I don't usually blog about gigs but having witnessed four men in their mid-seventies with a combined age of nearly 300, having the time of their lives on stage, I just had to share this with you as one of the best examples of positive ageing I have seen in a long time......
Like many baby boomers, I grew up with the Rolling Stones and could often be found in my bedroom singing "I can't get no satisfaction" into my hair brush, while my parents looked on in horror! I have seen them live a couple of times since my 20s and have always left the gig declaring that they're the best rock and roll band in the world.
So when they came to Southampton on the South Coast recently it was a no-brainer for me and my school-friend, Dalia, to go see them, along with thousands of 60 and 70 somethings, and thousands of youngsters, including Dalia's son who is 34 and thought they were "amazing". And who knows how much longer we'll see them all together if you get my drift!
The photos aren't great because I wasn't expecting to do a blog but Mick was so energetic and the rest so happy and having such a ball on stage I have to post this, along with a quick "How on earth do they still do it?" look at their health regime.
Mick still struts his stuff, apparently covering 12 miles a night on stage and, considering he's 74, I just sat with my mouth open wondering a) how is he this fit and b) why doesn't it look wrong for a man of that age to still be swivelling his hips: it doesn't look wrong, it looks totally inspiring!
Apparently, he has a punishing physical regime which involves jogging up to 8 miles a day, personal training, yoga and ballet for his posture. He's also into green smoothies (I have some good pro-ageing ones here!), small amounts of protein and a small plate of pasta 4 hours before a gig to keep him going. And he's practically teetotal and drug-free, as they all are nowadays, apart from Keith, who stills enjoys his spliffs!
Keith, the same age as Jagger, said in a recent interview that he hasn't had a drink for months but he still smokes cigarettes, has a joint every morning, plays tennis and does warm up exercises before he goes on stage. Apart from a little arthritis in his fingers, he still plays guitar like the legend he is. (I couldn't stop thinking about him playing Johnny Depp's Pirate Dad, loved him in that!)
Ronnie Wood is the baby of the group at just 70! He used to be Keith's partner in their days of massive drug taking & boozing (but always the best and purest drugs according to Richards, which could explain why they are all still alive!) but is now a clean-living non-smoker and, usually, non-drinker.
He is into yoga, mindfulness meditation, walking and, of course, his art and building stuff. He's not that interested in food and still has a 28 inch waist as does Mick!
And finally, the oldest Stone.......
Charlie Watts is now 76 and is the most laidback drummer you've ever seen! He gave up drink, drugs, and cigarettes way back after breaking his ankle going down to his cellar to get some more wine! He credits his habit of early rising for his continued health and fitness and sticks to small meals and plenty of walking for exercise.
Of course, the band has an army of nutritionists, physiotherapists, chefs and personal trainers etc. to keep them fit and healthy on tour. But there isn't a facelift amongst them, although they all have nice, white shiny teeth. Most important of all: they don't stop grinning, they're having the time of their lives! So, the main message to me seems to be; keep moving, keep working at what you love, keep happy and moderation in everything, including food!
The Rolling Stones have certainly not gathered any moss in my eyes and have completely inspired me to not act my age. When someone patronises me for still dancing at gigs (3 days after this gig we both went to Goodwood to dance to Rudimental!) I will just say, "if it's good enough for four men in their mid-70s, it's good enough for me!"
So what are your thoughts on sex. no drugs, but plenty of rock n' roll at our age?! As usual, I would love to hear from you,