Marijuana and music is a timeless relationship, but some musicians have a deeper symbiotic connection with cannabis than others. This isn’t necessarily “stoner music,” though it perhaps fits underneath that category. Instead these are musical acts who aren’t only known to partake in consistent marijuana consumption, but have become activists and entrepreneurs within the cannabis industry as well.
Hip hop acts like Snoop Dogg, Cypress Hill, Wiz Khalifa, but also a band like 311. Though the group can also represent the beer-loving community, 311 has served as an important collective to new-age hippies and stoner kids alike. They were representing the healing and mind-opening powers of marijuana before it was cool—and culturally accepted—to do so.
No one is more outspoken from 311 than Nick Hexum, though. “Bands like us and Cypress Hill, we were carrying the cannabis flag when it was really risky to do that,” 311’s Nick Hexum told Morning Call. “We had instances where we had cops on the side of the stage. We were conscientious objectors. We were about cannabis and using it there, to show the absurdity of the laws.”
Part of Hexum’s brazen nature stems from a personal connection. His mother and mother-in-law are cancer survivors, which has led to Hexum speaking at fundraisers for the Moffitt Cancer Center, like he did in Tampa recently. He told the Tampa Bay Times he wanted to turn that fear into action, which is why he isn’t backing down from his marijuana stance.
“I’m a huge believer in CBD, and how cannabis can be very helpful for the symptoms of what people go through when they’re having cancer treatment, whether it’s aches and pains and chemo, or appetite loss or whatever,” Hexum told TBT. “Being able to work on products in the cannabis field for medical patients like my mom has been another way that I’ve been helping out.”
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Those products include a signature 311 vape kit called the Grassroots Uplifter. Currently they only have a THC Grassroots Uplifter available, but Hexum says they’re currently developing a CBD version as well.
If that weren’t enough, Hexum also is in talks with another company to produce a CBD-infused beet juice energy shot. He says it’s a good way to “help with aches and pains and inflammation and some mental stuff as well.”
Still, Hexum continues to speak out in favor of marijuana legalization. While many states have legalized medical marijuana and a smaller collection have also voted yes to recreational marijuana, the drug remains classified as a Schedule I Drug on the federal level.
“It’s an interesting time, because when alcohol prohibition was repealed, it was all at once, and everybody knew, ‘Okay, it’s legal now.’ This is such a messy incremental ending of prohibition,” Hexum said. “There’s so much uncertainty, and to a certain extent, it’s like, who’s going to be brave and challenge the laws? Keeping up on the regulations and knowing where you can sell what keeps everybody in my organization pretty busy.”