So in just over a year, I’ll be turning 50.
The big five-oh. And even though I still feel like I’m in my 30’s ( I don’t think I ever was in my teens or 20’s), it feels like a big milestone. And one of the common questions that people tend to ask themselves around this age is: am I still relevant? Can I still contribute to the industry I’m in? In my case, can I still design and develop and keep up with people half my age?
With that in mind, for inspiration, I’ve found myself listening to musicians that I feel are still relevant and making music that people can relate to….I figure if these people can do it, then why can’t I?. There are obvious ones like Bob Dylan (79) and Bruce Springsteen (71) that still manage to sell millions of albums. I wanted to highlight some artists that you might not have heard of, or ones that you might not have been aware were still creating:
Nick Cave (63)
I could write an entire post about Nick Cave, but I won’t torture my wife by doing that. I will say he’s one of the coolest mf ers around. We had the pleasure of seeing him live at Massey Theatre in ‘the before times’ and it was one of the concert highlights of my life. Cave hails from Australia and has been performing since the early 70’s, and even though he’s released great albums throughout his career, in the past few years he’s been very prolific. He has created some of the best and most impactful music he’s ever done. He’s never duplicated himself and is constantly pushing to challenge himself with every new album. A true original.
I’ve got to admit that I’ve never really listened to KRS-One; I only really knew him from Radio Song by R.E.M. though I did know he was a respected rapper. Lately my kid has been singing Sound of Da Police, which inspired me to look into what he was up to these days. Well it turns out he’s still doing his thing. He released a new album last December (Between Da Protests) that has been on regular rotation in the studio.
Alejandro Escovedo (70)
I’ve been a fan of Escovedo since 1994 when I first listened to his album “13 Years”, one I still listen to on a regular basis to this day. He’s released 13 albums since then, fighting and barely winning a battle against Hepatitis C in the process. His latest (The Crossing) was released in 2018 and is a concept album documenting the immigrant experience.
Lindsey Buckingham (71)
Yep. That Buckingham. I never really did get into Fleetwood Mac, but Buckingham’s solo albums are some of my favourites, highlighting his amazing guitar skills and singular voice. His latest album (excluding the anthology he released in 2018) was recorded with Christine McVie and released in 2016…one of the songs on it made my son’s birthday playlist a couple of years ago (link to the song). He underwent open-heart surgery last year, so here’s to a quick recovery so that we can get more music from him soon.
Beth Hart (49)
Hart is a blues/jazz singer that’s been around since the late 90’s. She’s released over a dozen albums, but it’s the latest (War in my Mind) that has really struck a chord with me. It’s been on regular rotation in our studio for the past few months; her voice is a force to be reckoned with.
One can’t help get inspired listening to the above artists, and it helps one believe (almost) that age is indeed just a number. And if not, then at least it might get your feet moving, and we all know how important that is as you get older. And if none of the above artists are your cup of tea, I’m willing to bet there’s an artist out there that is still creating music that is relevant and resonates with you. And let me know who they are! I’d love to take a listen.