It’s a fact. We get old. The world around us changes and time flies by without us noticing. Our body starts aching without us knowing why, we see unwanted wrinkles or grey hairs, we start feeling tired, our movements and reflexes grow slower etc. etc. etc.
While we slowly start accepting that fact when it starts happening to us, we get surprised and somewhat angry when it happens to our heroes and to the rock stars we so much adore. To us, they are indestructible and immune to the changes that time inflicts on human beings. They are simply gods; Immortals.
The reality is, these rock stars are humans as well. They feel pain. They get sick. They grow old. They die. They are our Fading Idols ( Btw I love this title so much and I might use it in a song in the future ;))
Last year we witnessed the end of the mighty Black Sabbath. Rush have announced that they are basically inactive as a band. Slayer and Ozzy announced their farewell tours, Motley Crue retired and the list goes on and on and on.
Metallica, Megadeth, Anthrax, Guns n Roses and Bon Jovi members are all in their fifties and members of Iron Maiden, Judas Priest and AC/DC are in their sixties. All The original members of Motorhead have passed away.
Why am I writing about this? Why am I discussing old age? Why am I discussing how old these rock stars are?
Well, the reason is, I’m worried. I’m not worried about getting old or seeing wrinkles or greying hair. I’m worried about the future of Heavy music. What will happen to the music that we so much love when Maiden, Metallica and Megadeth retire? Who will carry the torch?
Sabbath passed the torch to Judas Priest and Iron Maiden who Passed the torch to Metallica, Megadeth and Slayer and for a while we thought that heavy music is safe and our legends will live forever and they will forever nourish us with this beautiful noise. Mark my words, in the next 10-15 years most of the above will be retired or, god forbid, in the grave. Who will then give us the next “Master of Puppets” or “Holy Wars” or “Number of the Beast”?
There are a lot of good newer bands. Avenged Seven Fold, Behemoth, Machine Head, Ghost, and Lamb of God to name a few, but are they as good as their predecessors? Are they legends? Will they write the next Paranoid or Back in Black?
The pop world is much better than the heavy world in this sense. They keep on creating stars who are equal in talent, or sometimes surpassing, their predecessors. From Cher, to Tina Turner, to Micheal Jackson, to Madonna, to Brittany Spears to Christina Aguilera, to Coldplay, to Adele, to Rihanna to Ed Sheeran to John Mayer etc. They are all carrying the torch and passing it from generation to the other and allowing their music to flourish from generation to generation.
All of us newer bands have a great burden to bare. We need to be innovative and creative. We need to carry the torch from those “old timers”. Those guys have kept heavy music alive and they have paid their dues. We have to pay ours.