When Bob Dylan Smoked Weed With The Beatles, the Ceiling 'Came Down'
Paul McCartney tells the tale in a new memoir.
If there's one thing everyone knows about The Beatles, it's that they definitely smoked weed and did LSD. (If you’re too young to know what we’re talking about, please go listen to Revolver or Sgt. Peppers’ Lonely Hearts Club Band.) Of course they dabbled with pot in the early 1960s, but according to an excerpt from Paul McCartney’s new memoir, The Lyrics: 1956 to the Present, it wasn’t until they partied with Bob Dylan in 1964 that they were really turned on to the stuff.
He said Dylan shared weed so potent, it made them feel like the ceiling was ‘coming down’.
The night the smoke went down
The story goes that Dylan showed up to the hotel suite The Beatles were hanging out in, they were “having a little party,” McCartney shares. "We'd ordered drinks from room service — scotch and Coke and French wine were our thing back then — and Bob had disappeared into a back room."
Unsurprisingly, Ringo followed, and then reappeared “looking a bit strange.”
"He said, 'I've just been with Bob, and he's got some pot,' or whatever you called it then," McCartney recalls. "And we said, 'Oh, what's it like?' and he said, 'Well, the ceiling is kind of moving; it's sort of coming down.' And that was enough. After Ringo said that, the other three of us all leapt into the back room where Dylan was, and he gave us a puff on the joint."
After they "kept puffing away," they were giggling and laughing at each other. "I remember George trying to get away, and I was sort of running after him," McCartney recalled. "It was hilarious, like a cartoon chase. We thought, 'Wow, this is pretty amazing, this stuff.' And so it became part of our repertoire from then on."
McCartney and cannabis
It's no secret McCartney was a fan of cannabis. In the 1980s, he was arrested while touring in Japan after customs officials discovered nearly half a pound of marijuana in his luggage. McCartney spent 10 nights in a Japanese prison before being released and deported from the country.
In 2015, however, McCartney said he stopped smoking because of his role as a grandfather. That may have changed a bit: Today he's groing hemp in his own barden. He’s now struggling to hide the homegrown plants from local teenagers.
"We're actually just getting into growing hemp, the funny thing with government regulations is you've got to keep it where people can't see it because you get all the kids coming in and robbing it," McCartney said.
It's doubtful McCartney will turn his his plants into anything other than personal use — don't expect him to have his own branded pre-rolls a la Justin Bieber, for example. But that idea has wings.