Classic rock is not dead, it takes a '60s band to make sense of time during Coronavirus - by Chloe Hunt
I will always remember the first song I loved as a kid. It was Beast of Burden by the Rolling Stones; now, this song is nostalgic for me. It reminds me of a blissful childhood, and every single time I hear the opening lead guitar, I cannot help but smile. I forced both of my parents to play this song on repeat in the car, at home and everywhere.
I often think about how the greatest of music is behind us. We still appreciate these legends and their contribution to society, but they are done producing music. Everybody knows that Ringo Starr’s solo career in the 2000s pales in comparison to his contributions to the Beatles, and it seems to be a universal truth that rock is dead. New rock does not have the same vibrancy and heartiness that the classics do.
That is what I thought wholeheartedly, until I heard the Rolling Stones’ new single, Living in a Ghost Town. This is their first original music since 2012, and I could not be more happy. Apparently the Stones began working on this single last year, but in light of Covid-19, they decided to polish it, and give it a new twist. In my opinion, this is their best new single. This song does not remind me of any past Stones album, but I love it. This single is bluesy, and it swings so beautifully, while retaining elements of a Rolling Stones song that we all love. The harmonica solos are especially unique, and one cannot help but listen to the song over and over again.
The lyrics are simplistic, but timely. Some lines really resonate with me, such as:
I’m going nowhere, shut up all alone / So much time to lose just staring at my phone
This is symbolic of how I feel during the day. Once I feel mentally exhausted after a day of online school, it is extremely difficult to muster up the strength to be productive. Instead, I pass a lot of time mindlessly scrolling through my phone.
preachers were a-preaching, charities beseeching, politicians dealing
This is what it feels like as well, and the Stones seem to encapsulate my anxiety. Every press briefing with the Trump administration hurts a little bit. When Trump continuously touts hydroxychloroquine amid overwhelming scientific evidence that says otherwise, it is difficult to be hopeful. It truly feels like we are living in a ghost town. I drove past Rivers Edge park the other day, and it was astonishingly empty. Then, I went to the grocery store to get some necessities for my mom. Aisles were empty, and the new system of living feels so apocalyptic.
What happened to civilization as we know it?
Here is one final lyric that sums up how we are feeling:
Life was so beautiful
Then we all got locked down
The Stones make the message clear, and it is simple. Before this lock down, we all took so much for granted. Life is beautiful and it goes by so quickly. It is important to appreciate what we have and embrace every moment, because now, we are living in a ghost town.
Gracean Ratliff '23