The shock of 2016, the yr of the Nice Dying Off of Musicians, continues to be being felt.
It began with David Bowie on Jan. 10, 2016, and earlier than the primary quarter was over, we had misplaced Glen Frey (The Eagles), Paul Kantner (Jefferson Airplane/Starship), Maurice White (Earth, Wind & Fireplace), George Martin (The Beatles’ producer), and Keith Emerson (Emerson, Lake, and Palmer).
It continued with Prince, Merle Haggard, Scotty Moore (of Elvis’ band), producer Sandy Pearlman, disgraced boy band Svengali Lou Pearlman, Greg Lake (ELP once more), Gordie Tapp, and George Michael.
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Depend up all of the notable musicians who died in 2016 and you find yourself with a few hundred names with the overwhelming majority of them of their 60s and 70s. A barely rising quantity left us in every of 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, and 2021, most of them from the problems of outdated age and a long time of onerous (or let’s say, hearty) dwelling.
Up to now, 2022 exhibits indicators of being simply as tough — or worse. Canadian R. Dean Taylor was the primary on Jan. 7.
Since then, we’ve misplaced Ronnie Spector (most cancers), Meat Loaf (a coronary heart subject which may have been exacerbated by COVID-19), Foreigner’s Ian McDonald (most cancers), Dallas Good of The Sadies (coronary heart situation), Gary Brooker of Procol Harum (most cancers), Mark Lanegan (unknown, however he’d been sick for some time with many, many issues), Taylor Hawkins (seems to be like a coronary heart situation), Bobby Rydell (pneumonia), Naomi Judd (died by suicide), Vangelis (COVID-19), Alan White of Sure (unknown), Depeche Mode’s Andy Fletcher (unknown), Ronnie Hawkins (he was 87), and dozens extra.
It all the time comes as a shock when a favorite artist dies. It’s not as if we knew them personally, but it surely’s by means of their artwork that we be taught extra about ourselves. Once we’re in ache, we regularly flip to their music for solace and energy. And once they die, the music that after consoled us and gave us a lot pleasure itself turns into a supply of ache. That’s very onerous to take. Their deaths additionally remind us of our personal mortality, too.
Personally, I discover it incomprehensible that Bowie, Prince, Gord Downie, and Neil Peart are now not with us. I imply, they’d all the time been there. How is it doable that they’re gone?
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For the final couple of years, there’s been a folder on my pc labelled “When They Die.” It’s a rising assortment of pre-written obituaries for a protracted listing of musical artists who’re of their 60s and 70s, prepared for publication and manufacturing throughout numerous web sites and radio stations. Newspapers and broadcasters everywhere in the world have related folders. You may most likely think about the names included in these information.
All this has many individuals desirous about spending the dosh and making efforts to see their favorite heritage artists at the least another time.
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This Wednesday, I’m making a fast journey to Boston to see Paul McCartney at Fenway Park. It’s costly and a protracted method to go for a live performance inconveniently scheduled in the course of the week. however anybody who’s ever been current when Macca leads the group in a singalong of the coda of Hey Jude is aware of what sort of non secular expertise that’s. Main the way in which is an precise dwelling Beatle, the person who wrote one of many most interesting songs of the twentieth century. Belay that: One of many most interesting songs within the historical past of music.
By all stories, he’s nonetheless in good well being whilst he approaches his eightieth birthday on June 18. His voice is weakening, however he’s been capable of compensate and he’s obtained a crack band to assist him out. Heck, I’ll nonetheless go see McCartney once they’re wheeling him as much as the piano in a wheelchair as a result of … nicely, he’s Paul McCartney, the universe’s best dwelling songwriter.
There could also be one other probability to see The Rolling Stones who’re on their Sixtieth-anniversary tour in Europe this summer season. Charlie received’t be there, in fact — we misplaced him final summer season — however so long as we now have Mick and Keef within the entrance row, it’s nonetheless The Stones. Largely. Shut sufficient.
This September, there’s an Elton John live performance I need to see. The primary album I ever purchased was a replica of his first best hits assortment. Are you able to consider I’ve by no means seen the person stay? The excuse has all the time been “I’ll go subsequent time.” However at 75, Elton is approaching the top of what he swears is his farewell tour. He’s had his well being challenges, too. Can’t wait anymore.
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The very first live performance I ever attended was KISS on their Love Gun tour again in 1978. Gene Simmons maintains that they’re performed after this present highway journey known as The Finish of the Street World Tour. The final date at present listed on their web site is in Sacramento on Oct. 7. I really feel some sort of obligation to be there for the top.
Lastly on the schedule — at the least for the second — is another time with The Who on their The Who Hits Again tour. I by no means needed to see them at their most harmful when Keith Moon was alive, but it surely’s all the time been value it to listen to Gained’t Get Fooled Once more stay though they’re down to only Pete and Roger.
We will deny all of it we would like, however we’re approaching the top of a really particular period in rock. My recommendation? Seize all the things you possibly can with each arms whereas it lasts. And don’t neglect to purchase the T-shirt.
Alan Cross is a broadcaster with Q107 and 102.1 the Edge and a commentator for International Information.
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