Music

"The Future of the Concert Business Is … Old Dudes?"

Yes, indeed.

So it was fitting when concert promoter Goldenvoice — founder of the world’s most influential music festival, Coachella — announced what might be the last memorable gathering of rock ’n’ roll. It’s called Desert Trip, a two-weekend event in the middle of October that will take place on the same Indio, California, site as Coachella. Six stupefyingly famous artists will play over three nights each weekend: the Rolling Stones and Bob Dylan on Friday, Paul McCartney and Neil Young on Saturday, and Roger Waters and The Who on Sunday. It’s a remarkable lineup for both obvious and discrete reasons — like a first-ballot Rock and Roll Hall of Fame yearbook photo sprung to life. The Stones and the Beatles have played only two shows together; it’s been five solid decades since their last one. Naturally, the internet jokingly renamed the festival “Oldchella” — only it’s not a joke. The average age of this lineup? 72.5 years old!


"Stuck Between Stations"

Not the David Bowie song, but the one by "the greatest bar band in the world," The Hold Steady. (Though Google informs me that there are several contenders for that title.)

And I tip my cap to Wikipedia, whose article on The Hold Steady informed me that there is a label for a good chunk of the music I most like: "Heartland rock". Two of the primary influences were Dylan and Van Morrison. Four primary exemplars are Springsteen, Tom Petty, Bob Seger, and John Mellencamp. And among the musicians grouped under the label are (depending on the source): BoDeans, Lone Justice, John Hiatt, The Hold Steady, John Cafferty, Little Steven, Southside Johnny, Los Lobos, Bruce Hornsby, Neil Young, Tom Cochrane, The Killers, and Iron City Houserockers. A pretty good group.