In 2017, a study showed that country music included more drug references than any other genre. Country music's drug of choice? Weed.
For fans of country music, it wasn't that surprising. Sure, country radio may have cultivated a squeaky clean image and radio programmers in the days of yore may have balked over including a reference to lighting up, but country artists' love affair with marijuana goes back further than Kacey Musgraves extolling the virtues of rolling up a joint or Eric Church singing "Smoke a Little Smoke."
In fact, classic country is filled with cannabis odes that go hand in hand with stoner anthems like Sublime's "Smoke Two Joints," Cypress Hill's "Hits From the Bong" and "I Wanna Get High," Dr. Dre's "The Next Episode (featuring Snoop Dogg, Kurupt and Nate Dogg), Peter Tosh's "Legalize It," Method Man and Redman's "How High," Kid Cudi's "Marijuana," Bob Dylan's "Rainy Day Women #12 & 35," D'Angelo's "Brown Sugar," Black Sabbath's "Sweet Leaf," Neil Young's "Roll Another Number (For the Road)," "I Got 5 on It" by Luniz and Mighty Diamonds' reggae classic "Pass the Kouchie."
Here are country music's 25 best songs about weed.
"Contact High," Brad Paisley
Brad Paisley compares brief connections with a woman to getting a "contact high" in this cheeky tune.
"Ready to Roll," Blake Shelton
This song from Blake Shelton's Red River Blue relates a weekend at home with his love to a relaxing toke.
"Worry B Gone," Guy Clark
Written by Guy Clark, Gary Nicholson and Lee Roy Parnell, this song is all about shutting out the world for a while and enjoying a few puffs of "Worry B Gone."
"Altitude Adjustment," Midland
Texas trio Midland take a much-needed trip to Colorado for a "Rocky Mountain high" with mary jane.
"Stoned at the Jukebox," Hank Williams Jr.
We're not sure if Hank Jr. is stone-drunk or just stoned on weed in this song. Either way it's a classic heartbreak tune.
"Greener Pastures," Brothers Osborne
Brothers Osborne wrote this perfect weed song with Maren Morris and Ryan Hurd. It's part breakup anthem, part ode to reefer.
"Reasons to Quit," Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard
"Reasons to Quit," penned by Merle Haggard and featured on Willie Nelson and Haggard's album Pancho & Lefty, takes a more somber approach to singing about recreational drug use.
"Reasons to quit, they have no rhyme or reason when you're high/ And the reasons to quit don't outnumber all the reasons why," Nelson and Haggard sing. "So we keep smokin' and we keep drinkin'/ Havin fun and never thinkin'/ And laughin' at the price tag that we paid/ And we keep roarin' down the fast lane like two young men feelin' no pain/ And the reasons for quittin's getting bigger each day."
"Okie From Muskogee," Merle Haggard
"We don't smoke marijuana in Muskogee" -- that's how Merle Haggard kicks off this song about the straightlaced residents of Muskogee, Oklahoma. But the tounge-in-cheek nature of the tune led "Okie From Muskogee" to become part of the toking soundtrack for country stoners everywhere.
"Weed, Whiskey and Willie," Brothers Osborne
Brothers Osborne celebrate three of their favorite things in life in this nod to both a musical and a THC high.
"I've got bottles and vinyl stacked to the ceilin'/ I get stoned for survival, it helps with the healin'," the duo sings. "And when it all goes to hell the only thing I believe in/ Is weed, whiskey, and Willie."
"Weed With Willie," Toby Keith
Stories of getting stoned with the king of stoners, Willie Nelson, are legendary. Toby Keith sums up why it's not for the fainf of heart in "Weed With Willie."
"Smoke a Little Smoke," Eric Church
Eric Church shakes off a breakup by blazin' in this 2009 tune.
Turn the quiet up, turn the noise down/Let this ol' world just spin around," Church sings. "I wanna feel it swing, wanna feel it sway/ And put some feel good in my soul/ Drink a little drink, smoke a little smoke."
"You Don't Know How it Feels," Tom Petty
A country-rock classic, Tom Petty's "You Don't Know How it Feels" also goes down as an all time great weed song.
"Turtles All the Way Down," Sturgill Simpson
A heady, psychedelic trip, "Turtles All the Way Down" is certainly about more than just smoking weed. Instead, the tune explores everything from mind altering substances to philosophy and religion.
"Willin'," Linda Ronstadt
Linda Ronstadt's stunning rendition of this Little Feat song references self-medicating -- for better or for worse.
"Get High," Brandy Clark
Singer-songwriter Brandy Clark tells the story of a wife and mom who turns to smoking weed in her kitchen to slip away from her troubles for a while.
"Stop Drop and Roll One," Pistol Annies
Pistol Annies (Miranda Lambert, Ashley Monroe and Angaleena Presley) spark one to deal with their increasing burnout on "Stop Drop and Roll One."
"High Time," Kacey Musgraves
"High Time," not Kacey Musgraves' first or last nod to ganja, finds the singer-songwriter re-assessing her priorities.
"It's high time/To slow my roll/Let the grass just grow and lean way back," Musgraves sings. "It's a fine time/
To let it all go/ I've been too low, so it's high time."
"Might as Well Get Stoned," Chris Stapleton
Chris Stapleton finds a brief escape for heartache and the worries of the world on this song from Traveller.
"Weed Instead of Roses," Ashley Monroe
Ashley Monroe puts the spark back in a relationship with a request for weed instead of roses.
"Give me weed instead of roses," Monroe sings. "Bring me whiskey instead of wine/ Every puff, every shot, you're looking better all the time."
"It's All Going to Pot," Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard
Willie and Merle teamed up yet again with a call to legalize it.
"Follow Your Arrow," Kacey Musgraves
"Family Tradition," Hank Williams, Jr.
Hank Williams Jr. traces his family lineage in this country classic, asking "Hank why do you drink? Hank, why do you roll smoke?"
"Sunday Morning Coming Down," Kris Kristofferson
One of the greatest country songs ever written, Kris Kristofferson's "Sunday Morning Coming Down" is about a down on his luck narrator, still reeling from the night before, taking stock of his life on a Sunday morning.
"On the Sunday morning sidewalk/ Wishing, Lord, that I was stoned," he sings. "'Cause there's something in a Sunday/Makes a body feel alone."
"Illegal Smile," John Prine
One of many examples of John Prine's wit, "Illegal Smile" is all about a man trying to escape reality with the help of weed.
Seem like total silence was the only friend I had
Bowl of oatmeal tried to stare me down, and won
And it was twelve o'clock before I realized
I was havin' no fun
And you may see me tonight with an illegal smile
It don't cost very much, but it lasts a long while
Won't you please tell the man I didn't kill anyone
No, I'm just tryin' to have me some fun
"Roll Me Up and Smoke Me When I Die" Willie Nelson
Leave it to Willie Nelson to record the ultimate anthem for country music loving potheads. "Roll Me Up and Smoke Me When I Die" is the Red Headed Stranger's last will and testament. Fittingly, the song was released on April 20, 2012 (4/20).
"Roll me up and smoke me when I die/And if anyone don't like it, just look 'em in the eye," Nelson sings. "I didn't come here, and I ain't leavin'/ So don't sit around and cry/ Just roll me up and smoke me when I die."
Check out our Cannabis Country playlist below.
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