Anthropology

Classical music illicit drugs work better with classical

The playlist isn’t based on the musical taste of the subjects or the researchers in the project. We have learned that in high-dose sessions, especially during the onset and intense period of entheogen effects, the supportive structure of the music is more important than either the guide’s or the volunteer’s personal musical preferences.

The psilocybin playlist from John Hopkins has been shared by the Columbia University Press Blog. The playlist accompanies a book by William A. Richards entitled Sacred Knowledge: Psychedelics and Religious Experiences. For starters, yes, there is religious music on the playlist. No, there isn’t any Grateful Dead. Now, who is going to be the first symphony orchestra to present a psilocybin concert? Yes, it’s illegal, but what better way to find a new audience than an underground illegal magic mushroom concert based on the John Hopkins playlist? Just so we’re clear, I’m suggesting that illicit drug use become a part of the classical music culture, as it was in the past, in order to create a new audience. Maybe we can start with some medical marijuana since it’s a gateway drug. In states of ego transcendence, the everyday self as the perceiver of music may no longer exist, having entered into a unitive awareness that is claimed to be quite independent of whatever sonic frequencies are coming into the ears through the headphones or loudspeakers. In treating alcoholism with psilocybin, the Johns Hopkins study found that participants responded to Brahms symphonies, of all things. Brahms is criticized for being a bourgeois composer, but apparently his music isn’t for squares. Many of the subjects went on to attend symphony concerts and classical music remained a part of their lives.

From the Article (San Diego Reader):
Illicit drugs work better with classical
Artwork Fair Use: Erik Henningsen

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