Historically, hip-hop has never been short on a classic marijuana-based anthem; anyone that owns a Dr. Dre album can attest to that. Over the years, you’d be hard-pressed to find a mixtape or playlist that didn’t include “I Got 5 On It” by the Luniz, Redman & Method Man’s “How High”, “Good Times” by Styles P or the plethora of gems by Cypress Hill and Snoop Dogg that we don’t have the space to even begin to list!
Since we’re with the smoke, here’s a ten-track playlist of underrated, certified dope tracks to set your 4/20 off right.
Madvillain – “America’s Most Blunted” (2004)
A standout track from the highly-acclaimed MF Doom and Madlib group album Madvillainy, featuring a guest verse from Madlibs alter-ego Quasimoto (also known as Lord Quas). The two trade blunted tales over a loop so dusty that you may get a contact high.
Diamond D (feat. Sadat X) – “Never” (1997)
The D.I.T.C. member shares this joint with Brand Nubian MC Sadat X, as both vow to never give up the sticky green with a little help from the Jerry Butler sample on the hook of this self-produced cut.
Alchemist – “Calmly Smoke” (2008)
Possibly the most chilled-out song on the list. The first line says it all: “I wanna smoke until my brain is numb”. Alchemist, Styles P and Evidence smoke their problems away with this laidback therapy track.
Cyhi the Prynce (feat. ScHoolboy Q) – “Food Savers & Scissors” (2012)
The one-time G.O.O.D. Music signee Cyhi the Prynce teamed up with ScHoolboy Q and really got into the specifics. The song breaks down exactly what one would need to separate and redistribute the cannabis: “Food savers and scissors, food savers and scissors/ We use it so they can’t smell shit and make it safe to deliver”.
Redman – “How To Roll A Blunt” (1992)
Reggie Noble gets very educational on this audio instructional. Released on 1992’s Whut? Thee Album, this track breaks down the blunt construction process over a super funky instrumental, assisted by Pete Rock. Basically, this is Rolling Blunts for Dummies.
Danny Brown – “Blunt After Blunt” (2011)
The usually high-pitched vocals of Detroit’s Danny Brown turned down an octave for this ode to chain smoking. He sounds uncharacteristically serious on the hook, but hey, smoking blunt after blunt after blunt after blunt is no joke!
Ab-Soul (feat. ScHoolboy Q) – “Pass The Blunt” (2010)
Top Dawg Entertainment artist and frequent Kendrick Lamar collaborator Ab-Soul blesses his Long Term 2: Lifestyles of the Broke and Almost Famous mixtape with this smoking anthem. The “I Got 5 On It” sample in the hook is a subtle-yet-dope nod to the original classic, and ScHoolboy Q chimes in with a cloudy third verse that ends it nicely.
Chance The Rapper (feat. Ab-Soul) – “Smoke Again” (2013)
The Grammy Award-winning Chicago native released his second project Acid Rap in 2013 that really shot him into the limelight. Chance utilizes a sing-songy delivery, which is offset alongside the aforementioned Ab-Soul on the third verse. It’s a carefree new age anthem perfect for the summer car ride along a highway to nowhere.
KRS-One – “Can’t Wake Up (I’m A Blunt)” (1993)
Hip-hop head of state and Boogie Down Productions legend KRS-One came out of left field with this masterpiece. He vividly paints a lyrical picture about what it’s like to actually be a blunt in a super creative way, which also shouts out his blunt-enjoying friends, many of whom are also on this list. DJ Premier came in on the beat to cement this as an all-time classic.
Freddie Gibbs & Madlib – “High”
Madlib’s second mention on this list as a producer, this time from the 2014 collaborative album Piñata with Freddie Gibbs. Flipping the same sample as the classic “I Get High” by Styles P, there’s only one direction to really take it. “I got you motherfuckers gassed off the smell, dawg/So go ahead and take a hit of what I’m bout to sell y’all” — Freddie is as consistent as ever with the pen. Danny Brown finds his way onto the track with the last verse in an oddball yet strangely intriguing collaboration that really works.
Happy 4/20, folks — be safe out there!