Wednesday, September 15, 2021

I'm in that stage of life when the musicians I admire are getting old

While my musical tastes have certainly broadened over the years, the artists at the top of my "Favorite Musicians" list have not.

One look at the most-played songs on my phone will quickly reveal that I am a hardcore fan of essentially three men: Sting, Colin Hay, and Billy Joel.

There are others in there I love, many of which are 80s bands that are still going (somewhat) strong like Duran Duran, The Fixx, and Huey Lewis and the News. And then there are my second-tier singer-songwriters, which include Jim Croce, James Taylor, Bruce Hornsby, David Francey, and so on.

But Messrs. Sting, Hay, and Joel are in the heaviest rotation and have been for decades now.

They are also, respectively, 69, 68, and 72 years old.

I am not sure how this happened.

Well, I know how it happened. Time moves on. We get old and so do those we admire, even if we think they shouldn't.

It recently occurred to me that there will someday very soon be a last Sting album and a last Colin Hay album. You could argue there has already been a last Billy Joel album, as he hasn't put out any new pop/rock material since 1993.

It has always been something of an event for me when one of those men released new work. In the pre-Internet days, I would consult a newspaper or maybe Rolling Stone to see when an album was due, and I would show up at a record store that day to buy it.

Then I would come home, pop it into my stereo (yes, a stereo) and listen intently while following the liner notes.

Now it's a little different. I still get excited when my guys have new material, but rather than me having to go out and get it, it just shows up on Apple Music. It's just...there, all of the sudden.

That doesn't affect my enjoyment of the music itself, of course, but it does take some of the pageantry away from the actual release.

Anyway, I try to appreciate new music from Stingo, Colin, and BJ more because I know they each have only so many more new songs in them. Sting has an album titled "The Bridge" coming out later this year, while Colin recently put out an excellent disc full of covers and has his own new music slated for release in the not-too-distant future.

I will savor every moment of it, knowing it won't be long before each of these guys will need a hearing aid just to listen to his own music.

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