In 2013, it was reported that worldwide, digital music is selling globally better now than it ever has. All types of music from way back in the forties and fifties to the present day are being downloaded.
This has got me thinking,"Is it ever too late to learn something new or discover a hidden talent?" Some may think too that people approaching retirement age may have left it too late to try, I beg to differ. Especially where music is concerned.
I have a friend who has just taken up playing the cello, It was a 60th birthday present and why not, good for her I say!
Herb Jeffries, a retired American jazz musician, is the oldest living person at just over 100,* followed by our very own Vera Lynn at 96. Take a look at this chart, the Hundred Oldest Rock Stars Still Living.
Vera reached number 1 in 2009 in the UK album charts at the ripe young age of 92. Fred Stobaugh, a 96 year old widower from Illinois is the oldest living artist, to date,to reach the Billboard Hot 100.
Looking for more inspiration? Meet Ruth Jeffery, the oldest living orchestral musician. Ruth has been playing for more than 80 years and at 97, she shows no signs of stopping. As Ruth says in this article..
"It would be too big of a hole in my life if I didn't play anymore.."
'Well I didn't start early enough' is an argument that is often said. Music,it's reported and specifically learning an instrument any age,can be very good for your wellbeing, improving memory and assisting sleep quality, as well as making your smarter.
Phycologist Gary Marcus began learning the guitar at the age of 40. In this, excellent and insightful interview Gary is quoted as saying...
"Kids and adults are differently able. They bring different skills. Adults are more analytical. One thing I was able to do was understand music theory and comprehend it in a way [that kids couldn't]. Kids are more patient and willing to practice the same thing over and over. They don't have the same expectations about being good right away and probably cut themselves more slack and probably have faster fingers."
His book, Guitar Zero, published in 2012 explores the process of taking up a musical instrument as an adult.
I used to play guitar when I was younger. I have since started taking it up again with the help of online video lessons. I will admit that It certainly seems a lot harder to learn now that I'm that much older, but I'm determined to keep it up. Watch this space, I feel a Youtube video one day!
Whether you learn like I did with Youtube and other video lessons, or go and have lessons from a teacher, there really (hopefully) shouldn't be anything regarding your age to stop you!
As piano teacher Art Matthews says about one of his new 80 year old students..
"This gentleman has a quick-witted, razor-sharp mind and in each lesson so far, he has been "fired-up" and "ready-to-go!" He's turning out to be a great student and I love working with him! The benefits of music learning, that apply to our kids, also apply to our senior citizens! It keeps their minds active and young! I'll have to include myself in the latter category!"
Music certainly has no age limits for listeners and learners and I hope I've shown that it's posible to be the same new to the game or old. I think we can all agree that the world would be a much drearier and quieter place without it.
*Herb Jeffries passed away in May 2014. R I P Herb.