Why the Oldies Endure on Tour

After nearly 6 decades, the Oldies are still one of the most listened eras of music. People of different generations are exposed to the music in various ways. Whether it was when the listener first received the record on vinyl, or a member of Gen Z using Tik Tok to expose the song to listeners, the oldies endure.

When talking about what classifies as Oldies, I am referring to music from the 60’s through the 80’s. As to why this genre of music endures, it has to do with nostalgia, persistence of the artists who made the music, and cross generational appeal. Various artists of the Oldie’s era are still on tour to this day. Some even have the dubious task of headlining major pop music festivals. Here is the comprehensive list of artists on tour currently from that era.

 

 

  1. Stevie Nicks

While on break from Fleetwood Mac, Stevie Nicks has hit the road as a solo artist in 2022 after a brief postponement of tour dates last year. Nicks music both as a solo artist and with Fleetwood Mac are timeless. Nicks’ signature Fleetwood Mac tune “Dreams” went viral 2 years ago on Tiktok, bringing the song to newer listeners. This cross generational appeal of Nicks’s music is what helped keep her on the road. She will largely headline music festivals such as the New Orleans Jazz Festival, and Bonnaroo this summer.

 

 

  1. Journey

One of the more surprising editions of last year’s Lollapalooza Festival in Chicago was the inclusion of Journey in its lineup. The festival is known for being a gathering of who’s who in pop music. On paper Journey made sense, they have some of the best sing a long songs of all time. The group was a hit amongst the multigenerational crowd. It allowed for parents and kids to join in singing along with some of their best-known hits including “Anyway You Want It” and “Don’t Stop Believing”. The night before the festival, Journey played a surprise sold out show playing over 30 hits from their storied career. Playing both a festival and sold-out private show without original singer Steve Perry, now that is what I call longevity.

 

  1. Aerosmith

The Bad Boys from Boston continue to reinvent themselves. Recently the group has taken up a residency in Las Vegas. While many may say that when a band plays Vegas, it usually means that their career is over. This is far from the truth. Their “Deuces are Wild” residency has sold out just about every night since its inception. The group offered new innovative technology as part of the residency as well. This allows the audience member to be fully engaged in the show by listening to the mix of the concert directly from the soundboard. If you don’t care to hear the whole band, you can switch to a Steven Tyler Mix, or any member of the band individually.

 

  1. Eagles

For Don Henley and the rest of his flock, the group are reminding people that the album format still works best for fans of Oldies music. While many from Generation X- Z typically listen to single songs from an artist, the Eagles are proving that the LP is not going away anytime soon. Currently on tour with Vince Gill filling in for the late Glenn Frey, the band is playing its classic Hotel California record in its entirety. The third highest selling LP is hitting the road with the band in all its 40-minute glory. The reason why they are playing the record is “because LPs were shorter back then” Henley quipped to a crowd in Detroit on this tour. Don’t expect a short concert though, as the group plays over 18 of their biggest hits bringing the show to almost 3 hours in length. Not bad for a group of septuagenarian that can sell out stadiums to multiple generations of people.

 

  1. The Who

This summer Rodger Daltrey and Pete Townshend hit the road once again. The group will start their tour this May and come to Philadelphia on the 20th of that month. The group featuring Pete Townshend (76 years old) and Rodger Daltrey (78 years old) will hit the road performing some of their well-known hits. The group has largely remained on tour due to Rodger Daltrey’s cancer charity work with Teen Cancer America. The organization helps put wards for teenagers in children’s hospitals.

 

 

 

  1. Elton John

We all know the joke; this is the farewell tour, this is it, for real this time. Kiss, the Who and many others have been on that tour for over two decades now. Though Elton John seems dead set on making sure that this tour really is his last. Elton John wants this tour to be his last so he can go home and spend time with his family. The tour had some hiccups dealing with the ongoing problems caused by Covid-19 in the touring industry. However, Elton’s tour is back on track and runs until July 2023.

 

 

  1. Motley Crue, Poison, Joan Jett, and Def Leppard

2022 proved that glam metal will never truly die. With its inclusion as part of the soundtrack to HBO’s Peacemaker, to the focus on the lives of Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee, hair metal has proven it’s here to stay. This summer Motley Crue, Def Leppard and Poison will hit the road with help from Joan Jett. The concert is expected to sell out in baseball stadiums around the country. With the arrival of Hulu’s Pam & Tommy, Tommy Lee might just be enough of a draw to bring in a multigenerational crowd to the show.

 

 

As to why the oldies continue to endure, Joe Walsh said it best, “when artists cross multiple generations, the music is here to stay”. Come check out these artists while they are on tour this year. If there are any major tours from artists of this era that I missed, let me know in the comments below.

The Rejected Titles of Famous Rock Records

For us here at Popradio77, we like to talk about what could have been in pop music just as much as what had occurred. Over the years there have been many ideas, songs and collaborations that have been lost over time causing us to wonder what could have been.

This week’s blog explores alternative titles to popular albums and why they were dropped in favor of the more well-known title.

  1. The Smiths Declare That The Queen is Dead

For The Smiths Morrissey, he is as openly political as they come. For the groups record The Queen is Dead, Morrissey originally wanted the record to be called “Margaret and The Guillotine”, named after his staunch distaste for Margarete Thatcher, whom he once called “barbaric”. The record even had a song of the same name that was dropped for the record so it would be less divisive amongst fans. The song that replaced it instead was “Viva Hate”.

 

 

 

  1. The Beatles Fire Blanks With Revolver

For the Beatles, they were struggling to come up with the title to the follow up record to Rubber Soul. The rejected titles were suggested by members of the band. John Lennon had the preposterous title of “Four Sides of the Eternal Triangle”. It doesn’t have the catchiness to it that Revolver did. Ringo Starr suggested “After Geography” a play on the Rolling Stone Aftermath record. “Abracadabra” was also suggested as a title, but the real magic came when the title Revolver came to the group. It was a play on how LP records revolve at 33 and a third revolutions per minute.

 

 

 

  1. The Doctor Almost Wasn’t In On Doolittle

For the Pixies, the record Doolittle was almost named “whore” after lyrics from a song called “Hey”. The group decided to change the name to Doolittle to give the record a more radio friendly title. Despite the raunchy lyrics, “Hey’ ended up as one of the more popular songs off that record.

 

 

 

 

  1. Never Mind the Bollocks Of Choosing Album Titles

For the Sex Pistols, they are blessed with a perfect album title. However, Never Mind the Bollocks was almost never meant to be. The record was originally going to be called “God Save The Sex Pistols” after their song “God Save The Queen”. The album’s title was changed in the middle of 1977 based on a phrase from guitar player Steve Jones. The title stuck and the rest they say is history.

 

 

 

  1. The Rumours about Fleetwood Mac

For the members of Fleetwood Mac, the recording process of Rumours was a tumultuous nightmare. The members Lindsay Buckingham and Stevie Nicks had broken up, and other relationships were on the outs. Christine and Jon McVies relationship was looking over as well. The original title for the record was going to be “Yesterdays Gone” after a lyric from their song “Don’t Stop”. Though in the end the group settled on Rumours as it accurately described the drama and turmoil each member faced when making the record.

 

 

  1. The Automatic Changer That Inspired Let It Bleed

For the Rolling Stones, they were originally going to call their 10th LP, Automatic Changer, after the album cover. The cover featured a cake made with a tire, a clock face, a film canister, and a pizza covered in frosting. The cake was made by Delia Smith who was hired by the albums cover designer Robert Brownjohn. To Delia, the cake was just another job to do and thought nothing of it at the time. The album title changed later to Let It Bleed but Keith Richards liked the cake so much that it was kept on the cover.

 

 

 

 

  1. The Return of the Thin White Duke Was Cut Short

For David Bowie, he liked either “Golden Years” or “The Return of the Thin White Duke” as the title to the follow up to “Young Americans”. David Bowie instead went with Station to Station after one of the tracks on the record as the title.

 

 

 

 

 

 

  1. The Talking Heads Remain In Light

For David Byrne and the Talking Heads, the group was set on the title “Melody Attack” for their fourth album. It wasn’t until the group sat around during downtime and watched a Japanese game show, where the title Remain in Light came from.

 

 

 

  1. Bob Dylan’s Subterranean Homesick Blues

For Bob Dylan, Bring It All Back Home was originally going to be title “Subterranean Homesick Blues”. This was after the classic track of the same name. However, the alternate title still stuck when Dylan’s record company released the record in the Netherlands.

 

 

 

 

  1. Green Day Are Immature

For Billie Joe Armstrong, Mike Dint, and Tre Cool, the members of Green Day had an even more gross title for their hit record Dookie. The record was originally Liquid Dookie, though their label, Warner Brothers deemed it to be “too gross” a title.

 

 

 

 

 

  1. Pink Floyd Eclipses Medicine Head

For Roger Waters, David Gilmour, and the rest of the band, they were set on calling The Dark Side of the Moon, “Eclipse”. The reason for this was that an American band named Medicine Head released an album called Dark Side of the Moon a year prior. However, Medicine Heads record went nowhere in America. The members Pink Floyd figured no one would even remember the record and decided to go with their original title, The Dark Side of the Moon. The rest they say is history.

 

 

  1. Michael Jackson’s Thriller Shines Just as Bright as “Starlight”

For the King of Pop, Michael Jacksons best-selling LP was originally going to be titled Starlight. It was the working title he used when recording the record. However, Rod Temperton, Jacksons song writer changed the title to Thriller. He did this because he thought the record had marketing potential. Temperton was right as the record became the biggest selling LP of all time with over 49.2 million sales as of today.

 

 

 

 

  1. U2’s Tale of Two Americas

For Bono and company, despite recording the record in Joshua Tree, the group had alternative titles in mind. The group originally had “The Two America’s” and “The Desert Songs” as alternatives. The initial album art featured imagery depicting where the desert met civilization. The groups photographer, Anton Corbjin told them of the Joshua trees. Bono liked how the trees were named after the prophet Joshua from the Old Testament. With this information, Bono decided that the record would be named Joshua Tree.

 

 

 

 

  1. Led Zeppelin’s Thanksgiving

Despite being one of Led Zeppelins least famous albums, the records Prescence was almost never felt. The record was made during a trying time for the band. Robert Plant was involved in a car accident the year before amongst other internal problems amongst members. Jimmy Page had suggested the title of “Thanksgiving” for the record due to it being completed before Thanksgiving. The record was named Presence after the black object the family looks at on the album cover.

 

 

  1. Deaf Dumb and Blind Boy Doesn’t Make for a Good Album Name

For the Who, their rock opera Tommy was originally going to be called “Deaf Dumb and Blind Boy”. The record had this title because of the characteristics the rock operas lead character Tommy. Instead, the record was simply named Tommy.

 

The Most Horrific Incidents and Injuries in Music History

Metallica’s James Hetfield Jumps Into The Fire.
  1. Gimme Fuel Gimme (slightly less) Fire That I Desire.

    When Metallica performs live, it is like watching a master craftsman create a marble statue in one go. As a band, they are sonically perfect when performing in front of an audience. They always command their audience’s attention, and the stage show is always second to none. However, when things go wrong, mishaps tend to have disastrous consequences. For the world’s greatest heavy metal band, they embarked on a tour with Guns N Roses in 1992. During a show in Montreal, front man James Hetfield stood too close to the vent that unleashes plumes of flame. As expected, the flames singed Hetfield’s arm causing the show to stop in its tracks. James Hetfield was rushed to the hospital and received treatment for severe third-degree burns. Metallica, ever the professional musicians that they are, continued the tour with Hetfield’s arm in a cast and their guitar tech filling in for him on rhythm guitar for the remaining tour dates.

 

  1. Enrique Iglesias proves that he is a “Hero”
Enrique Iglesias Has a Close Encounter With a Drone

For Enrique Iglesias, the singer likes to play catch with his audience. Occasionally, fans would throw things onstage, and he would catch them. These objects were drones the fans would bring into the stadium during his shows. Enrique would catch them, and the fans would predictably go wild for the stunt. However, one fan tossed a drone that Enrique caught at the wrong angle. The blades of the drone severely cut his fingers, causing him to bleed out onstage. He stepped off to the side to have the injury examined and came back later with his hand wrapped in a t-shirt to play the rest of the show.

 

  1. Breaking the Law has Consequences!
Rob Halford and his Harley Davidson.

For Judas Priest singer Rob Halford, he tends to take risks every now and then. This one risk involved a stunt that had Rob Halford ride a Harley Davidson motorcycle onstage every night. One time however, there was a problem with the motorcycle. The motorcycle crashed into a drum riser that sent Halford to the ground where he was knocked unconscious. The stage crew couldn’t find Halford for a few minutes due to smoke caused by the fog machines. The incident helped Rob Halford make the decision to leave Judas Priest in 1992.

 

 

  1. Keith Richards Rocks Off to The Side of The Stage
Gimme Gimme Shock Treatment!

 

For Keith Richards, playing sold out arenas is a constant source of joy in his life. However, one night, he noticed that the microphone was placed at a different angle. Keith attempted to turn the microphone to face him so he could perform some backing vocals. However, he was “shocked” to discover that the mic electrocuted him and sent him to the ground. The entire show stopped, and Keith was taken by medics to a nearby hospital for treatment.

 

 

 

  1. Get the Firehouse Because I Set My Hair on Fire
Hotter Than Hell

 

For Gene Simmons, he is called the demon for a reason. He levitates from the stage, spits blood and on occasion breathes fire from his mouth. One time during a gig in 1973, Simmons hair caught fire when performing his fire breathing trick. A roady with a wet towel came out to help douse the flames. For Gene Simmons, this would not be the last incident involving his hair and fire. Gene Simmons had roughly seven more mishaps over the course of his career.

 

  1. Keith Moon Goes Out with a Bang.
If At First You Don’t Succeed, add More Explosives!

Being one of the world’s greatest drummers doesn’t necessarily make you one of the world’s most brilliant people. For Keith Moon, the drummer convinced his roadies to load his drum kit with explosives. When on a late show, Moon proceeded to add three times as many explosives in his kit than usual. As the Who finished playing “My Generation”, the drum exploded. While Keith Moon made it out of the way with minimal injuries, Pete Townshend to this day blames the incident on why his hearing is as bad as it is.

 

 

  1. I Think I Broke My F’n Leg

For Dave Grohl, when performing in Sweden with the Foo Fighters, he miscalculated a step. This miscalculation caused the Foo Fighters front man to fall off the stage and severely injure his leg. His doctor hauled him offstage while the rest of the band played classic rock covers to a nervous crowd. Dave Grohl later returned onstage with a cast and a chair and proceeded to play the rest of the show. He would later go on to complete the rest of the tour with a throne inspired by Game Of Thrones so he could nurse his broken leg.

 

  1. The Toxic Twins Are At It Again!
The Toxic Twins Rivalry Continues, Even If it Was By Accident

For Steven Tyler and Joe Perry, the two have a history of feuding. However, this time, Stevens injury was purely accidental. Joe Perry playfully nudged Steven and Steven took a tumble while onstage. This resulted in head, neck, and shoulder injuries for Steven Tyler.

 

 

 

 

 

The First Song

When you first put on a record, it’s always that first song that grabs us. It shocks our musical taste buds and makes the listener want to everything there is to know about the band. The first song on a record should give the audience a good clue as to what the sound, the feel, and what the concept of the album is about.

The Beatles managed to hook listeners from the start of Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. While the first song and title track of the album may not be the best on a record that features such tunes as “With a Little Help from My Friends”, “Fixing a Hole” or “A Day in the Life”. The first song on the record sets the tone for what is to follow.

The song introduces the concept, Sgt. Peppers are a fictional version of the Beatles, and the album itself is supposed to be the group playing “live”. The track sets the tone for the entire record and the record never lets up from there in terms of quality content.

While the first song on the record could be used to introduce its concept, the first song could also mark a transition in sound. For the Who and their album Who’s Next, “Baba O’Riley” dramatically changed groups sound forever. Known for short punk rock songs like “I Can See for Miles” and “My Generation”, the Who shifted focus in direction with this record.

Continuing the theme of making another “Rock Opera” album like Tommy, guitarist Pete Townshend thought that a change in sound was needed. Despite wanting to make new songs, fans had wanted to have The Who to keep playing “My Generation.” Pete Townshend decided to make their new material stand out from what was recorded before. To get the sound he wanted, Townshend made “Baba” impactful as the first track by using an instrument new to The Who, the synthesizer.

The addition of the instrument marked a sonic change for the band. It set the tone for the record to follow, which included more operatic and grandiose sounding songs. These titles included “Bargain”, “Won’t Get Fooled Again” and “The Song Is Over”. Almost all of which featured the use of the synthesizer. The record even featured a wider vocal range from singer Rodger Daltrey, who received help from a vocal coach during the Tommy sessions. All these recording experiments helped change the direction of the band which allowed them to produce some of classic rocks well known hits. This all happened because The Who decided to experiment with their sound and fundamentally alter the course of their career as a result.

 

The video below describes what it feels like to listen to the song for the first time:

The first song off a record is the most important because it sets up a lot of things. It can describe the concept, introduce a sense of wonder, or even change the sound of a band forever. The first song is the one that grabs you and once it does, you want to hear and know everything else the band has done. What is a first song from a record that really got you hooked onto a band or a discovered that it changed the sound from an older group?

 

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