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Best musician named for the fact that he smoked tons of dope?

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blitzen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-05-08 12:34 AM
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Best musician named for the fact that he smoked tons of dope?
Edited on Fri Dec-05-08 12:35 AM by blitzen
It's gotta be Smokey Wood (the guy who, Woody Guthrie wrote, "taught me how to smoke stick"), an obscure master of Western Swing from the 30's. Here's his "Everybody's Trucking"--which he sings so as to sound a lot like "Everybody's F-..king." The Modern Mountaineers was the name of one of his bands.

His fondness for smoking dope is legendary:

"It was about this time that the boys in his band realized that apart from music, Wood's great love was for the wacky tobaccy, or as it's better known: marijuana. According to some accounts, Wood was high most of the time and would even smoke on the bandstand when the notion grabbed him (and when the cops weren't close by, one presumes). And to further put things in perspective, Wood's love was so steadfast and big, too he usually kept at least a pound or two around for safe keeping and spared his lean budget in the process by growing some plants of his own. Smokey, indeed!

So, with Wood perennially in good spirits, Modern Mountaineers came together around 1937. And to compliment his own predilections, Wood found a bunch of hard-drinking players to swing those blues away."

"Ever hear of Smokey Wood & the Woodchips?"

Ray Benson is on the phone, calling from the Playboy Mansion out in California, where his band Asleep at the Wheel is about to perform for the Marijuana Policy Project, a campaign to legalize medical marijuana.

Smokey was an obscure Western swing artist from Oklahoma who worked mostly around Houston and Dallas," says Benson. "Nora Guthrie sent me some writing Woody did when he was sick, and one line in a poem about Smokey went, 'I taught Smokey how to drink, and he taught me how to smoke stick.' That was him. He was known as a pot-smoking, whiskey-drinking, womanizing, fun-loving Western swing guy."

Maybe Smokey was a little too fond of weed. The Arkansas-born Wood moved to Oklahoma as a child, but his musical career centered so much in Texas that he was known as "the Houston Hipster." Wood played in a series of bands near the end of the Thirties notably the Modern Mountaineers with fellow pothead and ace fiddler J.R. Chatwell and his love of smoking dope was notorious, as he would spend his days high and even light up onstage. His appetite for pot was such that he carried not just bags but pounds of it around.

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