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I can sight read while drunk

Discussion in 'Bass Humor & Gig Stories [BG]' started by BryanM, Nov 4, 2012.

  1. BryanM


    Dec 15, 2007
    Pittsburgh, PA
    When people ask me what instrument I play I usually tell them bass, guitar, a little bit of piano and saxophone when I'm drunk. The qualification being that I can only seem to play sax well, especially from scores, when I'm drunk. I was drinking on halloween night and sat down at the piano to tinker around a bit. There was some sheet music on the holder for a piece by Chopin that I just started playing. I also found Saber Dance and Minuet in G and played through both pretty completely. I didn't think anything of it at the time cause I figured I was just too drunk not to hear mistakes but we had a stereo recorder running that night and I was listening back and asked who was playing the piano. My roommate told me I was playing and commented that I must be practicing a lot when nobody's home. I think now I need to conduct an experiment with an assortment of liquors and instruments. Does anyone else have any similar stories or experiences, or any insight as to why this would be?
  2. Kmonk


    Oct 18, 2012
    South Shore, Massachusetts
    Endorsing Artist: Fender, Spector, Ampeg, Curt Mangan Strings
    Its funny that you say that because when I've been drinking I can play just about any song I've ever heard even if I've never played it before. I once played a private corporate party with a friend's band and everybody was drinking. People were buying us beers and shots. We discussed the songs that I knew ahead of time but while we were playing, the leader started yelling out songs that I had never played. Somehow, I managed to get through them. At one point he turned to me and said "I'm convinced that you can play anything".
  3. Chef FourString

    Chef FourString

    Feb 4, 2011
    Never sight read drunk but we used to get stonned as hell before comp back in high school. We always got 1s. Jazz band was always more fun stonned, too. :)
  4. BryanM


    Dec 15, 2007
    Pittsburgh, PA
    I've got a funny story about getting stoned and playing. When I was in high school I got stoned with some friends and we had a few beers. I grabbed my friend's strat when we got back to his house and started noodling around. I was convinced that I was doing pretty well because everyone was quiet and my friend ran to the corner to throw on a recorder. I must have played around for about 90 minutes like that before my friend decided to go out and light up again, and all the time I was rambling on about what I had played, thinking it was impressive enough to make everyone stop. My 3 friends that I was with were kind of passing looks and laughing a bit, so later that night when I was a bit more clearheaded they put the recording on playback. While I had thought I was doing some impressive playing or at least making reasonable noise, I had actually just been playing the G on the low E string in 8th notes at about 120BPM for almost 90 minutes straight, without stopping and only fluctuating slightly in tempo whenever I tried to say something (which also didn't work as I had perceived it to have done.)
  5. I play and write best when I'm dead tired.

    Like, to the point where my mind cannot focus on anything, and it's sheer muscle memory in my fingers playing the song.
  6. Tat2dHeart

    Tat2dHeart Only two strings away from an attitude problem.

    OP - That's a whole Family Guy episode. Peter's a piano protege while drunk.
  7. MatticusMania

    MatticusMania LANA! HE REMEMBERS ME!

    Sep 10, 2008
    Pomona, SoCal
    Theres also a FG episode in regards to his second post. Peter and Lois get high and play music together thinking its great because theyre stoned, but they sound really awful.
  8. Pilgrim

    Pilgrim Supporting Member

    I can read just fine.

    Problem is that I can't play as well, even though I think I do at the time.
  9. Tat2dHeart

    Tat2dHeart Only two strings away from an attitude problem.

    Ooooh...you're right. I remember that one. :D
  10. I can only sight read while shooting heroin into my eyelids. Also, I can only play 200bpm triplets while burning inside of an incinerator. Duel edged sword...

    Ok, joking aside, I can sight read for voice (in a choir or solo if the music is simple), but I have a tough time translating it to bass guitar. So far, that is... I'm actively practicing it!
  11. ciudadmarron


    Oct 16, 2009
    I am a much better player when drunk.
    Think it's a being a bit looser and like someone else said letting the muscle memory coming to the fore.
  12. Look up "state-dependent learning".
  13. DiabolusInMusic

    DiabolusInMusic Functionless Art is Merely Tolerated Vandalism Supporting Member

    They don't call them "jazz cigarettes" for nothing! :D
  14. rimbaud

    rimbaud Banned

    Nov 17, 2011
    There's "stoned" and "stoned"... yep.... difficult ! let me explain

    I know a guy who's a real killer: he sings like Ben Harper, plays in a blues rock band, he's got the look (rasta dread locks etc...) he's got the hendrix touch of class on guitar, he can play mostly any kind of blues and funk on piano and as a drummer, he kills too.

    Mostly a tiny bit drunk, but sorry... when he's stoned, he can't do anything really well: while he really entertains most of the time, completely drunk he's completely immature: he lost his ring while drumming in a jam session and he couldn't laeve the bar until someone could find him his... ring. He smashed a guitar, and really, he's a nightmare musically speaking when he's drunk.

    But it's really a gifted and nice guy, so gifted that he's also a medical student in his fourth year and has done all the french music academy curse :eek: : 8 years when he was only a teenager !
  15. Russell L

    Russell L

    Mar 5, 2011
    Cayce, SC
    Recorded some of the most creative stuff I've ever heard one night while stoned after oral surgery (under general anesthesia in the big hospital). I was also taking hydrocodone for pain and drinking Rock n Rye. And it was on the keyboard! The next day when I listened to it I was surprised to find that it actually WAS GOOD! No way could I have come up with that stuff straight. Some of it I'm not sure if I remember playing it. I wasn't out from under the anesthesia yet. LOL, my wife caught me in the living room earlier with a soup bowl full and overflowing with apple sauce, dripping all over. I have no recollection of it at all. I certainly wasn't supposed to be smoking after that surgery, but...

    So, ya never know.
  16. Phendyr_Loon

    Phendyr_Loon Supporting Member

    Sep 4, 2010
    I have to admit that I'm more focused and creative when I've had a few beers. That doesn't necessarily mean that I can always remember what I played, but I suppose that's what records are for.

    As far as my skill improving on bass while drinking, I believe that it's more of a boost in the potental which I already posess through less thinking and more doing.