Smoking has long been associated with the music world from the days of hard rock bands in the 60’s and 70’s (think Keith Richard and the Rolling Stones – he was never seen without a cigarette in his mouth and still isn’t as a septuagenarian). Even fans of Bob Dylan and Leonard Cohen will recall barely being able to see the artist through the clouds of smoke encompassing them. Concert-goers followed the trend, and even at home, there was nothing quite like pulsing out the music, cigarette in hand.
Yet as we are all aware, far too many acts have had struggles with addiction, with smoking just the tip of the iceberg. Tobacco, tar, and other nasty chemicals may have lent a distinctive sound to some such as Tom Waits, but for other, damaged lungs and vocal cords are the price they’ve paid for years of abuse.
Music still lives on, but not so cigarette smoking. Thanks to the creative mind of Chinese innovator Hon Lik, what was once a guilty pleasure is now a relatively harmless hobby, as the e-cigarette has gone from hipster accessory to mainstream in an astonishing rise.
There has been a huge shift in the music world from harmful smoking. Musicians are jumping on the vaping bandwagon, quitting smoking and becoming vaping brand ambassadors.
Tom Petty, Katy Perry, Lenny Kravitz and numerous DJ’s all promote vaping. Pharrell Williams has even written songs about it (Vape and Be Happy Remix), as well as Rich KrK, Dromahtyz and DJ Trizzles of the Seven Cities Syndicate, Vaporactive – Smoke Free Source and Sean Verchick (Radioactive – Imagine Dragons), – the list is endless. Surely it won’t be too long before we see a ‘Now That’s What I call Vaping’ CD.
Vaping to music has become a phenomenon on YouTube, including the passion for creating the biggest cloud of ‘vape smoke’.
For those particularly into the music scene, whether you’re a performer or viewer, the days of huddling together out in the cold for a smoke are over. Whilst the rules on using these at gigs varies from venue to venue, chances are that the hosts will be more likely to look the other way. Although you might lose the option to strike up a conversation over borrowing a lighter, those non-smokers around you will appreciate this shift in your habit.
On a more technical level, e-cigs work with flavoured e-liquids containing of Vegetable Glycerin (VG) or Propylene Glycol (PG). The proportion of each can be adjusted to create bigger vape clouds, or better emulate the “throat hit” of smoking (why on earth would you want to…). The larger clouds are generated by VG, while PG does the throaty thing. Anyway, for singers, if it’s the feel of your throat that has you worried, VG liquid packs far less of a throat hit than PG does and you can even go 100% VG.
So, if you’re trying to juggle the life of a music lover with that of a smoker, then vaping might work for you. Whilst cigarettes may have once served a purpose establishing the identity of so many artists, the long-term risks have always been a cause for concern. With eCigs, whilst it may be early days to claim it’s “fully safe”, experts and the NHS agree, it’s a whole lot better than smoking ciggies.