Seven Songs from the ’60s and ’70s about Drugs

In the ’60s and ’70s, it was very common for songs to be written and sang about drug usage. During these decades, the majority of bands and the general public was battling drug addiction. Continue reading to learn more about the top 7 songs about drug usage.

 Cold Turkey by John Lennon (1969)

 John Lennon often expressed and exposed himself through his music. The single, Cold Turkey, is a song about his heroin addiction. This song is honest about his withdrawal from this substance. In the last minute, he begins to lose it and expresses it with a series of moans and wails. Then, things in his life get terrifying as he goes through the side effects of withdrawal.

 Gold Dust Woman by Fleetwood Mac (1977)

 The album, Rumours by Fleetwood Mac, was recorded during a time when five members of the band were spiralling out of control. The members of the band were facing personal conflicts, crumbling relationships and drug abuse. Stevie Nicks tries to understand the emotional chaos and drug abuse surround her band in Gold Dust Woman. This song was the darkest song on the Rumours album.

 White Rabbit by Jefferson Airplane (1967)

 White Rabbit from the album Surrealistic Pillow became one of the anthems to the era’s drug scene. Although Jefferson Airplane was not officially advocating drug usage, it became a favorite. It described Lewis Carroll’s beloved tale of Alice in Wonderland and a mix of hallucinogens.

 Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds by The Beatles (1967)

 From the album Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, Lennon claimed Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds was about a drawing his son, Julian, drew; however, many speculate that it was about LSD and other substances. The lyrics talk about kaleidoscope eyes, which makes people believe it is about LSD usage rather than a drawing.

 The Needle and the Damage Done by Neil Young (1972)

 The Needle and the Damage Done from the album Harvest was one of Diamond’s precautionary songs about using drugs. This song was done in the early ’70s when drug use was everywhere. This song was written about band member Danny Whitten’s heroin addiction. Whitten ended up dying within a year of the release of the memorable album.

 Sweet Leaf by Black Sabbath (1971)

 This song was featured on the album Master of Reality and was considered an ultimate stoner jam. The song begins with Tony Iommi’s looped cough, which presumably occurred after ingesting too mush devil’s lettuce. The song then launches into one of the heaviest riffs in music. Then, Ozzy Osbourne begins singing about the positive effects of enjoying a puff every once in awhile.

 The Velvet Underground (1967)

 By the mid-’60s, songs across America were boasting references to LSD and marijuana. However, most were surprised by the seven-minute song about the roller-coaster ride of heroin. This song encompasses the full effects of heroin beginning with the rush of euphoria experienced and ending in a pang of despair.

 The 7 songs listed above is just a sampling of the tunes that were about drugs. This list shows how drug became an integral part of the rock scene and was shown in the music.

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