In recent weeks I have been to a number of gigs starring what might politely be called "veteran" performers. All have been fantastic, both in terms of quality and quantity. They may be getting on, but they still put in a shift that would shame many of their younger peers.
First up was Swamp Dogg (76 years old), then Frankie Valli (84). Last night it was the turn of the Pretty Things, in what was billed as their last ever gig after a career lasting 55 years. Founding members Phil May (74) and Dick Taylor (75) are both still at the height of powers, and the juvenile guest stars Van Morrison (73) and David Gilmour (72) sounded pretty good too.
We were treated to three sets. The first was a selection from their back catalogue by the current line-up (or presumably now the most recent former line-up).
For the second, they were joined by all the members of the line-up that recorded their classic "S./F. Sorrow" album - Wally Waller, Jon Povey and Skip Alan - plus David Gilmour to play selections from that album.
The final set, for part of which they were joined by Van the Man, was mostly R 'n B standards (his and theirs included) with a bit of hippy freak-out thrown in for good measure, and followed by rollicking renditions of "Rosalyn" and "I'm A Road Runner" in the encores.
Of course, even with over two hours of music, there were plenty of their old numbers that they couldn't squeeze in. Here are a couple of personal favourites that I will now never hear them play (unless they were fibbing about it being their last gig).
"You Don't Believe Me" - The Pretty Things
"She Was Tall, She Was High" - The Pretty Things