Here at Hey Stupid Champ Kennedy is known for many skills, but he is the unchallenged mixtape champ of the staff. He often keeps the site rocking as we write, so I feel it’s my duty to periodically let you, the readers, know what keeps Hey Stupid rocking. As Rob Gordon once said: “Now, the making of a good compilation tape is a very subtle art. Many do’s and don’ts. First of all you’re using someone else’s poetry to express how you feel. This is a delicate thing;” “the making of a great compilation tape, like breaking up, is hard to do and takes ages longer than it might seem. You gotta kick off with a killer, to grab attention. Then you got to take it up a notch, but you don’t wanna blow your wad, so then you got to cool it off a notch. There are a lot of rules. Anyway… I’ve started to make a tape… in my head…” Here is Champ Kennedy’s head, poured out for you.
BEST SONGS WRITTEN WHILE THE ARTIST WAS STONED
I’ve always mulled the theory that the best music, the best rock and roll, was written while the artist was on some sort of chemical. This mix highlights some of the greatest hard rocking music to ever be created while musicians were high.
As Bill Hicks once said: “See, I think drugs have done some good things for us, I really do. And if you don’t believe drugs have done good things for us, do me a favor. Go home tonight and take all your albums, all your tapes, and all you CDs, and burn ‘em. Because you know what, the musicians who’ve made all that great music that’s enhanced your lives throughout the years: real fucking high on drugs.”
This list showcases that great relationship between chemical romances and artists. As always, we rank them in order starting with the least-amount-of-drugs-taken-yet-still-banging-our-heads all the way to the unfortunate, inevitable near-comatose-but- rocking-our-fucking-socks-off end of the mix.
Champ Kennedy Presents: The Greatest Songs Written While Dependent On A Chemical Substance
The Rolling Stones – “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction” – Any list on this topic has to include the Rolling Stones. Has to. Just look at the way Mick Jagger dances. The riff of this song is so bad-ass. I’m pretty certain Keith Richards had ran out of veins and was injecting heroin straight into his eyeball to come up with this one. Then he probably forgot it and Mick had to remind him of it. Who cares? It fucking rocks!
Stone Temple Pilots – “Art School Girl” – The first appearance of Scott Weiland on our list. I contend that he was the greatest druggie musician to ever live. Need proof? Listen to STP’s last two records. And anything by Velvet Revolver. See, I was right. He was fedinitely fucked up when writing this song. It’s basically the same four lines repeated over and over again as both the chorus and verse; it’s just about some girl in art school, which he mentioned in four different way. And the pre-chorus, the only variety in the song, should prove it: “I told you five or four times.” What the fuck?
Deftones – “Be Quiet and Drive (Far Away)” – Notorious grass smokers, only the right combination of artistic brilliance and drugs could create this perfect mix of beauty and sheer heavy metal rocking.
Motley Crue – “Dr. Feelgood” – Motley Crue. ‘Nuff said.
Deftones – “Elite” – Another from the Deftones already! This is a chainsaw of heavy metal riffs, drums, and screaming. And it makes almost no sense. Kind of sticks out on an otherwise sweet, atmospheric album, but it’s supposed to.
Metallica – “Fade to Black” – James Hetfield: the notorious metal drunk. He wrote this song right after Metallica’s gear was stolen and he lost some amps his mother had given him. The song’s a metaphor for suicide. How drunk do you think he was?
Led Zeppelin – “Kashmir” – “Oh let the sun beat down upon my face, stars to fill my dream; I am a traveler of both time and space, to be where I have been; To sit with elders of the gentle race, this world has seldom seen; They talk of days for which they sit and wait and all will be revealed.” Only a man ingesting DMT would come up with stuff like this. Even so, it’s some of the most powerful, beautiful sentiments ever put down on a rock record. And when Page comes in with those guitars, who doesn’t get chills? Don’t worry, we’ll hear from these guys again.
Nirvana – “Milk It” – Yeah, I know, Cobain wasn’t a drug addict; he had stomach problems and took pills for the pain. Regardless, he had to have been on something while writing these lyrics:
”I own my own pet virus
I get to pet and name her
Her milk is my shit
My shit it is her milk
Look on the bright side is suicide
Lost eyesight I’m on your side
Angel left wing, right wing, broken wing
Lack of iron and/or sleeping”
It’s contradictory, repetitive, nonsensical, and probably my favorite Nirvana song.
Led Zeppelin – “No Quarter” – Seven minutes of pure rock bombastics. Bonham pounds the skins, Page delivers on the guitar, and Plant regales us with a story of “news that must get through.” Beautiful rock; beautiful high.
Black Sabbath – “Paranoid” – This needs no discussion: have you seen Ozzy lately?
Stone Temple Pilots – “Seven Caged Tigers” – Scott Weiland wants another opportunity to prove he’s the champion drug using artist. Let’s join his press conference already in progress:
”Wastin’ time chasin’ those cows that fly
Churnin’ out all that butterfly sugarboost
Track the blade as it sweeps downward and onward
Take a pill it’ll kill all the martyrs, martyrs
Passin’ time rippin’ as time kicks by
Pass the umbilical cord down for this fly by
Take a sneak while the model earns it earns it
Hike a mile as it keeps crawlin’ on crawlin’ on”
I think he’s taking the lead.
Alice in Chains – “Sludge Factory” – Weiland may ultimately take the title, but Layne Staley may win Mister Congeniality. In this song he compares himself to other druggies and speaks in third-person about being dead by 25. Well, he was a little late, but he was close. God, I miss him.
Stone Temple Pilots – “Trippin’ On a Hole In A Paper Heart” – Rumor has it Weiland wrote this song with a needle still in his vein. We have a winner. Just listen to some of this stuff and tell me he’s not fucked up off his rocker:
”Sippin’ lemon yellow booze ‘ole’ leadbelly sings the blues
All dressed up on wedding day keep on trippin’ anyway
I am I am I said I’m not myself, but I’m not dead and I’m not for sale
So keep your bankroll lottery eat your salad day deathbed motorcade”
I’m not sure I know what that means, but this song fucking rocks me out everytime. Weiland sings with so much power and passion and the guitar solo fucking rules. Listen to the record Tiny Music and tell me we’re not better off with our rock stars close to comatose.
Jimi Hendrix – “Voodoo Child (Slight Return)” – “Well, I stand up next to a mountain and I chop it down with the edge of my hand.” That’s a fucking rock star. (And Stevie Ray Vaughan gets an honorable mention here for his version.)
The Beatles – “Yellow Submarine” – “We all live in a yellow submarine?” What the fuck? How are we supposed to hide from the Ruskies if we’re in a yellow sub? That’s not very stealth. The Beatles had to have been high when they wrote this one. Hell, need more proof: they even let Ringo sing it.
Peach – “You Lied” – Three chords + monstrous drum beat + the same eight lines repeated over and over again = 7 minutes of perfect windmill-era rocking. Check these guys out if you haven’t yet; they are heavy metal to the core.