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So who is still getting it done after all these years?

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  • So who is still getting it done after all these years?

    An unfortunate fact of life in the world of rock n roll (at least in my observation) is that as bands/musicians age, they often lose some of the fire that made their songwriting and playing so great. Whether it's age alone, or in some combination with fame, success, wealth, etc. they often lose the hunger that made them great and become a shell of what they used to be.

    I think fans are sometimes blind to this and don't really outwardly admit it. So, my question to the group, who has been able to avoid this pitfall? Who has consistently brought the rock across decades? Who has been relevant at one point, only to fade away, and then reappear (reunion) with the same fire they once had (with an emphasis on songwriting)?

     

    A few from my own list...

     

    • Johnny Cash never lost it, and in fact, I feel he did his best work late in life.
    • Dinosaur Jr. left the scene for many years and reappeared sounding like they never left.
    • Neil Young continues to reinvent himself in ways that have kept him relevant
    • I've never been a huge Rush fan, and to some extent I think they're part of a genre in which interest has mostly faded, but they've continued to create music that is on par with what they did during their heyday.

     

    Who else? And maybe who has not?


  • #2

    Johnny marr keeps coming up with new relevant interesting projects and whilst they haven't all been to my taste they were all good.

    I also agree with those mentioned in the op but other than that i find myself prefering just one or two albums from an artist rather than there whole catalogues.

     

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    • #3

      JEFF BECK.........Still an amazing, fiery player. Still heads and shoulders above the crowd. If you haven't seen "Jeff Beck at Ronnie Scott's", find it and be amazed.

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      • Strung_Out
        Strung_Out commented
        Editing a comment
        I'll put a vote out there for Mark Knopfler, I love his stuff with Dire Straits, but his new music is excellent as well.

        I'll also through a vote out for AC/DC. You've got to give them kudos for keeping with a formula that works.

      • Flatspotter
        Flatspotter commented
        Editing a comment

        AlamoJoe wrote:

        JEFF BECK.........Still an amazing, fiery player. Still heads and shoulders above the crowd. If you haven't seen "Jeff Beck at Ronnie Scott's", find it and be amazed.


        Also check out Rock 'n' Roll Party with Imelda May's band.


      • blind radish
        blind radish commented
        Editing a comment
        +1 on Beck ... it's his world, all other guitarists are just living in it.

    • #4

      - Definitely Rush.  It's nice to see them come out with something as strong as Clockwork Angels the same year that they got into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.  And I'd argue - along with the guys from Meshuggah, Dream Theater and Mastodon - that prog metal is very much alive and well.

      - I'd also add U2 to that list.  They're still touring new CD's with some great songs, they're not working the oldies' circuit and they still like playing together.

       

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      • ElectricEye
        ElectricEye commented
        Editing a comment

        Alecto wrote:

        - Definitely Rush.  It's nice to see them come out with something as strong as Clockwork Angels the same year that they got into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.  And I'd argue - along with the guys from Meshuggah, Dream Theater and Mastodon - that prog metal is very much alive and well.

        - I'd also add U2 to that list.  They're still touring new CD's with some great songs, they're not working the oldies' circuit and they still like playing together.

         


        C'mon...how can anyone POSSIBLY put U2 here? They've been riding that wave of popularity so long they got from Joshua tree, they are treated like royalty. Yet their last 3 or so albums have been pure stink. Over-rated is an understatement.


        Moving on...

        Megadeth is still crushing it. While 13 was so-so, Endgame was brilliant. Listening to clips from the upcoming Supercollider sound more like Endgame. Me likey.

         


    • #5

      Brian May: He put out A Survey of Radial Velocities in the Zodiacal Dust Cloud just a few years ago, 35 years after MgI Emission in the Night-Sky Spectrum  and An Investigation of the Motion of Zodiacal Dust Particles.


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      • #6
        Pearl Jam is getting old now, and I still dig what they do.
        Guitars: 3 Fender Strats, Fender Jazzmaster, Squier Bullet, 2 Gibson Les Pauls, Gibson ES-339, Gibson Les Paul Jr. Special, Epiphone Les Paul, Epiphone Dot, Epiphone SG, PRS SE Custom 24, Ibanez AS73, Hamer Duotone, Larrivee D-03R, Takamine EG5013S, 1951 Epiphone Devon, Ibanez SR305 (bass)Pedal Chain: BBE Green Screamer -> MXR Distortion III -> Boss CE-5 -> EH Stereo Pulsar -> Boss DD-20 -> BBE Boosta GrandeAmps: Vox AC4, AC15, AC30, Pathfinder 10, DA5SoundCloud

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        • T ned
          T ned commented
          Editing a comment

          Mike Patton.  I was never into FNM or Mr Bungle, but I'm really digging the new Tomahawk record.

          Buzz and Dale from the Melvins.  You could make the argument that Melvins output is stagnating, but they still put on steller shows, and at their worst they're much better than pretty much anybody.

          They Might Be Giants.  Haven't heard their latest, but Join Us has some great tunes on it.

           


      • #7
        I agree with many mentioned already.
        I'll add Peter Gabriel. He's been writing interesting tunes and constantly innovating for over 40 years. I saw him perform recently, and he still rocks it live and unlike so many singers his age, can still hit those high notes.

        Comment


        • billybilly
          billybilly commented
          Editing a comment

          KISS sounds horrible and Ace can hardly sing, hang it up boys.  When they came down to Australia last time they were embarrassing.


        • Mad Tele
          Mad Tele commented
          Editing a comment

          elvis costello still rocks live

          dick dale

          jeff beck

          john paul jones


      • #8
        ACDC. They have been writing and performing exactly the same song for 40 years now.

        Comment


        • orourke
          orourke commented
          Editing a comment

          The jury is still out for me on his new album, but David Bowie's last two album (year they were ten years ago, but he was still pretty old then), Reality and Heathen were fantastic.

          Bob Dylan keeps doing interesting stuff well into old age.

          Leonard Cohen is still are great live performer even in his eighties

          I know they're not the most popular on the guitar forums but I still enjoy every new U2 album, I look forward to what they're going to do next..

           


      • #9

        Arnel Pineda really helped put the spark back into Journey.

        Amazing singer.

         

        journey

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        • #10

          Iron Maiden

          Robert Plant is doing some of the nbest stuff of his career with various people

          David Coverdale keep bringing the foundation and makeup mainly but his pipes are doing the job

          Lemmy will not stop till he rots in wherever he plans on rotting

          Meatloaf as much as he grates can still bring a bottle

          and finally the Stones continue to confound whne they take to the stage, you may not like all of their albums but thier back catalogue has at least a gem an album

           

          and sadly, although now gone Gary Moore was just getting better and better

           

          Music is a moral law. It gives soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and charm and gaiety to life and to everything. - Plato

          Comment


          • Ratae Corieltauvorum
            Editing a comment

            And to be fair, Duran Duran's last album was bloody good, and they pretty much sold out two years of dates all over the world

             


          • Dr. Scottie C
            Dr. Scottie C commented
            Editing a comment

            Ratae Coritanorum wrote:

             

            David Coverdale keep bringing the foundation and makeup mainly but his pipes are doing the job

             

            Meatloaf as much as he grates can still bring a bottle

             

            and sadly, although now gone Gary Moore was just getting better and better

             



            Coverdale always had a good voice.

            Meatloaf sucks a 9 inch limp dik

            Gary Moore is a legend..... off the chain beast of a player.


        • #11

          Deep Purple

           

          Black Sabbath

          Ritchie Blackmore.

          Comment


          • #12

            Many of us are listing people that haven't lost us as fans, but thinking of it another way - are they still doing things to gain new fans? Are they still culturally relavent? Are they making music that pushes the boundaries even further than they pushed them when they were made famous originally?

             

            Jeff Beck is a good answer, because he continues to evolve his own playing, and as before, he has the attention of premier guitarists everywhere. So yes, he's still doing what he's always done.

             

            U2 still writes and records successful new pop music. Since they were always a pop band, and they continue to be relavent, I'd say they still have it.

             

            Robert Plant still turns heads with his projects - Raising Sand and Band of Joy were both pretty big. I'd say he's a good answer. Different people than Zeppelin fans are listening to him now.

             

            I mentioned Pearl Jam, and though they are still one of my favorite bands, they don't churn out the hits like they used to. While they still tour sucessfully, they may fall into the nostalgia act category like almost everyone else mentioned in this thread. They may still be good musicians with careers that are still going and fans following them, but they have lost some of what made them what they are.

            Guitars: 3 Fender Strats, Fender Jazzmaster, Squier Bullet, 2 Gibson Les Pauls, Gibson ES-339, Gibson Les Paul Jr. Special, Epiphone Les Paul, Epiphone Dot, Epiphone SG, PRS SE Custom 24, Ibanez AS73, Hamer Duotone, Larrivee D-03R, Takamine EG5013S, 1951 Epiphone Devon, Ibanez SR305 (bass)Pedal Chain: BBE Green Screamer -> MXR Distortion III -> Boss CE-5 -> EH Stereo Pulsar -> Boss DD-20 -> BBE Boosta GrandeAmps: Vox AC4, AC15, AC30, Pathfinder 10, DA5SoundCloud

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            • cheezit66
              cheezit66 commented
              Editing a comment

              kayd_mon wrote:

              Many of us are listing people that haven't lost us as fans, but thinking of it another way - are they still doing things to gain new fans? Are they still culturally relavent? Are they making music that pushes the boundaries even further than they pushed them when they were made famous originally?


              That's tough.  What made an act original when they started is that they were different than the other stuff out there.  But you're saying that to keep "getting it done" they need to be different than they themselves were. 

              Some artists do that---go from peak to peak, always something new, and don't repeat themselves or follow trends.  The Beatles, David Bowie, Bob Dylan.  But most artists have a musical home, and they may travel a bit, but they always come back to a core sound, and in the process inevitably sound much less fresh than they did when they started. 


              It's even worse with genre-defining bands---everyone apes their sound, and then the originals start to sound like imitators.


            • PRS_JRW
              PRS_JRW commented
              Editing a comment

              AC/DC, Rush, Journey, Bon Jovi, Kiss... The obvious choices. Saw The Little River Band a couple months back, and he was still singing the tunes without tuning down and cranking away on the songs. Tom Petty, Heart, Cheap Trick, Iron Maiden, Clapton, the remaining members of The Who, David Gilmour, Roger Waters, Motley Crue, Tony Iommi, Billy Joel, Jeff Lynne, Daryl Hall, Aerosmith, Bad Company, the remaining members of Queen... I could go on for sure as many of you have.

              Kiss was never a question of musicianship, but one of showmanship. I give them props for putting on a heck of a show for over 2 hours at their age. When I last saw them, it was as long as Rush, and they put on a long set.


            • PrawnHeed
              PrawnHeed commented
              Editing a comment
              Most bands didn't get famous by pushing musical boundaries. They mostly did it by playing 4 chord rock and pop tunes whilst wearing an attitude which appealed to teenagers and offended their parents. Hard to repeat that trick.

          • #13
            Well, not necessarily. U2 hasn't changed much, but they still keep gaining new fans with relavent pop music. A lot of the other guys (like Pearl Jam) just don't have the hits, even though their tours are extremely successful. Doing the peak-to-peak thing certainly keeps relevance, but it's not the only way. I think that gaining fans with their new music is what would say they "still have it." Again, that's not to say they have lost their musicianship, performance ability, or original fan base.
            Guitars: 3 Fender Strats, Fender Jazzmaster, Squier Bullet, 2 Gibson Les Pauls, Gibson ES-339, Gibson Les Paul Jr. Special, Epiphone Les Paul, Epiphone Dot, Epiphone SG, PRS SE Custom 24, Ibanez AS73, Hamer Duotone, Larrivee D-03R, Takamine EG5013S, 1951 Epiphone Devon, Ibanez SR305 (bass)Pedal Chain: BBE Green Screamer -> MXR Distortion III -> Boss CE-5 -> EH Stereo Pulsar -> Boss DD-20 -> BBE Boosta GrandeAmps: Vox AC4, AC15, AC30, Pathfinder 10, DA5SoundCloud

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            • #14

              The obvious answer is "Bruce Springsteen".  At 63 years old (and 40-plus years at it) he's still regularly touring the US, Europe and Australia, has produced more credible material in the last ten years than most top artists do in their first ten, and is one of the few artists who can open a show with a set from his most-recently-released album ...

              Comment


              • uab9253
                uab9253 commented
                Editing a comment

                I agree with a lot of choices listed earlier, Kiss, Aerosmith, AC/DC, Rush, Bruce, but I'll add some odd ones:

                Green Day, they may still seem new but they've been gitn'r done for years.

                Alice in Chains gets my respect for their last two releases.

                Believe it or not, Rick Springfield's last two releases were career topping, songwriting quality wise. He writes his own stuff and does most of his own guitars.  His live band kicks ass too.

                Van Halen - totally loved the new CD.

                Blue Oyster Cult is still slogging around out there. Had the chance to do an extended interview with Eric Bloom a couple of years ago and didn't once mention MORE COWBELL!  :-)

                Fleetwood Mac - no new material but still sounding good live. Same with the Eagles - their two disc release awhile back was a dissappointment.

                Iron Maiden - anyone?

                 


            • #15

              Jeff Beck has actually gotten BETTER thru the years. amazing...

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