any more. In this world of smart phone video recordings from all angles throughout every arena that you perform in, people are going to know what you really sound like. So, at some point, these guys could be damaging their long-term legacies and reputations by having too many of the really bad performances saved for all time on the internet.

I feel as though we're on the verge of that with some hall of famers and wanted to see what others thought.

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Alister

Supporting Member
In his autobiography Life, Keef addresses this very directly by saying, "I ain't doin' this for you, I'm doin' it for me."

As far as the "embarrassment" factor, not to be cute, but you can't be embarrassed without your own permission. And apparently a lot of these icons don't give it.

That may not be the "answer" that satisfies you as a fan or an audience member, but I'm pretty sure that's the answer they'd give you.
 

DarrenTD

Member
The way I see it, Rock Star is more about image than anything else. If the image is still working for you when your in your 90's, more power to ya!
 
In his autobiography Life, Keef addresses this very directly by saying, "I ain't doin' this for you, I'm doin' it for me."

As far as the "embarrassment" factor, not to be cute, but you can't be embarrassed without your own permission. And apparently a lot of these icons don't give it.

That may not be the "answer" that satisfies you as a fan or an audience member, but I'm pretty sure that's the answer they'd give you.
:agree

I can't add anything to this except to agree with it wholeheartedly.
 

Ben R

Member
Unless I'm having a conversation with world-famous rockers and don't realize it, I wasn't talking about "us". I wasn't referring to the local weekend warrior in a cover band. I wasn't talking about the dude in a wedding / corporate band. I wasn't talking about the classically trained musician performing in an orchestra somewhere. I meant the really famous rock star, performing in arenas with a walker one day. At what point is someone like that so much a shell of their former self that they're ultimately doing their legacy a disservice by hanging on for too long with the "I'm an arena rockstar" routine?

There's no right or wrong answer. i just wanted opinions and needed to clarify that I was not asking "when should we stop playing" (assuming that nobody here is world-famous).

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SteveO

Member
Unless I'm having a conversation with world-famous rockers and don't realize it, I wasn't talking about "us". I wasn't referring to the local weekend warrior in a cover band. I wasn't talking about the dude in a wedding / corporate band. I wasn't talking about the classically trained musician performing in an orchestra somewhere. I meant the really famous rock star, performing in arenas with a walker one day. At what point is someone like that so much a shell of their former self that they're ultimately doing their legacy a disservice by hanging on for too long with the "I'm an arena rockstar" routine?

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I think that as long as enough people are still buying tickets to fill an arena, then there is enough demand for them to go out and give them a show.
 

DarrenTD

Member
Unless I'm having a conversation with world-famous rockers and don't realize it, I wasn't talking about "us". I wasn't referring to the local weekend warrior in a cover band. I wasn't talking about the dude in a wedding / corporate band. I wasn't talking about the classically trained musician performing in an orchestra somewhere. I meant the really famous rock star, performing in arenas with a walker one day. At what point is someone like that so much a shell of their former self that they're ultimately doing their legacy a disservice by hanging on for too long with the "I'm an arena rockstar" routine?

There's no right or wrong answer. i just wanted opinions and needed to clarify that I was not asking "when should we stop playing" (assuming that nobody here is world-famous).

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Like I said. It's about image. IMO Keef has been expired for decades, but the image still works for him. Hell, they even make Pirate Movies based on him now..........
 

Release

Member
If they're still enjoying what they do, they can do whatever they want.

It's up to ME whether or not I want to spend my money to see them.
It's hard to put aside your memories of them in their prime though.
 

JacieFB

Member
Tough question. I think it varies from star to star. I think Paul M should have hung it up the second the Beatles disbanded. However, he, along with most of the folks you are referring to are still selling a crap load of expensive tickets and albums year after year, so I'm not sure there is an impetus to quit. As long as there is a market, go sell your product there. We don't all have to buy it, thankfully.
 

Pat Healy

Member
I think that as long as enough people are still buying tickets to fill an arena, then there is enough demand for them to go out and give them a show.
This.

I have had the opportunity a couple of times to play in front of crowds of over 10,000 (not that they were coming to see me specifically - these were music festivals that my band happened to play). It's an INCREDIBLE rush, a thousand times better than any drug. If I had the chance to do that night in night out, and that many folks were still coming out to see me play....as long as my own desire and ability to do it continued, I'd never give it up.
 

Go Cat Go!!

Member
I feel that if an artist still has the urge to create and chase their muse who am I to say they can't. Roger Waters has lost his voice but he still hires some great musicians and singers to perform his creations. I just watched the Clapton and Winwood at MSG DVD. I love how they walk on stage without any major announcement. Everyone knows who they are and why they're there. A simple wave to the audience and then they proceed to tear the house down. It's the same with the Cream reunion DVD.

Given that, wasn't it Grace Slick that said rock-n-roll was best left for the young. The artists I mentioned have all grown old gracefully. It's hard for me to picture Vince Niel doing that.
 
The Stones, Aerosmith, Queen, havent done anything new that Ive cared for in a long time...they are basically touring cover bands...

I think Keif looks ridiculous on stage...so old and worn out...
 

hk45acp

Member
Solomon Burke, Little Richard get rolled out on stage in wheelchairs and then proceed to put on an amazing show, so I say do it till you drop.
 


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