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#1
Old 09-07-2007, 09:58 AM
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Songs about getting older?

I'm looking for some songs about getting older, to make a cd for a friend's birthday. I don't know that he's particularly bummed about getting older, but he does keep talking about it. The songs can be serious or light-hearted, but preferably from a first person point of view.

Any ideas?
#2
Old 09-07-2007, 10:01 AM
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"I'm an Adult Now" by The Pursuit of Happiness

Speaking of noise,
I can't take too much loud music.
I mean, I like to play it,
But I sure don't like the racket.


Love that song.
#3
Old 09-07-2007, 10:09 AM
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When I'm Sixty-Four, the Beatles.
#4
Old 09-07-2007, 10:09 AM
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I guess the classic is Frank Sinatra's rendition of "It was a Very Good Year." The last verse is:

But now the days grow short
Im in the autumn of the year
And now I think of my life as vintage wine
from fine old kegs
from the brim to the dregs
And it poured sweet and clear
It was a very good year


I seem to appreciate that song a little more each year.

Last edited by PoorYorick; 09-07-2007 at 10:11 AM.
#5
Old 09-07-2007, 10:12 AM
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As Good as I Once Was - Toby Keith

Sample lyrics:

Quote:
I ain't as good as I once was
I got a few years on me now
But there was a time back in my prime
When I could really lay it down
And if you need some love tonight
Then I might have just enough
I ain't as good as I once was
But I'm as good once as I ever was
#6
Old 09-07-2007, 10:12 AM
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Lies by Stan Rogers


Is this the face that won for her the man
Whose amazed and clumsy fingers put that ring upon her hand?
No need to search that mirror for the years.
The menace in their message shouts across the blur of tears.
So this is Beauty's finish. Like Rodin's "Belle Heauimiere",
The pretty maiden trapped inside the ranch wife's toil and care.
Well, after seven kids, that's no surprise,
But why cannot her mirror tell her lies.
All lies.
All those lines are telling wicked lies.
Lies all lies.
Too many lines there in that face;
Too many to erase or disguise;
They must be telling lies.


Also "The Circle Game" by Joni Mitchell.
#7
Old 09-07-2007, 10:14 AM
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I'm here for my obligatory Harry Chapin reference. Dreams Go By is not one of my favorites by him, but it fits the bill.
#8
Old 09-07-2007, 10:15 AM
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Steely Dan's "Hey Nineteen"

Hey, Nineteen, that's 'retha Franklin
She don't remember the Queen of Soul?
Hard times befallen the sole survivors
She thinks I'm crazy, but I'm just growing old...
#9
Old 09-07-2007, 10:16 AM
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Another one:Middle Age by Steve Forbert.
#10
Old 09-07-2007, 10:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PoorYorick
I guess the classic is Frank Sinatra's rendition of "It was a Very Good Year." The last verse is:

But now the days grow short
Im in the autumn of the year
And now I think of my life as vintage wine
from fine old kegs
from the brim to the dregs
And it poured sweet and clear
It was a very good year


I seem to appreciate that song a little more each year.
I love that song. Especially the way the strings just get more and more melodramatic as it goes on, and his talk of riding in limousines with blue-blooded girls of independent means.
#11
Old 09-07-2007, 10:20 AM
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Another Harry Chapin song: WOLD, about a disc jockey.

Also, maybe, Taxi.
#12
Old 09-07-2007, 10:27 AM
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It's blatant schlock, but 100 Years by Five for Fighting.
#13
Old 09-07-2007, 10:28 AM
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"I Think I'm Going Bald" by Rush

Quote:
I looked in the mirror today
My eyes just didn't seem so bright
I've lost a few more hairs
I think I'm...I'm going bald
#14
Old 09-07-2007, 10:30 AM
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Harry Chapin again with "Cat's In The Cradle"
ABBA's gem "Slipping Through My Fingers"
#15
Old 09-07-2007, 10:32 AM
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"Old Friends" from Bookends (Simon and Garfunkle).
Be warned: pretty sad.

Here it is on YouTube: http://youtube.com/watch?v=WB0nt22Sgi8

Last edited by beowulff; 09-07-2007 at 10:35 AM.
#16
Old 09-07-2007, 10:33 AM
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Sixty Years On ó Elton John and Bernie Taupin

Who'll walk me down to church when I'm sixty years of age
When the ragged dog they gave me has been ten years in the grave
And seŮorita play guitar, play it just for you
My rosary has broken and my beads have all slipped through
#17
Old 09-07-2007, 10:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sauron
Another Harry Chapin song: WOLD, about a disc jockey.
I, too, have a spot on the top of my head, and a (minor) tire around my gut from sittin' on my butt.

Little Miss Magic by Jimmy Buffet isn't specifically about getting old, but it's a nice story about an aging guy who feels "a little more moustache goin' gray..." and who dotes on his daughter.
#18
Old 09-07-2007, 10:34 AM
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Old and Wise by the Alan Parsons Project. Very bittersweet. I hope to have it played at my funeral.
#19
Old 09-07-2007, 10:37 AM
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"Nick of Time" by Bonnie Raitt
#20
Old 09-07-2007, 10:37 AM
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I used Cat Stevens' song "Child for a Day" when I made a bat mitzvah video for my partner's daughter:

Quote:
We're getting older as time goes by
A little older with everyday
We were the children of yesterday
I'll also whole-heartedly recommend the Hothouse Flowers' song "The Older We Get"

Quote:
The older we get the further we see
The more we mean to each other
The more you mean to me
#21
Old 09-07-2007, 10:39 AM
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These are great, thanks. I had considered Frank Sinatra and Hary Chapin, but I didn't even think of most of these.

I don't know if I should open or close the disc with "Older" by They Might Be Giants. It might be too flippant.
#22
Old 09-07-2007, 10:42 AM
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I have to second the "Frank Sinatra's rendition of "It was a Very Good Year.""

Another;
Landslide by Stevie Nicks. The Dixie Chicks covered it fabulisly as well. Either rendition can bring a tear to my eye fast and hard.
#23
Old 09-07-2007, 10:47 AM
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I Am My Dad (lyrics), by Electric Bonsai Band
#24
Old 09-07-2007, 10:47 AM
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When I Grow Up by Michelle Shocked?
#25
Old 09-07-2007, 10:50 AM
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A more cheerful song -- Growing Older But Not Up by Jimmy Buffet.

I'm growing older but not up
My metabolic rate is pleasantly stuck
Let those winds of time blow over my head
I'd rather die while I'm living than live while I'm dead
#26
Old 09-07-2007, 10:51 AM
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How could I forget!
Time by Pink Floyd.
#27
Old 09-07-2007, 10:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robot Arm
I Am My Dad (lyrics), by Electric Bonsai Band
In that vein, there's "Leader of the Band" (video) by Dan Fogelberg. Another one guaranteed to bring a tiny tear to the eye.

Last edited by PoorYorick; 09-07-2007 at 11:00 AM.
#28
Old 09-07-2007, 11:01 AM
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"Grow Old Along with Me", although it is about a couple growing old. John Lennon wrote it and Mary Chapin Carpenter has a nice version.
#29
Old 09-07-2007, 11:07 AM
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Stan Rogers has a other good ones that kind of fit:

45 Years
Down the Road
#30
Old 09-07-2007, 11:19 AM
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"Bungalow" and "Frivolous Tonight" by XTC -- the first is about the dream of retiring to a cottage by the sea; the second, to a relaxed middle-aged spread and conviviality.

"A Simple Kind of Life" by No Doubt is about how a single woman's priorities, notions of love and family, and personality can be changing over the years, not necessarily for the better, and how she still has time to decide one way or another (but it's a very tough choice).

"The Man Who Sailed Around His Soul" by XTC is a masculine take on the same, after the damage was done and the man sits alone in his old age. A grim subject, but wonderfully literate lyrics.

"The Wrong Road Round" by The Go-Betweens -- although the song relates to experience rather than aging per se.

And an honorable mention to the entire album Blast of Silence by The Golden Palominos, which opens and closes with the spoken phrase "A little older, a little more confused" -- and whose songs are less about aging than life's meting out hard-won lessons, and our struggle to find some measure of redemption.

Last edited by The Scrivener; 09-07-2007 at 11:21 AM. Reason: Some [B]XT[/B]ra info.
#31
Old 09-07-2007, 11:32 AM
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Even though there are no words in it, there's "Saturn- The Bringer of Old Age" from Holst's Planets Suite.
#32
Old 09-07-2007, 11:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gigi
"Grow Old Along with Me", although it is about a couple growing old. John Lennon wrote it...
with help from Robert Browning.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alma
I don't know if I should open or close the disc with "Older" by They Might Be Giants. It might be too flippant.
This is the first one I thought of. You must include it.

How old is this friend going to be, by the way?
#33
Old 09-07-2007, 11:45 AM
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Tim McGraw: "My Next Thirty Years"

...Oh, my next thirty years, Iím gonna watch my weight
Eat a few more salads and not stay up so late
Drink a little lemonade and not so many beers
Maybe Iíll remember my next thirty years


The story is that the songwriter, Phil Vassar, woke up on his 30th birthday and wrote the song that day.
#34
Old 09-07-2007, 11:50 AM
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And The Promise Ring's reference to the Sinatra tune on Things Just Getting Good. I haven't listened to it in awhile so the lyrics are sorta sketchy:

Quote:
How September came for Sinatra
.....
When what I came to say is said,
and we all feel the holiday cheer,
Then I hear my swan song singing,
it is winter, then it is a new year.

....somethingsomthing, and my best brother,
with things just getting good.
#35
Old 09-07-2007, 11:54 AM
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Jethro Tull's Too Old to Rock and Roll
#36
Old 09-07-2007, 11:57 AM
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Time Stand Still by Rush

I let my past go too fast
No time to pause --
If I could slow it all down
Like some captain,
Whose ship runs aground --
I can wait until the tide
Comes around

Make each impression
A little bit stronger
Freeze this motion
A little bit longer
The innocence slips away...

Summers going fast --
Nights growing colder
Children growing up --
Old friends growing older
Experience slips away...
#37
Old 09-07-2007, 11:57 AM
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"Night Moves," "Like a Rock," and "Against the Wind," by Bob Seger. He probably did a bunch more.

"On Growing Older," by The Strawbs. The only song I know that uses the word "retrospect."
#38
Old 09-07-2007, 12:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thudlow Boink
with help from Robert Browning.
Was he in The Beatles?
#39
Old 09-07-2007, 12:24 PM
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"I Don't Want to Grow Up" by Tom Waits (featuring Keith Richards). The song in question kicks in at 0:50.
#40
Old 09-07-2007, 12:36 PM
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Paul Simon's Old off of the album You're the One.

It's a bouncy little song starting off with Baby Boomer nostalgia (Buddy Holly, Rolling Stones, Russians in space, etc) and ending up with metaphysical mumblings.

Down the decades, every year
Summer leaves and my birthday's here,
and all my friends stand up and cheer
abd say 'Man, you are old!'


It's fun.
#41
Old 09-07-2007, 01:06 PM
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What about "Sunrise, Sunset" from Fiddler on the Roof? (Depending on how old your friend is)

Bruce Springsteen -- Glory Days

Steely Dan -- Reelin' in the Years

I dunno about Harry Chapin's Taxi, as someone suggested above. If your friend is not happy about the way his/her life is turning out, it may be depressing. Or inspiration to change.

Same thing with George Harrison's All Things Must Pass.
#42
Old 09-07-2007, 01:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thudlow Boink
How old is this friend going to be, by the way?
He's going to be 29. He seems to think that's inexplicably old and that a big chapter of his life is over. I kind of want to rub it in, given that almost all of his friends are older than that. I expect it to be received in good humor.

Last edited by Alma; 09-07-2007 at 01:16 PM.
#43
Old 09-07-2007, 01:17 PM
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Sugar Mountain by Neil Young - All about reaching the ripe old age of 20
#44
Old 09-07-2007, 01:23 PM
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Another one from Rush: "Losing It"
#45
Old 09-07-2007, 01:33 PM
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Grateful Dead's "A Touch of Grey."

Last edited by Diogenes the Cynic; 09-07-2007 at 01:34 PM.
#46
Old 09-07-2007, 01:34 PM
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Old Man by Neil Young
#47
Old 09-07-2007, 01:35 PM
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100 years by Five For Fighting.
#48
Old 09-07-2007, 01:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Staggerlee
I love that song. Especially the way the strings just get more and more melodramatic as it goes on, and his talk of riding in limousines with blue-blooded girls of independent means.
Yes, it's evocative, isn't it? I could never understand what people meant when they described Sinatra as a great interpreter of songs until I really listed to that one.

Then, it could just be because I'm getting older.
#49
Old 09-07-2007, 01:49 PM
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End Of The Line, by The Traveling Wilburys

Well it's all right, even if you're old and gray,
Well it's all right, you still got something to say
Well it's all right, remember to live and let live
Well it's all right, the best you can do is forgive

Well it's all right, riding around in the breeze
Well it's all right, if you live the life you please
Well it's all right, even if the sun don't shine
Well it's all right, we're going to the end of the line
#50
Old 09-07-2007, 01:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chefguy
End Of The Line, by The Traveling Wilburys

Well it's all right, even if you're old and gray,
Well it's all right, you still got something to say
Well it's all right, remember to live and let live
Well it's all right, the best you can do is forgive

Well it's all right, riding around in the breeze
Well it's all right, if you live the life you please
Well it's all right, even if the sun don't shine
Well it's all right, we're going to the end of the line
D'oh! How could I forget that one?

Touching video for that song, with the rocking chair and Roy's picture and all.
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