Hardy Reflects On The Drinking Culture Of Touring: “You Can’t Get Away From It Unless You Switch Careers”

hardy country music

Cold beers and live music go hand in hand.

If you’ve been to enough concerts, you’ve undoubtedly been surrounded by drunk fans, maybe got too drunk yourself a time or two (hundred), and you might’ve even seen a performer so sloppy that the enjoyability of the experience decreases.

But most of us don’t know what it’s like to experience this from the artist’s point of view.

In a casual podcast interview earlier this past summer with the hip-hop recording artist formerly known as Mike Stud, HARDY shared some of his own experiences with alcohol and how it collaborates with performing.

Mike initiated the conversation saying how impressed he was with several of his friends in the industry who have headed into a more “grown up” phase, even though the environment doesn’t make it easy.

“Seems like the Big Loud boys are just kind of a conglomerate… all kind of cleaning up their acts… I try to explain this, as an artist, we are in a drinking culture. Touring artists like yourself, you’re in a drinking culture 24 f*ckin’ 7.”

HARDY agreed:

“You can’t get away from it unless you switch careers.

I’m just over it man, I look back on… from age 21 to like now… this past decade, dude, I had so much fun, and I did everything I wanted to do as far as partying.”

Mike shared some intimate personal truths of his own, in feeling like a few drinks always turns into more for him and HARDY found the conversation entirely relatable.

For most of us, concerts and festivals are a time to relax and let loose, but for artists they live in the “let loose” zone every night.

“Everybody’s different right, but it sounds like we are the same. I can’t, there’s no way I can hit a great buzz and be like ya know what, this is good… I’m gonna let this wear off and go to bed. That’s never happened to me not once in my entire life.

I’ve taken breaks before… a guy told me once just to make sure you can, take a couple weeks off. But I went like four weeks, and we had a show… it was a big festival show, and it was my first sober show in a really long time, and I was nervous.

And I went out there and had the best time, and I was present, and I remembered all of it. And I was looking at people, interacting with people and smiling and laughing, and it was real. None of it was synthetic. And I don’t know, it kind of has flipped a switch.”

Even after hitting his mark for his four weeks of sobriety, HARDY shared that he didn’t enjoy the show that followed near as much as his sober performances:

“And I did the show, and I hated it. And that was the first buzz I had gotten in like a month, and I was foggy. The show was fine, but I was uncomfortable and felt like I wasn’t myself. So then the next night I was like, ya know what, I’m going to not drink again, and I loved it.

Ya know, I shotgun a beer at the end of every show, and I think that might be, for awhile, might be the only time I drink on stage at night, cause I’ve really been enjoying being present, like hosting the party, ya know what I mean?”

It’s an interesting spin on the live performance scenario to consider the artists as the hosts of the party, but it’s absolutely true.

The crowd’s enjoyment is often a direct reflection of the artists’ enjoyment on stage. And the weight of finding the right balance of work and leisure falls primarily on the guys out there performing.

“There’s just something about it man. Being there with everybody and enjoying the experience with everyone as opposed to being kind of sloppy drunk, running around.

There’s something about it I really really like.”

Hardy’s upcoming album, The Mockingbird & The Crow is set to drop on January 20th, 2023.

A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock