Stop Singing About Drugs: A Bored, Exasperated Plea to 21st-Century Musicians


From Flavorwire:

Drugs and music have a long history, of course. A couple of years back, we looked at the thoughts of a few of our favorite musicians on the idea that drug use can catalyze or augment creativity, an idea that has, for better or worse, been a pretty significant part of rock ‘n’ roll’s mythology over the years. The idea has been around a lot longer than that, too — plenty of jazz musicians got into smack in an effort to emulate Charlie Parker, cocaine was everywhere in the swinging 1920s, and decades before that, proto-rock ‘n’ roller Arthur Rimbaud was writing about getting blotto on absinthe in a quest for a “long, intimidating, immense and rational derangement of all the senses” to inform his poetry.

Still, despite this history, there was still something of the unknown that hung around drugs when rock ‘n’ roll first came along, a kind of clandestine glamor that the musicians of the 1960s and ’70s were eager to embrace. As with plenty of other holdovers from the “golden age” of rock, however, this shit is kinda tired in 2013. We’re not prudish here at Flavorwire, nor are we particularly conservative in our feelings towards drugs. There just isn’t anything particularly mysterious or rebellious about them anymore, not when so much of the economy of Mr. Wavves’ native northern California is based on growing weed (and growers voted against legalization of marijuana because it’d damage the local trade) and even urbanites who aren’t particularly well hooked up can make single phone to get any number of substances delivered to their doorstep.

Whatever aura that might or might not have characterized drug use when rock ‘n’ roll was born has long since dissipated. Drug use is about as quotidian as it gets (as Noel Gallagher once famously said, doing cocaine is as normal for some as “getting up in the morning and having a cup of tea”). These days, it’s far more surprising to meet an adult who’s never tried weed than one who has. That’s not to say that drugs have magically become harmless, of course — but neither is eating fast food or smoking cigarettes or any number of legal pursuits.

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