Use your Rocks Off Mag account to vote in our "G.O.A.T. Votes" polls, earn exclusive profile badges and claim your Rocks Off Mag merch!

Or Sign In With

Don't have an account yet? Register here

by continuing you accept our privacy policy

Use your Rocks Off Mag account to vote in our "G.O.A.T. Votes" polls, earn exclusive profile badges and claim your Rocks Off Mag merch!

What Are Some Of Your Favourite Music Moments?
Or Sign In With

by continuing you accept our privacy policy

Forgot Password ?

Don't worry! It happens. Please enter the
adress associated with your account.

Reset Password

Please enter new password.

Thank you for signing up to the Rocks Off.

To complete the sign up process please verify your email address by clicking on the link that has been sent to you previously speficifed email.

Rocks Off Magazine is reader-supported. When you buy via the links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no cost to you.

The Hippie Music Starter Pack: 4 Bands And 5 Albums That You Need To Listen To

The Hippie Starter Pack: 4 Bands And 5 Albums That Stylized This Period

Hippie culture is something we love to look back on, everyone at some point has romanticized the idea of walking around in bare feet, letting their hair grow long, and embracing flower power.

Whether you have been inspired by Woodstock ‘69, the Summer of Love, or just caught some old snaps of your dad kicking back in his hippie van – here is the hippie music starting point for any prospective hippie to figure out where they fit into this groovy subculture.

If you want to start living the hippie lifestyle, you need to understand their music. Keep reading to find the best hippie music from the glory days to inspire your journey!

Jefferson Airplane – Surrealistic Pillow

hippie music

The Summer of Love was arguably the height of the hippie movement, the warm smell of colitas was rising up through the air, love was free and San Francisco was bustling with long-haired students who just wanted to have a good time.

If there was one band that summed up this movement and time period it was Jefferson Airplane, the most popular band among the Summer of Love and the epicenter of the San Francisco scene where the Summer of Love converged.

The images of them performing at Fantasy Fair in June 1967 is a prime example of the hippie music scene.

‘Somebody to Love’ and ‘White Rabbit’ from their most popular album Surrealistic Pillow, is the foundation and backbone of any free-loving hippie movement.

In the 70s, Jefferson Airplane morphed their sound, and their name, as they became known as Jefferson Starship. Make sure you read our list of the 10 essential Jefferson Starship songs and decide for yourself which you prefer.

The Mamas & The Papas – If You Can Believe Your Eyes And Ears

music for hippies

While the name might throw you off, this folk-pop outfit was another defining band of the counterculture scene in the 1960s.

While Jefferson Airplane are more rock-centric you could consider The Mamas & the Papas as the pop hippie outfit.

Their music has a happy-go-lucky vibe which varied from psychedelic to sugar-coated, but the band themselves fulfilled the hippie archetype in their own lives.

Often traveling a lot, using drugs, and generally being an example of the counterculture at the time.

Michelle Phillips was often known as the ultimate hippy chick and was idolized by many, boys and girls, during the 60s.

‘California Dreamin’ is another hippie ballad that has colored many films based in this era and embraces the typically hippie sound, as well as ‘Go Where You Wanna Go’, both from the album If You Can Believe Your Eyes And Ears.

The Jimi Hendrix Experience – Are You Experienced?

best hippie music

Jimi Hendrix and his fellow band members spearheaded the psychedelic rock that was typical of the hippie movement.

Finding his success mainly in the 1960s until his accidental death in 1970, Hendrix is arguably the figurehead of the hippie movement.

Playing crazy guitar solos like a man possessed, Hendrix summed up everything counterculture and was perhaps the biggest draw of Woodstock ‘69.

A black man who played his guitar backwards, he stylized the whole genre with his mastery of the wah-wah effect and feedback that would later be typical of the genre, there’s no denying that Hendrix was the pioneer of the hippie music we have come to love.

‘Purple Haze’ and ‘The Wind Cries Mary’ from Are You Experienced are the go-to rock jams for any guitarist, let alone someone interested in the hippie movement.

The Beatles – Revolver & Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band

hippie movement

For those who are new to Rock history, The Beatles may be a surprising inclusion on this list.

Yet, The Fab Four went through many phases and during the 60s they made perhaps some of the best psychedelic albums of all time. So much so that we couldn’t pick just one of their albums.

Revolver (1966) was considered to be the first album of the band’s psychedelic period, being a sign of the times.

With Lennon specifically being a psychonaut at the time, and Harrison’s own interest in Eastern spirituality growing, many of the songs embrace avant-garde and ‘trippy’ aesthetics in both their lyrics and sound – ‘Eleanor Rigby’ and ‘Tomorrow Never Knows’ being examples of this.

After the shocking announcement in 1966 that they would stop touring, the band took a three month break.

During this period they moved away from the spotlight and dabbled in psychedelia, with many of the boys traveling to eastern countries exploring esoteric subjects.

The combination of these experiences led them to create Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band (1967), which soon became the band’s most psychedelic and progressive record yet.

The track listing arguably forms one of the earliest conceptual albums, embracing surrealism and absurdism in the name of peace and love – ‘Strawberry Fields Forever’ and ‘I Am The Walrus’ being the best examples.

Both these albums are examples of the hippie ideals that colored both the US and the UK during the 60s and 70s.

To save you the hard work of figuring out what to listen to, we’ve put together a list of the Top 10 Beatles songs of the 1960s. Check it out and let us know what you think!

hippie music

Final Thoughts

The hippie culture and music of the 60s and 70s is something that we can hear in many modern music genres today.

But, arguably, if you wanted to find the source of this psychedelic and spiritual sound, these are the five albums to listen to.

Peace and love!

P.S. Have a look at this video from Vox to see how the classic psychedelic hippie look came about.