The Beatles’ Song ‘Got to Get You Into My Life’ and the 6 More of the Best Classic Rock Songs About Pot

For as long as there’s been classic rock, there have been musicians more than willing to sing about their vices. Namely sex, booze, and drugs. As with so many other things they did, The Beatles turned songs about smoking pot into mainstream successes. Let’s look at their tune “Got to Get You Into My Life” and six more of the best classic rock songs about weed.

1. ‘Got to Get You Into My Life’
Artist: The Beatles

The Fab Four incorporated marijuana into their creative process soon after Bob Dylan got them high and pranked them in 1964. Two years later, Paul McCartney wrote an ode to pot, “Got to Get You Into My Life,” disguised as a boy-girl love song. Which it was, if the boy was McCartney and the girl was nicknamed Mary Jane. Paul’s song appeared on The Beatles’ 1966 album Revolver, which many music fans considered the first psychedelic record. Incidentally, it became a hit years after the Fab Four broke up.

2. ‘Misty Mountain Hop’
Artist: Led Zeppelin

The Hobbits in The Lord of the Rings book trilogy loved smoking. Led Zeppelin singer Robert Plant was a big pot fan who named the song after one of the prominent locations from the novels. The lyrics to the tune from 1971’s Led Zeppelin IV discussed the police breaking up a pro-pot rally, set to a breezy west-coast musical vibe. Plant said he was lucky to stop using drugs cold turkey, but “Misty Mountain Hop” was one the few Led Zeppelin songs he has continued playing during his solo career.

3. ‘Sweet Leaf’
Artist: Black Sabbath

How groundbreaking was Led Zeppelin? So much so that Black Sabbath changed their sound when they heard the band. Yet the student outpaced the master in at least one area — writing one of the best classic rock songs expressly about pot. There’s no getting around Ozzy Osbourne’s intent with “Sweet Leaf.” The tune opened with a looped vocal that mimicked coughing. Between the title and lyrics such as “My life was empty, forever on a down / Until you took me, showed me around / My life is free now, my life is clear / I love you sweet leaf, though you can’t hear” sung over a Tony Iommi’s heavy, chugging guitar riff, there’s no getting around the song covered a love affair with weed.

The lead song from Master of Reality beat “Misty Mountain Hop” to record stores by several months in 1971. Led Zeppelin showed Black Sabbath the heavy music blueprint and inspired the band to try a new approach. Sabbath showed Zep what a classic rock tune about pot could look like.

4. ‘Hi, Hi, Hi’

Artist: Paul McCartney

Macca wasn’t content to let The Beatles have all his best songs about pot. The Wings song “Hi, Hi, Hi” became a hit single in 1973, even though the BBC banned the song for Paul’s overt references to sex and drugs. It was one of the best songs from “Red Rose Speedway,” but it didn’t appear on the 1973 version of the album. The song finally appeared on a 2018 expanded reissue.

McCartney never hid his love for pot, but he regretted one aspect of “Hi, Hi, Hi.” He once said the lyrical content of the song was a little embarrassing because he had grandkids.

5. ‘No-No Song’
Artist: Ringo Starr

Ringo Starr embraced living the rock ‘n’ roll lifestyle when The Beatles broke up. And considering he had a full-sized bar in his house and was close friends with hard-partying musicians such as Keith Moon, John Bonham, Harry Nilsson, and Marc Bolan, he likely lived hard before the Fab Four fractured.

The drummer didn’t write it, but “No-No Song” was a short but entertaining song in which the narrator singing it met people offering him weed, cocaine, and moonshine. He declined all of them in the tune, but in real life, Ringo rarely said no, no. He spent years imbibing before he finally embracing cleaner living, which inspired another musician to get sober.

6. ‘Smokin’’
Artist: Boston

Boston founder Tom Scholz attended MIT and worked as an engineer at Polaroid. Despite that seemingly straight-laced veneer, his band performed one of the best classic rock songs about pot. It’s all party-down boogie from the beginning, complete with Scholz’s punchy intro riff and sweet arena rock chorus riff. Brad Delp’s lyrics begin by talking about a rock show, but it’s clear he was singing about more than electricity in the air: “Smokin’ / Smokin’ / We’re cookin’ tonight, just keep on tokin’ / Smokin’ / Smokin’ / I feel alright, mama, I’m not jokin’.” The words made it clear as day, and the song’s runtime was a nod to stoners, too — it lasts 4:20.

7. ‘Legalize It’
Artist: Peter Tosh

Is it a cheat to include a reggae song on a list of the best pot songs? We’re including it anyway, even if it is. The former member of The Wailers released the song in 1976, decades before many locations in the United States relaxed their pot laws. Tosh might have been a little off the mark when he sang that doctors, nurses, judges, and lawyers all smoked it, but that doesn’t change the fact that the slow-moving, relaxed “Legalize It” was a straightforward anthem for all those who loved marijuana as much as the singer did.

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