10 Tripped-Out Songs About Hallucinogens and Psychedelics
The Beatles — "Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds"
Picture yourself in a boat on a river / With tangerine trees and marmalade skies / Somebody calls you, you answer quite slowly A girl with kaleidoscope eyes
John Lennon claims that the imagery in this song is about a picture Julian drew. Uh-huh, so it must be a coincidence that the title can be abbreviated as LSD. What kind of kid draws rocking-horse people eating marshmallow pies, anyway?
Jefferson Airplane — "White Rabbit"
One pill makes you larger / And one pill makes you small / And the ones that mother gives you / Don't do anything at all / Go ask Alice, when she's 10 feet tall
Alice in Wonderland may be the all-time best example of a drug trip disguised as a children's story. Though, for the record, LSD didn't exist in Lewis Carroll's lifetime.
Timothy Leary — "How to Operate Your Brain"
This walks a fine line between spoken word and something you'd see at a rave. This video clip is trippy enough to watch sober and get a good sense of Leary's "turn on, tune in, drop out" philosophy.
The Moody Blues — "Legend of a Mind"
He'll fly his astral plane, Takes you trips around the bay, Brings you back the same day, Timothy Leary. Timothy Leary.
Timothy Leary isn't dead, he still uses his astral plane to take you on a trip — or so the Moody Blues say.
Jimi Hendrix — "Purple Haze"
Purple haze all in my brain Lately things just don't seem the same Actin' funny, but I don't know why 'Scuse me while I kiss the sky
Purple Haze isn't just a type of marijuana; it can also refer to LSD.
Of Montreal — "Lysergic Bliss"
And I'm dizzy from her kiss so vertiginous lost in lysergic bliss
Of Montreal shows are pretty crazy. The theatrics can seem like an acid trip, so it should come as no surprise that this song is named after lysergic acid diethylamide.
ATB — "Ecstasy"
Have you ever noticed that I'm not acting as I used to do before? Have you ever wondered why I always keep on coming back for more
Can you picture girls with fuzzy leg warmers and pacifiers twirling lights to this song? Because you should, or just watch the girl writhing around in this video.
Nicki Minaj — "Beez In The Trap ft. 2 Chainz"
There are a few Ecstasy references in Minaj's songs. "Beez in the Trap" has 2 Chainz saying "got your girl on Molly" and Lil Wayne raps "pop a Molly, smoke a blunt, that mean I'm a high roller" in "Roman Reloaded."
Xzibit — "Shrooms"
Yeah, that's some other shit One of the reasons why George Clinton sees the mothership
The lyrical content of this song is fairly obvious, just like...
Eminem — "Mushrooms"
I said, 'Wait, first try this hallucinogen It's better than heroin, Henn, the booze or the gin
This is the beginning of a very, very bad trip.
Editor's Note: This list originally published on August 17, 2012, and was updated for publication on July 5, 2016.
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