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Florida Man Plays Deftones Songs on Guitar During Brain Surgery

Fervent fandom makes us occasionally exaggerate how vital music has been to our lives. But when we declare that, for instance, band x or track y helped us to not lose our minds, we typically don’t appreciate the extent to which that could be absolutely true—and for a Florida Man, at that.

While undergoing a waking craniotomy at a University of Miami hospital, Christian Nolen, a professional guitarist practiced nu-metal riffs as part of a procedure to remove a tumor from his brain. Christian Nolen told WSVN Miami that he was playing Deftones songs to exercise his motor skills for the surgeons, who wanted to monitor their progress while being “as aggressive as possible.”

Nolen’s playing hand had been affected after he was injured at a show and then lost feeling in his left side. With his dexterity at risk, he says he “couldn’t pass up” the experience of being awake for part of the two-hour operation (making that opening verse of “Battle-Axe” hit a little differently).

While his recovery from the successful surgery includes a course of remaining treatments and therapy, Nolen’s amazed to get back to physical activity and guitar-playing and, we hope, no Saturday night wrist.

Whose songs would you play if you were on the table? Let us know below!