Months ago, I had a story idea that I was going to pitch to Weekly editor Gayle Reaves as a Second Thought column. I’d planned to use the space to develop this thoughtfully researched argument in favor of legalizing marijuana, based on things like facts and statistics. I was going to limn cannabis’ harmlessness compared to its major criminal designation, especially when texting while driving, eating too much fast food, smoking tobacco, and overindulging in alcohol in public are all perfectly legal. I also was planning to point out how more Americans cop to enjoying a bowl now than ever before and that a lot of them are probably someone you know, finally concluding with the question, “If you’re opposed, do you even know why?”

I wrote the pitch down on a scrap of paper, tacked it to my bulletin board, and went into the living room.

And like the hook in that terrible, terrible song, I got high.


I didn’t finish the column. OK. I never started the column.

Anyway, since the unofficial stoner holiday 4/20 is Saturday and since Fort Worth clubs will be packed with live music, you’re probably going to catch a whiff of weed while walking around whether you want to or not.

Probably the biggest event this weekend has nothing to do with weed. Just beer. Lots of it. And good music. Paste magazine’s Untapped Festival at Panther Island Pavilion is “not about the quantity of selection,” festival honchos say, “but rather the curating of the best in both craft beer and emerging local and national bands.”

More than 50 breweries will be represented, including Fort Worth’s Martin House, Granbury’s Revolver, and Dallas’ Lakewood and Peticolas.

The stage will be occupied by a mix of national and North Texas-local bands, including Deer Tick, Justin Townes Earle, Sarah Jaffe, The Orbans, Skeleton Coast, and Dove Hunter. Honestly, while the tickets might seem a little pricey to some ($30 for the beer-and-concert ticket is actually a steal, cheapskates), Untapped is probably the team to beat. The bands start at 3:45 p.m. and go ’til 11:30. I’d say, go there during the day and head somewhere else at night.

Your best bet for a contact high is probably the West 7th corridor, specifically Lola’s Saloon (2736 W. 6th St., 817-877-0666), the site of the inaugural 4/20 Psyche-Out Festival. Featuring an assortment of local and national bands, including Stardeath & The White Dwarfs, Blackstone Rangers, The Cush, and one of my own bands, EPIC RUINS, the Psyche-Out will be full of rock groups known for their, um, psychoactive properties, which means that some of them may have members who smoke pot and that most of them produce musical sounds that require a bunch of effects pedals, which are fascinating to people who smoke pot. Cover is $10-17.

Of course, 4/20 wouldn’t be 4/20 without somebody playing a Bob Marley song, so thank your irie stars that Pablo & The Hemphill 7 are playing The Live Oak Music Hall & Lounge (1311 Lipscomb St., 817-926-0968). Cover is $10-15.

For a heavier vibe, check out Fort Wizard Productions420 Fest, with Trollfinger, Cadillac to Mexico, and a bunch of other bands that will scare you witless with the anger, volume, and sheer weight of their music at The Cellar (2916 W. Berry St., 817-923-6116). No cover!

Whether you make good brownies or the THC-less kind, get out into Clubland and see some bands this weekend. I definitely plan on it. There’s a reminder note about it on my bulletin board. –– Steve Steward


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  1. I’ve got 3 Sold-Out VIP tix for the Untapped Festival in Ft. Worth for Saturday for sale. Have to go out of town unexpectedly. PM me if interested.