March 2018 - Cover Story: The "High"namic Duo - Cheech & Chong
When it comes to the art of Stoner Comedy, no one does it better than the Godfathers of the genre, Richard “Cheech” Marin and Tommy Chong. Their chance meeting in Canada back in the late 1960s has provided the world with earth-shaking laughter and memorable catchphrases. Excited to learn that they would be stepping foot on New Mexico soil, playing Inn of The Mountain Gods on March 16th, I had to take the opportunity to learn more about these two legendary performers - their rise to fame, and their comedy partnership that has lasted for over 40 years.
The moment I got on the phone with Cheech Marin he had me laughing. I asked, “What did you want to be when you grew up?” He said, “Employed”. Marin was raised with a hard work ethic, never giving up on what he wanted to do in life and making sure he was going to make a living doing it. “I have cedo in my family, since we’re all Chicanos we need to have more than three jobs simultaneously,” shared Marin. “It’s the American Dream to have three jobs.” Marin was a potter in Alberta, Canada, where he fled to after dodging the draft. He talks about this in his book, Cheech is not my real name, but don’t call me Chong. After dealing with the cold in Alberta, he moved to Vancouver in search of warmth and work. There he meet Chong in an improv theater group, at a bar, in the worst section of Vancouver. “I joined the theater group and after it broke up, Chong and I stayed together.”