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marijuana.com - By Barry Bard on December 22, 2014
RIP Joe Cocker: A Legend Once Thrown Out of Australia for Smoking Weed
Joe Cocker has passed away at the age of 70 after succumbing to a long battle with lung cancer. Known for his rendition of The Beatles’ “With a Little Help From My Friends” and one of the best recording artists of our time, Cocker’s legend will live on through his music.
From “Feeling Alright” to “Cry Me a River”, no voice oozed with utter emotion like Cocker’s has for the past 50 years. Cocker’s bout with lung cancer is well-documented, as the artist used to smoke “40 a day at one time.”
While Cocker quit that habit about two decades ago, the damage done by that major nicotine use was too much to overcome. Sadly, Cocker’s death can be a nostalgic reminder that smoking cannabis is a far healthier inhalation alternative to tobacco.
As we remember one of the more beautiful, heartfelt voices ever recorded, it’s worth nothing that Cocker was blazing a trail of cannabis across the world before it was fashionable to do so.
Wikipedia (by way of Rolling Stone) notes a time in the early 70s when Cocker was touring Australia and the singer’s weed was simply too loud for Melbourne:
"In October 1972, when Cocker toured Australia, he and six members of his entourage were arrested in Adelaide by police for possession of marijuana. The next day in Melbourne, assault charges were laid after a brawl at the Commodore Chateau Hotel, and Cocker was given 48 hours to leave the country by the Australian Federal Police. This caused huge public outcry in Australia, as Cocker was a high-profile overseas artist and had a strong support base, especially amongst the baby boomers who were coming of age and able to vote for the first time. It sparked hefty debate about the use and legalisation of marijuana in Australia and gained Cocker the nickname of “the Mad Dog”. [Wikipedia]
In retrospect, Joe Cocker was fighting for the freedom to smoke weed freely–and internationally–since that date in 1972. With that in mind, it’s no wonder his voice has helped millions of friends get high and by with one another since the days of Woodstock:
Like many influential artists now gone, Cocker’s message will live on through voice for eternity."
RIP Joe Cocker: Legend Once Thrown Out of Australia for Pot
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