I haven’t been on this blog for a while and was just reading your comments to the post “The State of Popular Music”. It brought to my mind something slightly tangential but which I have thought about a lot over the past few years.
My question has to do with how ones musical creativity, genius, whatever you want to call it, is impacted by age. My observation is that most artists put out increasingly vapid music as they get older. Take, for example, Springsteen. I love Springsteen but, if I am honest, his last couple of albums sucked. Same thing with U2. I am not a huge Stones fan but it seems to me that this happened to them as well. Unless I am mistaken, one of the reasons the Beatles called it a day was because they didn’t feel they were putting together good music while recording an album post Abby Road.
First, what is it about getting older that seems to stifle the ability of artists to write really good music? Is it a matter of losing the passion and drive that comes with youth? Do they just get tired? Riches making them lazy?
Secondly, does this lack of creativity, genius, drive, etc. which increases with age happen outside of songwriting? What I’m really getting at is will it happen to us? If so, how do you avoid it? Or should it even be avoided (what’s wrong with living of the truly great work you did decades ago)?
This is just one of the many things I think about as I approach 30.
Also, I concede there are exceptions to this (i.e. Clint Eastwood) but I think I am on to something here.
Lastly, Merry Christmas Dudes!