Jay Z isn’t what you’d name a “weed rapper.” Sure, he’s peppered his verses with marijuana references since at the least 1996’s “Feeling It” (“I free my mind sometimes I hear myself moaning/Take one more toke and I leave that weed alone, man”), however amongst his friends—of which there are few, consummately talking—he may be the final MC you’d envision blowing it down in the midst of a studio session. To that finish, I can’t ever recall seeing an image or video footage of him hitting a joint, blunt, or anything one would possibly use to get excessive. This is notable solely as a result of if it did exist, it’s not prone to have damage his profession. He’s a rapper, and rappers smoke weed. It’s virtually within the bylaws. But if Jay is something exterior of a rapper—his standing as a loving husband and father however—he’s a businessman. And his newest and best enterprise endeavor occurs to be weed.
The firm known as Monogram, a reputation I’m instructed Jay Z got here up with himself. The thought behind it’s that monogram print is attribute of luxurious objects. Additional to that, the ‘gram’ part is a nod to the unit of measure. At Monogram, Jay Z is Chief Visionary Officer, a title that requires quite a lot of time and a focus as Jay makes an attempt to develop the corporate within the new and already very crowded cannabis space. “Cannabis has been around for thousands of years, yet it is still an industry whose legacy of skilled craftsmanship is often overlooked,” begins a quote attributed to Jay throughout the firm’s press supplies. “I created Monogram to give cannabis the respect it deserves by showcasing the tremendous hard work, time and care that go into crafting a superior smoke. Monogram products are next level when it comes to quality and consistency and we’re just getting started.”
It was a Monday night in December when I obtained a textual content message from Monogram’s Culture & Cultivation Ambassador DeAndre Watson, alerting me that he was downstairs with a package deal for me. In penning this piece I can be certainly one of a choose few to preview the merchandise simply earlier than they went on sale. Monogram merchandise are solely out there, at the least initially, to California residents. Fortunately for me, I reside in L.A., the place supply is an possibility. While our interplay was temporary (he handed me a nondescript black field that seemed prefer it would possibly in any other case maintain an assortment of sweets and wished me an excellent evening), he did reply some questions on his position at Monogram by way of e mail.
“I work closely with Jay on the cultivation and strain selection process for Monogram, which starts with us putting together a taste profile for every strain,” he wrote. “This lets the team know exactly what kind of smell, color, moisture, and overall feel they should be looking for at each stage. Then we check every nug by hand, to make sure that each is perfect before we package it up to be smoked.” Without moving into specifics, Watson’s bio mentions that he’s been concerned within the hashish trade for 25 years. He sees Jay’s involvement as a win for folks of coloration who’ve had a disproportionately difficult time moving into the very a lot still-burgeoning world of legalized hashish. “He’s creating opportunities for people like me, who have decades of experience working with the plant but haven’t been able to reap the benefits of the emerging legal market until now,” Watson says.