The age-old myth that cannabis makes you lazy and slow is finally going out the window. Many prohibitionists have been using this key argument for ages, with no actual facts to support it.
Let’s face it, it’s outright preposterous to insist that every person who uses marijuana will end up a bleary-eyed loser, sitting on the couch watching simple-minded comedies and playing video games. In fact, very few stoners spend their time teared up, nostalgic about a past gone bad because of their use of cannabis.
Yes, there are some consumers who transcend into zombie-like personalities with no goals or plans for the future past getting high. But, there are numerous exceptions. Many marijuana users continue to remain mentally functional, and continue to seek opportunities to better themselves and their lives.
Three of these consumers, successful rappers Lil Wayne, Jay Z and Snoop Dogg have proven that you can inhale, and still make major strides in life. All three of these successful stoners have risen to heights they probably never imagined… well, at least not sober.
Dwayne Michael Carter Jr. is a professional high hop rapper who goes by the stage name Lil Wayne. This New Orleans-born recording artist has won multiple Grammy awards for various singles, mixtapes and albums, including “Lollipop” and “A Milli.”
Born on September 27, 1982, his rap career began with the hip hop group the Hot Boys. Although he started rapping at the age of eight, he didn’t make his first professional recording until 1993. True Stories was released under the Cash Money Records label.
At the age of 16, he brought style, flare and his southern twang to the music scene. He launched his solo career, dropping his 1999 hit Tha Block Is Hot, which went double platinum. This award-winning hit song became an anthem for hip hop lovers across the world.
Lil Wayne Breaks Records in Rap
In 2004, the Louisiana hip hop star made a move that permanently cemented him as one of the leading performers in rap history. His title “Go D.J.” rang out from speaker boxes all across the globe.Lil Wayne went on to release more successful albums, eventually winning four Grammy’s in 2009.
Once again, he made history with the release of 2008: Tha Carter III. This albums success was obvious from the beginning, as it sold over 1 million copies within just the first week. Two of his No. 1 hit titles, “Lollipop” and “A Milli” were featured on this album. Big names, such as Jay-Z, Robin Thicke, Babyface, Juelz Santana and Busta Rhymes made cameo appearances on the award-winning album.
Lil Wayne’s 2008 album won a Granny for best rap album. Carter himself, was awarded three Grammy awards that following February: “Lollipop” won best rap song, and “A Milli” won best rap solo performance. He also had the honor of sharing a Grammy with Kanye West, Jay-Z and T.I. Their single “Swagga Like Us” won an award for best rap performance by a duo or group.
Lil Wayne Launches Young Money Entertainment
The successful rapper didn’t just stop there. In August 2009, he took his hip hop career to new heights when he signed up-and-coming rapper Bow Wow to his label, Young Money Entertainment. And, the successes didn’t stop there. Lil Wayne released Tha Carter IV, the 4th installment of his Tha Carter series. Not only was it a success, it actually set a new record. Within its first four days for sale online, the album was downloaded on iTunes 300,000 times. This was a new record for iTunes downloads.
I Am Not a Human Being II, Carter’s 10 studio album, debuted on the Billboard 200 chart at No. 2. Within its first week of release, 217,000 copies were sold.
Never Forget Your Roots
The successes of rapper Lil Wayne go beyond the music world. Mr. Carter went on to establish One Family Foundation, a charitable urban youth organization. It began as an effort to rebuild the athletic fields at Eleanor McMain Secondary School, which he attended as a child. This came after the 2005 destruction of Hurricane Katrina. Despite his successful music career, Lil Wayne has yet to forget where he came from in life.
Rapper Jay Z
Shawn Corey Carter hit the hip hop music scene under his stage name, Jay Z, and took it to new levels. With more than 100 million records sold, he’s now one of the best-selling musicians of all time. The 21-time Grammy Award winner is also the husband of musical legend, Beyoncé.
Jay Z was born on December 4, 1969 in New York City. Raised in Marcy Projects, a drug-infested Brooklyn low-income housing complex, rap became his escape early on in life. The young rapper began appearing on Yo! MTV Raps in 1989. He later went on to become a lucrative businessman, founding his own entertainment and clothing line companies.
Jay Z and the Start of Roc-a-Fella Records
In 1996, Jay Z teamed up with two of his good friends, Kareem Burke and Damon Dash. Together, they founded Roc-a-Fella Records. It was on this label that the rapper released Reasonable Doubt, his debut album. Two years later, the title track from his second album Vol. 2 … Hard Knock Life, would become his most popular single track to date, making him the biggest name in hip hop.
Carter went on to release a slew of No. 1 albums and hit singles over the years. He retired from rap in 2003, telling the world that good competition just didn’t exist anymore. Three years later, Jay Z returned to rap, with a more “middle-age” style, feel and tone.
Jay Z Moves to the Business Side of Music
But, it was during this three-year hiatus when Carter decided to explore the business side of the music industry. He was proudly appointed as the president of Def Jam records. As president, he signed such successful artists as Young Jeezy, Ne-Yo and Rihanna, while helping Kanye West build a successful music career.
However, he resigned as president of Def Jam in 2007. He told the world that the company’s resistance to alter business models proven to be ineffective was a major issue.
By 2008, it was back to the executive table for the rapper, who signed a deal with Live Nation that year. The concert promotion company agreed to a $150 million super deal, which created Roc Nation. This was a joint venture, which launched Roc Nation to handle almost all aspects of the careers of its artists.
Other Jay Z Business Ventures
Some of Jay Z’s other lucrative business ventures include Rocawear urban clothing, Roc-a-Fella Films and the upscale NYC sports bar known as the 40/40 Club, which also has Atlanta, Atlantic City and Las Vegas venues.
He went on to become a part owner in the Brooklyn Nets basketball team. By 2013, he had launched Roc Nation, a full-service sports management firm. Jay Z’s dreams went beyond just managing artists. The NYC-native businessman soon sold his shares in the Brooklyn Nets so he could earn certification as a sports agent.
Cordozar Calvin Broadus, Jr. was born on October 20, 1971. He busted his way onto the rap scene, with the help of Dr. Dre, under the stage name Snoop Doggy Dogg. He later changed his name to Snoop Lion. Today, the successful rapper and co-star on Martha & Snoop’s Potluck Dinner Party, is known simply by Snoop Dogg or Snoop.
Snoop Dogg has had a successful rap career, with 15 albums released since the launch of his career. He’s also collaborated on many other artists’ albums and singles, appeared in over 30 feature films and numerous television roles. Multiple video games feature characters created in the likenesses of the Long Beach-born entertainer.
But, what truly sets Snoop Dogg apart from many other rappers and actors in the mainstream world is his dedication to cannabis. Snoop is a self-proclaimed marijuana advocate who believes in both the recreational and medicinal benefits of the cannabis plant.
Snoop Dogg Advocates for Legalized Marijuana
In April 2015, Calvin Broadus made the leap from artistic creations to investments. He became a minority investor in a California-based weed delivery company. The new startup was appropriately named Eaze, and promised to deliver medical marijuana to the consumer’s doorstep within 10 minutes.
In October of that same year, Snoop Dogg launched Merry Jane, a digital media business dedicated to cannabis news. He calls the sticky, icky green a crossroads of politics, pop culture, business and health.
By April 2016, the rapper-turned-businessman was frustrated with the NFL policy on cannabis use. He took to social media after finding out the NFL was anti-marijuana, but pro-guns. Snoop Dogg found this to be ludicrous, and made sure the world knew.
Snoop Dogg’s View on Legalized Marijuana Laws
On May 26, 2016, he made a visit to a Tucson, Arizona medical marijuana dispensary before a scheduled concert performance that evening. He made it a point to talk with patients in the dispensary about the benefits of legalized marijuana. Snoop voiced his support for the measure, which was set to be on November ballots in Arizona, to legalize recreational cannabis use.
Then, on December 30, 2016, Snoop attended a Las Vegas, NV “meet and greet” thrown at Reef Dispensaries, and local marijuana cornerstone. There, the artist was joined by some former NFL players. They were there to raise awareness about the medicinal benefits and painkilling effects of medical marijuana.
The hope was that the event, which was planned along with Doctors for Cannabis Regulation, would show the NFL that medical cannabis is an effective alternative to prescription drugs, often over-prescribed and misused by league members.
Snoop Dogg Launches His Own Cannabis Line
Today, Snoop Dogg is proud to market his very own marijuana brand, known as Leafs by Snoop, which launched late 2015. Because of the laws governing recreational marijuana in most states, including his native California, it went on sale in Colorado, where recreational use is legal (state-wise).
The Leafs by Snoop line of cannabis features eight different types. Consumers will find Northern Lights, Lemon Pie, the world-famous Cali Kush and other interesting flavors. His medical marijuana line includes various concentrates and edibles as well.