NUG Magazine had the chance to catch up with CEO of Swisher Streets, Meen Green, So-Calâ€™s local â€œdankstaâ€ of â€œHemp-Hopâ€ who was brought to you a couple of years back by Ras Mike, our music editor and host of NUG Radio. Meen Green and his group, Swisher Streets, make music about livinâ€™ the streets, blazinâ€™, and doing your thing and hereâ€™s why:
Remind me again, what is â€œHemp-Hopâ€?
Hemp-Hop is a collaboration of weed music and hip-hop. Iâ€™ve been doing stoner music for over 18 years. My first album, which came out in 1997, was called The Smoking Section. Plus Iâ€™ve smoked some of the best dank California has to offer since 1991. Now in 2011, we celebrate daily lung exercises which consist of bluntfast, blunch and blinner. I am the first person to ever call himself a â€œHempoholic.â€ I consume cannabis like alcohol. Iâ€™m a flat-out stoner, not a patient. I try to bring real issues to light and to the listenerâ€™s ears, but have fun too. We try and inform listeners in a positive and sometimes even negative manner (balance). Gun shots, mayhem and murder happen daily but we still try to speak to kids and even adults about habitual crimes, robbery, going to jail and all sorts of things â€“ you know stuff that goes on in the streets every day.
What motivates your emphasis on cannabis/hemp issues? Should it be legalized or decriminalized?
I voted yes on Prop 19 but I still think it needed to be reevaluated to better suit the people it represents. (R.I.P JACK HERER) I still have a lot of doubts about some of the people that call themselves freedom fighters and I believe that a lot of the money that is supposed to be for the betterment of the movement will be wasted and even misappropriated for personal causes. This pot frenzy is a new gold rush for us in our lifetime. People are moving to the West Coast from all over the world just to take part in this 420 movement.
Tell me about Out The Trunk Distribution.
O.T.T.D is my record label. It facilitates Swisher Streets as a group. I have over 15 artists/producers plus I own my own Media Company called A La Carte Multimedia. We do CD/DVD duplicating, flyers, business cards, posters etcâ€¦ We (O.T.T.D) are self-sustained; I do all of these things for my own company while helping friends out. Swisher Streets is composed of five groups in over six different states. (MEEN GREEN, FETTY SLAPS, Lâ€™SANE, R DUNKER, JAY WORTHY, BMB, FESS GOTCHU, DJ MILKCRATE, MARSH B, SLEEZY GANZ, Bâ€™STROLL BROWN, K SMOKE, BIG NONAME, DREDOJA, J PISTOLA, SCOTT MOYA, BILLY D. DAS and MALIK DESIL).
Tell me more about your music. Is it underground or do you simply represent the streets?
Like I stated earlier Iâ€™ve been in the music business for over 18 years and put out 3 classic solo stoner albums with some radio appeal even though weâ€™re in the underground stoner field. Weâ€™re no different than Snoop Dogg, Cypress Hill, 311, Willy Nelson, Sublime, Kottonmouth Kings, Los Marijuanos, etc. You can find a little of everything in my music. I consider myself a superhero via the streets. Every day we put on our uniform and go to work for the streets, whether it is for freeing cannabis, politics, or just daily street representation.
Whatâ€™s next for your music?
I am looking to release an album early this summer called â€œThe Next Thing Smoking.â€ Itâ€™s my 4th solo album as Meen Green; now â€œBlesusâ€ is what I refer to myself as a solo artist. I am sacrificing myself to bring together what we (Swisher Streets) really have, especially since some of us are still considered underground. Itâ€™s now time we rise, grind and shine. 13 brand new smoking hot joints is the aim and what I feel is the Next Thing Smoking.
Whatâ€™s the last thing you want to mention about Swisher Streets?
Swisher Streets is an umbrella. We all came together as a group to make Swisher Streets a brand name in 6 different states. During my 20-year rapping career my music paid the bills and kept my head above water so to speak. Till a very good friend of mine, Shea, owner of local SD clothing giant Seedless Clothing gave me a shot in phone sales. He moved my family to OB, and without any formal training or schooling, in 3 Â½ years I went on to become one of Seedless Clothingâ€™s top salesmen. This helped my music career in ways no one understands fully to this day. During the course of various tradeshows, concerts and pot rallies, I came up with the idea of Swisher Streets and the rest is HEMPSTRY – All stoners unite and light up at the same timeÂ -Our sponsors (IGS, Vortex, Pipe Wipes, K.O.W Pipes, ZONG & Blue Dot Glass, The Smashtray, Smokeclear Papers, Burnablunt Clothing, 420FL.com, The Digger and Glass Gripper Also, please help out my friend Rev. Eddy Lepp; anything will help! www.freeeddylepp.com, Free Eddy Lepp!
Meen Green is raw in representing the streets, politics, and cannabis issues. If you havenâ€™t heard his group, Swisher Streets, I highly recommend visiting their website, www.swisherstreets.com, plus www.top420music.com where you can also check out all their paraphernalia plus the first Swisher Streets release called â€œThe Variety Packâ€ CD. You can listen to samples of their music and get a taste of their Hemp-Hop. â€˜Till then, blaze it up!