Are Indica or Sativa Strains Better When Listening to Music?


Most people would agree that music sounds incredible when you’re high. And whether you prefer relaxing to chilled-out reggae beats or banging your head to something altogether heavier, out there somewhere is the perfect strain for you.

But should you choose an indica or sativa bud to enhance your listening experience? Stay tuned to find out.

Music and Marijuana: Why Your Favorite Tunes Sound Better When You’re High

Before getting down to the nitty-gritty of which marijuana strains are best for music, let’s take a quick look at why weed makes your favorite tunes sound so much better than usual.

There are several different theories surrounding the connection between cannabis and sound. Firstly, weed is well-known for altering your perception of time. Research has shown that being high causes your internal clock to move more quickly than usual, meaning that external time appears to slow right down.

When this effect is combined with the increased attention and focus that many strains provide, it is possible that pot allows you to hear subtle notes that you may miss under normal circumstances. It is also likely that being high will enable you to concentrate more fully on the music itself rather than letting it wash over you while you complete other tasks.

In high doses, marijuana can even induce synaesthesia, the phenomenon of seeing sound as color. Combined with the right tunes, this can make for a very cool and trippy experience!

In his article The Space Between the Notes, Jӧrg Fachner discusses in detail how cannabis can alter your perception of music. It makes for fascinating reading if you are interested in learning more.

Although the connection between marijuana and music is well documented, there is little information available on whether sativa or indica strains make for better listening. Is there any difference between the two?

Are Indica or Sativa Strains Best for Music?

There is much debate within the marijuana community about whether sativa and indica strains are different species of cannabis or one species which has evolved to develop different characteristics over time. However, what is generally accepted is that sativa strains produce more uplifting, cerebral effects, while indicas produce a more sedative ‘body high.’

Therefore, the question of whether indica or sativa strains are best for music depends on the type of music you want to listen to and what else you want to do while listening. For example, if you are planning to go out to a club or concert and dance the night away, an energizing sativa may be more appropriate. On the other hand, if you feel like melting into the couch and being lulled into a meditative state, you might find an indica a better choice.

At the end of the day, your choice of weed is about as personal as your choice of tunes. If you are a seasoned stoner, you will likely know your go-to strains for any mood. However, if you are new to the scene, choosing cannabis can be a pretty mind-boggling experience. So, if you are confused by indica vs. sativa, never fear. Read on to discover our top 10 marijuana strains for music.

Matching Marijuana and Music: Our Top 10 Sound-Enhancing Strains

The days of tuning into the radio on a Sunday afternoon to catch the charts may be long gone, but we have created a Top 10 of our very own. Here are our suggestions for the best marijuana strains for every musical taste.

1. Harlequin (Sativa) for Jazz

Jazz has been associated with cannabis since the early 20th century. It is thought that jazz musicians were fond of the herb as it helped them to improvise and play freely, without the constraints of time signatures or fixed tempos.

However, when high, the randomness of jazz may be too much, especially if you have a low tolerance or imbibe too much at once. That is why we have chosen sativa-dominant Harlequin as our perfect accompaniment. It is high in CBD and low in THC, meaning that it provides a relaxed high but without too many psychedelic effects, allowing you to enjoy your jazz without being sent into a spin!

2. Lamb’s Bread (Sativa) for Reggae

Another musical genre with strong ties to Ganga is reggae. Not only is smoking weed is an integral part of Rastafari, but it also perfectly complements the chilled-out island beats associated with this religion.

We’ve chosen sativa-dominant Lamb’s Bread as the perfect strain for reggae as it is Jamaican through and through. It was also reportedly a favorite of Bob Marley, giving it a reggae royalty seal of approval!

3. Herijuana (Indica) for Hip Hop

Hip hop and weed are a perfect pair. Rap superstar Snoop Dogg has always been extremely vocal about his love of sticky icky icky, and groups such as Cypress Hill have dedicated song after song to the herb.

Herijuana is an extremely potent strain and is said to be favored by Snoop himself. It is 80% indica-dominant and provides an intense body high combined with a mental focus that will help you to hear every beat perfectly. Just don’t expect to be getting up and dancing as you will probably be locked firmly to the couch!

4. Trainwreck (Hybrid) for Psychedelic Rock

There is arguably no other musical genre better suited to getting high than psychedelic rock. Whether you are listening to the distorted guitars of Hendrix or following Pink Floyd on a journey through time and space, you might start to feel high even before you reach for your bong!

Trainwreck is a potent hybrid which is slightly sativa-dominant. Some users report mild psychedelic effects, which, combined with its full-body relaxation, makes this an excellent strain for becoming completely absorbed in psychedelic sounds.

5. Black Diamond (Indica) for Electronica

If you need to unwind after a hectic day, the ethereal, electronic sounds of bands like Massive Attack and Morcheeba could be ideal. And what better way to deepen your relaxation than a THC-laden, trippy bud?

Black Diamond is an indica-dominant hybrid which is known for its extreme potency and hallucinogenic effects. If you are looking to enhance your trip-hop experience, then this could be the strain for you. But be warned, it is not for the faint-hearted!

6. Green Crack (Sativa) for Heavy Metal

Heavy metal is yet another musical genre with strong ties to weed. From Black Sabbath singing about their love of sweet leaf to sub-genres with names like ‘stoner rock,’ nobody could deny that metal and marijuana go hand in hand.

We have chosen Green Crack as the ideal accompaniment to metal due to its powerfully energizing sativa effects. This makes it ideal at gigs and festivals where you need every bit of stamina you can get. It works well for an especially vigorous air-guitar session in the kitchen too!

7. Red Headed Stranger (Sativa) for Country

You might not immediately put country and cannabis together, but as it turns out, Willie Nelson is a big fan of weed. So much so that he has a strain named after him!

We have chosen Red Headed Stranger as the perfect strain for country music thanks to its long-lasting sativa high. Why not try it while listening to the Nelson album of the same name for a truly immersive experience?

8. Bubble Gum (Hybrid) for Pop

Again, you might not associate pop music with cannabis straight away. However, an increasing number of stars, including Miley Cyrus and Lady Gaga, have spoken out about their use of pot.

Bubble Gum is a balanced hybrid which seamlessly blends sativa and indica effects. It is ideal for socializing with friends and early on in the high, you could feel inspired to get up and dance. It is also known as a highly creative strain, so you might find yourself writing a new masterpiece as you sing into your hairbrush!

9. Blue Dream (Hybrid) for Classical

Classical music is another genre not typically associated with weed. However, the powerful sound of a full orchestra can be significantly enhanced by listening while high, allowing you to pick out individual instruments and hear subtle sounds you may not have noticed before.

Blue Dream is a popular strain which is best-known for its medicinal benefits. However, this sativa-dominant hybrid is exceptionally versatile, much like classical music itself. So, whether you are listening to some calming chamber music or a dramatic concerto, this could be the ideal accompaniment.

10. Hindu Kush (Indica) for Meditation Music

A growing number of people are using music to help them meditate. A quick YouTube search throws up seemingly endless options, ranging from binaural beats to ocean sounds. Marijuana is also used by many people to enhance meditation, so it makes perfect sense to combine the two.

Hindu Kush is a pure indica strain, something difficult to find these days. It provides a deep, sedative, and trance-like state, making it the perfect partner for drifting off to a higher plane.

Indica or Sativa for Music: Final Thoughts

In the end, the cannabis strain you choose to accompany your music is very much down to personal preference. We have provided the above list for guidance, but they are merely suggestions based on our experience.

Marijuana is as varied as music itself and finding the perfect combination for you may take time and experimentation. However, this is the kind of research we can get behind, so grab some bud, turn up the volume, and let us know what you find!