Editorial: Madonna & Dr. Drew

Editorial: Madonna & Dr. Drew

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LOuV03CNGxU&w=853&h=480]

Scroll to :54 seconds in and you’ll see Madonna, the “Queen of Pop”, ask the crowd “who has seen Molly?”  If you are unfamiliar with the term “Molly,” it’s a slang term for MDMA, aka the active ingredient in Ecstacy.  At first I thought it was funny, but, after digesting it, I am appalled.  I think she did it for two reasons: 1. to stay relevant and 2. to promote her new album.  Given her age and the fact that Lady Gaga dethroned her as the current “Queen of Pop”, she had to do something to stay relevant, especially with her new album (so appropriately named MDNA) coming out this week.  There were 150,000 fans that attended Ultra Music Festival, and between 20,000-50,000 fans watching the live stream at any one point throughout the weekend.  Who would have thought we would be talking about Madonna the day after Ultra.  Congratulations, Madonna, you succeeded.

Due to her celebrity status, she has a moral responsibility not to advocate drug use.  I don’t want to sound like a parent, but there were plenty of young, impressionable kids watching.  Not to mention, she has a teenage daughter of her own.  I’m not taking a stance on whether or not you should or shouldn’t do drugs because that is entirely your choice.   The harsh reality is that doing ecstacy has the potential to be deadly even if it is your very first time.  One problem with the drug is that it often comes out of underground “pill mills”, and, without testing it, you never really know what you are buying.  The same goes with molly.  Molly typically comes in a powder form that may be in a capsule, but when you do it, you roll the dice and hope for the best.  There is a reason why people often feel downright scared the first time they try it(maybe every time).  This simply is not something that Madonna should be advocating or glorifying.  Remember, she gets rich off this hype and could care less about the consequences to the scene or its fans.

The biggest problem that I have with it is helps reaffirm the typical stigma that comes along with the “rave culture.”  Absolutely, I have seen plenty of people on ecstacy and molly at shows.  I’m not going to lie and say that people don’t do it.  But, over the past few years, artists have really been trying to get rid of that stereotype.  The artists make the music because it is the music that they love, not just so some kid has an excuse to get hopped up on ecstacy and bop around a field.  Anyone who can’t enjoy the music without needing to do drugs at every show risks giving the whole scene a bad reputation (see the ‘Reducing Americans Vulnerability to Ecstacy’ act, or the R.A.V.E. Act here).

It gets under my skin when people hear the music that we all love and immediately comment about ecstacy and glow sticks.  When people do this, it not only shows their ignorance, but it also shows how the wrong aspects of the culture are being emphasized.  They should be first commenting about the music.  As I mentioned before, it is in the scene, but the fact that Madonna came out and openly asked who had “seen molly” just brings it to the forefront and destroys any work that the artists themselves have done to rid the scene of that image.

Deadmau5 is one of the first to come out and slam Madonna for this.  This is taken from an article on the Huffington Post:

Very classy there madonna. “HUR DUR HAS ANYONE SEEN MOLLY???” such a great message for the young music lovers at ultra, quite the f’n philanthropist. but hey, at least yer HIP AND TRENDY! fucking cant smack my head hard enough right now.

I can appriciate her meteoric career, and all good deeds done, but WHAT THE FUCK WAS THAT?” he added on Facebook. “That’s your big contribution to EDM? Thats your big message to ultra attendies? hipsterspeak for looking for drugs? fuck off you fucking IDIOT.

It really hurts me to see rampant ADVOCATION of extreme bullshit lifestyles to a genre that spans pretty much any age gap these days …

I just feel like ive been kicked in the balls for a dollar. I’ve always been into electronic music, as far back as i can remember… and around the beginning, i really do remember the times the events i loved were pretty much outlawed by my city simply due to its speculated over-excessive drug use, and the media coverage that everyone loves to lap up around it. Yeah, that bummed me out… kinda made me feel like… how could something so damn interesting, artful, fun and just plain cool, be frowned upon by most….
but look at us now, allthough not completely, and never like to be completely, the dark veil has been lifted slightly and the music and good times and technology is starting to shine through more and more than “the latest breaking news about such and such a drug found only at these underground TECHNO RAVES – Tonight on fox!”

The popularity of the whole scene isn’t helping the stigma either.  When I was in college, none of my friends wanted to attend the shows that I was going to, or hit up festivals like Ultra.  Now it’s the “cool” thing to do.  I think that some of these “scenesters” give it a bad rap, and help to take away from the scene that so many of us try to help make better.  But, with its rise in popularity, we are getting a ton of great new “bedroom producers”.  Gaining true fans that never would have been exposed to it if it hadn’t moved into the mainstream.  It’s really been a beautiful thing watching the scene as a whole grow over the last few years.  My bank account isn’t happy about the rising ticket prices, but that is another issue.

Some of you may bring up the fact that Cedric Gervais is releasing a track called Who has seen Molly?, which effectively does the same thing to a lesser extent.  Or the fact that Tiesto has a track called Ecstasy.  To put it in perspective, some people do actually gain true ecstasy from the music itself.  During the Ultra stream of the A State Of Trance tent on Sunday, the camera showed a girl that was on the verge of tears just because of how amazing the experience was between the setting and the music.  I have personally seen people brought to tears because of how the experience touched them, and to me that is the true “ecstacy” of it all.

To make matters worse, this video was also released today:[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UAwZVwDq4UY&w=853&h=480]

Thank you Dr. Drew for not helping the situation, making a mockery of the scene, and just pushing Madonna even higher.  This just seems to prove that this was the angle Madonna was playing all along.

Sound off in the comments about what you think of it all.

-Jeff Miller

Editor In Chief & Co-founder of TheBeatMill.com and an EDM Fanatic

Agreed. I've been listening to the genre since I was 12 years old, so in no way shape or form is drug use necessary to love this music. I agree that Madonna cheapens it, and the more I think about it, as much of a douche as DeadMau5 can be, I'm gonna have to side with the above arguments on this one. For me, that 'true ecstasy' you talk about is when I hear a really banging track or set for the very first time. It feels like butterflies or something, and its au naturale. But I hope no ones hating on the glow sticks...


Great Article Jeff. Strong and informative break down of the situation before, during and after the show. Thank you for including the very helpful responses that have already started to post from EDM insiders and from the outside media. It really adds warrant and truth to your break down of possible outcomes from the instance on stage. Thanks for helping me increase my knowledge and understanding of the situation. I was mostly unaware of the occurrence before people started talking about it yesterday night.