When my son was a teenager, his favorite groups to listen to were many of the bands that I grew up listening to; Def Leppard, Foreigner, Boston, Kansas, Queen, the Beatles, etc. And he wanted to see these bands, or what is left of them, live. As he explained it to me, he wanted to see these iconic performers before they were gone. We ended up seeing many of these groups when they were in town.
Many of these groups band members are now in their 60s and 70s. They certainly have enough money and don’t need to continue to work. They could do pretty much anything they want. Yet they continue to rock on!
Here’s why I believe aging rock stars have the right plan for retirement by continuing to tour and what current and future retirees can learn from them.
1) They Never Really “Retire”
I think the word “retire” is the wrong way to view the latter part of our lives. Retirement, or “to retire” has the connotation of an ending to something. Instead, we should view retirement with a more positive outlook. This might be doing the same or similar work you currently do, or it might be shifting or changing your area of expertise. Consider the possibilities!
These aging rockers just keep playing. They don’t stop doing what they have been doing. Some may end up forming other group or doing solo performances, but they adapt and keep going.
2) It Gives Them Purpose
When transitioning into retirement, it is important to find our purpose. For those changing from a long-time career, this can be a challenge. For these aging musicians, continuing to bring their music to their fans is what continues to give them a purpose.
3) It Allows Them to Continue Doing What They Enjoy
They have identified their purpose and continue to pursue it with passion. Performing live is something that gives them that “being alive” feeling. And, they know the fans want to continue to see them perform. Since they don’t need to do it for the money, they are doing it because they love what they do and it brings joy to others.
4) It Gives Them Flexibility to Work Only When and as Much as They Want To
Older bands seem to tour only occasionally. Some more or less than others. They pick and choose when to tour and when to be at home. This allows them time to pursue other activities.
5) It Keeps Them Connected
As mentioned earlier, fans want to continue to see them. It keeps them connected to their fans and bandmates and others in the music business. They can basically decide who they work with and surround themselves with. They have been in the industry long enough to know who they want to be in a band with and who they don’t want to be around. They choose to be around people they genuinely enjoy spending time with.
6) It Keeps Them Active
In the course of a concert, they get a lot of exercise. Many of the concerts I have seen, the lead singers still go from side to side on the stage, often (still) running and jumping – OK, maybe now it’s more like a stroll and a hop! The other members of the band, guitarist and drummer also get a great workout. In order to do this night after night in their 50s, 60s, and 70s, they must stay in shape in order to continue to do what they enjoy.
7) It Keeps Them Healthy (or at least more than in their younger days!)
Gone are the days of all-night parties. They have been there and done that. Don’t get me wrong, I am sure many of them have a good time prior to or after concerts, but I bet many of them know they must take care of themselves if they want to continue playing. Many of them now are married and have kids. Things like that make a person change. It makes them see what is really important.
Ok, so we will never be a real Rock Star, but maybe we can learn a few things from these aging bands that never seem to slow down. Be your own Rock Star in retirement by following what keeps them healthy, active and social while having a strong purpose to keep going strong!