Louis Armstrong is most famous for being a beloved jazz musician and composer, but did you know that he was also quite the stoner? He thought of marijuana as a "healthy alternative to drinking," and reportedly would smoke "three cigar-sized joints" everyday throughout most of his life.
Famous painter Vincent Van Gogh created more than a few brilliant works of art in his day, but we bet you didn’t know about his dependence on absinthe and the prescription drug digitalis. He used both to treat his mental illnesses, but one side effect of both of these substances is seeing yellow spots, which might explain this particular painting.
During the production of Return of the Jedi, Phil Tippett, the character animator on set, reportedly wandered off set during a break to drop the tiniest bit of acid. He then came back to work and had a vision for the Rancor pit monster, describing it as a “cross between a bear and a potato.” And we won’t even get into the rampant partying of the three stars of the film...
Oddly enough, the frontman and songwriter of Nirvana known for his crippling heroin addiction was actually a pretty straight-edge guy in the band’s beginning stages. Later, however, Cobain turned to heavy heroin usage and began spiraling downward. Several Nirvana songs written by Cobain have themes of drug use and addiction.
It might seem like a big "duh" that the Beatles would be on this list, but did you know that Paul McCartney was the first British pop star to admit to the media to using LSD? McCartney was quoted saying, "After I took [LSD], it opened my eyes. We only use one-tenth of our brain. Just think what we could accomplish if we could only tap that hidden part. It would mean a whole new world."
Yup, definitely sounds like something a high person would say.
The author of The Shining used to make up a crazy concoction of cocaine, Xanax, Valium, NyQuil, alcohol and marijuana all at once. Yikes! He did this until his family staged an intervention, and to this day he remains sober.
Amy Winehouse’s critically acclaimed, heart-wrenching album “Back To Black” was written almost entirely by the singer herself, but at the same time she was also struggling with debilitating drug and alcohol addictions that lead to her death in 2011.
Charles Dickens, who wrote beloved works including A Christmas Carol and Oliver Twist, was also quite a fan of opium. Opium was a fairly common drug in the Victorian age in London, and it’s believed that Dickens even wrote about his experiences with the drug in his unfinished work, titled The Mystery of Edwin Drood.
The legendary guitar player from Seattle sure was heavy into the drug culture of the ‘70s. He often mixed marijuana with alcohol and other drugs. He also took amphetamines while touring, perhaps to deal with the crippling stage fright he dealt with in his early years.
If you look at some of Andy Warhol’s work, it’s really not too surprising to learn that the iconic artist fancied mind-altering substances from time to time. His drug of choice was Obetrol, otherwise known today as Adderall. He used the drug to stay awake all night.
The iconic singer/songwriter reportedly was a heavy user of marijuana and alcohol during his younger years as a musician. He’s even gone sober in recent years. “I did it for 40 years, “ he told The New York Times. “Now I want to see what it’s like to not do it. It’s just a different perspective.”
It’s been said that much of David Bowie’s early musical success was due to his love for cocaine. Carlos Alomar, one of Bowie’s guitar players, told the New York Post that, “in order for him to stay up all night and finish the tasks at hand, [cocaine] was a huge factor. Its function was to keep you alert, and that’s what he was doing. It did not stop his creativity at all.”
Aaron Sorkin, who wrote the film The American President, smoked crack every single night in his hotel room at The Four Seasons while writing the screenplay. He claims that his drug use is the reason it took him three years to write it. But hey, we got The West Wing out of it, so it's all good.
Did you know that perhaps the most iconic name in art history also dabbled in a plethora of psychotropic drugs? His drugs of choice were opium, morphine and hashish, and some art historians believe that his drug use may have lead to the creation of Cubism.