He's dying his hair and he can no longer hit the high notes, but at 68, Paul McCartney can still rock the house. In this case- the White House.
I watched the PBS show last night-the broadcast of Sir Paul performing at the White House and receiving the Gershwin Award for popular music. It was a good show, and it was great to see Paul up there doing his thing, but there was a certain surreal element to it- just as there had been previously, when Pete Townshend and Roger Daltrey received Kennedy Center honors.
For a start- Sir Paul is the same age as Barack Obama's MOTHER. President Obama was three years old when the Beatles appeared on the Ed Sullivan Show.
Ringo turned 70 earlier this month, and John would be 70 in October if he hadn't been murdered 30 years ago come December. Julian Lennon, John's older son is only two years younger than the prez. Anniversaries have been popping out of the woodwork the past couple of years- big anniversaries- with numbers like 40 before them. Tet, MLK, RFK, Chicago, Woodstock, Kent State...
Must have been some sort of cataclysmic disturbing shift in the very fabric of time. Wasn't there a contract of sorts- some guarantee that Boomers would stay young forever- never grow old? We're sex, drugs and rock' n roll- not Activia, Viagra and Depends. Getting old is for -well old people- like our parents and grand parents- the ones who were horrified and appalled at our clothes, our hair, our music, our lifestyle. People who in their 50's and 60's wore weird, boring old people clothes, had prim disapproving expressions, worshiped conformity and tradition and hated that awful rock music. The total antithesis of the classic Boomer. We knew we'd never get old like them. We just knew we'd stay young forever.
And I guess partly we have- since to some extent age is a state of mind as well as body. People in their 50's and 60's are MUCH younger now in so many ways than their counterparts of 40 years ago. Hell- back then 40 year olds looked and acted old- primly disapproving of all the things the 'kids' were up to and into.
And hope springs eternal. Bands who hoped they'd die before they got old are still rocking- even if all of the members are officially senior citizens. Though one of these days I'd like to see Charlie Watts admit to his real birthdate of 1938.
Me- I'm still 16.