LSD and the '60s Music Scene Essay

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In the sixties, the psychedelic music scene was at its prime and the world was full of hippie musicians that loved to drop acid and create some of the most interesting and innovative music known to man. During this time, drugs were a very popular part of the hippie culture and the prevalence of LSD helped to create the distinct genre of psychedelic music known as psychedelic or acid rock. Many bands and artists such as Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane, The Beatles, and The Byrds were heavily influenced by LSD, which led to the creation of some very popular music. This decade was full of adventure, music, sex, and drugs, and it was all made possible due to this powerfully trippy drug.
In 1938, Albert Hofmann discovered lysergic acid
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The goal of LSD, along with other psychedelic drugs, was to open the mind and “find a new light to look upon things” (Bacig). Many artists took this approach to their music and would drop acid before composing music. This gave the music of this era a distinct sound and without LSD, the world would not have psychedelic rock. During this time, many artists referenced LSD in their songs because of the profound effect it had on them. In order to produce the psychedelic feel, the artists would write “esoteric lyrics, often describing dreams, visions, or hallucinations” as well as use other techniques such as distorting and delaying the sound, and playing sections of the song backwards. Another important part of psychedelic rock is the influence of Indian music. Bands such as The Beatles popularized this technique of using ”exotic instruments like the sitar, the tambura, and the tabla” in their music (Psychedelic Rock). The Beatles were a very well-known and popular band in the sixties. The use of LSD and other drugs heavily influenced two of their albums, Revolver and Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. Their first experience with the drug within the band was when John Lennon and George Harrison accidentally took acid in 1965. After their eye opening incident, Lennon and Harrison decided that Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr needed to try it as well because they found that “[they] couldn't relate to them any more. Not just on the one
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