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Ep.341: Muggs

Cannabis Economy Podcast
Ep.341: Muggs

Ep.341: Muggs

Of Cypress Hill, Muggs joins us and shares how his east coast upbringing led to initial west coast success. He remembers that his relationship with cannabis led to inspiration and action, which was different than what he heard about the plant. He does feel that the group had something to do with the way the majority of society who accepts cannabis views cannabis. And how that informs his business endeavors in the space.

Transcript:

DJ Muggs: Beautiful Kauai, putting it down, having a good time out here, smoking the good Maui Wowie, spreading the good word of cannabis to the business folks. I'm happy to be here at the International Cannabis Business Convention.

Speaker 1: Yeah, ICBC.

DJ Muggs: ICBC.

Speaker 1: That's it. I told you in the room there, you just gave a little bit of a talk, that you provided the soundtrack for college for me, pretty much.

DJ Muggs: Oh, thank you, brother. Good times.

Speaker 1: Black Friday came out right on time for me to go to school.

DJ Muggs: Right.

Speaker 1: We were just talking about I'm 42-, not to make you feel old, but how the industry which is becoming an industry now has the folks in the right places at the right age to understand who you are.

DJ Muggs: Oh, yes, because they grew up with music that was pretty much in the mainstream that was pro-cannabis from day one. Before that it was pretty much something you did behind closed doors. You might listen to Jimi Hendrix or Bob Marley, and you kept things behind closed doors unless you were in an open-air festival. We kind of kicked the door down for that even in mainstream music. Once we came out, and we was waving the flag for marijuana, it pretty much made it okay for everybody at that point in rap and modern pop music to be like hey, I smoke weed too, and talk about it in their lyrics.

DJ Muggs: Beautiful Kauai, putting it down, having a good time out here, smoking the good Maui Wowie, spreading the good word of cannabis to the business folks. I'm happy to be here at the International Cannabis Business Convention.

Speaker 1: Yeah, ICBC.

DJ Muggs: ICBC.

Speaker 1: That's it. I told you in the room there, you just gave a little bit of a talk, that you provided the soundtrack for college for me, pretty much.

DJ Muggs: Oh, thank you, brother. Good times.

Speaker 1: Black Friday came out right on time for me to go to school.

DJ Muggs: Right.

Speaker 1: We were just talking about I'm 42-, not to make you feel old, but how the industry which is becoming an industry now has the folks in the right places at the right age to understand who you are.

DJ Muggs: Oh, yes, because they grew up with music that was pretty much in the mainstream that was pro-cannabis from day one. Before that it was pretty much something you did behind closed doors. You might listen to Jimi Hendrix or Bob Marley, and you kept things behind closed doors unless you were in an open-air festival. We kind of kicked the door down for that even in mainstream music. Once we came out, and we was waving the flag for marijuana, it pretty much made it okay for everybody at that point in rap and modern pop music to be like hey, I smoke weed too, and talk about it in their lyrics.

DJ Muggs: To that point, Doctor Dre was saying I don't smoke weed or cess because it gives a brother brain damage, and brain damage on a mic don't matter, and you heard a lot of other rappers saying leave everything alone.

Speaker 1: Whereas you were insane in the membrane, if I remember correctly.

DJ Muggs: Yeah, we just took what we did on the block and just talked about it and kind of kicked the doors open and said this is what we do, but I had the mentors. I was a big Bob Marley fan, and I definitely studied Bob Marley, and I grew up with Grateful Dead music in my house, and I grew up with High Times Magazine on my living room coffee table, so ...

Speaker 1: On the living room coffee table?

DJ Muggs: Yeah, because my uncle was a big High Times fan, and he shared a bedroom with me. He was ten years older. I grew up with black lights, velvet posters, 8-track tapes, lava lamps, Hendrix, the Who, Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, all that kind of stuff.

Speaker 1: All of it.

DJ Muggs: All that was an early influence on me. If you listen to my music and look at photographs and stuff of Cypress Hill, that's where a lot of the inspiration came from.

Speaker 1: Sure. You were like Jimi Hendrix with a hat on basically, right?

DJ Muggs: 100%, Jimi Hendrix from Queens, New York.

Speaker 1: Yeah, sure. Seattle, of course, right?

DJ Muggs: Yeah, but I'm from Queens.

Speaker 1: Gotcha. Let's actually dive in there, man, because you just set a very interesting scene. You grew up in Queens, where in Queens?

DJ Muggs: Jackson Heights.

Speaker 1: Okay. That's where my grandma's from, but you won't know her. She's a different age, right? Why was your uncle sharing your bedroom? That's already different, right?

DJ Muggs: It was my mom's younger brother, so he moved in with us, he got out of the house. He was like 16, and my mom, we had a small apartment, and he shared my bedroom.

Speaker 1: So he was a teenager.

DJ Muggs: Absolutely.

Speaker 1: All right, so your mother was twenty-whatever.

DJ Muggs: Yeah, my mom was twenty-something already, so my uncle was there.

Speaker 1: Was your dad around?

DJ Muggs: No. That's what he was into, he was into rock and roll, he was a hippie.

Speaker 1: Right. How many years older than he was you? I don't think that sentence made sense, but you heard me.

DJ Muggs: He was 12, about 12 years older than me.

Speaker 1: 12 years older, so really good influence. Did he also influence you as far as cannabis?

DJ Muggs: I used to smell the smell. I didn't know what it was. I was a fucking kid, you know what I mean?

Speaker 1: Right.

DJ Muggs: I remember when I first started seeing it and smoking it, I was like oh, that's that smell I smell in the house all the time.

Speaker 1: You connected the dots, right? What was that first experience, do you remember it?

DJ Muggs: I smoked when I was young. I smoked probably when I was like nine or ten.

Speaker 1: Too young, right?

DJ Muggs: Yeah, too young. Somebody gave it to me, I took a hit and fell asleep, and then I didn't smoke again until I was like sixteen.

Speaker 1: Better, right?

DJ Muggs: Yeah.

Speaker 1: Can you take us through that experience? Obviously it's been such a big part of your life, right?

DJ Muggs: When I was sixteen, man, I just giggled my motherfucking ass off, driving in the car, I just giggled my ass off. But then what weed did to me ... I noticed it does two things to people, it either works for you or it doesn't work for you.

Speaker 1: It fights you almost.

DJ Muggs: You either get stoned so you're like a fucking rock, you just sit there, you don't do nothing. It doesn't work with your chemical balance and your structure of how you function as a human, or it gets you high and it uplifts you and it stimulates you.

DJ Muggs: With me, what I noticed is it makes me want to go to the gym, it makes me want to make music, it makes me want to work out, it makes me want to talk. I see ideas, I see colors. If I walk into a studio and I don't feel like working, and I smoke a little weed, it just uplifts me. Same with a lot of different things. I noticed it's kind of like a pick-me-up, and it's always been like that for me.

Speaker 1: Whether it's sativa or not, is what you're saying.

DJ Muggs: Yeah, if it's not a sativa, I just don't sit there and smoke the whole damn joint. You know, you take a puff, you put it down, because back then there was no way to measure what kind of fucking weed you were getting.

Speaker 1: Hopefully it was green, right?

DJ Muggs: The only stuff that would really bother me was when we used to buy pounds at a time was stuff that was heavily chemical, like when they first started putting steroids. That's the stuff you could tell that it gets you tired a little bit. But for the most part, no, weed's definitely a stimulant for me, which people think is odd, but ...

Speaker 1: Well, now we know, right? In the nineties we didn't know. Now we absolutely do know that it works with your endo-cannabinoid system, and you've got receptors in there for it, so it all makes sense.

DJ Muggs: I got some friends that have one drink and they want to beat up everybody in the bar, and I got some friends who have a drink and they just turn into don Juan Casanova, and they get smooth and it's like the verbal elixir for them.

Speaker 1: Exactly. You gotta get rid of those guys that want to have a fight. Come on.

DJ Muggs: Yeah, come on, man.

Speaker 1: Let's all get along, right?

DJ Muggs: There's enough women in here, come on, stop trying to fight men.

Speaker 1: Focus on the ... Exactly, focus on what we need to focus on. All right, sixteen you become familiar with the plant. What about the other guys? When did you meet them?

DJ Muggs: I met them two years later, and something we all had in common was we all smoke weed. We all sold weed, we all smoke weed, we all drank forties, and we all hung on the block. All we started doing is taking what we did on the block into the studio.

Speaker 1: How do you get into the studio? What, do you have dollars coming out your pockets already with nothing?

DJ Muggs: What happened was I was doing a party in east LA, in a city called Bell Gardens, and about a month before that, Ely, went to Hollywood, and he came back, and he's like yo, I met these kids from Brooklyn, you gotta come meet them, they're cool, they're cool as [inaudible 00:07:32], they got a record out.

Speaker 1: Yeah.

DJ Muggs: So when I was throwing this party I was like yo, why don't you tell your boys from Brooklyn to come play at our party, because we didn't know nobody with a record. The group was called 783, so they came to our party, their DJ didn't show up, so I DJed for them. Then they was like yo, you wanna DJ for us, we got three shows coming up with Ice Tea. You're better than our DJ, come DJ for us. I'm like fuck it, so I went to DJ, did three shows with them, and then they was like yo, just be our DJ. Then about two weeks later we was in the studio recording the song for Colors, the Colors soundtrack.

Speaker 1: Yeah, sure, colors, colors.

DJ Muggs: So we did a song for the Colors soundtrack.

Speaker 1: Was that you, colors, colors?

DJ Muggs: No, there's another song I did called Mad Mad World.

Speaker 1: All right.

DJ Muggs: It was my first gold record, 1988. That was kind of like my introduction to the music business. I was in that band, 783, we did a whole album, and that was kind of like my crash course. They threw me in with the motherfucking sharks, learned the music business, so I took everything I learned with that and just brought it back to Cypress Avenue. That's where Cypress Hill is, from Cypress Ave, and brought it back and said yo, I learned this, I learned this, I learned this. Here's how the studios go. I bought a drum machine, and that was it.

Speaker 1: And that was that. How did you get from Queens to LA?

DJ Muggs: I moved out to LA when I was about fifteen to live with my mom. She had moved out there a few years earlier. I didn't want to move to LA because I had my friends, I had my school. I stayed living with my aunt and my grandmother in New York. Eventually I was getting in trouble, my aunt was like you get, go live with your mother, so I went to LA. It was a fucking culture shock. I went from Queens, New York, growing up in a place where it was black, Italian, Jewish, Irish, Puerto Rican, Dominican ...

Speaker 1: Everybody.

DJ Muggs: With everybody's culture really strong. I moved to a place where it was 99% Mexicans, and it was just a culture shock. The public transportation wasn't the same. The cultures was different. The way you dressed was different, and acted, so I was like what the fuck, where am I at. You know what I mean?

Speaker 1: Yeah.

DJ Muggs: LA's home now.

Speaker 1: Sure. Now it's kind of come around to you. If you don't want to answer it, bat me away. I'm sure you know how to do that. That's a unique experience, man. Your mom kind of left before you did.

DJ Muggs: Right.

Speaker 1: How did that all go down?

DJ Muggs: She was tired of New York, and she wanted to move to LA, got a job and stuff.

Speaker 1: You were what, twelve, thirteen, fourteen?

DJ Muggs: Yeah, about that age.

Speaker 1: So who'd you stay with?

DJ Muggs: My aunt, my grandmother, but we had a big family so it wasn't no big deal. It was like our family's all they were close, so it wasn't like she dumped me with somebody. I would just stay with my aunt. All my friends lived on that block, so I was good.

Speaker 1: It takes a village, is what they say.

DJ Muggs: It definitely takes a village. I came to LA, and I would go back to New York every summer, and I would go back to New York every Christmas holiday I could, and just would go back and forth. What I noticed, though, it was giving me an advantage in hiphop in Los Angeles because I would bring things back, cultural things that they didn't even know what they were, they couldn't even get to the west coast music, fashion ...

Speaker 1: Like what? Music wise, what are we talking about?

DJ Muggs: Music wise, Rakim's first record on Zakia, My Melody, early MC Shan records, Marly Marl mix tapes, Red Alert mix tapes. I'd go from Mister Magic to Red Alert and Chuck Chill Out, you know, from Kiss FM to WBLS and record tapes, bring these 12 inches back, and bring Lee Jeans back, and Pro Keds. I'd come back to LA, and they'd be like yo, what's that, what's that. You know what I mean? They would be fascinated with the stuff I would bring. If it was now, it would just be on the internet, everywhere, but the things I would bring back it gave me kind of a cultural advantage in LA to have these things, because everybody started to get into break dancing and to hip hop really big, and I was bringing things back that you had zero access to these unless somebody was bringing it back from New York.

Speaker 1: No access. You literally had to step up. You were bringing stuff out from the wild.

DJ Muggs: Absolutely, yes.

Speaker 1: You just mentioned some of the hiphop influences. Where along your musical journey did it go from your uncle's music of the Who and Led Zeppelin and all that into more hiphop?

DJ Muggs: What happened was I got with that band, 783, we went to record an album in Philadelphia.

Speaker 1: You were already spinning by then.

DJ Muggs: I was DJing.

Speaker 1: Yeah, excuse me, you were DJing.

DJ Muggs: I was a DJ champ, a was a DMC champ, west-coast champ.

Speaker 1: How'd you get to that, is what I'm saying?

DJ Muggs: To DJing?

Speaker 1: Yeah.

DJ Muggs: Oh, just DJing, just DJing in the hood, and just DJing. Just DJ in basements. Here's what happened. There was some kids who lived across the street from me, and I would go buy weed from them in LA, and they were DJs, and they played high energy music, which was like a lot of Latinas were into the music, and I would go over there and I would just DJ on their turntables. I didn't pay it no mind, but I started getting better than them. They would show me how to do it, they was like man, you learn fast. Then they was like come to a DJ party with us, and I was like fuck it, I'll go to the party, and I went to the party and I DJed, and I seen all the girls there, and I'm like fuck, when's the next party.

Speaker 1: Right.

DJ Muggs: I started going, and I tried to play hiphop in them parties, but it was too slow, and like nobody wanted to dance to it at that time, so we was playing techno hop, a lot of stuff like It's Time, Clear, Planet Rock, Egyptian Lover records, and then on the other side we had Debby Deb, Trinere, the Cover Girls, records like that.

Speaker 1: Do you go all the way back because of east coast, do you go back to Herc and Bambaata, and those guys?

DJ Muggs: I was too young for them.

Speaker 1: I know, but did you get that influence?

DJ Muggs: No. I was influenced by Red Alert, Chuck Chill Out, Marly Marl, Mister Magic, and then on the west coast I was into Tony G, this guy that played on K-DAY, was one of my biggest influences. Then so after the 783 stuff, we toured, we did the song for Colors, we got an album deal. We went to Philadelphia to do the record with Joe the Butcher, and he had produced Schoolly D records and Steady B, and had his own label out there. I showed up with all my ideas, but I never produced nothing. He produced all my ideas, and I didn't love the way the record came out.

Speaker 1: Talk about that relationship between producer and artist, because you knew what you were trying to do.

DJ Muggs: I knew what I wanted, but they wasn't giving a freaking, an 18-year-old kid $150,000 to go produce a record that didn't produce a record at that time, so they gave it to an established producer.

Speaker 1: Where did it go wrong, do you think? What didn't he get.

DJ Muggs: It's just we all have different musical instincts. If you played a guitar and I played a guitar, the same guitar it's gonna come out different even if we played the same song. I was just into what I was into, and when I came home I was like man, I wanted it to be grimier and dirtier, and to be more like this. But what that did is that turned me on to just save every [inaudible 00:14:07] penny until I had $3000 to buy a drum machine, because it was expensive back then, so I got me a drum machine and just started doing the Cypress demos at that point.

Speaker 1: At that point?

DJ Muggs: That's when I started being able to take my sound and my influences and my instincts and how I vibrated and put it onto the music. It was hard back then because you could do the demos at the house, but then you still had to get a studio and you had to get a recording engineer. Then once you recorded it, you had to pay for a mix engineer. Then after a mix engineer, you had to get a mastering engineer. Then you still had to get motherfucking label and you still had to get distribution. Now you just get a computer and you put it on the internet. A lot of time and it's a lot of expenses.

Speaker 1: How did you pay for those expenses, Muggs?

DJ Muggs: Sold weed. I sold a lot of weed to pay for our demos. Then once we got, we did some demos, we used to do them on a four-track, a cassette four-track, at the beginning. Once something was good and we liked it, then we'd go and record it. After about a year of recording songs, we got a deal with Rough House Records.

Speaker 1: From there, the rest is history, right?

DJ Muggs: From there it was on.

Speaker 1: Did they have comments on what you included in the liner notes?

DJ Muggs: Absolutely not. Rough House, because I actually signed with Joe the Butcher's label after that because I knew him, and I was like yo, here's my demos, here's my demos. One day, we did a song called Real Estate, and after we did that song, that was the first song Cypress did as a demo that sounded like a record. Once we did that, everything started sounding like records after that. We hit something that day.

DJ Muggs: Then it was just what we was into, and they was just like do what you do, man. They was 100%, they loved it so much. They just sat back and and just gave us the wisdom they had to help us along, but they just let us be us and let us do us, and didn't try to interfere at all.

Speaker 1: You mentioned the fact that you were eighteen before. Now you had a couple years on you. What did they see in you, yes the couple of years, but you're still a young guy, how were they able to turn over the keys as they did?

DJ Muggs: Because when I came in with all the Cypress demos that I was recording that year, and they seen everything, they was like oh this shit's fucking amazing. That's why they signed us. We don't even want to touch it, just do you.

Speaker 1: Just keep going.

DJ Muggs: Don't get in the way because we're going to interfere and fuck it up. They were smart enough and they were creative enough, they're visionary music guys, that they was like let the artist be the artist, don't get in the way of this, this doesn't need any help. This just needs to be put out the right way, and we have the avenues, we have the knowhow to know how to put these records out and let Muggs be Muggs, because now I had a three-year relationship with Joe at that time. We kept in touch, he was like a mentor to me.

Speaker 1: Now here we are, what do you think you did, I'll ask you directly, for cannabis culture in the nineties and bringing it through to today? How responsible do you feel? I'll be straight with you?

DJ Muggs: I feel very responsible. I think we was the hottest coolest band in the world for that period of time, and we made it cool to be able to smoke. You might kind of wanted to, and you might kind of your big brother might have done it, but we made it to be like try this shit, it's cool, and this music's the best fucking music on the streets, and we smoke weed, we're successful, we smoke weed, we're killing the game. We talked about it in our songs, and we uplifted, we made it sound like fun. We made it seem cool to smoke, so I think it made kids like oh, this is fun, this is cool, I wanna be cool, I wanna have some fun.

DJ Muggs: At the time, it was really important. There was a lot of crack on the streets. It was the War on Drugs, and it was the crack culture. I think then Snoop comes out, and Dre and us, and I think a lot of the people, a lot of us getting people into smoking weed helped combat the crack epidemic where people just got into smoking weed, man.

Speaker 1: Yeah, just kind of take this route versus that route. We talked about and I asked you directly in the room, now for us here, what are your thoughts on communities that have been disproportionately effected by the War on Drugs, and what we can do with this industry to kind of help?

DJ Muggs: I think it's just bullshit laws that things that happen like that, especially with the law on powder cocaine and crack cocaine, you know how the laws are.

Speaker 1: Totally different, yeah, it's the same thing.

DJ Muggs: I've got locked up, I've done three days for a fucking joint in New York before for no fucking reason, but what's weird is that in the late eighties and early nineties New York was very liberal about weed. LA wasn't. You couldn't jaywalk, you couldn't have a joint, you was going to jail, but in New York, I could smoke in the park, I could smoke in Washington Square Park. If the cop seen you, a cop would go like hey, man, could you put that down, have some fucking respect. You could have a beer as long as it was in a paper bag. Matter of fact, cops come in my pockets before when I was uptown in Harlem, pull up under covers, go through my pockets, find like twenty nickel sacks, and go like you ain't got no crack, nope, all right well cool. Hey, smoking blunts is illegal, take that inside, and do nothing about it.

DJ Muggs: Until after 9/11, then they started the no-tolerance law and they wanted to get everybody into the system, the new system they had, so they just started busting everybody for weed. That's when I got busted for a joint, but until that time New York was one of the most liberal places in the country for it.

Speaker 1: Real quick on Washington Square Park, did you make your way down Bleecker Street to Peculiar Pub and Terra Blues and Microphone Café?

DJ Muggs: Yeah, I know all those spots. I used to live on A and Houston for like twelve years.

Speaker 1: I've definitely been in the same place with you at the same time, there's no question about it. As we go here, you've got a partnership with Bhang, right?

DJ Muggs: Absolutely.

Speaker 1: Have you met Scott Van Rixel, everyone wants to know?

DJ Muggs: Good friend of mine.

Speaker 1: Right?

DJ Muggs: Yeah, Scott's a good friend of mine.

Speaker 1: Episode 2 of this very podcast.

DJ Muggs: Me and Scott developed all the products together for the Cypress launch.

Speaker 1: Tell us about Scott from your perspective. Everybody's got an opinion on Scott.

DJ Muggs: Scott's a mad genius, and me and Scott click, yo. I just dig Scott. That's the kind of energy that I like working with, people that are inspired and people that are exciting, has a vision, very outspoken, and at the same time easy to work with for me, very easy to work with for me. He gets it, and he gets it and he's a good listener and he helps get my vision across and helps push my vision. He's tenacious, his work ethic's fucking unmatched by anybody. I'm speaking to him at 6 in the fucking morning, and I'm speaking to him at 12:00 at night, you know what I mean?

Speaker 1: Doesn't sleep, yep.

DJ Muggs: I think we share the same vision and the same enthusiasm for what we're creating, and it's fun to have somebody on your level to create with.

Speaker 1: That's interesting. He's in my phone, he's SVR, which makes me think of Stevie Ray Vaughan, that's why I put it that way, you know what I mean?

DJ Muggs: Yeah.

Speaker 1: Just as far as the product assortment, what are you happiest with, what are you excited about?

DJ Muggs: We're coming on a lot of different levels, very strong on the wellness level, A, because I'm into ... I'm vegan.

Speaker 1: Okay. How's that going, by the way?

DJ Muggs: It's six years, I've been good.

Speaker 1: Do I need to worry about this?

DJ Muggs: It's up to you.

Speaker 1: Does it work for you, is what I'm saying?

DJ Muggs: It works for me.

Speaker 1: Did you do it because you needed to?

DJ Muggs: No. I just did it because I want to feel good in my future. I'm invested in my sixties, so when I'm in my sixties I'm gonna be feeling good, I'm gonna be flying around with good clean arteries, you know what I mean?

Speaker 1: I hear you.

DJ Muggs: That's what I did it for.

Speaker 1: All right, so wellness.

DJ Muggs: It's gonna be we're all into being healthy, we all want an edge. We all want ... I live a high endurance lifestyle, so I definitely want something to help me on that side of it. On the flower side, on the music side, on the edible, on the oil side, on everything else ...

Speaker 1: Talk about the strain you brought back from Africa.

DJ Muggs: I brought back something called Durban Poison, which we know everybody is pretty familiar with it, but I was in South Africa for awhile, working, and while I was out there I was just like where could I get some Durban Poison seeds. Somebody brought my 23 seeds, and got the seeds back to America.

Speaker 1: From there, there you go. The heavy CBD, though, right?

DJ Muggs: Heavy CBD is why I brought them. They told me there was in a few places, but they were hard to get seeds, people were telling me they were hard to find these seeds, and I'm heavy into CDB, so I made sure, I was like okay, cool, I'm gonna grab some while I'm down here then.

Speaker 1: There you go. I've got three final questions for you, but before we get there as far as where we are, we've got ... I gotta ask you now. Let's talk about politics for a second, do you mind? What do you think about what's going on?

DJ Muggs: Like what part?

Speaker 1: The fact that geopolitically, globally, we are all in a civil war, each country hates the other half.

DJ Muggs: Yeah, it's fucking crazy. Yeah, man, whatever.

Speaker 1: You don't bother yourself with it or what? You know what I mean?

DJ Muggs: It ain't like it's nothing new. Shit's been like this forever. You know what I mean? It's just maybe I think people got ...

Speaker 1: But now start ...

DJ Muggs: The Internet, so it's people are more conscious and aware of it, and there's a voice for it to be able to just connect your thoughts because it's been a divide. I mean if somebody was the President and he won 52 to 48, that was considered a fucking landslide and he won, but this country was still divided in a sense, you know what I mean?

Speaker 1: Sure.

DJ Muggs: I'll tell you the truth, though, for me growing up I'm not big into politics. I pay attention to them and I do my due diligence on them, but when they took Mesopotamia and they separated everything from Iraq and Iran and everything in there, when they put the fucking borders on everything, they made sure they kept the Sunnis and the Shiites in the same territories to keep them governments at ease, I mean keep those governments disruptive. Same how they separated Africa. They kept warring tribes in the same area, when they could have separated things and put the borders where everybody had their own states, but ...

Speaker 1: They did it so they could stay in power while people are fighting each other.

DJ Muggs: This is a chess game, man. This is a chess game for control of the world. People complain a lot about America, but you have three choices. America polices the world, the Chinese, or the Russians. I'd rather have the Americans police the word.

Speaker 1: I'm with you there.

DJ Muggs: You know what I'm saying?

Speaker 1: I think we're ceding that power, is what it feels like to me.

DJ Muggs: I've never ... And it's a constant chess match for that control. I've never had no politics really didn't bother me too much until George Bush came in, and that was the first time I got fucking scared for he fucked up this economy so goddamn bad, I was like am I gonna make any ... Is this what this shit is gonna be like?

Speaker 1: Is this gonna be over? Right.

DJ Muggs: It was the first time I had a little bit of shake up, and Obama came back in and got everything balanced. Then this fucking donkey we got in there now, I'm like I sit back sometimes and go is this shit really real, what the fuck's going on. Is this even real?

Speaker 1: You know, he's from your hometown, right?

DJ Muggs: It's unbelievable. He's from Queens, it's unbelievable.

Speaker 1: Explain ...

DJ Muggs: Because you know it's funny we used to like Donnie in New York back in the days, he was on TV, he was charismatic ...

Speaker 1: All the way back, though, and then ...

DJ Muggs: No, back in the nineties, Donnie was cool. He was like a New York figure.

Speaker 1: Sure, but then he got tired, right, and then he destroyed Atlantic City. They can tell you about it. Then he started not really being a real estate guy, and just putting his name on the buildings, and not really being the guy.

DJ Muggs: He was just a New York socialite that was on the fucking news all the time, the rich guy, you know what I mean?

Speaker 1: Exactly, here's the rich guy from New York.

DJ Muggs: [crosstalk 00:25:10] rich guys. He had a little swag about him, but you know the guy's a piece of shit, and it's fucking unbelievable, man.

Speaker 1: It is unbelievable. You know, I am looking for I think people that are not left, that are not right, that are just people, to get into office and to do something about it.

DJ Muggs: We just want truth.

Speaker 1: That's what I'm saying.

DJ Muggs: Just truth. No bullshit, just truth.

Speaker 1: In all seriousness, you're not a politics guy, which is what makes you perfect to jump in and maybe run in Queens or run in LA for the mayorship or whatever, or the state senator ship.

DJ Muggs: Yeah, I ain't running for shit.

Speaker 1: Why not?

DJ Muggs: Because I'm gonna chill the fuck out. You all can do that shit. I'm gonna go make music, man.

Speaker 1: All right. Three final questions. I'll tell you what they are, I'll ask you in order. What's most surprised you in cannabis, what's most surprised you in life, and then in the soundtrack of your life one track one song that's gotta be on there, that's gonna be hard for you.

Speaker 1: First things first. What has most surprised you in cannabis?

DJ Muggs: What has most surprised me? Where it's getting right now, like that it's actually a reality that it is becoming legal.

Speaker 1: Mm-hmm (affirmative). It's happening.

DJ Muggs: I knew it would be legal one day. I didn't know how, when, why, and it's really happening and it's like whoa, shit is really happening, and it's gonna be very shortly here it's gonna be happening in a global way.

Speaker 1: Global way, and America's last. That brings me back to I think cannabis is a leading indicator of America ceding its leadership to the rest of the world. We would have never been last when you and me were growing up, we would have been first in everything, everything, everything, and now we're happy to be last. Weird, right?

DJ Muggs: Yeah. I think that has a lot to do with the evangelicals and politics and everybody trying to just do things for their control and their stuff instead of doing what's right.

Speaker 1: What's most surprised you in life?

DJ Muggs: That I'm still fucking here. You know, hey, man, life's real. You know what I'm saying?

Speaker 1: What do you mean?

DJ Muggs: Life is real as fuck. There's no answers, and you just gotta go out there and figure your own shit out, man, and get as smart as you can, keep your fucking body in tune, keep your spirit strong, keep the love in your family, make sure you give your business and your family equal amount of time and equal amount of love because without water and fucking sunshine and care and nature everything is gonna die. Don't put too much time in your business, and don't forget about your life. You gotta nurture everything, and just make yourself a bigger, better more powerful version of yourself that you can everyday. Understand your faults, call your own bullshit on yourself, and fix your mistakes, don't make them fucking twice, and be the kind of person that steps into the room and he makes everybody around him better.

Speaker 1: Yeah.

DJ Muggs: You know what I mean?

Speaker 1: Yeah.

DJ Muggs: Bring that kind of energy to the party.

Speaker 1: I love that list. I'm gonna put that up with this episode. That's a good list.

DJ Muggs: Absolutely. Thank you, brother.

Speaker 1: All right, let's try it. On the soundtrack of your life, one track, one song that's gotta be on there, you might have more than one.

DJ Muggs: Sade, Paradise. Look at us, baby. How you like me now? I got the Maui Wowie, I'm in Kauai, I'm speaking to you, we at the motherfucking ...

Speaker 1: ICBC.

DJ Muggs: ICBC.

Speaker 1: On cannabis economy.

DJ Muggs: Cannabis economy, all the way live, DJ motherfucking Muggs, Cypress Hill, baby. Holler.

Speaker 1: Muggs, thanks so much, man.

DJ Muggs: Thanks for your time and energy. Appreciate it, brother.

Speaker 1: And there you have DJ Muggs. I mean the guy's paying attention to himself, he's paying attention to his loved ones, he's paying attention to his health, and he's paying attention to his business. Very unique and interesting kind of career-slash-life, very much appreciated talking to him. Hope you enjoyed it, too. Stay tuned.

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Cannabis Economy is a real-time history of legal cannabis. We chronicle how personal and industry histories have combined to provide our current reality.