Excessive drinking by rock bands may have gone by the wayside since the heavy-metal era, but musicians can still sit back and enjoy a terrific mixed drink every now and then. Whether it’s as classic as a Whiskey Ginger or as off-the-wall as something called Penicillin, musicians discuss their love for cocktails and share their favorite recipes.
1. John McCauley (Deer Tick)
The drink: Divine Cuban Screw
Ingredients: Don Q Cristal, Nantucket Nectars Orange Mango and ice
How to make it: Fill pint glass with ice, pour in a lot of Don Q Cristal (I like to count to four or five), top it off with Nantucket Nectars Orange Mango juice, stir, blow bubbles, etc. Enjoy.
Why it’s great: I was drinking a lot of clear rum during the making of Divine Providence. I always liked rum & OJ (Cuban Screw), but the introduction of the mango flavor was pretty great. Drink this (like six or seven of them, basically the whole bottle of rum) and you too can make a drunk rock album.
2. Jim Ward (At the Drive-In)
The drink: Kickstand
Ingredients: Bourbon, Fernet Branca and Grenadine
How to make it: Combine 1.5 oz bourbon, .5 oz Fernet Branca, Splash of Grenadine, and ice in a shaker. Stir for about 30 seconds, strain into short cocktail glass and garnish with one cherry.
Why it’s great: It’s my favorite cocktail. The Fernet/Bourbon combo is deep and delicious—we also use homemade grenadine at both our bars in El Paso (Hope and Anchor and Bowie Feathers) and it has no high fructose corn syrup, so it’s even better!
3. Matthew Caws (Nada Surf)
The drink: Greyhound
Ingredients: Grapefruit juice, vodka and ice
How to make it: Put a few ice cubes in a glass, pour in as much or as little vodka as you’d like, add grapefruit juice.
Why it’s great: I stick to water, wine and whiskey on tour because anything else is not so great for singing, but when I’m not doing shows, this is my favorite alcoholic beverage. The grapefruit juice makes it taste good but its inherent bitterness reminds you that you’re drinking something serious and helps keep you from overdoing it.
4. Ryan Rabin (Grouplove)
The drink: Penicillin
Ingredients: Ice, scotch, honey, fresh ginger and lemon juice.
How to make it: Mix the above ingredients and top off with some Islay scotch and ginger candy and you’ll have a nice night ahead of you.
Why it’s great: It’s considered a classy, old prohibition drink, but it’s still really tasty and goes down easy even though it’s really strong. And it makes us all feel invincible and gives us the ability to fly.
5. Richard Edwards (Margot and the Nuclear So and So’s)
The drink: The Suicide
Ingredients: Trappist Achel blonde ale, Delirium Tremens, La Fin Du Monde, Unibroue and aloe vera extract.
How to make it: Pour all that shit into an oversized Colts mug and stir it like crazy. Shake the aloe vera real good and dump a mess of it in, as well. Sniff it good to make sure it came out right. If it’s been made correctly, it should clear your sinuses when you smell it. Take a sip, let out one huge belch, and watch any stomach ailments/general life problems sail away forever and ever.
Why it’s great: Why is water wet?
6. Tony Smith (Sleeper Agent)
The drink: Dirty Lemonade
Ingredients: Minute-Maid Lemonade (or the cheapest at the liquor store) and Jim Beam
How to make it: Two shots of Jim Beam, fill the rest of the glass with lemonade
Why it’s great: It’s the manliest drink I could find that lets me be a little fruity. Plus, it’s the easiest way to get a girl to drink bourbon.
7. Neyla Pekarek (The Lumineers)
The drink: The Jude Law
Ingredients: Two Long Island Iced Teas (all the clear liquors in the well on ice – twice).
How to make it: Pretty easy, just drink all of it.
Why it’s great: Welcome to the jungle…
8. Mathieu Santos (Ra Ra Riot)
The drink: Grey Goose & Ginger Beer
Ingredients: See above.
How to make it: Ginger Beer + Grey Goose…adjust ratios for how drunk you want to get!
Why it’s great: Well, because ginger beer is great, and it’s got a nice ginger kick that cuts right through the alcohol. It’s very tasty, and it’s very refreshing.