A warning for the curious.

Phil47uk

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In the sad event of the tragic death of Amy Winehouse, I’d like to give a bit of old fart advice to any newbies in the guitar playing business. Steer clear of booze drugs!

I can hear some now saying. What’s that old fart going on about steering clear of booze and drugs..Well give it some thought. That’s how we got to be old farts.
Amy was the same age as my daughter and as my daughter’s also in the music biz, it sent shivers down my back.

I can’t tell you how many good players and friends I have seen smash themselves against the rocks with booze and drugs over the years. Great players in some cases, all deluded it would enhance their art and performance.
It didn’t. It simply turned them into pathetic creatures lurking in the shadows, who couldn’t tell fantasy from reality.

Don’t be tempted by the arsehole that hangs around at gigs and says, “Hey try this man, it’s fantastic and you’ll play a lot better”. Kick his arse out double quick time and I mean it.
I don’t drink at gigs, simply because they are not social events for me but a job.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m no bloody Saint and I’ve certainly had my times completely out of it on free house drinks.
I can’t even remember playing one gig in Madrid back in 1972, because I was so pissed I had to play the whole set from behind the curtains sitting on a chair. Evidently I managed to pull it off, although God knows how, but the rest of the band weren’t too pleased to put it mildly.
Having a phobia about needles helped too as there is no way I’d be injecting myself every few hours.

But why the music biz many have always asked me. Well of course it’s not just the music biz and there are many different reasons people do drugs, but I can only talk from experience.
Here’s one example of which I have witnessed on more than one occasion first hand.
I once played a big gig in a bullring in Spain with around 12,000 people.
You’ve got the best dressing rooms. You’ve got women throwing themselves at you who probably wouldn’t look twice at you twice walking down the street.

The tables are full of bottles of Scotch and all manner of drinks. You can hardly see through the clouds of smoke of pot people are smoking.
Arseholes and hangers on who you have never ever seen before seem to have infiltrated backstage and are offering all sorts of candy to the gullible.

You’ve had a couple of Scotches and suddenly it’s time to get on stage. Everything is surreal as you walk out of the tunnel into the arena and millions of jasmine petals rain down on you. The stadium lights hit you and there is an almighty roar from the crowed.
I remember turning to the bass player whom I have know since we were kids and saying “ F*cking hell”. :shock:
You play a blinding set, because you have rehearsed for six months solid like a day job.. You come of stage, fall into a chair in the dressing room and a gorgeous busty brunette drapes herself all over you, telling you how wonderful you are.
You are God!… Am I?.. Well I suppose I must be. :hmm:

Ah!….. But now comes the great anti climax..
You get in a car and someone asks the roadie to pull over at a bar for some cigarettes.
You get out of the car, walk into the bar and the guy behind the counter says, “ Yes mate can I help you?” Nobody else is paying any attention to your arrival, least of all any women ….. What the f*ck has gone wrong?

Now this is where the drugs and booze come in so handy. Many people simply can’t take that comedown. How can have deity status one minute and the next you are simply Mr Joe Bloggs? They drink and take the drugs to keep them up there, because they simply can’t take that comedown from such a high.

Conceited egos you might say, but believe me it’s not that, it’s like you are two different people and for some that’s hard to cope with.
Luckily I have never taken myself seriously and have always looked at these people backstage and thought ‘ You sycophantic arsehole, you wouldn’t be hanging around me now if I were sitting on a bus in town somewhere’ and sure enough, I have always been right in my assumption. They simply melt away when the spotlight dims.

Ok I’m a boring old fart I agree, but at least I’m still here and flying the flag for rock n’ roll and toasting my many years in the business. Albeit with a glass of fruit juice.
drink4.gif


Don't delude yourself.. Your music is your drug.
 

PapaSquash

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are you kidding? Do you know what I'd give just be Mr Joe Boggs?
 

Ed Zeppeli

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Yeah, I imagine you're either grounded before you hit big status or you're excellent at adapting when you come down.

Good post!
 

nick1962

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Hmm, nothing wrong with (almost) anything in moderation. Some people have addictive personalities though. I have a good friend who is alcoholic and a gambler; his father was the same, and he simply lacks the will to do anything about it, mainly because he enjoys both pursuits so much.
 

Sirzach

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...Where's Vasco when you need him?

Just kidding Phil. Thanks for the post Phil. I never plan on abusing or even using most/if any drugs in the future.
 

Daniel

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Hmm, nothing wrong with (almost) anything in moderation. Some people have addictive personalities though. I have a good friend who is alcoholic and a gambler; his father was the same, and he simply lacks the will to do anything about it, mainly because he enjoys both pursuits so much.

Nothing to do with personality... Nothing to do with will power.

And some drugs even in moderation do so much damage to the soul right off the bat even just trying them on for size it's just like pulling the lever on the toilet.
 

Phil47uk

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Hmm, nothing wrong with (almost) anything in moderation. Some people have addictive personalities though. I have a good friend who is alcoholic and a gambler; his father was the same, and he simply lacks the will to do anything about it, mainly because he enjoys both pursuits so much.

Of course one doesn't have to be a musician to be a drug adict or an alcoholic and there are many different reasons and personality traits involved. I'm merely talking musos who I have known.
 

nick1962

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Nothing to do with personality... Nothing to do with will power.

And some drugs even in moderation do so much damage to the soul right off the bat even just trying them on for size it's just like pulling the lever on the toilet.

I beg to differ, having worked with addicts in psychiatry.
 

Daniel

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I beg to differ, having worked with addicts in psychiatry.

I have little faith in the religion of Psychology (or psychiatry) even though I wasted 6 years getting my degree in it.

You may beg to differ, however, I've worked with many hundreds of addicts and alcoholics for many years.
 

rogerd

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People who have an addiction will learn nothing from Amy's death. That is the nature of the illness

Anybody who has somebody close with a drug/alcohol addiction will understand this. It's nothing to do with 'rock'n'roll' lifestyles. It's nothing to do with music. Nor is it anything to do with advice from older people.

Addiction is an illness that kills. It's not choice. You can't decide not to be an addict. Even if you stay clean, you are always an addict. Just one drink..one hit..and its back to square one...
 
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It's a trap!:laugh2::laugh2:
More like a minefield! I often wonder how we make it through. The world is littered with the dead and dying from getting hooked on substances. Its well recorded in history and in your face all the time, but still people fall in to the same trap (yours truly included). I have managed (so far) to guide my kids through the initial stages (mostly in their twenties now - phew) but you can see the attraction in their eyes - the old dance with death. Has to be some genetic, or inherent, part of us that makes you want to chance your arm. Sorry, this is a bit rambling - ok old farts, tell us why did you do it?
 

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