Originally Posted by fuzzyroes
It seems like once every good songwriter reaches about their mid 40's and on that they simply can't write a good song anymore. The examples are seemingly endless and it's a true rarity to find an odd exception to this rule.
So what is the deal? Do these guys get old and just stop caring about music? All of the older people I know in my life still love music so that can't be it. Is it just that these guys get pushed too hard and they burn out?
I'm 35, and I noticed--as well as my peers who are also songwriters in their mid-30s--that once you hit 30, it becomes more difficult to write good material. You can still do it, but they are few and far between as compared to in your twenties.
I think there's two main reasons (in my experience):
1) You are older and have been doing this for a while, so you are more aware of becoming stagnant. It is hard to break stylistic patterns you created (maybe even mastered) ten years earlier, so in becoming aware of it, you second guess much of what you write. I can come up with a hundred catchy chord sequences and bullshit a fun melody and abstract lyric in five minutes. Will it be good? No because that's an avenue I already explored and it's time to move on, and to set that aside. In effect, there's less of what I perceive as "quality material" because of the time it takes to consciously redefine your own work. Which leads me to the next point...
2) In your 30s, you have to really face real life. 9-to-5 job, kids, a mortgage, bills, etc. I no longer have the time to sit and write songs when I have to wake up, get the kids to school, sit and work for 7 hours, feed kids, get them to soccer practice, then get them in bed--let alone trying to redefine your creative process in order to not become stagnant. This is the real reason you see hot new bands of kids in their twenties: that's the time of your life when you have less responsibilities, and you can just cash in your student loans and go on tour or whatever. Once you are in your thirties, it's time to grow up and be a manager at GC or something.
Just my $0.02