Mgr. Oldřich Poděbradský Ph.D.

Oldřich Poděbradský got his Ph.D. in ethnomusicology at Faculty of Humanities, Charles University for his work Soundscape of Prague Psychedelic Guitar Rock Scene under the supervision of doc. PhDr. Zuzana Jurková Ph.D.

Currently he is teaching ethnomusicology at Faculty of Humanities and besides his academic work he spends his time as a musician and musical and festival producer.

TITLE OF PRESENTATION: “Is it really psychedelic?” Psychedelic rock music and altered states of mind: a Prague case


It is very well known that psychedelic rock music is connected with psychedelic drugs and altered states of mind from its very begging in the 1960’. Musicians, artists and audience likewise in Western Europe were eager to take mind-altering substances, write songs about them and believed in social and political change that would come hand in hand with using these substances. The situation was slightly different in socialist Czechoslovakia, although there was something we can call a “psychedelic rock scene” at the end of the 1960’. But what is the situation in the capital of the Czech Republic in current days? During the last decade with renewed popularity of psychedelic rock music even in more mainstream media, also in the Czech Republic emerged a new “scene” of this genre among young musicians. This paper is based on the five-year research of this genre in Prague. It focuses on how the agents think about psychedelic music in general, if there is some kind of psychedelic rock community, what is the “psychedelic sound”, if there’s a need to take psychedelics to make psychedelic music and if the Prague psychedelic rock is really psychedelic.