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“The wrinkly rocker with the pouting lips and swiveling hips”

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Man, has the world changed. Thank God I’m coming along at the tail end of the Baby Boomer generation (1958), which has pushed age category definitions beyond anything conceived since Methusela. “Middle age” now starts after 40, “late middle age” now extends into the 60s, “old age” isn’t even recognized, but if the point is forced begins after 70.

Best of all for our self-image are all these gray rockers, who just keep right on rocking as if nothing has changed, or everything has changed, or maybe both. Now, in the middle of a wildly successful tour, following a rejuvenating greatest hits release, Mick Jagger turns 60:

    Mick Jagger turns 60 this weekend and plans to celebrate with 60,000 admirers.

    The Rolling Stones singer, who once sang “What a drag it is getting old,” is in no rush to reach for his pipe and slippers.

    On his birthday Saturday, Jagger will be flying from Hamburg to Prague, the latest stop on the band’s European tour.

    “He is having a private party with the band and friends in Prague,” said a spokesman for the wrinkly rocker with the pouting lips and swiveling hips. [Reuters]

Now that is a great line!

    Like former Beatle Paul McCartney, now 61, Jagger revels in touring the world’s rock stadiums. Performing live is still the ultimate buzz for the two Swinging Sixties icons.

    Two years ago, when Jagger became the front page spread in Saga, a magazine for the over-50s, British tabloids had a field day mocking the personification of sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll.

    “Sittin’ Jack Flash, the pipe ‘n’ slippers pin-up,” said a mocking Daily Mail.

    But the evergreen rocker, one of Britain’s richest entertainers with a personal wealth estimated by newspapers at $300 million, has had the last laugh.

    Devoted Sixties fans have stayed loyal. Jagger’s swagger and unique voice still fill stadiums with middle-aged devotees high on nostalgia.

Time is stretching out: the first 15 years or so of rock history was highly compressed, like dog years. 1966 was like a different universe from 1965 – I remember the top 40 station I listened to in L.A. in the ’60s played “golden oldies” that were two years old. Now rock ‘n’ roll is almost 50 years old and we see its history in decades instead of years, and that is how we are coming to see rockers as well.

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About Eric Olsen

  • http://www.eddriscoll.com Ed Driscoll

    Eric,

    I just saw the title of this post, and I wanted to say thanks for making me the Blogcritics musician of the month and for writing such a superb introduction that perfectly captures my musical sensibilities.

    Oh wait–this isn’t it?

    Never mind… ;)

  • Eric Olsen

    You’re not wrinkly Ed