TABLE OF CONTENTS

music

the Graying of Rock ’n' Roll

IN SEPTEMBER, Forbes published its hit list of “Top 40 Big Money Entertainers”—one guide to what’s really important in the music industry. Of the top five, three were group partnerships that, arguably, have done no work of value since the mid ’70s: at number five, the Eagles (1995 earnings of $43 million); at number four, the Rolling Stones ($71 million); at number three, yes, with the tag line “Guess Who’s Back” and a fetching pic from 1964, the Beatles ($100 million). Building on 1994’s internationally successful Live at the BBC compilation, all parties involved in item three have since gone for the grand archive slam. The ensuing TV series and outtake albums have triggered an unprecedented media frenzy: 1995’s major music story comes from a partnership that hasn’t worked together in 25 years.

The past is everywhere in popular music, so much so that the issue is not so much an esthetic

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