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Readers Respond: What Place Do Older Musicians Have in the Music Industry?

Responses: 40

By

From the article: Choosing a Music Career 101

Does the music industry have an age limit? What kind of obstacles do older musicians face in the music industry? Does their genre of music matter? Share your thoughts about age and the music industry - if it matters, why it matters and how older musicians can get around music business ageism.

YOU ARE AN ARTIST FIRST. PEROID.

I got so caught up in the "OMG, Im getting older/ what about my image?" B.S. during my younger years that my ARTISTRY development suffered big time. It wasn't until I stopped caring whether I was too old or not, gonna make it or not, etc,,that my talent and skill really soared. But by then I was already married with a family and had other responsibilities. Moral of the story: If you get derailed with the external B.S. and stop believing in yourself and your ARTISTRY, you will lose sight and never get there.
—AllenBWood

teal marie / guitar

Like others in these responses...I am in my 60's and had played for years; took a 'raising my family break' and learned a few things about myself along the way. I answered a facebook posting by a longtime friend and came out of retirement for a musical project I truly believe in. Now after a couple of years and finding the right musicians (from 21 to 60's) we found a magic combination that is so much fun I have to pinch myself sometimes. The most amazing thing I discovered is I still have my chops... So for me, age is not an issue...quality songs and musicians is the most important for me.
—Guest teal marie

What does age have to do with talent?

God is a story we all have to believe in and life as always had a mstory but a gift is not given it is truly a blessing and rehearsed that comes from experience like the bible believe and have faith wasn't for age defying but fir all same goes fr the talented and shame on the agency fr being wooses to testing Internet take it over from reality but you have reality show why? Doesn't make sine well neither does the music bz anymore oz still rocking and so lives on the heart f rock n roll! So ets appreciate talent not age! I love experience not looks..Los s nice but I'd rather watch ugly sing there heart out then cute sucks...R u 4 real.. I am!...no age on the lifetime musician/ singer...dreamer..dream on! Can,t stop us if we want it just appreciate and enjoy .
—Guest Music Me

I Agree With —michaelfitzhugh

This is so true! The music industry is a mess. It is no longer about putting out the best actual music anymore, it is about selling only. Business and music equals bland music. There are hardly any real musicians on the recordings anymore. Now people coming up do not appreciate anything but DJ's and electronics, mostly which don't require actual musical talent. They use samples. I much prefer people who can communicate with their voices and the instrument that they fought with to learn how to play for years. Many of the kids who are put into the spotlight now, are not real songwriters either. I miss the days when real musicians with great talent were the top dogs. Now, everyone just wants to be famous without doing the work. There are thousands of us out here who can't live without our music. We're experts. We will never see any dividends. Some arrogant narcissist like Chris Brown gets promoted. Give the music industry back to the people with talent. Not glorified strippers!
—Guest Jesus

You're Never Too Old

Granted I'm a jazz and Brazilian singer, but I starting my career at 65. I'm having the time of my life!
—Guest carolemiguel

SINGER/ACTRESS

HI IM A 28 YRS OLD ACTRESS/SINGER AND I'LL BE TURNING 29 SOON, I'M SCARIED OF THE FACT IF I DON'T MAKE IT NOW I NEVER WILL!!! I KNOW EVERYONE SAYING AGE IS NOT A FACTOR BUT MOST WANT TO BE KNOWN AS THAT SEXY YOUNG GIRL OR GUY, I LOOK THE SAME WAY I DID AT 24, 25 PROBLY EVEN BETTER BUT THE SOUND OF THE NUMBER 30 JUST DOES SOMETHING TO EVERYONE IT SOUNDS LIKE YOUR IN A WHOLE NOTHER AGE BRACKETT, AND THATS HARD TO SWOLLOW BUT I'M STILL GOING FOR MY DREAMS I WOULD FEEL MUCH BETTER KNOWING I TRIED.
—Guest LJOSEPH

Surprises from the past

I'm 60 now and have been playing guitar for 50 years. I had my local successes in the 60's, 70's and 80's and got to play the game a bit but I hung it up in the early 80's and only recently picked it back up again. I have a 24 year old bassist, a 48 year old drummer and a 27 year old recording engineer who is heavily into electronic (sampled) music tracks. The young guys are stunned by the original music I regurgitate from the early 70's and wonder why that stuff never made it... they like my tunes a lot as do many other youngsters. It's just something that you never hear anymore. I tell them that there are thousands of unheard gems by doctors to fry cooks who never got signed in their younger days. It's the breaks of the game, talent and innovation have little or nothing to do with it. We play a couple time a week now and I enjoy big time... better than sitting and listening to my arteries harden. Will my stuff ever get "air play", I highly doubt it... does "air play" even exits?
—Guest mudsharkable

MScottBurke

Hi Folks. I am a singer from the Showband days here in Ireland. I still sing and play mainly for charity occasions, and with time and experience I have improved beyond what I used to do. I know that may sound big-headed but there y'ar. I would dearly love to get back in the business properly. I can sing almost anything, Sinatra, Crosby, Marty Robbins, Perry Como, Englebert, Pat Boone, Eddie Fisher and I even sound quite like them. If anyone has any advice I would dearly like to hear from you. Kind Regards, Mike.
—Guest Mike

It matters if you go traditional

If you try to get a record label yes it matters, and you have to be the right look, nice body ( male or female) , most times you dont have to sing that well if you look the part, they will fix the pitch problems in the studio. I am 55 and have been playing and singing and writting songs for over 30 years, I have had offers when i was younger, but nothing ever paned out. I am told all the time , you need to get on those America's Got Talent shows and win it. What I do know, you have a chance to make it in this day and time without the record co. help, thanks to Youtube , if you have got it , go for it, there are people that really want to hear the music and the meaning of a song and not just Look at a person shack there butt. Make a CD and a video or 2 and put it out there, If you have the tallent people will buy it. Thats what I am trying to do now. Lets show them us older pickers and singers can still light some fires and kick some Butt!!!! Ed Thompson, Tallahassee Florida.
—dealmaker56

Research on older musicians

Thank you for your interesting comments! I am a PhD student from Germany and searching for professional orchestra musicians in America to conduct interviews. Is there anyone here? I am staying in the US at the moment. Thanks for your help!
—Guest Sandra

Old mans wisdom

In the old days Maestro's sailed across landscapes and meadows as they played their creations and so it was good to hear .But today those same maestros are cooped up in the crowded alleys of cities creating their music that only sounds like where it comes from. "off concrete jungles all arranged in an ensemble of sounds" that only the blind can follow and a measure of weights they call a beat that energizers them. And that they call entertainment as if they are listening while they are jumping around .So the employer knows no better than the fans and he is there too. So how would he hire an older musician who only drifts in the breeze and there is no weight tied to his feet. A sailor on a dreamboat lost and alone adrift on a.celestial sea. A prophets speech is understood by the few who follow him and always and forever misunderstood by the masses that gather before him. music is not for all but a few .But if it is for gain than you have lost the greatest gift of the gods.
—Guest Philips Philips

Old mans wisdom

In the old days Maestro's sailed across landscapes and meadows as they played their creations and so it was good to hear .But today those same maestros are cooped up in the crowded alleys of cities creating their music that only sounds like where it comes from. "off concrete jungles all arranged in an ensemble of sounds" that only the blind can follow and a measure of weights they call a beat that energizers them. And that they call entertainment as if they are listening while they are jumping around .So the employer knows no better than the fans and he is there too. So how would he hire an older musician who only drifts in the breeze and there is no weight tied to his feet. A sailor on a dreamboat lost and alone adrift on a.celestial sea. A prophets speech is understood by the few who follow him and always and forever misunderstood by the masses that gather before him. music is not for all but a few .But if it is for gain than you have lost the greatest gift of the gods.
—Guest Philips Philips

Who cares

The best musicians are not on the stage where general audiences go to at talent shows. Because general audiences cannot understand good music so they opt for the worst on the local community stage, a one time a week band who only practice for that particular show and count the numbers as they play. Its a cheap shame to say they are talented at all. But sadly they seem to walk away with great prizes and a large fan club . No wonder these audiences are now waiting for 2012 . The curious and the unknowing seeking false tales to lead on their lives. Tomorrow is not seen but only heard off .and in the end one comes to take advantage of the blind to lead them away into 2012. Such is the mind of the of the pawn . There is no harm in cloning as they are already here . you don't need to be a scientist to know that. Simply understood soldiers politicians and religious,and large groups of people who gather for a course are the same . they will build what the will destroy in their own rage .
—Guest Philipphilips

Older musicians

I've been playing guitar and singing for over 30 years and feel just as vital now as I did when I was in my teens. Actually, I feel better about all aspects of my performances because I now have so much experience as far as what to expect: how to deal with mistakes, unruly audience members, etc; also I feel my stage presence is more confident and interesting. I always played with older muscians when I was younger and felt that the experience helped me to learn. I became a much better musician because of playing with people who were far more experienced than I. Now, I try to pay it back by encouraging younger musicians. On the flip side, I like to play with younger musicians because they seem to be more open to newer music than some older ones (although I think that may have to do with where I live right now). Bottom line, true musicians do not care about things like age. We're all in it for the music.
—Guest Demelza1964

Looks and colour matters.

Like I said people come to see ,not to hear if it does not shine they go away to a brighter spot. They will be there where the light spills out on them and deflects their images out wards But you don't get much of that from a dark form where light is more absorbed then deflected. Go back to the T.V.see how many darks appear on the adds . It is sad because they really are a sore sight .Who can help it,even the dark look for whites.we simply have to bare the truth .People who love music will listen more than they see. Because music is thing of the mind and ear and a portel of intence mental energy creating concepts of thought and knoledge, Adrift into the unknown. But the morden man buys the painting that others buy and they hang it on the walls in their hall ways. They say they are lovers of morden art and even experts at that. Music goes a long way when there are only a few to listen and the stage is dark and with only shadows in mind. and no colour dawns the night .
—Guest Philip

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