Doug Wendt (2)
High Times (1998)
Wendt: Do you remember the first time you smoked herb?
Scratch: It make me feel real glitzy and I don't know
what's happening. I want to say it took me on a trip, a strange trip.
And I was no longer on this planet Earth. It take me into space and I
want to come out of it. And I get out of it. I afraid of it and I want
to say whatever it is, I try it again. But the trip was nice. It teach
me wisdom and knowledge and understanding, and put me back on the planet
Earth to stand on solid ground. You say whatever you want. You ask the
Earth because the Earth have all the powers. If you think Earth didn't
have the powers, how did Earth grow the trees and the plants and the
flowers? And how does Earth feed the animals? So then he send me back
to Earth after the trip to understand that the Earth is the lord. Then
if you want or need anything, why don't you knock and ask the Earth?
Wendt: So herb was a revelation?
Scratch: And a revolution.
Wendt: What's the difference between Jamaican herb like
Lamb's Bread, Goatshit, and so forth?
Scratch: Sinsemilla. Lamb's Bread. Cannabis. Collie.
Marijuana. Tampi. Any name it have it is the same. It just named herbs.
The herbs, green herbs. Green collie herbs, green marijuana herbs or
green ganja herbs - it's just the green genie you talking about. Yeah,
the genie exists and the green ganja collie is the genie. The green genie
Godeenie! He makes the wind blow, the grass grow. He makes the school
bell ring and the people sing. The tree of life - ganja! Hallelujah.
Jahovia. Jah Rastafari.
Wendt: You wrote a song called "Bushweed Corntrash".
Scratch: Well, people used to get different vibration
off the weed. The weed we normally did plant, we didn't maintain properly
or give good treatment to turn into a good smoke, so it become a bush
weed. It didn't get any mental support. So they put it with corn trash
and smoke it as one vibration. What you put in, you get out. You didn't
give anything, so it become bushweed. And you put it with corn trash
and you smoke it. And say it was fucking up your brain.
Wendt: What was the idea behind the song "Herb
Scratch: Me get a message from a different planet to
deliver down here to the Earthlings. I extraterrestrial it to the Earthlings.
I make it on music so the Earthling can hear this message. (Sings) Dub
it Iyah. Dub it Iyah. Yeah, hit the collie. Hit the collie 'til it swell
your head now. Do it Iyah, do it Iyah. Yes!
Wendt: How is the herb
Scratch: It's okay and I think they don't fight against herb. They don't
put herbs amongst the drugs. They don't rate herbs like drugs. Put herb
always above that. Think about that.
Wendt: Will there ever be an Upsetters reunion?
Scratch: There won't be any more Upsetter band. I once planned the Upsetter band.
The Upsetter was so upsetting that it upset even I. They wanted to take
over the whole thing. They was upset and they become Wailers. So I give
them all the things that wail and put all that is upsetting away. I put
their alcohol away, I put their rum away, and I put their massive dreads
away. They were all too dreadful for me. Anything that is upsetting to
me I must get rid of, that's why I'm the Upsetter. I must not be upset.
Wendt: Are you rebuilding the Black Ark studio?
Scratch: I did want to, but I discover it will bring back
the destruction that was around me. And even death. My power is to stay
alive - not to encourage death. So the Black Ark studio won't be coming
back. Anything that is a problem to me my object is to put it away, get
rid of it. I don't care how powerful it was, even if it was the power of
the world - it have to go.
Wendt: What inspired your last album, Who
Put The Voodoo 'Pon Reggae?
Scratch: What inspired me is that some of us are unbalanced, and for us
to get balanced we'd have to go on track. So we create a big boom like
a big dance track for the people to follow. It wasn't meant to be called
reggae. I didn't have a name for it at the time, but the government wanted
to call it reggae. So something to mix up, through money. And because something
go mix up, I don't want anything to do with the name reggae. But whoever
love it, I will bless them and say take it. I don't want to have nothin'
to do with it for reason more than one. God bless you for loving the reggae,
but I don't want to discuss anything about it. See, I'm following Emperor
Haile Selassie's footsteps. He didn't give Egypt for nah reason, he give
it up and I have to give away reggae for a reason as well. I don't want
to be a kaput. Okay? I send you a prophet, and the music would not save
the life of the prophet.
Wendt: Are you talking about Bob Marley?
Scratch: If you say so. I didn't say so. I said I send you a prophet. If
the reggae didn't save him, how is it going to save me? The people love
reggae and I love reggae still. I don't hate reggae and I don't want you
to think I throw away reggae. I love reggae. It become a giant and cannot
be controlled anymore. 'Cause of the force it bring upon me. I have to
burn the Black Ark studio and leave Jamaica. Otherwise I wouldn't be here.
They want my reggae tapes. When you are alive you are nothing, but when
you are dead you is worth something. So I was supposed to be dead and be
a legend, then my reggae tapes would sell more.
Wendt: Is that a flaming sun leaf on your shirt?
Scratch: Fire, yes. Sparkling fire. Fire revelation.
Fire mean the revelation of a prophecy.
Wendt: And fire burned down the Black Ark studio you
Scratch: Yeah. Fire come as a witness again.
Wendt: This had to do with Island Records turning down
your Roast Fish Collie Weed And Corn Bread album when you were
at the height of your powers.
Scratch: That album! That's what caused every fucking
Wendt: And then a couple of years later, you released "Judgement
Ina Babylon" with Chris Blackwell on the cover as a vampire.
Scratch: When he fight against Roast Fish Collie Weed
And Corn Bread, it did create power. What else could I call it but judgement?
I couldn't call it justice. If I call it justice I would have killed
him instantly. You understand? But that would be against the rules of
the cosmic laws. You have the cosmic laws and the cosmic energy. The
cosmic energy don't want you to do that because the weather want to watch.
And if you spoil the weather's fun and the watcher don't watch 'til the
end, the watcher will charge you for spoiling the weather's fun.
Wendt: Last night at your show you said "are you
deaf? I will make you deaf". Why do you want to make people deaf?
Scratch: I will make them undeaf. I mean, if you are
closed, I will make you unclosed. And if your brain is unclosed, I will
open your brain and open your mind and open your hearts, open all your
parts! Then if you open your past with your ears so you're hearing, I
come through your past and give you a present into your future. Through
your ears I speak. Could you hear me if you're not havin' the ears on?
If you could not hear, then you could not hear me. And if you could not
see then you could not see me, could you?
Wendt: We can shut our eyes, but we can't shut our ears.
Our ears are always open.
Scratch: Always open. Even when you dream. Even when
you have vision you hear something else sing.
Wendt: You often make references that you're crazy or
you're eccentric. I think you know you're not really crazy. You use it
as a way to keep people at bay. Isn't that what's really going on?
Scratch: Look, I'm surrounded by people with wasted
brain. And when I send out my beam, my scannin' beam, and go into their
wasted brain and see no part of the wasted brain that I require, I'm
bored! But when I scan the brain and see brain that are not wasted, brain
that can be put to work or put to use to bring forward a creation, I
would be really interested in it. Then I won't be bored.