Weed: The Muse of Art | Artist’s Inspiration - HØJ

Weed: The Muse of Art

Estimated 6-minute read

Marijuana has been a source of inspiration for artists and creatives since unimaginable times. From William Shakespeare to N.W.A. What did they have in common? They loved weed. Musical, artistic, and ideological successes have emerged from it. However, it is controversial for many. That’s why we will analyze some of the musical successes that have sprung from marijuana or that refer to marijuana.


Sweet leaf, Black Sabbath

Here's the song in Youtube for you to hear it.

The first song we'll talk about is sweet leaf by Black Sabbath. In 1971 this musical group made almost honorable mentions to marijuana. In a direct way for the time, they focus on topics such as introspection, “you introduce me to my mind”. Alluding to the altered state of consciousness that is reached by smoking marijuana.

They also sing about freedom; they mention in their lyrics “my life is free and clear”. And I think that is one of the benefits of marijuana, the realization of a lack of true freedom, the freedom to be yourself, Deeping to find oneself. It is not that marijuana is indispensable for this, but come on, psychedelics of course serve as an impulse for this, like a boost.


It's all going to pot, Willie Nelson

Here's the song's YouTube video for you.

Willie Nelson is one of the most emblematic cannabis-consuming musicians. Willie became the first megastar to endorse the plant when most wouldn’t publicly. He said on multiple occasions that marijuana saved his life.  It helped to quit smoking whiskey and smoking cigarettes back in 1978.

“It saved my life, really. I wouldn’t have lived 85 years old if I had kept drinking and smoking like I was when I was 30, 40 years old. I think that weed kept me from wanting to kill people. And probably kept a lot of people from wanting to kill me, too out there drunk, running around” Willie Nelson.

I feel Willie, back in the day I used to drink a lot, and I eventually changed liquor for weed. It is much better in terms of functionality and health. It keeps me calmer and keeps me from doing the stupid and dangerous things I used to do drunk.


Hits from the bong, Cypress Hill

Here's the song in YouTube for you to hear it.

If we are talking about marijuana, the rap counterculture saw the birth of great artists who base their inspiration and revolutionary message on their urban point of view. Saying what happens on the streets and what the street is like. Popular realism is their means of identification for millions of people.

Hits from the bong show the daily life without eccentricities of someone who smokes and celebrates it, millions of people.


Snoop Dogg, Kurupt, Nate Dogg, Dr. Dre, The next episode

Here's the song's YouTube video for you.

Snoop Dogg has become synonymous of marijuana over the years. He was part of the second-generation pioneer of hip hop and LA counterculture that inspired millions of people to show the reality of what life was like in the most marginal neighborhoods of LA.

Snoop Dogg even turned into a lucrative revenue source by introducing a cannabis product life. Leafs by Snoop is Snoop's brand of cannabis. His collection includes various types and flavors, chocolate bars and chewing gum, although of course always seasoned with snoop's weed.

These containers come with collectible stickers with messages from the rapper such as his classic “smoke weed everyday” or “grind it, roll it, light it”.


Miley Cyrus, Doo it

Here's the song's YouTube video for you.

Miley Cyrus has always been distinguished by her eccentricity and unique style that has taken her to the top with several high-level musical projects. She seems to care little for pandering the commercial standards of the music industry by putting out music and videos that demonstrate her personality and tastes.

Like doo it, song in which she openly mentions that she smokes marijuana and her personal effects. The effects she describes are positive, like feeling one with the universe and a sensation of peace and freedom.


William Shakespeare (1564-1616)

A few years ago, scientists in South Africa discovered something in William Shakespeare's pipes. In addition to tobacco remains, they also found marijuana and coca leaves. It seems that times change, but habits are the same.

In 2015, clay pipes were found in the garden of the playwright's house. These were more than 400 years old and had not been studied. So, the intervention of scientists was the key to find details in the remains inside the pipes. The studies determined that eight pipes had cannabis and two of these had coca leaves.

For this reason, it is said that Shakespeare used these substances for inspiration. There are even hypotheses in which it is postulated that the writer has many references to drugs in his works. Especially in poetry.


Victor Hugo (1802-1885)

Responsible for creating such as Les Misérables and Notre Dame in Paris, Victor Hugo is one of the most famous, talented, and resected creative minds in French literature. Hugo was also a huge fan of cannabis, with hashish being his favorite method of consumption. Hugo was a member of the Club des Hashischins, which translates to Hash Eaters Club.

This notorious club of creative thinkers was dedicated to understanding and exploring drug-induced experiences and how these intoxicating sensations affected creativity.


Bob Marley

Here's the song in YouTube for you to hear it.

One of the most emblematic images for any cannabis consumer is the cover of “Catch a Fire”, the 1973 album by Bob Marley and The Wilers, in which a young Bob appears smoking a huge joint, and which not only reflects his rebellious spirit, but also makes clear his deep relationship with cannabis.

In a famous interview, Bob Marley sums up his opinion on cannabis as follows: “Smoking weed reveals your own self. All the evil you do, weed reveals to you, your conscience is clear because weed makes you meditate. It is a natural thing, and it grows like a tree.”

Bob also refers to weed creative power and how his dad used weed in this way. “Creative inspiration was everything to my father, for him it was like breathing or living. Every time he smoked, he was inspired, and an open mind was the doorway for his creative inspiration. He thought weed was a gift.”


Louis Armstrong

Here's the song on Youtube for you to hear it.

"First of all, it's a thousand times better than whiskey...It's a helper, a friend, a good cheap booze if you want to call it that...Good for asthma, relaxes you. We've always considered weed as a kind of medicine, a cheap booze that gives you a lot better ideas than when you're drunk on liquor" Louis Armstrong.

The profound influence of the rise of cannabis on the development of jazz is a clear example. Above all, experimental, because it reached levels of musical and creative awareness never seen before: Jazz. Marijuana served as a conduit for creativity, musical production, and interpretation.

We can realize that no matter the time, artists and musicians have always seen marijuana as a method of inspiration and creativity. And of course thousands of songs and artistic works are missing in this list, without mentioning that each country and language has a different cannabis culture. However we mention the most iconic ones. 



Author: Pipo

Tardio, A. (2018, March 26). Weed anthems: 60 lit joints for your next session. Cassius | Born Unapologetic | News, Style, Culture; Cassius Life. https://cassiuslife.com/52582/best-weed-anthems/

Green, G. in. (2020, September 23). Songs that speak about cannabis and you may not even have noticed. GIRLS IN GREEN. https://girlsingreen.net/en/music-about-cannabis/

Epstein, R. B. R., Bienstock, R., Reeves, M., Garber-Paul, E., & Epstein, D. (2020, April 19). Pot sounds: The 20 greatest songs about weed. Rolling Stone. https://www.rollingstone.com/music/music-lists/pot-sounds-the-20-greatest-weed-themed-songs-of-all-time-627951/the-mighty-diamonds-pass-the-kouchie-1981-628168/


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