“Every now and then I think: Should I pack it in? Does anyone want this old geezer in the way?”: Paul Weller on his excitement about modern music

Weller is particularly impressed by Billie Eilish’s What Was I Made For?

Paul Weller on stage playing a Telecaster guitar

Image: Robin Little / Getty

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Paul Weller, who’s gearing up to release his new album 66 later this month (just in time for his 66th birthday), has shared his appreciation for today’s artists, namely Billie Eilish.

Weller says his house is full of records he hasn’t even had the chance to listen to and he often plays music up until the point of feeling like his head will explode. Although a lot of the music he listens to comes from his heroes such as The Beatles or John Coltrane, Weller actually feels greatly inspired by the artists up and coming today.

In the July issue of Mojo, Weller ponders his own longevity in music and shares his belief that “there is so much talent out there” right now.

“Every now and then I think: Should I pack it in? Does anyone want this old geezer in the way? But John Coltrane is one of my biggest influences, not because I want to play jazz but because of his aspiration to greatness, and it makes me realise that I’m not taking up any space that would otherwise be occupied by a young band,” he states.

“I’ll always go back and nick a bit of Beatles and Kinks because that’s what I grew up on, but the real inspiration comes from people now, doing great things.

“I’ve got to say, man, Billie Eilish is fucking great. What Was I Made For? is an incredible tune. It is lovely to see my little girl playing the record on vinyl and singing along to the words because I’m thinking: That was me and The Beatles. Those early inspirations stay with you for the rest of your life.”

Among Weller, a multitude of other established artists have formerly shared praise for Eilish. Dave Grohl had previously called her “rock ‘n’ roll”, Paul Stanley has also complimented her “real” approach to music, and even Butch Vig feels she has impacted a generation in a similar way to Nirvana. Eilish will be releasing a new album, Hit Me Hard And Soft on 17 May.

Paul Weller’s new album lands on 24 May. He will also be heading out on tour this summer.

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