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Related: drugs - reggae

I Love Marijuana (1978) - Linval Thompson


Cannabis is a genus of flowering plant that includes one or more species. It is also known as hemp, although this term usually refers to Cannabis cultivated for non-drug use. As a drug it usually comes in the form of dried flowers, resin (hashish), or various extracts collectively referred to as hash oil. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cannabis [Jul 2005]


The first recorded use of 'marihuana' in the United States, in 1909, was in Storyville, the red light district of the port of New Orleans that is universally regarded as the birthplace of Jazz. According to Ernest L.Abel: 'It was in these bordellos, where music provided the background and not the primary focus of attention, that marihuana became an integral part of the jazz era. Unlike booze, which dulled and incapacitated, marihuana enabled musicians whose job required them to play long into the night to forget their exhaustion. Moreover, the drug seemed to make their music sound more imaginative and unique, at least to those who played and listened while under its sensorial influence.'

Stoner rock

Stoner rock emerged as a distinct genre in the late 1980s with bands such as The Miracle Workers, Kyuss, and Monster Magnet, based on early heavy metal and proto-punk acts of the late 1960s and early 1970s. Its most well known exponent is Queens of the Stone Age. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stoner [Mar 2005]

Stoner film

Scene from Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1998) - Terry Gilliam [Amazon.com]

A stoner film is a movie which is generally made by, and for, stoners. Marijuana use is one of the main themes, and inspires most of the action.

Examples include:

--http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stoner_film [Mar 2005]

see also drug film - pot - theme


Herbal cannabis had always played a part in the medicinal and mystical rituals of ancient Africa and was probably well known to the slaves who worked the West Indian sugar plantations, but anthropologists contend that the herb didn't arrive in Jamaica until after slavery was abolished there in 1838, when it was brought by contract workers from the Indian sub-continent who were drafted in to fill the subsequent labour shortage. Certainly, the Jamaican term for herbal cannabis, 'ganja', is a Hindi word meaning 'sweet smelling', but also 'noisy'. Which is not a bad description of roots reggae.


The deep rhythmic bass of reggae, combined with the tendency of ganja to enhance ones' appreciation of tonal resonance and to distort ones' perception of time, when mixed together in primitive recording studios, begat Dub. It was the custom within the Jamaican music industry to fill out the flip-sides of 45rpm singles with instrumental versions of the song featured on the A side. Under the creative influence of sacramental herb, record producers began twiddling their knobs idiosyncratically, dropping out the treble and pumping up the bass, cutting up the vocal track and adding masses of reverb to haunting phrases that echo through the mix. No other music sounds more like the way it feels to be stoned.


Claims of drug use by biblical figures surprisingly have susbtance, says Professor Carl Ruck

Was Jesus a Stoner? is the mischievous title of an article about the use of cannabis in ancient Judaism in next month's High Times, a pro-cannabis magazine. Its author, Chris Bennett, likes to shock. He is the host of Burning Shiva, a show on Canada's Pot-TV, and an advocate for the medical use and decriminalisation of marijuana. -- Carl Ruck, The Sunday Times, 12 January 2003 accessed via http://www.cannabis.net/articles/jesus-cannabis.html, Apr 2004


  • http://www.ukcia.org/potculture/ Pot Culture -- Cannabis and popular culture by Russell Cronin


    1. Up in Smoke (1978) - Lou Adler, Tommy Chong [Amazon US]
      Cheech & Chong's first cannabis comedy is also their best, a souvenir from the more carefree days before "Just Say No," when people did not feel so defensive about inhaling. In 1978, the prevailing spirit was more like "Just Say Blow." Even New Yorker film critic Pauline Kael liked it (the movie, that is), adding that it was "an exploitation slapstick comedy, rather than a family picture, such as Blazing Saddles or High Anxiety--which means that it's dirtier, wilder, and sillier." The story has to do with bumbling potheads Cheech & Chong searching for primo bud, while being tailed by a team of inept law-enforcement officers, led by Sgt. Stedenko (Stacy Keach). Sample dialogue: When a cop pulls them over to ask if they are any illegal substances in his vehicle, Cheech replies: "Not any more, man." Up in Smoke is an irresistibly silly and charming movie that--despite, or perhaps because of, the national furor over drug use--plays today like a relic from a bygone era, a sweeter, more open, more innocent period in our history. --Jim Emerson for amazon.com

    2. Reefer Madness (1938) - [Amazon US]
      Although it was made in 1936, Reefer Madness didn't become a cult hit until 1972 when the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) rescued it from the Library of Congress film archive. Thereafter, it was a mainstay on the midnight movie circuit. And it's easy to see why. The ostensible story involves a group of upstanding young high school students who succumb to the allure of the "killer weed." What follows, as if by natural progression, is a catalog of crimes that includes hit-and-run driving, loose morals, rape, murder, suicide, and my personal favorite, permanent insanity! The action is at times so hysterical, in both senses, that you may forget to inhale. Honors go to the wild-eyed, cackling hophead David O'Brien; his performance reaches a raw intensity that is hard to imagine. One measure of this film's pervasive influence is the extent to which its title continues to be invoked in news stories about decriminalization and medical marijuana. Such posterity for unintentional humor must be rare. A great film to see stoned, man. --Jim Gay

    3. I Love You, Alice B. Toklas (1968) - Hy Averback [Amazon US]
      Poor Harold Fine (Peter Sellers)... he's a suit-and-tie-wearing Jewish professional who's being pressed by his fiancée (Joyce Van Patten, in a supremely whiny and irritating performance) to nail down a wedding date. Harold's bored and dissatisfied with his life, though; when he meets Nancy (Leigh Taylor-Young), a hippie-chick friend of his brother's, he decides to tune in, turn on, and drop out, in a big way. He flees the altar, leaving Joyce standing alone, and pursues the counterculture life. Soon, though, Harold discovers that the hippie life isn't all it's cracked up to be, with its hipper-than-thou hypocrisy adding up to little more than a different brand of conformity. Screenwriter Paul Mazursky skewers the shallowness of the '60s with dead-on humor and some hilarious set pieces; the scene where Harold and his straitlaced parents eat some of Nancy's "funny" brownies is especially memorable. Sellers's comic timing and physical awkwardness, paired with Mazursky's dialogue, makes this one of the better '60s-time-capsule flicks. --Jerry Renshaw


    1. High Times Grow America [MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION] [Amazon US] [FR] [DE] [UK]

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