Saturday, September 16, 2006

Age Watch 2006, or "are we falling behind?"

As of today, the oldest Tonic (except for Alek) has lived 23 years, 7 months and 2 days. At this age, here's what some of the greatest artists are doing:
  • Buddy Holly has been dead for more than a year.
  • A few months before committing suicide, Ian Curtis records "Love Will Tear Us Apart" with Joy Division.
  • Morrissey has just formed The Smiths. They are five months away from releasing their first single, "Hand In Glove."
  • Brian Wilson is recording the instrumental tracks for Pet Sounds.
  • John Lennon is filming and recording the soundtrack for A Hard Day's Night.
  • Phil Spector has nearly finished with The Ronettes and is preparing to record "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'" with The Righteous Brothers.
  • Eric Clapton is about to release Disraeli Gears with his band Cream.
  • A year before his breakthrough, Jimi Hendrix forms a band in New York and meets Frank Zappa, who introduces Hendrix to the wah-wah pedal.
  • Roger Waters is recording Piper at the Gates of Dawn with the original Pink Floyd lineup with Syd Barrett. He is about seven years away from Dark Side of the Moon.
  • Syd Barrett comes out of retirement to record The Madcap Laughs, his first solo album.
  • Elliott Smith is still playing in Heatmiser, and is a year away from recording his first solo album, Roman Candle.
  • Thom Yorke is five months away from releasing "Creep" with Radiohead.
  • Conor Oberst is busy promoting his breakthrough album, Lifted or The Story Is in the Soil, Keep Your Ear to the Ground, released a year earlier.
  • Lisa Loeb is playing coffeehouses in New York, and has three years to wait until her breakthrough single, "Stay (I Missed You).
  • Kurt Cobain is a year away from recording Nevermind (including "Smells Like Teen Spirit") with Nirvana.
  • Jack White has just finished recording The White Stripes' debut album.
  • Gwen Stefani and No Doubt are two years away from commercial success.
  • Black Francis is recording Doolittle with The Pixies.
  • Stuart Murdoch is still struggling with chronic fatigue syndrome, and is four years away from forming Belle & Sebastian.
  • Debbie Harry has not yet begun her musical career, and is seven years from her debut record with Blondie.
  • Chris Martin (of Coldplay) introduces the world to "Yellow."
  • Jim Morrison and The Doors have hit #1 on the charts with "Light My Fire."
  • Avril Lavigne has not lived that long.
Non-musical artists tend to be a bit slower:
  • Wallace Stevens has just graduated from law school, and he will work the next twenty years at various law firms and insurance firms before publishing his first book of poetry.
  • T. S. Eliot is a Ph.D student in philosophy. He has already composed most of "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" but is ten years from composing The Waste Land.
  • Sylvia Plath, a Fulbright scholar at Cambridge, is getting ready to marry fellow poet Ted Hughes. She is four years from publishing her first collection of poetry.
  • James Joyce is teaching English in Austria-Hungary. Dubliners will come in nine years. Ulysses, seventeen years.
  • Vincent van Gogh has quit his job at an art dealer, gotten jilted by a love interest, taken up religion, and gone to England to work at a boarding school. In four years, he will decide to be an artist.
  • Yoko Ono composes "Lighting Piece" ("Light a match and watch till it goes out.") about seven years before Fluxus is organized, and ten years before she meets John Lennon.
  • Andy Warhol is working in the commercial arts industry. In two years, he will self-publish a book called 25 Cats Name Sam and One Blue Pussy. The silkscreens will happen about five years later.
  • Pablo Picasso paints Garçon à la pipe during his "Rose Period."