Musicians who made it through the 1960s are now dying in their 60s. Within the next 20 years, the generation that sang My Generation will be gone. (John Entwhistle died in 2002 aged 57.) These players belong to my parents' generation, and this is what makes their passing so bitter: You know Mum and Dad are next.
Stamp's path through life could have been very different. For an East End lad growing up in post-war London, acting was not on the cards. "I left the East End quite early in terms of other kids my age. My mother made a terrible fuss, but my dad didn't mind at all. But if I was going to try acting, I couldn't have done it had I stayed at home."
All Night Long (1962) is an exception, a film I can't just turn up to. At the weekend I began watching it in jeans and a t-shirt but felt so slobbish that halfway through I paused and changed into a dress. (This wasn't sufficient but it was better.) One must prepare to watch All Night Long, it is an invitation to a party. You should attend in high spirits, your back straight, head held up.
Saturday Night and Sunday Morning's infamous line is "Whatever people say I am, that's what I'm not". This is a sentiment we are all well versed in. I once said it to a PE teacher who chastised me for being 'boring and slow'. You said it to your parents as a temperamental teen. Or to a friend who called you names for liking the wrong things.