Michael J. Burg whispers his wisdom conspiratorially to me across our luxurious table at the Russian Tea Room.
So these aging rockers didn't have the voices they had 50 years ago. So what? It didn't matter. Hearing them sing these familiar tunes was enough to put us in a nostalgic reverie.
If you've listened to Rock Radio in the USA for any length of time in the last 35 years, you have heard Paul Rodgers' voice over 200 times... easy! Paul is probably the most famous and well known rock vocalist that a whole lotta people don't know by name.
It used to be said that somewhere in the world, at any given moment, "Stairway to Heaven" is playing on the radio.
From what Mr. Brown told me, and as the wonderful new movie, "Get On Up" powerfully shows, whatever frustrations he was dealing with then couldn't begin to match the pain, rejection and daily obstacles he endured as boy and young man.
But to be successful at making art, you need an extra measure of sensitivity. Beyond the technical skills, like the ability to play the piano or draw, the artist's superpower is the capacity to feel acutely.
In no particular order of importance here are 10 things I learned during the 39th Annual National Association Black Journalists Convention and Career Fair held in Boston, Massachusetts.
1. Viola Davis, Dan Akyroyd, and Octavia Spencer, should all get Oscar nods. 2. Chadwick Boseman is funky as the Godfather of Soul, Mr. Dynamite, ...
Warts and all, in fits and starts, finally the Hardest Working Man in Show Business gets his story told.
"OH. MY. GOD. It's Mick Jagger!!"
These days, aside from writing for The Huff, amongst others, I basically survive on whatever royalties ASCAP's magnanimous computer feels like doling out each month for composing the theme to Jenna Elfman's last, short-lived CBS sitcom. But, life wasn't always this "amazing."
To be a rock 'n' roll practitioner in this strange place is to be an iconoclast and a dreamer -- like Edward Rogers, and his mentor, Kevin Ayers.
Of course there are lessons to be learned from rock music. As a songwriter, I know this and I try to use it to everyone's advantage. After all, the songwriters I'm referencing all went through their own stuff and toiled to put it all to paper in a concise and relatively snappy, relatable fashion.
If you asked the average person how they feel about the Federal Reserve's latest economic projection that trimmed its estimate of 2014 U.S. GDP growth to a range of 2.1-2.3 percent, they would probably say that's not so hot -- not a recession, but quite depressing nonetheless.
For Eleven Madison Park, Chef Humm selected classic Miles Davis prints ("so cool, fresh, innovative and collaborative"), while the more raucous Rolling Stones photos preside at NoMad, which he calls "our looser, louder sibling."