How to age gracefully as a rock star

Many of the rock musicians of my youth have not aged well. All sorts of things go wrong: they lose their vocals or other skills, they try to act young when they are clearly not, or they simply don’t look like rock stars anymore. Few have aged gracefully.

This weekend I came across a rare example of some rock stars that have aged well: Stevie Nicks and Lindsay Buckingham. Here they are in 1976 performing Rhiannon (on the great Midnight Special):

And here, decades later, performing Landslide:

As they aged, the subject matter for the songs matured, at least for this song. The way they look is great, but it is toned down and fitting for their age. They are blessed still with great vocals (in her case) and great guitar hands (in his case), and if her voice is deeper, it is no less nuanced and expressive.

I love both these videos. I am impressed every time I watch a Midnight Special video. That show was well produced, and the musicians that appeared on it really brought it to the performance. Buckingham played great back then, too, and Nicks was on fire singing Rhiannon. As for Landslide, I like how she goes behind him for the guitar solo: that’s a nice piece of stagecraft. Both well done. Aging rock stars should take note.

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