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MAR 2021






Rob Potylo

I Beat the Gong


for the


Has Legalization Helped

or Hurt Mainers?

Malden City


Seeks to PauSe

Cannabis Retail


DJ Stenny

Award Winning,

Mary Palmer



Strain Review



Product Review



Brett Cogill




Kaitlyn Buckley



Anna Coletti

Assistant Editor



Jarrett Ashley



John Labo



Lauren Loiacono


Mike “Cann” Crawford



Stoney Chicken




What’s Inside

Page 8

Page 13

Page 14

Page 18

Page 25

Page 28

Page 32

Growing for the Government:

Has Legalization Helped or Hurt


by Lauren Moore

Strain Review:

Sour Plums

by Kaitlyn Buckley

Malden City Council Seeks

to Pause Cannabis Retail


by Mike Crawford


The Real Life "Most Interesting

Man in the World"

by Jarrett Ashley

DJ Stenny:

Questions for Co-Found of Award

Winning, Mary Palmer

by Mike Crawford

Product Review:

Farmer Armour

by John Labo

Rob Potylo, I Beat the Gong

by Mike Crawford

Cover Image Submitted by Rick Naya.

Pictured: Cannabis Bred & Grown by Rick.


2017 STASH Awards





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Has legalization helped or hurt Mainers?

Over the past decade, we guessed and

gabbed about what commercially legalized

cannabis would look like in our everyday life.

And today in 2021, it's here. It's not so much

about the Marlboro joints and bulk grocery

containers we imagined. But it's not that different


If you're a medical marijuana patient in Maine,

you've been legally allowed to grow your own

weed since 1999. Granted, I'm sure it wasn't

as easy as scheduling a 15 minute Zoom

meeting, complaining about sleeping problems,

and having a patient ID number emailed

to you for $50 like I did last year. But in my

past decade of living on the Maine coast, cannabis

has always been abundant, high quality,

and easier and easier to get.

In 2013, the city of Portland legalized possession

of up to 2.5 ounces. In 2014, the city

of South Portland voted to legalize cannabis

recreationally. In 2016, Maine voted to pass

the Marijuana Legalization Act, permitting

adults 21+ to grow up to 3 mature plants, 6

immature, & unlimited seedlings. The medical

tax on sales stayed at 5.5%, while commercial

sales tax was set for 10%.

When I first moved to Maine in 2011, it was

actually BECAUSE they had some of the best

caregiver laws for growers in the nation.

While you were still supposed to pay taxes on

every sale, you could have up to 5 patients

with 6 flowering plants for each, and manage

your own business with basic reporting to

the state. Medical dispensaries were limited

to something like 1 for every 3 counties and

there were only 8 in the state. But as of 2020,

the latest recreational ruleset permits 2 dispensaries

per town, putting commercial use

within the same zip code as every Mainer.

Today, cannabis has officially surpassed

blueberries as Maine's most lucrative crop,


by Lauren Loiacono

cashing in at $221.8 million. While this figure

includes sales from both dispensaries and

licensed caregivers, revenue has more than

doubled since dispensary locations have expanded

and opened in October 2020. According

to the Maine Office of Marijuana Policy,

medical marijuana sales totaled $109.2 million

in 2019, when caregivers made up 76% of

revenue. On October 9th, recreational stores

opened in Maine and earned $94,000 in one

day. After the first month, they generated $1.4

million in sales.

I was actually one of many in the Maine cannabis

industry that voted no on Question 2 to

legalize recreational use in Maine. Like I said,

I genuinely believed we had the best caregiver

legislation in the country. Legalizing and

commercializing weed would take away from

small farmers. And while caregivers are still

able to operate as they were, the market continues

to change.

"I still have the amount of patients I need to

keep my operation legal, but sales are definitely

lighter," a small town caregiver says.

"The people who buy regular weight every

month stay consistent. But patients buying

smaller amounts here and there obviously

want to check out the market and spread their

money out. So I love all my patients, but might

have to shift my client base around or start

selling to the yuppie stores."

The dispensaries often grow their own product

and outsource from local growers and

commercial farms as well. While the competitive

market on one hand opens new outlets

for entrepreneurial growers, we're also adjusting

the cost for more middle men. When

I pay my caregiver directly for cannabis, she

pays the tax on it. When I buy it from a store,

we both do, and now so does the distributor.

Since I do not like what Maine's governor

does with our taxes, I personally try to keep

as much of my money from going back to the

state as possible. While the margin of victory

was razor thin, the push to vote "No on 1" in

2016 was not because Mainers didn't want

cannabis in our communities. It was to protect

small farmers.

“There is very little in the proposed bill that

would improve the state’s laws, and much

more that threatens the functionality of

Maine’s homegrown laws,” the No on 1 campaign


One beacon that appeared to shine for small

farmers in Maine was the expansion of the

hemp industry, which appeared to be a lowcost,

easy-to-grow, marketable opportunity

with the spike in demand for CBD products.

But the market flooded, which of course

means the supply became saturated while

demand steadily decreased. Maine's rapid

growth in industrial hemp over the past 4

years has all but crashed. Hemp farmers in

Maine both new and experienced have found

themselves with hundreds of pounds of excess

product and millions of dollars in debt.

Even commercial farms that positioned

themselves to corner the market are going

bankrupt. Since industrial hemp growing

was legalized with the 2018 Farm Bill, Americans

have more than doubled the supply of

the product. And with this increase comes

a decrease in value – the cost for CBD has

dropped roughly 80%. The national market

and distribution policies have to change if

there is any hope for small farmers like those

in Maine to have economic success with industrial


This is a burn in particular for growers that

have aligned with a free medicine movement

in the state. A small network of growers and

caregivers have affirmed that sick patients

(with cancer for example, not an acute condition)

don't pay. A caregiver shared that he had

a 99% success rate in helping patients combat

cancer with Rick Simpson oil, as the few

deaths he witnessed occurred in cases of too

much radiation and cannabis treatment coming

too late. But after fruitless investment into

hemp, he is unable to provide as much free

product as he was a few years ago.

"Multibillion dollar industry they said," he


Bubba Chunk

Bred by GreenMan Organics

Grown by John Labo

explained about industrial hemp. "Everyone

racing to get the strongest stake hold. Thousands

of dollars in applications and permits.

It was supposed to be the easiest crop to

grow and sell, and now what? We still have

product from last year and haven't even harvested

what we grew for 2020. It was an investment

that all signs pointed to pulling us

way ahead but tanked in every way. Money,

land, time, resources. Damn shame."

What's also a shame is that the only market

for non-psychoactive hemp is CBD products.

Every cannabis user knows how sustainable

a hemp-based economy would be, as George

Washington knew as well. It would be the rise

of the farmers and self-sufficiency. With the

endless uses hemp can provide, why are we

letting the government dictate its market?

While registered dispensaries funnel millions

of dollars to the state, another restaurant in

my town just closed. Small businesses and

farms are folding. All the while, our tax dollars

continue funding a system that does not

support us.

Cannabis and hemp are special products because

they remind us that we have everything

we need to be sufficient. We can grow our

medicine. We can grow our own paper, clothing,

rope, building material. We can grow our

own food. We can grow our own economy.

Because remember the cannabis industry before

legalization? We already had one.



NABIS & HEMP? Let's talk.

Contact details below.



Telegram @laurenloiacono


South Shore CBD

Take Back

Your Health.



Strain Review:

by Kaitlyn Buckley


Lineage: Plum Crazy x

Sour Diesel

Ratio: Sativa 80% Indica 20%

Flowering Time: 56 - 63 days

Scent: Earthy, Fruity, Sweet

Effects: Uplifting, Europhic

Medicinal Effects: Pain Relief

& Chronic Pain, Insomnia,

Gastrointestinal Issues, Loss of

Appetite, Arthritis, Depression,

Headaches, Loss of Appetite,

Mood Swings, Nausea, Stress

to name a few.

Sour Plums is a Sativa dominate strain, bred by the infamous

Crockett Family Farms. It is a cross between Plum Crazy and Sour

Diesel. Sour Plums can be grown indoors, outdoors or in a greenhouse.

This strain is not for the inexperienced gardener, though

absolutely worth having her as an addition to your medicinal arsenal.

Sour Plums has dark resin covered flowers. The aroma mirrors

that of her parents with deep sour funk and sweet candied plums. A

wonderful daytime high that is both uplifting and europhic in effect.

Seeds Available through Bay State Seed:



By Mike Crawford

Malden City Council Seeks to Pause

Cannabis Retail Licensing

City Councilor Craig Spadafora, an alcohol Retailer is not a fan of cannabis retail?

“I want them to live in Malden, I want them to

eat in Malden and I want them to drink in Malden.”

City Councilor Craig Spadafora, 10/10/19,

Malden City Council debate.

The Malden, Massachusetts City Council recently

passed a non-binding Resolve, “that the

city of Malden cannabis license commission

pause on soliciting additional applications for

retail marijuana licenses so that the city can solicit

voter feedback at the next municipal election

on limits on the number of establishments

allowed in the city” by a vote of 6-5.

State law passed after a 2016 legalization initiative

requires cities or towns that voted a majority

in support of the ballot question to license

a set number of cannabis licenses. In the city

of Malden, it would mean five or more adult use

cannabis applicants being licensed. The city is

only legally able to ban, to opt-out of cannabis

licensing by passing a new ballot initiative.

Currently, Malden has selected two adult-use

applicants to proceed with licensing.

The sponsor of the Resolve, City Councilor

Craig Spadafora doubted voters that elected

him, “A lot of voters didn’t realize there was a

number, they didn’t, whether you want to call

them uneducated voters that’s fine, they didn't

understand there was a number tied to the number

of alcohol licenses determined by the state by


City Councilor Amanda Linehan noted why she

was against the Resolve and seemed to take

issue with Spadafora on voter intent, “I voted in

favor of cannabis as a resident when it was on

the ballot and sincerely believe it sets a bad precedent

to assume that voters didn’t understand

how that ratio would be set or what it was that

they were voting on.”

Linehan also directly addressed those who would

be harmed by more delays, “I don't think it’s fair

to those that are midway through the process

right now to take this step.”

Spadafora seems intent in pushing for a ballot

initiative that would allow voters to limit the number

of retail cannabis licenses. This is interesting

considering he appears to retail liquor at his family’s

Malden restaurant business.


A 2017 study “Helping Settle the Marijuana and

Alcohol Debate: Evidence from Scanner Data”

showed a sizable decrease in liquor sales following

cannabis legalization with alcohol sales down

by as much as 16.2 percent.

Spadafora ran on a platform of transparency but

offered no response when I reached out via email

to address the conflict of interest and hypocrisy of

stalling cannabis retail while he appears to retail

a far more harmful product.

A call to Spadafora’s listed phone number on the

Malden City Council shows it is not in service.

Finding that a Craig Spadafora had a publicly

listed email on the restaurant’s website, I decided

to pose as a potential customer looking to book a

big bash to see if he would retail liquor to me.

He responded quickly to that email offering, “a

beverage setup fee of $100.00 to have a cash

bar available (applied for alcohol or soda sales).”

Getting back on official city business, not that important,

selling a cash bar, City Councilor Spadafora

will get right back to you.

At the hearing thirteen Malden citizens offered

spoken and written testimony against the Resolve.

No Malden citizens spoke in support of

Spadafora’s Resolve.

Speaking at the hearing, Jenelle DeVits, a member

of the Malden Cannabis Licensing Enforcement

Commission (CLEC), “Let’s be clear, the

resolution before you tonight is asking the CLEC

to violate our city ordinance and to shut down

our process down altogether, because this body

or the anti-marijuana residents failed to organize

appropriately over the last three-plus years to put

a question on the ballot, regarding restrictions on

the number of licenses as required by state law. If

there was really such a concern and motivation to

elicit feedback from our residents why did the city

council or these concerned residents fail to put

the question before the largest turnout of Malden

voters on this year’s Presidential ballot or even

last year’s mayoral ballot, I hope you all take a

pause and ask why now, three years later there is

a push to wait for an off-year election when we all

know turnout will be much lower and not representative

of the voters citywide. If the city council

wants to properly change our ordinance there is

a legal process to do that, which does not involve

a non-binding resolution directing the CLEC to

violate the city’s current ordinance.”

Kimberly Gillette, another Malden resident with

oral testimony, “This resolve would at best support

the closure of our process or at worst protect

a monopoly for the only two businesses that

made it through the first phase of applications.”

DeVits concluded, “Trying to direct the CLEC to

violate the current ordinance is not appropriate

and only raises questions of whether pausing at

this junction will be a violation of state law, such

a pause may be argued by some to be a de facto

ban on additional licenses or may be seen as

limiting the number of licenses below five which

we know can only be approved by a majority of

Malden residents through a ballot question while

residents had a full three years to get this question

on the ballot, that has not happened.”

Warren Lynch, a cannabis applicant in the city is

hopeful despite the results of the vote, “I spoke

with two City Councilors who voted yes on the

Resolve, and they both said that they do not

agree that cannabis licenses should be delayed

a full 12 months, and only voted yes on what

they viewed as the main point of the non-binding

Resolve, which is that the cannabis licensing

process in Malden could use some clarification in

a few places."

DeVits also isn’t giving up, "I plan to urge the

CLEC to keep moving forward with a monthly rolling

basis application process per our current City

ordinance that remains unchanged, even in light

of the split vote on the non-binding resolution."


by Jarrett Ashley

Rick Naya:


The Real Life "Most Interesting Man In The World"

What do you get when you cross Spanish royalty,

the "summer of '69", drug runners, state government,

and lots and lots of cannabis? No, it's

not the plot of the next Seth Rogan film. Ok, well,

it could be... but it isn't. When you break it down

and roll it all up, you get one hell of a story to puff

on. The name of the story? Rick F#$&ing Naya -

The "great grandfather of hybrid cannabis". Rick

is like one of those astronomical events that only

come around once every 200 years. There are a

lot of amazing people fighting this fight but few of

them have the background or the credentials that

Rick has carried with him since birth. You see, he

was born into the aristocracy. Not something like

it or symbolic but true "blue blood", run-the-world

type of privilege. You'd never know it if Rick didn't

tell you. For every bit of confidence and charisma

that pours out of him (and it's a lot), there is an

equal amount of humility and service. In fact, if

you even remotely understand the implications of

the fight for cannabis legalization or for the betterment

of humanity in general, then by the time

you've listened to Rick for 10 minutes you want to

shake his hand and thank him for everything he's

done. At least I did.

Cannabis Grown &

Bred by Rick

Rick was born in the US, on the 4th of July no

less, into a family of very wealthy and affluential

politicians who in turn were descendants of Spanish

Royalty that had settled in Cuba in the 1580’s.

In their prime, the family commanded the largest

fleet of steam ships in the eastern hemisphere.

No joke -- he is a bonafide prince with a family

castle in Spain and everything! The family were

eventually exiled from Cuba, relocating to the US

by way of Florida. This is where Rick's journey

begins. Despite his privileged upbringing, and

maybe even because of it to some degree, Rick

was exposed to and self-educated on cannabis at

a very early age. It was the summer of '69 when

he tried his first joint and it was unfortunately an

anticlimactic experience. However, it started him

on a path of curiosity that never ended. Here was

a plant that was thoroughly demonized by society

that he himself had tried, as well as many others

he knew of who were not harmed by it in any

way. In fact, some of them were helped by it! Rick

had the opportunity afforded him to dedicate time



and energy to

learning more

and learn he

did. Even as a

kid he started

to write letters

to leading

activists and


like Jack

Herer and Ed


What's morethey


back! His

knowledge on the subject grew exponentially until

he was one of the most knowledgeable kids on

the planet when it came to cannabis. The more

he learned, the more he understood the racist

and vile reasons behind the prohibition of cannabis

in the first place. He learned how the word

"marijuana" had been intentionally weaponized

and twisted by racists into the new name for what

had been called cannabis for centuries before.

He learned how Harry Anslinger almost single

handedly turned the world against this amazing

plant using fear mongering and racist rhetoric. He

learned how the likes of DuPont and Rockefeller

were turning oil into medicine - and practically

everything else - who viewed cannabis as cheap,

effective competition. The more he learned, the

more he began to transform from affluent heir to

black sheep. Then one day in the woods at age

13, his future would quite literally fall out of the

sky and change his course forever.

A drug smuggling plane dropped its load over the

woods Rick happened to be wandering through.

After the smugglers gathered up their prize and

cleared the area, Rick found the spot where bails

of cannabis were dropped only minutes earlier.

Not only that, but he found a few broken bails

that the smugglers had left behind. Over time he

began to use it, sell it, then grow it and eventually

- he started to breed it. He had to keep his activity

low key, not only because of the draconian

laws of the time but also because of his family's

prominence. So, he remained under the radar

-- but he was hooked. He became somewhat of

a recluse as he obsessed over and hunted down

the rarest landrace strains he could find. He was

creating some of the best bud in the area and

getting recognized for it quickly. Unlike other

growers he knew, Rick tended to everything from

the bioavailability of the soil to the electro-magnetic

resonance shared between plant and grower.

He knew that he was raising champs and it

wasn't long before the cannabis world acknowledged

it and embraced him fully as one of their

own. It was still the early days of genome testing

and the pioneers of this new science wanted to

backtrack genetics to catalogue the lineage of

the most popular strains. When testing was done

on the genetic profile of two of the better-known

strains, Skunk and Northern Lights, both were

found to be the progeny of a strain called "Gainsville

Green". You guessed it! Rick Naya was the

breeder and grower of Gainsville Green and as

such is recognized as paving the way for many

of the top shelf genetics that followed. This was

formally acknowledged when Sensi magazine

dubbed him "The Great Grandfather of Hybrid

Cannabis". Despite his efforts to remain out of

the spotlight, Rick Naya was a rising cannabis

star. So, he did what any well-educated cannabis

connoisseur and activist would do. He ran with

it... hard.

Now at this point I could get into all the various

titles he's held and organizations he's run. I

could write the rest of the article just on that topic

alone. His upbringing and privilege were never

totally shunned, only redirected. The aristocracy

had shaped him into a multi-state, billion-dollar

operator. Rick was not timid about running huge

projects and had the education and professional

experience to back it up. He eventually found

himself in New Hampshire, with a respected

reputation and a solid mission in the cannabis

world and so he got involved. Really involved!

As an independent activist in the cannabis arena

representing the people in the state, he found

himself in roles such as director of New Hampshire

Cannabis Freedom Festival, Director of

New Hampshire Cannabis company, director of

New Hampshire Farmers Cannabis Collective,

Director of "A Newer New Hampshire" and Executive

director of New Hampshire NORML just to

name a few. There are more. Much more! But all

of these are things Rick has done - not who he is.

Who he is, is a down to earth, father-of-four, man

of the people. He's well educated, well versed

and directly experienced having used cannabis

to win his own fight with cancer. He is using

everything at his disposal to make the world a

better place. Yes, the world! If you ask Rick, he'd

tell you the "cannabis arena" is really the arena

of life. Just as with anything else, change comes

through the bravery of those who have the courage

to be educated and to teach others, to lead

by example and take on the lies of history and to

make a brighter world for everyone. Ask him what

he wants to be remembered for and he doesn't

hesitate: "spreading love". That's who Rick Naya

is. That's why he almost seems to glow when you

see or speak to him. Passion pours out of him in

such a way that it becomes impossible to dismiss

him as a fluke or a gimmick. Rick Naya is the real

deal and make no mistake, he is on more of a

spiritual mission than a political one.

Rick is deeply spiritual. He will tell you so directly

but he really doesn't have to. You can gather as

much just from listening to him talk about cannabis

and what it means to him to make it accessible

for all. He says that God called his soul

to be a gladiator for cannabis. He believes the

world will be a better place when we as a species

realize and live what Rick calls "the 4 principles".

These 4 principles create the foundation for

everything that Rick does and it's no coincidence

that these 4 principles tend to make their way into

the priorities of anyone with a healthy respect and

affinity for cannabis. The principles are Health,

Wellness, Love & Compassion. Rick's own kids

went through periods of resentment and feeling

abandoned by his dedication to his cause but

later acknowledged the profound love that was at

the core of his being, driving everything he does.

While they have not explicitly joined him in his

mission, they understand it and support him. It's

hard not to when you realize that everything he

has worked for and accomplished has been built

on dignity and truth as the cornerstones. While

he may not have always been able to be home -

he was always operating from a place of love and

there is no denying that.

(or are at least looking for) the truth. He sees how

a money hungry industry continues to push for

growth of profits at the expense of the 4 principles.

Ever the self-styled superhero though, Rick

continues to push back. Whether or not you've

heard of him, there's no mistake that he is among

the few individuals who's sweat, blood and tears

got us to where we are today in this battle and

that's no small feat. He truly is bringing the cannabis

community together and has been for years

in ways that give new meaning and direction to

the culture he has proudly been a part of since

childhood. When I asked him what the most

positive shift in the culture has been, his answer

surprised me. He pointed to the dynamics directly

following George Floyd’s public murder at the

hands of the police. I didn't fully understand what

he meant until he pointed out that now "systemic

racism" was a household term. Now more than

ever we can address that issue which also lies

at the heart of cannabis prohibition and the continued

harassment and imprisonment of minorities

to this day. Only when this issue is properly

addressed can we ever hope to bring cannabis

fully out of shadows and bring humanity one step

closer to the light. The other major shift following

that horrific 9-minute video was the amount of

people who are ready to be activists. Not just for

cannabis or law reform, but for justice and lasting

systemic reform that has been so desperately

Today, Rick is extremely concerned with the

"cultural wedge" born of disconnect and control

that continues to create a gap between those

who have been lied to and those who have seen

Rick, underneath a Fluorescent Light Fixture.


needed in this country. Cannabis legalization isn't the only way that's achieved, but it is a giant leap

in the right direction.

Now Rick is preparing to launch his latest project, RickNaya.cool, which is an online platform that will

include his current project "The Rick Naya Show" as well as provide a platform to cannabis superstars

such as Wutang and to up-and-coming activists and canna-businesses that meet the standards set

by the love-sharing trail blazer himself. He is also gearing up to take on the big money players in the

industry by laying legal claim to the massively popular strains that contain his original genetics and

making anyone who wants to sell them come through him first. He is also an honorary judge at almost

all of the major events like Terptown Throwdown, Hightimes Cup, and more. As such, he has a direct

hand in guiding and cultivating both the genetics and the growers of the next few decades. With the

right support and help from the world, Rick Naya is set to lead the cannabis industry down the path it

should be going rather than leave it in the hands of the same few big money interests and aristocrats

that have sought to control things for a very, very long time. The same aristicrats that Rick came from

and eventually shied away from in order to bring love, light and cannabis to the world. In the words of

the man himself... “Groovy Shit!"

I couldn’t have said it better myself.

Smoke Up & Shine On

- Jarrett Ashley



By Mike Crawford



“Like any business, an entrepreneur must know all parts of the business.”

Do you go by DJ Stenny? How did you get that name?

My whole life growing up in Quincy, I’ve been called

Stenny. My father had gotten the nickname while serving

in the Navy, the members of his crew would shorten

his last name from Stentiford to Stenny. After I got out

of the Marines, I started to DJ in the Boston area and it

was an easy choice to brand and market the nickname

I already had.

When and why did you start Mary Palmer?

My girlfriend Lynne Spinney and I started Mary Palmer

in the fall of 2018. We wanted to create a beverage to

help people. We made a THC-infused beverage to compete

at the inaugural Commonwealth Cannabis Cup

held at the Boston Freedom Rally. About two months

later, we entered the Harvest Cup competition and won

first place for sweet edible.

few products that we weren’t too sure about how the

judges would perceive. We entered medicated stuffed

pepper and infused pickle in the “savory” category and

both did really well, with pepper in second place and

pickle taking first place.

What are your best-selling products?

The CBD tinctures, our Best Buds dog treats, and the

CBD gum. Research has shown that pets have an endocannabinoid

system (ECS), just like humans do. This

means that the endocannabinoid receptors in the body

are able to interact with CBD and use it to promote an

overall balance.

What are you working on next?

Finishing the CCC’s economic empowerment program

and getting a community host agreement.

How and where do you create your Mary Palmer products

and source the CBD?

Most of our products are formulated in our kitchen

by us. We have a local production partner for a few

products we don’t have the equipment for. Our CBD is

sourced both locally and nationally.

At the Harvest Cup 2020, you took home six first-place

wins and four runner-ups, ten awards total. Tell us

about some of those awards, any that you are most

surprised about?

This was a unique year, and with no events going on

we focused on the contest. There were definitely a

Where do you see yourself in the future?

In the Massachusetts recreational retail market.

If you could get elected city/town and statehouse officials

to take action what would you ask them to do?

Get the ball rolling on recreational cannabis in Quincy,

change the designated green zones.

Any advice for budding local cannabis entrepreneurs?

Start growing, get involved in your local community,

start networking, and find like-minded individuals. Like

any business, an entrepreneur must know all parts of

the business.

Mike Crawford is a Massachusetts medical cannabis patient and founder of The Young Jurks and midnightmass.substack.com. You can listen to The Young Jurks on

iTunes or wherever else podcasts are streamed. This article was produced with support from Midnight Mass and The Young Jurks, where your contributions are greatly

appreciated and help us deliver more local coverage.


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By Mike Crawford

Rob Potylo, I Beat the Gong

Potylo is expected to be featured in a highly anticipated documentary on

his friend, the WWE hall of fame wrestler, Chyna, who sadly passed in 2016

Rob Potylo, grew up in the Massachusetts town of Danvers, is an actor, film producer, and a musical comedian.

Potylo is expected to be featured in the production of a highly anticipated documentary feature on his friend,

the WWE hall of fame wrestler, Chyna, who sadly passed in 2016.

Something I had the chance to ask him about. He’s tight-lipped on the details of that project.

From wikipedia, Potylo “has produced and appeared

in five seasons of Quiet Desperation,

a scripted online mockumentary comedy web

show and cable series about the underground art

and music scene.” and “appeared on Season 1,

Episode 4 of The Gong Show to perform his song

"Hot Dogs And Applesauce," and encored with

"Shaving Cream" by Benny Belle.”

Potylo who currently lives in Pasadena, California

has also appeared on the Ellen show and is often

most recognized as his alter-ego, Robby Roadsteamer.

I’ve known Potylo for nearly 20 years and had the

pleasure to interview him about it all via email.

One of your most viewed videos has over 7

million views on youtube, singing to a NY police

officer, you made a connection, has she seen the



Singing to cops and finding a connection is a

wonderful way to de-escalate protest situations

before anyone really gets hurt. I've seen Vermin

Supreme do this technique a lot! You see it in the

eyes of cops and protesters alike that we're human,

in this together, and we can all use a smile.

Love, comedy, and connection will always prevail!

The NYPD lady cop's brother reached out to me,

and said she thought it was hilarious!

Why did you decide to start singing to the police

and the National Guard? Have you been

surprised by their reactions?

At various protests with Vermin Supreme and I

just felt using my songs, the personality I developed

at comedy clubs and music venues around

Boston was a great way to de-escalate the crazy

situations at marches. Stop agro cops or protesters

from getting more aggressive in already

volatile situations.

I wasn't surprised that the troops or cops like the

tunes, because I wanna make them smile. An

entertainer gives. Performance art stops arrests,

pepper sprayings, and beatings, and the cops

get to hear nice songs about “Hot Dogs & Applesauce”!

Children songs for adults!

Have you received any backlash about those

videos from people who aren’t necessarily

fans of police?

Yeah. I don't know what to say. There's good and

bad on both sides, and it helps to see that. Only a

Sith deals in absolutes.

Vermin Supreme, how did you meet and decide

to start doing videos and protests with


Vermin Supreme showed up to a shoot that I did

for Quiet Desperation. We had an open casting

call for hippies on a fake commune and surprise!

We hit it off that day, and when he saw that I tried

to kill myself on the next episode, he invited me

to his compound in Gloucester to bond for a day!

During which I jumped from 40 foot cliffs into a

quarry dressed as a penguin! And he invited me

to the DNC in North Carolina. Rest is history!

Vermin is always running for President, who

are you voting for?

Biden. I'm a Bernie, AOC bro, but we gotta get

Hitler Hellboy out of the Whitehouse so these

trolling MAGA's can get back to 4chan porn and

Beanie Baby swap meets.

What do you say to Trump supporters or your

friend, Ernie Boch, Jr?

It's a death cult, and the shit you're willing to

ignore cause you're getting more of your taxes

back speaks volumes. To Ernie tho? I'd say,

“Thank You for being a friend, travel down the

road and back again.”

Craziest Robby Roadsteamer show?

Played a show to a bunch of upper crust Karens

at an outdoor gig in Manchester By The Sea, a

benefit at this country club looking venue. The

kids in the back loved it, but these rich privileged

parents who had long ago settled for wrought-iron

gate houses were giving me the stink-eye. So I

told the kids "Your parents have long ago sold out

and fucking suck, they are afraid of you, because

you're the future!" A chef grabbed a knife, a waiter

called the cops, and I left through the back for

another gig in Worcester, while the cops came

through the front. There was even a listing, the

police report in the Gloucester paper about it.

Was there a breaking point when you knew

that you were killing Roadsteamer and coming

back with Potylo?

Took shrooms for the first time right before my

30th (birthday), and just went through this revelation

that I could still be me creatively, and as a

human being.

I was always guarded, and paranoid to be me,

because of relentless bullying at home, and in the

Danvers public school systems. Mostly by entitled

jocks that hated outsider creative types. I realized

on mushrooms that I was okay underneath, but

had a lot of evolving to do.

Nonetheless I started destroying the Roadsteamer

character live. Started saying stuff I myself

would say onstage through Robby "I'm just like

you guys, I love Elliott Smith, and Nintendo's Zelda,

and The Dresden Dolls!!" It was the beginning

of the end of my Roadsteamer audience!


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Today it seems logically the right move but at first not everybody was supportive?

They still don't like Rob Potylo as a performer in Boston. I come back to Cambridge, and play the Mid East

downstairs, with the Roadsteamer band, and bring 500 massholes. I do Rob Potylo, and get 30, with 10 asking

if, "I'll do any Roadsteamer songs?"

Haven't done a show in New England in four years now. It's a lot of games just to express who I am to a culture

that never gave many fucks about an outsider artist to begin with unless I scream, "I put a baby in you!!!"

Did you ever doubt your decision?

No regrets ever. Roadsteamer is fabulous to play, but I'm glad I got my soul back playing me. I ain't losing

sleep if Massholes hate Potylo. New Englanders love trolling artists and bohemians with shit like "what do

you really do for a living?" "Saw the link didn't click". Most won't support creative types by going to a show or

buying a 6 buck bandcamp album cause they don't like that you're getting off the beaten path. I mean why

do they wanna see your band or comedy do good, when long ago they knocked up a girl, had 3 kids, settled

quietly and quickly. So now they're gonna support your creative ass, and cheer on your ambitions to be Joey


It's a weekend warrior music scene. Any successes creative-wise inadvertently points out the shackles on the

norms ankles, and they don't wanna see you fly!

What are your favorite Roadsteamer memories?

Kicking ass at the WBCN Rock and Roll Rumble and getting a job at the CBS radio station. Being able to walk

into WBCN everyday in full costume yelling at salespeople and management

MassCann Boston Freedom Rally, one of those years you performed, Roadsteamer proclaimed from

the stage during his set that he was there at the pro cannabis rally to “legalize cocaine” and it caused

some commotion?

Alot of MassCann folks weren't really happy with each other, so I'm not going to lose sleep over it. They

couldn't get the joke, about a dude in a wig, with faux snakeskin pants, yelling about legalizing cocaine. I'm not

down with coke in real life.

Tell us about your relationship with Kyle Carrao and Michael Malta, they are missed by the local cannabis


Yes, great follow-up! There were a lot great folks that I met at MassCann events and the Freedom Rally! And

some great bands I swear.

Malta was his own whole stoner universe

in the Boston cannabis community. Met

at a MassCann battle of the bands that

we judged. He was this cool character,

slick goatee, tight sunglasses. Had his

own damn industry with the King Of Pot

(KOP) branding, empowering people in

the cannabis community! Always had

that smile, like he was in on that joke

Dylan talks about in All Along The Watchtower.

Mike always wanted to make sure

you were in a good place. Loved having

him on my mockumentary series Quiet

Desperation. RIP KOP.


Kyle I got to know at the EMF building

in Cambridge. An Iraqi War vet who just

wanted to kick it with artists, MassCann

folks. He wanted to give back, and heal

people around him, through medicinal

weed, and good vibes. Had the plea-

Mike Crawford, Michael Malta "KOP"and Rob Potylo

sure of staying with him on his grow-farm in Maine

when I needed a friend after Chyna died. During that

stay, I watched him bring weed to so many people

dealing with devastating illnesses. And he was just a

fabulous human being to kick it with, blaze, and play

Call Of Duty. Talked to him on the phone in January,

and he was so excited about helping shake Mass-

Cann up. Miss him terribly.

You brought Ernie Boch, Jr to a Freedom Rally,

what did he think of the experience?

He had a blast! He loves the arts, weed, and America!

Introduced me at a rally! Such a rad dude! I've had so

many adventures with him. He's been the facilitator of

some great moments I had in Boston.

What are some of your favorite videos that you’ve


Protester sings to NYPD Lady Cop, I Put A Baby In

You, Hot Dogs And Applesauce on ABC's The Gong

Show, Quiet Desperation, Robby Roadsteamer on the

Fox Morning Show.

Songs you’ve written that you are most proud of?

I Put A Baby In You, Hot Dogs And Applesauce, Drawing

Up Circles

Which songs do your fans recognize you the most


“I Put A Baby In You”. It’s the best when people come

up to me on the street, and start talking about it, while

I'm with a lady friend trying to sound smart.

Any songs that have fan support that you have

been surprised about their popularity?

“I'm Sorry Your Cat Had Ass Cancer”! I mean it's a

brutal topic! Why would they cheer for it live?!!

You were working on a documentary with the

WWE hall of fame wrestler, Chyna before she

passed away, is that going to ever be released?

Yes. Before you even realize it! There's actually two in

production, both of which I had a huge hand in developing!

I guess I better lawyer up when they come out.

You grew up in Danvers, MA, tell us about the

town and why you have recently joined the most

trump loving Danvers facebook group?

Well they banned me from the group page today!

Danvers is 99% white, and loves their high school

tough guy hockey players. And if you don't play sports

or don’t plan on going to UMASS to study landscaping

then all the offspring of Masshole Dry-Wall repairers

who will pick on you until you leave town.

What are your thoughts on the controversy over

the Thin Blue Line flags being removed from Danvers

firetrucks and the rally they had in response?

Danvers will support everything cops, privileged, anything

Howie Carr tells them to lick the boots of.

How do you expect Black Lives Matter message to

be received in Danvers?

Danvers wants everything to be the fucking Truman

show 24/7. And don't you dare bring up Black Lives

Matter because they don't wanna change a thing.

Keepin it 1954 4evah!

Advice to younger artists in Boston today, what

does their future look like?

Being creative full-time is tough in Boston. If you really

wanna do it full-time, hit LA or New York, so you ain't

wasting half your energy arguing with trolling fucks,

who think you're wasting your life being a "creative

failure". If you do choose to stay in Boston, learn

online platforms inside and out for it! Youtube, TicTok,

Twitch, Bandcamp. Be your own industry.

You’ve met or worked with a lot of Hollywood celebrities,

any that were special or not nice?

Jeff Goldblum was very kind and flirty, I met him as

Robby Roadsteamer at a piano bar he sings at in Los

Feliz. Mike Myers likes singing "Hot Dogs And Applesauce!".

Jennifer Coolidge had me in her hotel room

in Boston for two hours, to go over singing “Happy

Birthday” to her Dad. Will Arnett has no soul. I told Ellen,

I have a nintendo in my closet that she can play.

The Gong Show, how did you land that, your song

on ABC primetime tv? Did you ever think? Do

people recognize you from it?

I just got back to Venice Beach from a twenty city tour

with Vermin Supreme and Matthew Silver on the East

Coast. Saw an audition for it at the Roosevelt Hotel

in Hollywood. Went down and crushed it singing "Hot

Dogs And Applesauce!"

Honestly, my dream in life was to sing an original

song on network TV, and it came true! On the f%&king

Gong Show with Mike Myers, ABC prime-time, four

million people watched. Plus I got to encore and

sing "Shaving Cream", made three grand more than

the winner, and was the only contestant to receive

a screen actors guild credit. Greatest Day ever! The

only truly natural things are dreams, which nature

cannot touch with decay.

People still come up to me at the Supermarket to ask

how I "beat the gong?"



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