MUSICAL DECADES - 1960s - Psychedelic Music
Psychedelic music emerged during the 1960s among folk and rock bands in the United States and Britain, creating the subgenres of psychedelic folk, psychedelic rock (or acid rock), and psychedelic pop before declining in the early 1970s.
Psychedelic music (sometimes called psychedelia) was influenced by a subculture of people who used psychedelic drugs such as LSD, psilocybin mushrooms, mescaline and DMT to experience visual and auditory hallucinations, synesthesia and altered states of consciousness. Psychedelia may also aim to enhance the experience of using these drugs.
A number of features are quintessential to psychedelic music. Exotic instrumentation, with a particular fondness for the sitar and tabla are common. Songs often have more disjunctive song structures, key and time signature changes, modal melodies, and drones than contemporary pop music. Surreal, whimsical, esoterically or literary-inspired lyrics are often used. There is often a strong emphasis on extended instrumental segments or jams. There is a strong keyboard presence, using electronic organs, harpsichords, or the Mellotron, an early tape-driven 'sampler' keyboard.<