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Old 05-12-2013, 05:59 PM   #1
MattMurph
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Pot Playing Guitar and Drinking

We've all heard the stories about musicians getting rocked before a gig. Jim Morrison drinking a six pack before every show, Eric Clapton recording entire albums on the floor smacked out of his mind on heroin, Jerry Garcia tripping balls on acid, etc. I'm wondering if these stories are actually true.

Basically, when I drink even two beers, I lose all ability to play guitar. I have no timing and rhythm, I can't control volume, and I can barely even feel the strings. I do have a slight lack of feeling in my left hand, from shattering two metacarpals and slicing open the other two fingers with electric hedge trimmers (22 stitches), but my right hand is also useless when I'm sheets to the wind.

Is my lack of skill after drinking simply due to the fact that alcohol destroys any and all coordination? Or, should I just play more when I've been drinking? OR, is it just a refection of my skill level, and is something that I will eventually be able to do when I get better at guitar? Perhaps it is a combo?

This thread is not about any other drugs except alcohol, unless that is OK. I don't want violate forum rules. I am also 24.

Last edited by MattMurph : 05-12-2013 at 06:01 PM.
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Old 05-12-2013, 06:09 PM   #2
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maybe you just shouldn't drink and play guitar then

what are you, an alcoholic? how hard is it to wait till after the gig?

i mean it's all fine and good if you're jim morrison, but you're probably no jim morrison.
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Old 05-12-2013, 06:14 PM   #3
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No I am not Jim Morrison. Jim got head on stage in front of thousands of people. I play on my porch.

Waiting until after the gig would imply that I have a gig, or have had, or will have. I guess I've been pretty lazy in that area.
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Old 05-12-2013, 06:56 PM   #4
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m8 dis 1 tym me n da lads got fookin smashed m8 yer get me wuz fookin trollied off triple VKs at wethurspoons n den we get to da club n i knock bak about 5 jagerbombs n den dis burd was givin me the eye lyk n so i fookin got ma geetar out n played sum ****in sweeps n shit n she wer lyk propa luvin it n l8er on i tuk 'er bak to myn n smashed her bk doors in yer get me n den i pluggd in my strat and playd eruption at twice da normal speed wifout any mistakes u jus aint got wat it takes 2 be aswel as me wen ur drunk m8 pro tip jus dont drink if u wana play geetar 2 get birds bruv no wat im sayin?

n den dat bish txt me sayin she got da clap n i fort o well at least i got 2 clapta dem cheeks amirite?
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Old 05-12-2013, 07:03 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by griffRG7321
m8 dis 1 tym me n da lads got fookin smashed m8 yer get me wuz fookin trollied off triple VKs at wethurspoons n den we get to da club n i knock bak about 5 jagerbombs n den dis burd was givin me the eye lyk n so i fookin got ma geetar out n played sum ****in sweeps n shit n she wer lyk propa luvin it n l8er on i tuk 'er bak to myn n smashed her bk doors in yer get me n den i pluggd in my strat and playd eruption at twice da normal speed wifout any mistakes u jus aint got wat it takes 2 be aswel as me wen ur drunk m8 pro tip jus dont drink if u wana play geetar 2 get birds bruv no wat im sayin?

n den dat bish txt me sayin she got da clap n i fort o well at least i got 2 clapta dem cheeks amirite?


What in God's name are you blabbering about?

Long story short, if you are less than a superhuman, you are not going to play better after drinking, right?
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Old 05-12-2013, 07:06 PM   #6
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I actually play and sing pretty decent when I'm drunk. As long as I'm only playing the Guns 'n' Roses version of Knockin' on Heaven's Door...
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Old 05-12-2013, 07:09 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MattMurph
What in God's name are you blabbering about?

Long story short, if you are less than a superhuman, you are not going to play better after drinking, right?


the same people who play better drunk are the ones who play better on heroin

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I actually play and sing pretty decent when I'm drunk. As long as I'm only playing the Guns 'n' Roses version of Knockin' on Heaven's Door...


i lold
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Old 05-12-2013, 07:14 PM   #8
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Back when I smoked weed regularly I think it helped more with the creativity and writing more than anything. As far as the actual playing, definitely a little more sloppy, didn't help the timing either.
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Old 05-12-2013, 07:16 PM   #9
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i shouldnt be proud of the fact that i can play pretty decently drunk its nowhere near my sober levels but no one at a gig is going to notice


you just need to learn how to function while also being pretty hammered its no diffeerent than people who can go to work high or whatever
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Old 05-12-2013, 07:17 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MattMurph
What in God's name are you blabbering about?

Long story short, if you are less than a superhuman, you are not going to play better after drinking, right?


rong m8 jus come out on da town wif me n da lads n get sum vodka redbulls down ya n il show u how its dun m8
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Old 05-12-2013, 07:22 PM   #11
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I'm not a fan of it, unless maybe it's a "Band shot" year the end of a show.
I enjoy being clear headed and to play all of my parts correctly. Oh, and then I enjoy not driving home drunk with all of my gear in my car because I didn't think to have a backup plan.
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Old 05-12-2013, 07:42 PM   #12
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I noticed a couple of nights ago that not only does being drunk make suck in every way,but I had a hard time remembering how to play stuff that I have had memorized for years.My memory goes when I'm drunk.And for the people who say they can still play when they are drunk,record yourself sometime doing just that.It was a real eye opener for me,I thought me and my buddies got into some kind of magical zone jamming all ****ed up,then I heard the recording sober.
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Old 05-12-2013, 08:09 PM   #13
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Excellent stuff so far. I guess I can now say that I play a lot while stoned (marijuana). I've recorded myself sober and stoned and I sound virtually the same in both states of mind, although I LOVE playing stoned. I get high and practice repetitive exercises and play for sometimes 7 hours straight, with breaks of course. I wouldn't play publicly while high though, unless everything was going great. It does make me paranoid at times, and for myself that is as bad as having a few beers, feeling socially loose, and not being able to play at all. I've only played in front of maybe 5 people, so what do I know anyway.

The first guy mentioned alcoholism. Perhaps the reason these people were able to operate so well under the influence was because they were addicts, and were under the influence most of the time, allowing them to learn how to operate under the influence. From my familial experience, after a while some people need a few beers to feel normal, a normal they would consider sober, which is a normal a sober person would consider "under the influence." Or they are superhuman. Or I'm addicted to weed. LOL. JK.

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Old 05-12-2013, 08:32 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rickyvanh
I noticed a couple of nights ago that not only does being drunk make suck in every way,but I had a hard time remembering how to play stuff that I have had memorized for years.My memory goes when I'm drunk.And for the people who say they can still play when they are drunk,record yourself sometime doing just that.It was a real eye opener for me,I thought me and my buddies got into some kind of magical zone jamming all ****ed up,then I heard the recording sober.



look at my youtube and soundlcoud link on my sig

few of those were reocrded completely sober
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Old 05-12-2013, 11:22 PM   #15
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I was in a band that banned me from drinking energy drinks, I could should be high or as drunk they wouldn't care but me speeding up tempo of everything by at least 50bpm and running arround like a lunatic didn't help.
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Old 05-12-2013, 11:27 PM   #16
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look at my youtube and soundlcoud link on my sig

few of those were reocrded completely sober

I'll check your stuff out.I actually don't ever play completely sober either.I don't normally get the urge to pick up my guitar unless I've got my beer and bud buzz underway.But my playing suffers once I've had too many.I enjoy playing buzzed though,I put the headphones on out of consideration for others.
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Old 05-12-2013, 11:59 PM   #17
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Slash couldn't play unless he had been drinking - because his hands shook to much from withdrawal and he would get sick if he didn't drink hard liquor first thing in the morning.

Same with a lot of those guys. Their drug and alcohol use was beyond recreational. They were full on addicts with a real chemical dependency on the drugs they were taking, and without them they couldn't function.

You don't want to get to that point.

As you get better in general you also get better at playing drunk - but you will pretty much always be worse drunk than when you are sober.
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Old 05-13-2013, 12:16 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by rickyvanh
I'll check your stuff out.I actually don't ever play completely sober either.I don't normally get the urge to pick up my guitar unless I've got my beer and bud buzz underway.But my playing suffers once I've had too many.I enjoy playing buzzed though,I put the headphones on out of consideration for others.



i enjoy playing i often play whenever i can...i just drink alot

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Old 05-13-2013, 01:36 AM   #19
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As you get better in general you also get better at playing drunk - but you will pretty much always be worse drunk than when you are sober.
I think there's probably a point where the dis-inhibiting effect of alcohol is beneficial as it helps with self confidence and combats stage fright. At some dosage point, the benefits gained probably out weigh the impairment it causes.

Keep in mind I'm talking in terms of maybe a shot or a can of beer, not a half bottle of Jack.

Those things said, I'd avoid any benzodiazipine to combat nerves. That shit is a muscle relaxant also, and even a small dose kills both my will to play, and my coordination.
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Old 05-13-2013, 08:45 AM   #20
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I rarely drink at all playing now. I used to have a couple of beers before and during a gig but it would get to the point where I wasn't sure whether I was ok to drive home after.

I recently had a couple of beers before a show, maybe 4 or so, had a crappy day at work and juat wanted beer. It was pretty fun, feeling pretty free on the fretboard and confident. People told me I played well, it definitely felt good. However I'd played close to 100 gigs with that band before, could easily play any song of theirs in my sleep. I dont think that the beer "helped" in any way. If you know the songs you don't get stagefright, or alternatively if you gig weekly or more like myself (played around 60 gigs last year) you don't get stagefright even if you don't know the songs :P
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