Top 5 Old Musicians Actually Using Twitter

Like youth itself, Twitter is wasted on the young. But not everyone over 35 has completely tuned it out -- after a recent upgrade to a smartphone, even I'm using it now after years of Twitterphobia. (Hit me up at @ThePhantomTX.)

Since I've been on, I've learned that most musicians have handed off their Twitter accounts to one of their PR underlings, who use it for the usual patter of tour dates, press releases, fan-club contests and what have you. Once in a while it looks like Willie Nelson (@willienelson) may have wrested control of his account ("congrats," "thank you"), but mostly it's the same spiel as Ozzy Osbourne or Lou Reed. But here are five in my age bracket and above who give it to you from the horse's mouth.

5. Hayes Carll

Age: 36

Follow: @hayescarll

Hayes march 22.jpg
I would like to apologize to Hayes Carll for calling him "old." But let's face it, he's in his mid-30s, which makes him old. (Trust me.) Besides, he's an old soul anyway, which makes him one of the best singer-songwriters Texas has seen in years. His tweets are a blend of sincere interaction with friends and fans, spiced with droll observations from the touring life.

Sample Tweets:

On my way to Oklahoma today and every town we plan go through is under a severe flood warning. This will be fun.

Hit traffic on the way to L.R. but we shall persevere. Stopping at gas station to replenish stock of green t-shirts and Jack Daniels.

Just watched the 4 hour @tompetty doc. Downright inspiring stuff. Resulted in me doing bad petty impersonations all day long.

4. Paul Westerberg (The Replacements)

Age: 53

Follow: @PaulWesterberg

14songs march22.jpg
Founder, leader and chief songwriter of the booziest U.S. rock band of the 1980s with a weakness for Alex Chilton and devastating love songs ("Skyway"), the Replacements, Paul Westerberg has a bizarre Twitter account. There are no Minneapolis weather reports or advice on how to quit smoking, just periodic random examples of Westerberg's pithy, poetic lyrics.

The account started in Spring 2009, updated several times a week for about three months, and then abruptly stopped until this past December. Then it resumed at about the same pace until finally petering out in mid-January with a link to a video for "Ghost on the Canvas," the song Westerberg wrote last year for Glen Campbell's album of the same name.

Even though it may not actually be Westerberg in this case - the "about" line says "I'm just a Replacement for the real guy," although for some reason it really does seem like him - the stuff Westerberg (or whoever) is tweeting is good enough to make me wish he did it more often.

Sample Tweets:

Ring around the rosary Pocket full of prose you read Ashes to ashes we all fall in love

I need a God damn girl I really need a God damn girl

Used to wear my heart on my sleeve/I guess it still shows

We're feelin' good from the pills we took/Oh baby don't give me that look

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The Twitter feed of @MrBlackFrancis is pretty cool too.

Jim Porter
Jim Porter

@kristinhersh oughta be on that list.


good one.


The Paul Westerberg account isn't really Paul Westerberg; hence the comment they have: I'm only a replacement for the real guy.

Jay basically said the same thing. I read the article and got so excited that he was finally on TWITTER to check it out, that I became disappointed to realize it was wasn’t him. I would delete my original response if I could. lol

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