Our mayor made headlines with the suggestion that small amounts of marijuana should be decriminalized. Decriminalized is not a synonym for legal, but decriminalized marijuana possession would lessen the penalties for getting busted with less than a half ounce of marijuana. But for those of you who think marijuana is a good idea, let me ask a simple question. Isn’t our country stupid enough? The other question is, are there any rock and roll songs that reference weed? Ummm. A few.
One Toke Over The Line. William Blake once wrote, You never what is enough until you know what is too much. One toke over the line is apparently enough.
A song with a profound ambivalence. “The things we used to do on grass.” Which reminds me of an older song
Itchykoo Park. Banned by the BBC for overt drug references. It’s all too beautiful.
Champagne and Reefer. A potent combination but Muddy issues an important disclaimer: I’m not gonna be messin’ round with no cocaine.
You Don’t Know How It Feels. Tom periodically gets reprimanded by record companies and radio programmers who object to drug references. Tom don’t care.
Rainy Day Women #12&35. When the chorus is “Everybody must get stoned,” it is difficult to pursue an interpretation that tips its hat to the famous short story The Lottery, where getting stoned involves rocks. I’ve always thought Bob was using a Biblical metaphor to express his frustration with people’s expectations.
Two Hits And The Joint Turned Brown. Multi-Grammy winner John Hartford is joined by modern bluegrass pioneers Rodney and Doug Dillard (who passed away very recently) for this novelty number that I’ve played for Bob Marley features. I knew some people who smoked pot and two inhalations of heavily resinated marijuana will turn the joint brown.
Kaya. It’s religion, man.
The New Riders of The Purple Sage-Panama Red. Early in my morning radio career at XRT, I played this ‘classic’ only to have my producer and news anchor both ask me who the hell The New Riders of The Purple Sage were. After I explained with a sidebar about how my first date with my future wife was at a 1973 New Riders concert, they said, “What the hell is Panama Red?” It was then I called a retirement community to see if I could move in.
Hash is not on the decriminalized list. So watch it.
Peter looks a little wasted on the album cover.