Slipknot’s Corey Taylor: You don't have to be loaded to create good music

Corey Taylor
Slipknot and Stone Sour frontman Corey Taylor (Image credit: John Lamparski - Getty)

Slipknot and Stone Sour frontman Corey Taylor says he wants to “kill that myth” that alcohol and drugs are needed to be musically creative.

The vocalist was speaking on the latest episode of Daniel P. Carter’s The Marshall Podcast which was recorded earlier this year during Stone Sour’s European tour in support of their Hydrograd album.

Asked if he’s ever lost his motivation and drive behind creating and playing music, Taylor replies: “Only when I was drinking, and that wasn’t because of the music. I was still committed to the music, but I was so out of it that it took me out of myself.

“One of the things I realised and what encouraged me down the road of sobriety was seeing how bad my voice was sounding and how bad my creative level was at. That was a huge piece in me calling it a day on that shit.”

Carter points to the fact that there’s a romanticism that seems to surround musicians when it comes to drink and drugs, and Taylor agrees, saying: “I think it's encouraged by the people who are actually embedded in that. They want people to think that it's hard to create without chemicals – and that's some addict language.

"I used to do that for me, from a performing standpoint. I was convinced I couldn’t perform if I didn't have a Jack and Coke – at least one. And then that became two, and then that became half a bottle. That's addiction."

You don't have to be loaded to fucking create. You don't have to be loaded to fucking have a good time

Corey Taylor

"So I think that's a myth perpetuated by addicts who are looking for people to reinforce their dependency. And it's easy, especially when you see the antics and hear, ‘Oh, it’s such a great time.' And there were great times. 

"However, that had nothing to do with making an album. That had nothing to do with writing and performing and using your ability. That was the after-effect – that was the after-party."

Taylor says he’s only “been loaded” in the recording studio twice, experiences he admits to not liking as he wasn’t in control.

He adds: “I’ve really tried to kill that myth for people. If that’s what you think then God bless you, that’s fine. If that what works for you, I’m not going to convince you otherwise. However, it’s not the law of the land.

"You don't have to be loaded to fucking create. You don't have to be loaded to fucking have a good time. I actually think you sound better and play better and you have a better energy when you're not. Because then the focus is on you. There are no excuses after that. It's you, and that's the rawness of what we do.”

Listen to the full interview below.

Slipknot will head back on the road across South America later this month, before returning to the UK and Europe in early 2020, while Stone Sour will release Hello, You Bastards: Live in Reno on December 13.

Stone Sour: Hello, You Bastards: Live in Reno

Stone Sour: Hello, You Bastards: Live in Reno
Stone Sour recorded their show in Reno on October 5, 2018, and it's packed with some of the band's best-loved tracks, including Rose Red Violent BlueSong #3 and Fabuless

Stone Sour: Hello, You Bastards: Live in Reno
2. Taipei Person / Allah Tea
3. Do Me A Favor
4. Knievel Has Landed
5. Whiplash Pants
6. Absolute Zero
7. Bother
8. Tired
9. Rose Red Violent Blue
10. 30/30-150
11. Get Inside
12. Reborn
13. Song #3
14. Through Glass
15. Made of Scars
16. Fabuless 

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Scott has spent 35 years in newspapers, magazines and online as an editor, production editor, sub-editor, designer, writer and reviewer. Scott joined our news desk in the summer of 2014 before moving to the e-commerce team in 2020. Scott keeps Louder’s buyer’s guides up to date, writes about the best deals for music fans, keeps on top of the latest tech releases and reviews headphones, speakers, earplugs and more. Over the last 10 years, Scott has written more than 11,000 articles across Louder, Classic Rock, Metal Hammer and Prog. He's previously written for publications including IGN, the Sunday Mirror, Daily Record and The Herald newspapers, covering everything from daily news and weekly features, to tech reviews, video games, travel and whisky. Scott's favourite bands are Fields Of The Nephilim, The Cure, New Model Army, All About Eve, The Mission, Cocteau Twins, Drab Majesty, Marillion and Rush.