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How Drugs And Alcohol Have Effected The Music Industry

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Holly Hutchinson

on 24 June 2014

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Transcript of How Drugs And Alcohol Have Effected The Music Industry

How Drugs And Alcohol Have Effected The Music Industry

By Isabelle Soupe

The Beatles’ success is agreeably linked with drugs. From their early pre-fame days on Benzedrine and Preludin, to the flower-power era of LSD, and onto harder drugs as the 1960s ended.
The Beatles much preferred the harder drugs and George Harrison said that they weren’t impressed with the effects of Cannabis.
“In Hamburg the waiters always had Preludin – and various other pills, but I remember Preludin because it was such a big trip – and they were all taking these pills to keep themselves awake, to work these incredible hours in this all-night place. And so the waiters, when they’d see the musicians falling over with tiredness or with drink, they’d give you the pill. You’d take the pill, you’d be talking, you’d sober up, you could work almost endlessly – until the pill wore off, then you’d have to have another.” John Lennon

Drugs and alcohol have had many negative effects on the music industry as drug users have been branded as “bad role models” for their fans and in many serious cases musicians have died because of drug and alcohol abuse.
Rockstar Ozzy Osbourne was fired from Black Sabbath in 1978 due to his heavy alcohol and drug abuse.
Amy Winehouse was a brilliantly talented musician, but was reportedly late and drunk for her concerts, or just didn’t turn up at all. She sadly died of an alcohol addiction in 2011.
Whitney Houston was repeatedly in and out of rehab and passed away in 2012 due to her addiction.
Although all of the Beatles were arrested for drug possession at some point, it was rumoured that George Harrison managed an arrest on his wedding day.
Frankie Cocozza was kicked off the Xfactor after boasting about “cocaine-fuelled sex sessions”.

Kurt Cobian was the most well known drug-related rock star in the 70s and was battling with his heroin addiction when he committed suicide in 1994. Both him and his wife Courtney Love made it fashionable to be a “junkie”.
Drug and alcohol use in the music industry has clearly not proven to effect the artists careers badly as artists and bands who are notorious drug/alcohol users such as Snoop Dogg, Dr.Dre, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Sex Pistols, Everclear, Sublime and Iggy Pop have sold almost 60 million albums between them.

Drugs and alcohol have always been present in the music industry, especially in the rock genre, for many years. Many festivals are also known for people taking many different substances as people believe that it enhances their experience.
Some musicians believe that drugs and alcohol have helped them express their talents, “think outside the box” and even help them perform better. Critics have said that the choppy rhythms of David Bowie’s album “Station to Station” are due to his cocaine addiction in the 1970s.
Many rap artists such as Snoop Dogg frequently rap about drugs in a positive way, making it fashionable and somehow seem acceptable which have then rubbed off on their fans.


Drugs have been seen as mind-enhancing substances by many musicians and they believe that most of their great work and artistic movements are influenced by brain altering toxins.
Bob Marley is one of the artists who is well knows for his drug use and it is part of his identity. Despite only being arrested once for possession of marijuana, Bob Marley is well known for his support of Rastafarianism and for being the “King of Cannabis”.





The reason I chose to study the topic "How drugs and alcohol have affected the music industry" is because I think they have always played an important role in the industry and carry on to do so. I also chose this topic because I find it very interesting and I think more people should be aware of the topic.
Week 1.
I first started to briefly research the effects of drugs and alcohol on the music industry and more so on the artists on the internet.

Week 2.
Having gained information I then went round asking members of the public their opinions on the information I gained and their own thoughts of drugs and alcohol in the music industry.

Week 3
. I then looked into more depth the impact of drugs and alcohol concerning the individual artists and their fan bases. Lastly I collected all of the useful information and concluded which approach I was going to take to the presentation.
Full transcript