Zep is just the latest classic rock group to capitalize on the mega millions to be made on the concert circuit.
I just saw The Police at Madison Square Garden and was dazzled by the staying power of 57-year-old Sting, 58-year-old Stuart Copeland and 65-year-old guitarist Andy Summers. I also saw Jethro Tull a year or so ago at Carnegie Hall. Lead Singer Ian Anderson can still hop up on one leg and blow the flute for all he’s worth. I’ve also seen the Moody Blues, Cream and, of course, the Stones.
But, I’ve also had mixed feelings about the whole thing. It’s weird seeing bald, obese, aging fans grooving to their childhood rock stars. It’s weirder still to see some of those same Baby Boomers literally falling asleep during the groups’ encores.
Perhaps the strangest phenomenon of all, though, is the bathroom break some of the aging rockers take midway through the performance. Tull did it. So did the Moody Blues. I remember Ian Anderson telling the audience, ‘I don’t know about you, but I’ve got to pee. We’ll be back in 15 minutes.’ And they were.
So, I guess it’s cool to see the heroes of my youth still rocking away (especially when they’re 10 or 15 years older than I). But, it’s a little sad to think that more and more women concert goers are wearing Depends underneath their thongs and their male counterparts have less hair on their heads than the average cue ball.
I’ll bet Roger Daltrey and his fellow aging rockers are glad they didn’t ‘die before they got old.’ They’d have missed out on billions of dollars, millions of fans and numerous bathroom breaks between sets.