When it comes to selling concert tickets, classic rock is king. For the moment.
Those beloved road warriors are feeling the strain that comes from 50 years of touring. Just ask Jeff Beck, Christine McVie and David Crosby. And it’s just the beginning. Pete Townshend can’t hear, Eric Clapton plays in pain and Phil Collins did his final shows from a chair.
It begs the question…when are you too old to rock & roll?
Here’s my take. Only Keith Richards is eternal. He and Mick lost half of their bandmates and still pack stadiums. The mere mortals are left to grind it out. Some can’t quit because it’s all they can do.
But, when should a band hang it up?
Quit when the thrill is gone and you’re just touring for the money. Quit when you’re going through the motions on stage. Quit when it isn’t fun anymore.
Personally, I’d like these artists to play one, final tour. Live stream the last show as a farewell gift to fans. Sell a ton of tour merch and give the proceeds to charity. Leave it all out there, then bow out.
So, here are my nominees to park their tour bus:
– Paul McCartney is the greatest. Now take a cue from Elton and leave on top. You too, Bono.
– The Eagles are note perfect in concert. But without Frey, Felder and Meisner, they’re just a terrific cover band. Check out any time you like.
– Aerosmith, KISS, Def Leppard and Motley Crue look pretty rough and the spandex sags a bit.
– Fleetwood Mac should reunite with Lindsey Buckingham for a final tour and then go their own way.
– Madonna desperately needs the spotlight. But time’s up for the materialistic girl.
– ZZ Top is a three-piece band who lost a founding member…still the tour rolled on. Show some respect, y’all.