Classic Rock is Dying!

I am starting to feel old.  Why you might ask?  Well, I will tell you and it is not that I turned 50 last year.  It is not that my kids are growing up too fast.  Okay, that is part of it.  The main reason is that all the musicians I grew up listening to are now starting to die.  Not by drug addiction or overdosing. Nope, those are generally younger rockers and although sad, it doesn’t make me feel old.  The musicians are now dying of natural causes due in part to old age.  They are getting cancer or having heart attacks…you know…normal things that tend to happen when you are older.

Recently, we have seen the deaths of Eddie Money and Ric Ocasek who were both in their 70’s when they passed.  Let that sink in.  They were in their 70’s.  When I listened to them growing up, their music was mainstream.  Not today.  They fall under the Classic Rock category.  I loved both Eddie Money’s and The Cars’ music.  I remember sitting in my basement watching MTV and seeing Eddie scream out “Take Me Home Tonight” and The Cars “You Might Think” video which is one of the most innovative music videos ever done (at least at the time).

Their deaths brought to light a real issue that the world is facing.  The heroes of the classic rock era of the late 60’s, the 70’s & the 80’s are getting a lot older and won’t be around much longer.  Soon, we won’t be catching these acts on tour or won’t even have any new material be released.  The iconic music makers will be dying and the music of generations will start to fade away.  When that happens, how many radio stations will play Classic Rock anymore?  Think about it…there are no stations specific to the 40’s, the 50’s or even the 60’s music (ok, maybe unless you have Satellite Radio).  Some of the 60’s will fall under Classic Rock, but not the early 60’s music.  Gone.  Classic Rock’s days are numbered.

In the past couple years we have lost other legends who were getting older including David Bowie (69) and Lemmy Kilmister (70).  Most recently, Ginger Baker passed away and he was 80.  It is a reality that is staring at us directly in our face.  What is my point?  If you are a fan of a band from that time period of the 70’s, 80’s or heck even from the late 60’s and they are touring or putting out new music, go out and see them while you still have a chance.  They won’t be around forever.

I have taken that advice over the last couple years and gone out to see some of the older bands. I recently caught Queen with Adam Lambert (Brian May is 72 & Roger Taylor is 70) along with Kiss on their End of the Road Tour (Gene Simmons is 70 & Paul Stanley is 67).  I saw Bryan Adams (ok, he is young at 59) and Alice Cooper (71).  I have realized I might not get another chance so I got off my ass and out to a show.

Admit it, time is running out so you better head out and catch them while you can.  What about the ages of other bands still going strong?

Aerosmith – they are all late 60’s and early 70’s


The Rolling Stones – they are all in their 70’s (ok, Keith will never die, but the rest probably will).  They are touring and Mick Jagger just had heart issues.


The Who – they have a new album and a tour coming and Roger Daltrey is 75 and Pete Townsend 74.


Led Zeppelin – alright, they don’t tour or put out music together but they are both still active individually…Robert Plant is 71 and Jimmy Page is 75

Whitesnake – really I’m talking about David Coverdale who is now 68 so he is starting to push 70 and is actively touring and releasing new music.  Go support.


The Beatles – well at least Paul McCartney (77) & Ringo Starr (79) are still around.


And have you seen some of the 80’s acts? They don’t look like Spring chickens anymore.  As we get older, so do our musical heroes except they were already older than us to begin with so they are getting older faster.  And only yesterday, it was announced that Toto was calling it quits.  It is going to be a very common theme over the next few years as artists are getting up there in years and won’t be touring anymore.


I’m barely scratching the surface of aging artist, but I think you understand. I will repeat it…Go out and see the bands you grew up loving one more time if they come to your town.  It could be the last time.  Soon all that will be left are our memories, our music collections, tribute bands (the horror) and Keith Richards along with Willie Nelson – they will never die.


29 thoughts on “Classic Rock is Dying!

  1. oh yes, although not a complete rock fan i was a teenager of the 80s, so all those classic bands were all over the place. i started doing a double take when prince, george michael & bowie passed. especially prince. my mother hated him, i absolutely loved him.
    so, yep the time is now, to enjoy them live while they’re still around.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Yup, even Aerosmith is slowing down. Say what you want about KISS but they just keep going and going. Full out world tours. As much as they drive me nuts in some of there decisions you have to hand it to them.

    Great writeup John. Last night me and Tbone caught Sloan and I told Chris Murphy that we were the two older guys than the band on stage. Chris told us they are close in age to us haha.

    But yeah get out there I mean look at Nicko from Maiden. I think he’s 66 or 67 and drumming 2 hour Maiden shows every night is a sight to behold.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Well, sad to say, we fans are getting older, too. I’m 60, and my hubby is 62. We won’t be around forever either. My 28 year old son just discovered Roxette. He’s sad he didn’t find them sooner. They no longer make music or tour because of her health issues. Time catches up to us all.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. No, we are not getting any younger. My oldest daughter is 16 and I took her to see Queen as she has discovered the music. She loved, but sadly no new Freddie music. Who knows if we will hear any new Queen music with Adam though. Always a possibility.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I bought the CD set for my son for Christmas. He’s been listening to it online. I also downloaded it for my iTunes. There’s some interesting stuff included. Per Gessle’s solo stuff and music with Mono Mind is good, too. We’re fans of pretty much everything he does.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Van Halen, Eddie not doing well… yeah we have to get used to saying goodbye to our rock heroes.
    It’s funny because Pete says “Hope I die before I get old,” which was such a rock n roll sentiment. Queen said “Who Wants to Live Forever”. Well, a lot of these guys don’t wanna die! They wanna keep touring!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I’ve been thinking about this ever since I got into classic rock as a teenager. Being a millennial, a lot of my favourites died before I was even born (I was born in 1994). I was lucky I got to see Yes with Chris Squire and Paul Revere and the Raiders before they passed away.

    I’ve seen The Who, Roger Waters, Paul McCartney, the Manfreds, Heart, Peter Noone, The Lambrettas, and Secret Affair.

    Another thing I want to add to this is that journalists really need to interview classic rockers more. Who knows how much longer they’ll be around and we all want to hear their stories. Classic rock is so tight knit. All of these rock stars know each other.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Good for you. You saw some great shows. The one good thing is there are a lot of biographies out of the Classic rock artists that I have been enjoying and lot to read. There have also been some great documentaries as well. So at least we have that, but I agree with you on the interviews.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Definitely good advice – Gord Downie passed away 2 years ago today, was very grateful to have seen him perform so many times but in hindsight, I should have tried to catch even more shows


  7. Well, unquestionably the classic rockers are doing and that was inevitable and still, sad. (I’m still bummed that Alvin Lee died a few years ago without much notice.) But I’m reminded of an interview the novelist James M. Cain had about the “Hollywoodizaton” of his movies. “People tell me, don’t you care what they’ve done to your book? I tell them, they haven’t done anything to my book. It’s right there on the shelf.”

    So yeah, the rockers are going away but I listen to classic rock all the time. It’s right there on the shelf and it still sounds as fresh, new and great as it ever did. Beethoven, Mozart, Brahms are all gone but people still listen to their music, yes? “Rejoice, rejoice we have no choice but to carry on.”

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I know it’s not quite the same thing but are you averse to tribute bands? Some of them are great and the Brit Floyd show I saw was thrilling. Close your eyes and you wouldn’t know Waters and Gilmour aren’t up there. Also, the good news is that not only are a lot of the older rockers and bluesmen out there, they are still touring but playing smaller venues. In the past few years I’ve seen John Mayall, Kim Simmonds of Savoy Brown and Robin Trower. Mayall’s a little off his game but it was still cool to see him. The other guys seemed to me to still be in peak form.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. You know, I’m okay with Tribute bands. They work hard to stick to the sound as well as look and soon that will be all we have. I’m sure I will start to go to see some in the future.


          1. Do you follow Christian’s site? He is the King of all Tribute Bands. He sees them and writes about them on a regular basis. There are now entire festivals of tribute bands, largely devoted to classic rock.

            Liked by 1 person

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