A good night, the best in a long time
A new friend turned me on to an old favorite
Nothing better than a dealer who's high
Be high, convince them to buy

What's my drug of choice?
Well, what have you got?
I don't go broke
And I do it a lot

Seems so sick to the hypocrite norm
Running their boring drills
But we are an elite race of our own
The stoners, junkies, and freaks
Are you happy?
I am, man
Content and fully aware
Money, status, nothing to me
Because your life's empty and bare

What's my drug of choice?
Well, what have you got?
I don't go broke
And I do it a lot
I do it a lot

You can't understand a user's mind
But try, with your books and degrees
If you let yourself go and opened your mind
I'll bet you'd be doing like me and it isn't so bad

What's my drug of choice?
Well, what have you got?
I don't go broke
And I do it a lot, said I do it a lot
I do it a lot
I do it a lot, said I do it a lot

Lyrics submitted by Ice

Junkhead Lyrics as written by Jerry Cantrell Layne Staley

Lyrics © BMG Rights Management

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Junkhead song meanings
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  • +12
    My InterpretationAs a former heroin addict, who got clean with the help of the Dirt album, it was as if I could have written the lyrics myself, on how well I could relate to it. Here's my interpretation.

    Verse 1. After being clean for some time, the user relapses. He forgets about all of the negative aspects of the drug use, and just focuses on how it makes him feel, which trust me, it's an amazing feeling, that is very hard to not want to re-experience. He would have stayed clean, but he met someone new, who just so happened to be under the influence, and also had some to get rid of. Being in that situation is very hard for a former user. Needless to say, he was convinced to do it again.

    Chorus: The user doesn't do just one drug. He will do whatever he can get. At this point, both Layne and Jerry had large bank accounts due to the success of Facelift, so they always had cash available, and at this point frequently were doing different varieties of drugs.

    Verse 2. It's a fact, that the majority of people look down on hard-drug users. It seems sick to them, and they frequently try to educate people on the dangers of drugs. The users however, understand each other, and can relate very well to one and other.

    Verse 3. Are the non-users happy? The user feels that way at the moment. He feels content, and feels fully aware, although those are the drugs talking. He doesn't care about his money, or his status as a rockstar, because inside, he feels empty and bare.

    Verse 4. Anyone who is not a user, or a former user, can not understand a users mind. No matter how much they study it, they still simply can not understand. However, anyone who tries it, no matter what their previous stance on the subject is, they will then understand the users mind, and at first see it as being not so bad.
    horrorbusiness89on April 23, 2009   Link
  • +9
    General Comment"reverand_chris" pretty much has it. This is the start of the cycle of songs on "Dirt" that chronicle heroin addiction. Some people take the song out of context and misinterpret it, but if you listen to it closely or listen within its context on the album, it's blatantly against drug use.

    "Junkhead" is sarcastic ... very, very, VERY dark humor. He is simultaneouly explaining and mocking a drug addict's justification for using the drug. The narrator has convinced himself that drugs aren't so bad, that they make him better than others, etc. But LISTEN to the way he sings it--it's pretty damn obvious that he's fucked up and miserable and lying to himself/trying way too hard to convince himself.

    And, y'know, in case you missed the message, Junkhead is followed by "Dirt" ("One who doesn't care is one who shouldn't be/I've tried to hide myself from what is wrong with me"), "Godsmack" ("Can't get high, or you will die" "What in God's name have you done?" "So your sickness weighs a ton"), "Hate to Feel" ("What's gone wrong, I can't see straight" "Mirror on the wall will show you/What you're scared to see" "Used to be curious/Now the shit's sustenance"), "Angry Chair" ("Saw my reflection and cried/So little hope that I died" "Little boy made a mistake/Pink cloud has now turned to gray/All that I want is to play/Get on your knees, time to pray, boy") and so on. I mean, how obvious is it from those songs that heroin is DESTROYING him, it's killing him, making him insane, ruining his innocence and his life?

    So no, Junkhead is not a pro-heroin song. It's an explanation/very dark MOCK of how a junkie justifies drug use to himself. It's followed by a depiction of heroin DESTROYING said junkie. You'd have to be an utter idiot to think that amounts to an endorsement.
    drinkthepoisonon September 19, 2004   Link
  • +6
    General CommentThis track begins one of the deepest parts of any other album by any other band. The whole thing Junkhead through Would? Is about the cycle of drugs. I'll Explain...

    Junkhead- This is the user buying the drugs saying to himself its gonna be a great night. He finds himself a dealer, buys the drug then takes it home to do it.

    Dirt- Is him talking to the drug directly. Saying i want you to kill all the pain, and make me happy. And the reference to the stinging pistol in his mouth is him saying, that when i take these drugs there is a risk i could die but its a risk im wiling to take for a good time. And it ends with him taking the drug.

    God Smack- This is after he has taken the drug and his conscience is talking to him saying what have you done?

    The Instrumental(Iron Glad)- This is sometimes refered to as the "Dream sequence" This is when the drug had taken effect, and he his halucenating and things like that

    Hate To Feel- This is him regretting having taken the drug, saying he promised himself he would not be an junkie like his father was, and saying its time for me to check into rehab.

    Angry Chair- This refers to rehab itself. I have never been to rehab myself, but i do believe they give you tons of therapy (refering to the chair) and some medications. And he is talking about how horrible it was in there.

    Would? - This is him talking to another person about the mistake he has made, Saying that this drug nearly destroyed me, yet i still took it making the same mistakes, but cant you see it from my point of view. It ends with him telling the person how easy it is to be overtaken by the drug with him saying "If I Would, Could You?"

    And thats about it, i dont recall if those are exactly accurate but i'd say they are fairly close. Great stuff from one of the Greatest bands ever. its a shame he lost his life for drugs..:(
    reverand_chrison June 18, 2002   Link
  • +5
    General Comment""When Junkhead was written, it was a definite pro-drug song; it was written three years ago. But when we put it to music, it became an antidrug song. I thought that it was so blatantly pro-drugs people would be able to see it in the way I saw it then, and now, as coming from a really-sick-mind point of view, I thought they'd interpret it as I wrote it."

    -Layne Staley
    ckb614on April 19, 2012   Link
  • +3
    General CommentYea, this song is about smack but I disagree, person before me, I think it's not exactly promoting drugs it's talking about addiction and what it's like.
    Playaon May 27, 2002   Link
  • +3
    General CommentThis song extremely sadden's me......this was written during Layne's early druggin days where the high was exciting and enjoyable...and then he slowly decayed right before me eyes. I am fortunate to be a genX'er and got to see AIC and this beautiful man many times....addiction really killed his soul long before he actually died (listen to Mad Season's Above album and I think you'll agree)...What's my drug of choice????Its you Layne Staley.....something I believe God put you on this earth to accompish.... and through the many lives you inspired and touched.....'your wings were not denied'.
    imisslayneon August 05, 2010   Link
  • +2
    General CommentI viewed this song with the specific intention to say that this song contradicts everything he's said about his drug use. In the love/hate relationship that is drug abuse, I'm sure this was written on the love side. I don't think he was promoting it as much as he was saying why he does it.
    aptitudeon February 15, 2006   Link
  • +2
    General CommentThis is Layne's cocky side.

    You have to remember that as much as he wrote about the downsides of drug abuse, he enjoyed the drugs as well. Brilliant song, I usually play it on full volume during my cocky periods as well.
    Rebphoenixon December 01, 2009   Link
  • +2
    General CommentI think the atmosphere/tone of the music is the best part of this song.

    Lyrics pretty straightforward.....don't think it's an advocation of drugs per se, but more the justification in a user's mind. Especially against all the attacks and how "junkheads" are looked down upon. So this is the "f you" to them. Again - I don't believe it's an advocation of drug use though, but a distorted justification.
    hoppingbunnyon December 25, 2010   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThis song is obviously about drugs. It is saying that drugs are okay, as long as they don't consume your life. Unfortunately Layne Staley was a little too consumed and died of a smack overdose.
    Zarathrustraon May 02, 2002   Link

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