Saturday, October 24, 2020
JAY-Z launches new weed brand
It looks like JAY-Z is fully throwing in on the cannabis scene with the debut of a new weed brand, Monogram.
Not much is known about the new brand. This morning an Instagram appeared with minimal graphics, sparse captions, and vibey Instagram stories of people lovingly smelling cannabis plants. The website has snippets of Fela Kuti, Bob Marley and the Wailers, and OutKast playing under a headline that reads "Sounds from the Grow Room." With no shortage of hype-inspiring moods and lack of specific details regarding product names or launch dates, JAY-Z fans and potential consumers have little to hang onto other than pure speculation.
But that's part of the fun, you know? It's like guessing when Frank Ocean's next album is going to drop, but make it weed.
This isn't JAY-Z's first foray into the cannabis world. He's been the Chief Brand Strategist at Caliva, one of California's largest cannabis companies, since July 2019. While JAY-Z has been involved with other brand lines such as Bad Apple, Fun Uncle, and Deli, Monogram is the first brand to come from Caliva with JAY-Z's name behind it.
“With its careful strain selection, meticulous cultivation practices and uncompromising quality, MONOGRAM seeks to redefine what cannabis means to consumers today,” reads Caliva's press release for the brand. “In an effort to provide a more tailored customer experience, the brand will also launch through a best in class e-commerce platform dedicated exclusively to its singular product line.”
JAY-Z's weed history goes much further. He's been a longtime proponent of ending the War on Drugs, culminating with a collaboration with the Drug Policy Alliance for a New York Times opinion piece in 2016.
“Together, we hope to shape the conversation surrounding cannabis, foster equality, and fairness in the development of the industry, promote awareness for the many uses and benefits of cannabis, and empower consumers to feel free to use cannabis how, when, and where they want,” Caliva said in a statement to Highsnobiety.
And before the weed brand collaborations and social justice, JAY-Z was our preeminent weed-lyricist. I texted contributor Dante Jordan what his favorite weed-focused lyric of JAY-Z's is and he said the 2002 Pharrell assisted “Excuse Me Miss” with the lyric You can't roll a blunt to this one / You gotta, you gotta well, ya gotta light a J / You gotta puff a J on this one.”
Photos courtesy of Nike Communications.