What is Psychedelic Rock?

Psychedelic rock is a genre of music that had it’s peak years from roughly 1966-1969. This type of music is some of my favorite, with it’s distinct sound that centered around the counterculture in the mid to late 1960’s. The sound that came from this genre of music is best described, at least to me, as the youth trying to capture the feel of what it was like to be on psychedelic drugs, with LSD being the most prevalent at that time.


The sound coming out of psychedelic rock were very distinct. It was heavily influenced by the sounds of more eastern musical instruments, based on Indian classical music, such as the sitar and tabla. Also featured was the electric guitar. Experimentation with some unique sounds, such as the use of feedback and fuzz box were used, as well as wah wah units. The use of keyboards was prevalent in psychedelic rock, some being harpsichords, electric organs and the Mellotron. These sounds were very popular with the psychedelic culture, with my favorite keyboardist Ray Manzarek of The Doors, as the leader of the pack in the psychedelic sound.


Some of the best psychedelic rock bands of this era were: Jimi Hendrix, Jefferson Airplane, 13th Floor Elevators, Pink Floyd, The Grateful Dead, Strawberry Alarm Clock, Love, The Electric Prunes, Spirit, Soft Machine, Traffic, and many countless others that were less popular. Maybe the most popular of all, in my opinion, was The Doors. They are my all time favorite band during this era. I have many of these bands in my collection for you to search for, and hopefully will spark your interest.


8 thoughts on “What is Psychedelic Rock?

  1. I was surprised that I knew and even liked some of the bands you mentioned. I didn’t realize that they were considered psychedelic rock. I bet the 60’s were really wild. The Doors and Jimi Hendrix are my favorites from this genre. You have definitely sparked my interest. Thanks for this informative article.

  2. Hi Eric,

    Thank you for sharing. The Psychedelic Rock is the music I remember from my youth and was a time which I enjoyed. I still listen to this music and reminisce about the time of my youth.

    Musical instruments vary in different eras, from Rock ‘n Roll to today. I stopped with music from the mid-2000. Rock ‘n Roll into through the 60’s, including Psychedelic rock is what I listen to the most today.

    Great post. Thanks for sharing this.

    1. Hi Rosa, thank you for stopping by. I have all diffefent kinds of music in my collection, but music from the 60s is my favorite also! Come back and visit the site often, as I will he posting more in the future.

  3. Psychedelic rock. I hear you. The years of LSD. It always remind me of the former lead guitar and singer of Pink Floyd Syd Barret who seemed to have experimented a lot in that direction.

    We can say a lot of things about it. But some pretty good sounds came out of it then I think about Jim Morrison and The Doors. I never get tired of listening to some f their tunes – even today. There’s a certain twist to it that I like.

    1. Hello Guy, thanks for visiting my site and commenting. I think LSD and other influences contributed to the making of some great music, some of the best, you are right! Non better than The Doors, in my opinion! Please visit again!!

  4. They just don’t make them like they used to, do they? Reading this brought back many memories of my youth. I am certain that music wouldn’t be the same without this genre and its pioneers. I hear a lot of bands these days trying to make the psychedelic rock sounds and they just don’t quite hit it…

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