In Elle Magazine’s May Women In Music Issue, Lizzy Goodman wrote a profile on Kim Gordon, founder and singer/songwriter/bass and guitar player of Sonic Youth, that put the lie to any notion any of us may have that it’s “too late,” that our opportunities have passed us by, that the choices we made in the early days of our youth have locked us in, like cement, that we aren’t still perfectly free to make a glorious, noise for the next decades of our lives. She’s a reminder to rock on until the stone’s rolled over our grave or our bodies are set ablaze, whichever the case may be, and an exemplar of what it looks like, in the words of Fleetwood Mac, to “handle the seasons of [our] li[ves].”
Gordon at 59 has started a new band, is painting like a fiend, and she’s dating again, being squired about by younger men, a restauranteur, actor and architect among them, following the end of he long marriage to Thurston Moore, her Sonic Youth co-founder and bandmate, and father of her young adult daughter Coco. The marriage ended as these things sometimes do — a midlife crisis, an affair with another woman, counseling, Thurston’s unwillingness, or inability, to leave the other woman so as to knit his family back into a piece. Gordon is honest about the toll this loss took, and it’s her honesty that makes this next turn of her professional and personal screw so instructive for the many of us who, having taken a hit or two by the time we were 30 or 40 or 50 or so, wonder not so much how we can get back up and keep going — there’s something innate in the human survival instinct that allows us to do that — but how we can rise like a phoenix from the ash and set this world ablaze.