vintage ad for hair dye shows a young man scorning a musician who has
gray hair. The young man orders the old man to go dye his
hair with henna, because musicians must look young to play music properly! Presumably, it is not possible for a person who appears old to play beautiful music . |
Though this ad is old, (date and precise origin unknown, probably early 20th century, South Asia,) the imaging of pop musicians still implies that growing visibly older and 'getting on stage' are mutually exclusive.
Here are recent articles on the cultural discomfort with pop musicians continuing to perform as years go by and their bodies age:
New Wave artists aging gracefully. An 80′s world gone by… This article shows musicians who seem generally reluctant to show their gray hair; women more consistently cover their gray than men.
The Rolling Stones are not young, and two color hair to mask the appearance of aging. At their 2013 Glastonbury performance, "many suggest(ed) the band members were too old to perform as well as they used to."
A commentator for the LA Times wrote of aging rock stars,
"Only, only … I just can’t shake the feeling that something isn’t right. There are plenty of things one can do late in life. ... But is there anything more painful than aging rockers on stage?"
has long been used by performers to enhance their appearance and mask
the appearance of age. European stage performers began to use
henna in the late 1800's, vaudeville, and motion picture stars
Mehandi.com provides henna to many musicians and performers who are covering their gray, but we're not going to tell you who! We can tell you that they look fantastic on stage!
|Prolonged use of
para-phenylenediamine dye increases the likelihood of adverse health
effects, particularly with black chemical hair dye. The prevalence of
black hair dye through the punk and goth years of rock'n'roll may have
lingering effects on the people who used them. |