Wednesday, April 20, 2011

420 Friendly

This music video about "toking" is a hoot. It is almost surreal. I remember watching “The Lawrence Welk Show” at my Grandmother’s house when I was a kid in the ‘60’s. I always thought it’s “champagne music” was for “squares”. The Welk Show was known for their conservative, family-friendly format. I have no recollection of this song, “One Toke Over the Line”, being performed. Be sure to watch it all the way to the end for an explanation from host Lawrence Welk.


This song actually has a very interesting history. It was originally by the folk-rock duo of Brewer & Shipley. Their website recounts the story:
'One Toke Over The Line' became a Top 10 hit in 1971, and was largely responsible for introducing Brewer & Shipley to the masses. While the record buying public was casting its vote of approval by buying the single, the (soon to be disgraced) Vice President of the United States, Spiro Agnew, labeled Brewer & Shipley as subversives, and then strong-armed the FCC to ban "One Toke" from the airwaves just as it was peaking on the charts. Brewer & Shipley landed on Nixon's Enemies List, a badge of honor they wear proudly to this day. Even in the midst of all the fuss about the drug related lyrics, Lawrence Welk featured "One Toke Over The Line" on his show in 1971.
The FCC began a campaign to rid the airwaves of songs that “tend to glorify or promote the use of illegal drugs such as marijuana, LSD, speed, etc.” Some of the songs pulled by radio broadcasters during this time included:
One more video in honor of today being 420. Riki "Garfunkel" Lindhome and Kate "Oates" Micucci sing about the perils of obtaining medical marijuana in California.



Jess said...

I remember how I enjoyed that song ("One Toke Over the Line") as a kid. It wasn't until years later that I realized what it really was about. But I actually love songs like that, with their subversive messages, like "Afternoon Delight." I was so innocent back then! :)

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