KINGSTON, Jamaica — The Grass is Greener, a documentary linking ganja and its impact on pop culture, debuts this evening on American streaming giant, Netflix. Directed by hip hop pioneer, Fab 5 Freddy, it features interviews with Bunny Wailer and Damian “Junior Gong” Marley.
The 90-minute project is released today, designated 4/20, to celebrate legalisation of marijuana around the world.
Fab 5 Freddy interviewed Wailer in late 2017 at Pinnacle in Sligoville, St Catherine. The area is hallowed ground for Rastafarians and the Jamaican ganja movement.
Rappers Snoop Dogg and B-Real of Cypress Hill are also part of the film, which traces use of ganja by legendary entertainers such as Louis Armstrong and Bob Marley.
The Grass is Greener is also the name of the documentary’s theme song, sung by Wailer’s son Asadenaki and Blvk H3ro, the Grammy winner’s protégé.
Chris Schlarb is head of Dubshot Records, distributors of the song, which will be officially released on May 3. He believes song and documentary present an accurate history of ganja and Jamaica.
“It’s telling a story of Rastafarian culture and its impact on music and the world. The song was actually made on the set in Pinnacle, which makes it really cool,” he told the OBSERVER ONLINE.
Pinnacle was a settlement founded by Leonard Howell, who some scholars consider father of the Rastafarian movement. Described as a commune where Rastafarians produced art and craft items, it was raided in 1945 by police who said Pinnacle was a thriving ganja industry.
During the 1970s roots-reggae explosion, Marley, Bunny Wailer and Peter Tosh, their colleague from The Wailers, were some of the Rastafarian artistes who lobbied aggressively in song for legalisation of ganja.
Since late 2015, the Jamaican government has passed legislation that gradually decriminalises use of the weed.