When the voice goes, it doesn’t come back. Try as they might, Roger Waters and Neil Diamond can’t hold a note like they once could. Age is cruel! Find out which other iconic rock stars can no longer sing like they used to in their heydays.
Meat Loaf struck gold with Bat Out of Hell. The singer has since experienced his ups and downs, and though he can’t sing like he once did, Meat Loaf will be remembered for his hit-making glory days. Watch the clip from a 1998 episode of Behind the Music to learn more.
Axl Rose can’t keep up with the rest of Guns N’ Roses like he used to, as evidenced by this 2014 live performance of “Welcome To The Jungle.” Rose’s vocals are strained, and it sounds as though he’s struggling to keep pace. While guitars, drums, and basses can all be replaced, the voice, unfortunately, cannot be.
Roger Waters relied heavily on a backing track during his performance of “Have A Cigar” in 2009. You can hear Waters pushing to get the notes out, but they just won’t come.
Some say that Bob Dylan never had the best voice in the universe. Stylistic choices aside, Dylan’s voice was phlegmy and raspy during his performance of “Tangled Up In Blue” at the Cadillac Theater in Chicago last year.
Throat surgery in the mid ’80s permanently lowered Sir Elton John‘s voice, forever silencing his trademark falsetto. Captain Fantastic still has extraordinary vocal control, but as you can hear in the video of one of his live concerts at Madison Square Garden in recent years, his vocal tone is starting to go. On the contrary, Elton’s fingers continue to be infallible on the piano.
Marvin Lee Aday, a.k.a. Meat Loaf, was outpaced by singing partner Patti Russo during a live performance of “Paradise By The Dashboard Light” at Night of the Proms in 2001. Russo’s energy level and vocal abilities were noticeably higher than Aday’s, who was visibly tired and relied on the audience to sing parts of his hit for him.
Neil Diamond’s breathy performance of “Sweet Caroline” outside of the States Capitol building in 2013 went to show that the singer’s voice can’t sustain itself like it used to. Diamond furthered the notion when he excitedly called upon the audience to help him out with the last verse.
You’ve got to hand it to Alice Cooper for continuing to don heavy makeup in his older age. While an aging face can be masked with makeup, an aging voice cannot be. Cooper performed “Poison” live at a concert in Michigan last year, often singing out of tune and relying heavily on backup singers to carry him through.