Katie Cazorla Knows How to Party

When Katie Cazorla and I connect by phone, she’s in great spirits, enjoying the lull that accompanies the aftermath of the holiday season in Los Angeles. She’s back home in the city for a brief stint before embarking on an upcoming a string of shows at the Tropicana Laugh Factory in Las Vegas with Bill Dawes February 17th through the 23rd.

What inspired you to move from New York to Los Angeles and pursue a career in comedy?

I went to college at The University of Kentucky and there was this club where you could win a pitcher of beer for your table if you got up on stage and told a joke. Whoever got the biggest crowd reaction would win. All my friends were like, “You’re funny, you should go up there and tell a joke.” So I got up there and told a joke about lesbians, an “anybody can be a lesbian” type of thing. Everybody laughed and I won the beer. The club owner then suggested I come back every week as “a ringer” to get the crowd going. So I was basically a fluffer.

Some agent ended up seeing me there—Janie Olmstead—from Images Model & Talent Agency. She was like, “You have something. I’m going to this competition in Los Angeles, you should come. I’ll take you and we’ll see what happens.” I ended up going and winning my division. I still have the trophies. Anyway, I got signed. It was February of 1999. I flew back to college, said fuck college, packed up my shit in Elmira that summer and drove cross-country to Los Angeles.

But it wasn’t easy. I lived in my car for two months. I was desperate for work but couldn’t get a job because I didn’t have a place to live. Every application I filled out people were like, “Where do you live?” And I was like, “In my car! Wherever the back parking lot is.” It was awful.

My first job was at Dimples, which was this karaoke bar in Burbank. Then I got a job at Barney’s Beanery in West Hollywood hosting karaoke. At the same time, I would do stand-up at Dublin’s, which was the go to [comedy] place back in the day.

Oh, when Dane Cook was coming up.

Dane was actually my neighbor on Crescent Heights. He would walk me home sometimes from Dublin’s, which was super nice of him. Then he got weird and famous. I don’t know what happened, I think some bad shit happened to him, but then he had his resurgence and actually ended up doing my birthday show at The Laugh Factory [this past] September. It was nice. Like full circle. It’s been a wild ride. I can’t believe I lived.

How did The Painted Nail start?

I had been doing stand-up for like ten years and the one thing I hated was seeing female comics holding microphones with busted nails. It’s like a really crazy type-A thing. I’d always get my nails done, but these places in Los Angeles were like gas stations: on every block, grody, quick and cheap. I was over it. So I decided to go to nail school, get my license and open my own place. Do it the way I’d want to do it, you know?

I found a space in Studio City, right on the cusp of Sherman Oaks off Ventura Boulevard. I was watching the movie “The Painted Veil” and my husband – who was my boyfriend at the time – was like, “You should call your shop ‘The Painted Nail,’” and I was like, “Great idea!” I took all these chairs out of my house [and brought them in] and we installed a bar so people could drink for free. You’d sit in these big comfy chairs, drink free cocktails and get your nails done. Within three months, we had all these celebrities coming in. I got offered a tv show. At my grand opening party, Kenny G played in the parking lot. It was the craziest thing.

[The Painted Nail] turned into this reality show called “Nail Files,” which was produced by the people behind “Jersey Shore” and broke all these records. It was the highest rated show and the most watched show in the history of TV Guide Network. 1.2 million viewers on premiere night. It was absolutely insane and it sort of launched everything for me.

How has cannabis played a role in your success and the success of your businesses?

I was never a weed person until I went to Rose Day. They gave out these Beboe pens, which are supposed to be “happy” sativa based pens. I took a little puff and was like, “This is the best I’ve felt in fucking years.” I then got the dosist “bliss” pen, which I’m obsessed with. They’re low dose and great for someone who isn’t a “weed” person. ‘Cause, you know. California will fuck you up. There’s no more picking out seeds and stems. I’m from upstate New York where the weed was like oregano. People from upstate aren’t trained on drugs. Then you move to Los Angeles, and literally everyone here does some drug, if not all of them, at different points of the day.

I’ll never forget, I drove home one day and I look up at the recording studio on our property and Warren G is standing on the balcony. My husband’s a record producer and [Warren] came to collaborate on some project. Anyway, he’s out on the balcony smoking weed. I think he has his own brand. And he was like, “Have a hit.” And I’m like, I can’t say “no” to Warren G. I took the tiniest hit off this contraption and it fucked me up so bad. To the point where I was like, “I know all the words to all your songs.” I ended up rapping every single lyric of every Warren G song, singing all the Nate Dogg parts. And he was totally into it. We were laughing, going back and forth. When it was his part, I would look at him, and he would do his part. It was memorable, from what I can remember. But I was really fucked up.

And here’s the thing about people in Los Angeles who smoke weed. If you’re at a party and someone has a [weed] pen in really cool packaging, everyone wants to try it, and yet half the time, no one knows what’s in it. People are so quick to try. What if it was weed mixed with meth? But people just go for it. You don’t even know what’s in it. I think that’s the craziest thing, especially being out here with the strains being so strong. I feel like you’re asking for it when you decide, “Hey, I’m just going to put my mouth on this stranger’s pen and suck off of it.” Whatever comes out of that, whatever happens to you, you asked for it. So if you wake up and your sheets are bloody, with a scar on your back, that’s your problem. Know what you’re wrapping your mouth around.

I was up in Tahoe a couple months ago, and a friend of mine’s niece was like, “I have anxiety and [this pen] helps me calm down.” And I love those pens, so I took a hit. But it was one of those weird millennial “dragon” pens, where the tiniest little inhale produces this frightening “puff the magic dragon” cloud.” I was so fucked up, I thought I was going to die. My head was detaching from my neck. That’s how fucked up I was. My friend was like, “You need to chew black peppercorn.”

Is that really a thing?

It’s a thing. Oh my God, back in the seventies when everyone used to smoke weed, all the recording artists would chew black peppercorns when they’d get super fucked up recording their albums. It would bring their buzz back down so they could answer questions and be normal.

So I was chomping on these full black peppercorns and it worked! But it’s temporary. It gets rid of that edge, that feeling like the room is spinning and you’re going to die.

No one’s ever died from pot, but you’re about to be the first.

There’s a first for everything. And I thought I was going to be one of those people. But I lived. Never again. That’s what I’m saying. Don’t fucking take hits off random people’s pens. Trust the guy who works at the store and that’s it. Smoke what you know.

How has your comedic perspective evolved during your time in Los Angeles?

In the beginning, I was poor and was trying to find myself, so of course my comedy was based on that. Now, I’m married. I have step-kids. One of those children just had a baby. I mean she’s 28, but that makes me a step-grandma.

I’m more of an observationalist. I don’t really do dirty jokes. Good on female comics who do, but I don’t feel the need to talk about my asshole bleaching or vagina licking or anything to get laughs. I can bring jokes that are relatable and funny that don’t make the crowd feel like, “Oh my God.” [The jokes] aren’t a desperate reach to make people laugh.

Do you view the platform of being a stand-up as something other than just making people laugh?

My goal is to make people feel good, laugh, and have an impression of me that is always in the realm of, “Oh my God, she’s so fun.” One of those crazy funny people. A party starter. I always want people to be excited that I’m there. I don’t want people to be like, “Oh God, here she comes.” Or think I’m crazy in a bad way. There’s nothing wrong with being crazy if you’re fun and want to blow it out and have a good time. But don’t be crazy scary. Be crazy and fun. The people who are fucking crazy—not in a good way—are the people who need weed. They need weed and they need Jesus.

And it’s those two things they resist the most.

The ones who always need weed are the ones who are like, “Oh, I don’t do that type of drug.” And you’re like, “It’s a fucking plant.” Here’s something I don’t understand. So like, weed is legal. For the most part. Because it’s a plant and it has benefits. Did you that cocaine, like the coca leaf…those plants, if you pull a leaf off and you chew it, you get energy. So why can’t I grow coca leaves in my yard? And by the way, nobody dies from chewing a coca leaf and nobody dies from smoking weed, but people die everyday in the thousands from cigarettes and alcohol.

And from opiates.

I think pills are so dangerous. Seeing people that have literally gone from having back surgery to taking norcos, to ending up being heroin addicts and homeless…it can happen to anyone. But people don’t end up homeless on the streets when they take a hit off a Sunday Goods pen. No one is going to go suck a dick in a corner to microdose sativa off of a dosist pen. And if you’re going to, you need Jesus.

Check out and follow @officialkatiecazorla for tickets and tour dates.

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What’s in Your Stash? Julia Jacobson, Aster Farms, California

Julia Jacobson has suffered migraines for years, with one lasting as long as eight days. In 2016, she had a migraine to top all migraines—it lasted six months and came with vomiting and dehydration that landed her in the hospital on three separate occasions.

“I’ll never forget the day it began—September 22,” she shared. “It messed with my vision; I saw spots and auras. At times I couldn’t see at all,” she shared. “I was prescribed antidepressants and high blood pressure medications. Some of the meds they gave me had me dropping things, bumping into furniture.”

She was prescribed myriad medications, including Lidocaine shots and steroids. Jacobson said one of the meds, Imitrex, was so intense and had such severe side effects that the prescription was limited to two pills in a 24 hour period, with two doses in a two week period. She tried migraine glasses and had visits to an acupuncturist and chiropractor to no avail. 

“I just had a big mess of side effects and nothing worked,” she added. “My husband and I were thinking of having kids, and you can’t be on some of these medications while pregnant.”

Jacobson began using Prana transdermal roll-on 3-1 and Mary’s Medicinals CBD/THC patches. She also found a certain cultivar to be more helpful than others.

“White Buffalo is high in CBG, which they’ve discovered is a vascular dilator for blood vessels in the brain – it protects neurons,” she explained. “I also use Protab, a high CBG tablet made by Level.”

CBG is also effective in repairing neurological damage, according to a study titled “Neuroprotective Properties of Cannabigerol in Huntington’s Disease,” published in the journal Neurotherapeutics

What’s in Your Stash? Julia Jacobson, Aster Farms, California
Courtesy of Julia Jacobson

From Bloomies to Bud

Jacobson was born in Chicago and attended college on the East Coast, majoring in Comparative Literature. She moved to New York as a young woman and spent four years as a buyer for Bloomingdale’s department store. 

Today, she’s traded Bloomies for bud, making her home in her husband Sam’s hometown of Oakland, California. 

Her husband’s lineage in cannabis dates back to his grandparents, who moved to Mendocino County 50 years ago to grow cannabis. His parents grew up in the once covert industry, working as trimmers while Sam slept in a crib nearby.

Mendocino is part of the infamous Emerald Triangle, including Humboldt and Trinity, where some of the finest cannabis in the world has been hybridized, perfected, and grown for as many years.

Aster Farms sits on 80 acres in Lake County, just south of Humboldt. Not technically part of the Emerald Triangle, Lake County is the step-child of the trinity, but is still a viable source of cannabis in California.

“We named the farm after the aster flower, for its 23,000 species, as cannabis is just as prolific,” she shared. “We use fish tea, high in nutrients, that we make ourselves. Our cultivars are sourced from our neighbors in Mendocino.”

Currently, the couple grow three core cultivars, Maui OG, Durban Poison, and Sour Maui, with all organic inputs, grown in the sun. 

“All of our cultivars are old school—what you smoked in the 70s,” she added. “The farm will launch tincture production later this year, promising approximately 8,000 bottles, with additional terpenes added. Chamomile to calm, limonene to stimulate, and pinene, an anti-inflammatory compound.”

But the farm’s Maui OG is a favorite stand-out.

“It’s a beautiful, classic purple,” she said. “It gives energy, creativity—very uplifting. I’m really digging this high—it’s super balanced and joyful. It’s our best cultivar, by far.”

What’s in Your Stash? Julia Jacobson, Aster Farms, California
Courtesy of Julia Jacobson

Farmer’s Stash

Julia’s stash is a simple one, with a worn wooden cigar box gifted to her from a fellow farmer. Inside are jars of Aster Farms Deep Sour Kush, and Maui OG, with an Aster Farms Day to Night Pre-Roll pack.

The grinder is made by SharpStone, with a Lue brass spoon nearby in a small brass dish holding ground Aster Farms Strawberry Banana flower.

To treat her chronic migraines, she uses White Buffalo flower, high in CBG, Level CBD Tablinguals, used prophylactically; and Level CBG Protab, used at first signs of a migraine aura. 

She also uses Prana P1 THC Transdermal Aromatherapy Roll-on, used for migraine attacks on pain areas, if stemming from her temples, forehead, ocular areas, or neck.

An after work wind-down includes a sunset cultivar to take the edge off.

“I’m a purist when it comes to flower, and prefer to consume full spectrum flower with a PAX 2 vape,” she explained. “I enjoy our own Deep Sour Kush for those moments.”

Lastly, her travel kit, via a leather pouch made by her brother-in-law, contains PAX 2 cleaning supplies, including a pipe cleaner and a low-tech paper clip, the Lue brass spoon, RAW papers, a Bic lighter, ice water hash of Strawberry Banana in an infused pre-roll, and a tube of pre-ground Maui OG.

“I’ve found that the cultivars high in the compound CBG helps the most, while Durban Poison can trigger a migraine—so I avoid it,” she surmised. “White Buffalo with really high THC helps because it knocks me out and I’m able to fall asleep—and that resets the migraine.”

When the patient becomes a farmer, and the farm becomes her life, her stash takes on new meaning, concluding, “Cannabis has given me a safe alternative to take back my life!”

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Despite City Council Vote, Austin Cops Will Still Ticket, Arrest Pot Users

The city council in Austin, Texas approved a resolution last week to end enforcement of low-level marijuana offenses, but the city’s police chief says that the department will continue to issue tickets and make arrests for possession of small amounts of pot.

On Thursday, the city council passed a resolution directing the police department not to spend public resources on expensive lab tests that are now necessary to prosecute marijuana crimes. Since the legalization of hemp under federal and Texas state law, many prosecutors in the state are no longer filing charges in marijuana cases without lab test results that show a THC concentration higher than 0.3%. The Austin measure prevents such testing except in cases carrying felony charges.

Councilmember Greg Casar said before the vote that the resolution would help end the collateral damage caused by convictions for minor marijuana crimes.

“We know that too many Austinites have had their lives derailed by a low-level marijuana offense,” Casar said during a press conference on Tuesday. “People have lost their jobs, they could lose their student financial aid, families could even be separated by deportation when we overly enforce low-level offenses that could result in arrests or warrants.”

Casar also noted the racial bias prevalent in the enforcement of laws prohibiting cannabis.

“It’s time to do the right thing,” he added. “It’s the right thing for criminal justice reform … and it’s the right thing for racial equity.”

Cops Respond to Council Action

Immediately after Thursday’s vote to approve the council resolution, Austin Police Chief Brian Manley said the department would consider how the decision would affect department policy.

“We will look at our policies in regard to the resolution that just passed to determine what, if any, changes we need to make,” said Manley.

But by the next day, Manley said that the department’s policy on marijuana enforcement would not change.

“[Marijuana] is still illegal, and we will still enforce marijuana law if we come across people smoking in the community,” he said during a news conference on Friday afternoon.

The chief added that enforcement of low-level marijuana crimes has not been a priority for the department but officers would continue to make arrests or write tickets under its cite and release policy if they “come across it.”

After the chief’s announcement, Casar said that any tickets written by officers would be meaningless and anyone arrested would be quickly released without charges being filed by prosecutors.

“What has changed since yesterday is that enforcement, almost in virtually all cases, is now handing someone a piece of paper with no penalty or no court date,” Casar said.

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Tennessee Senator Files Bill to Allow Sale and Taxation of Marijuana

Legal pot in the land of Rocky Top? 

That’s what one Tennessee lawmaker is aiming to achieve in this year’s legislative session. State Sen. Raumesh Akbari filed legislation on Friday to permit the sale of marijuana. The bill calls for the new law to effect on July 1, which would bring Tennessee in line with 11 other states that have legalized recreational marijuana.

Akbari, a Memphis Democrat, said the new law would be both an economic boon and a victory for justice in the state.

“This legislation makes criminal justice more fair, creates thousands of Tennessee jobs, and invests real money in our students and teachers,” Akbari said, as quoted by the Memphis Flyer. “With marijuana now available closer and closer to our state, it’s time for Tennesseans to have a real discussion about repealing outdated penalties for low-level possession and investing in our economic future and public schools through legalization.”

Akbari’s bill would permit adults aged 21 and older to purchase marijuana, which would only be allowed to be sold from a licensed retail store. The law would include a 12 percent sales tax on marijuana products sold in the state, with the revenue generated from such sales going toward the state’s general fund, as well as education and infrastructure in Tennessee.

“Tennessee’s tough-on-crime possession laws have trapped too many of our citizens in cycles of poverty, and they haven’t actually stopped anyone from obtaining marijuana,” Akbari said, as quoted by the Memphis Flyer. “The enforcement of these laws in particular [has] cost our state billions, contributed to a black market that funds criminal organizations, and accelerated the growth of incarceration in Tennessee’s jails and prisons. Tennesseans deserve better.”

According the Flyer, Akbari’s bill has not yet been finalized, and is not currently scheduled for debate in the legislature. 

Earlier this month, one of Akbari’s Republican colleagues in the state Senate filed legislation to legalize medical marijuana in the state. The bill was re-introduced by state Sen. Janice Bowling after a similar effort fizzled out in the legislature last year.

“There are tens of thousands or hundreds of thousands of Tennesseans that could benefit from medical cannabis,” Bowling said. ““This is desperately needed in Tennessee, it is desperately needed by the patients, and doctors need an alternative from opioids.”

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Mackenzie Nicole & Seven – The Making of “Five Months, Four Days”

Mackenzie Nicole and producer Seven dive into their stories behind each song from her new upcoming album “Mystic”.

“This is one of my favorite tracks off the album.” Mack smiles.

“Yea?” Seven replies surprised.

“This is probably, I think, my second favorite right behind the ‘The House above the World’. I love it because we have these urban under tones with it. Like having the add-libs and the overall mood of it.” Mack continues. “This is one of the songs that was very literal for me, but very abstract for someone who is not in my head. I loved the feel of it. The hook is so powerful. The lyrics are so drastic. I wanted to make the lyrical content as intense as the feel of the hook.”

Seven responds by adding, “I don’t know what the emotion is, but more like, an abrasive kind of emotion. This particular track feels that way.”

from Faygoluvers