Born: May 24, 1938
Tommy Chong, born on May 24, 1938, is a Canadian-American comedian, actor, writer, musician, and cannabis rights activist. He is best known for his marijuana-themed comedy routines and his role as one-half of the stoner comedy duo, Cheech & Chong, alongside Cheech Marin.
Chong was born in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, and began his entertainment career as a musician in the late 1950s. He played guitar for various bands, including Bobby Taylor & the Vancouvers, before forming a comedic partnership with Cheech Marin in the late 1960s. Their comedy routines often revolved around counterculture themes, cannabis use, and satirical social commentary.
In 1971, Cheech & Chong released their self-titled debut album, which achieved significant success and launched their career as comedy icons. The duo went on to release several highly popular albums, including “Big Bambú” (1972), “Los Cochinos” (1973), and “Up in Smoke” (1978). Their comedy records were characterized by their unique blend of irreverent humor, storytelling, and musical sketches.
Chong and Cheech also ventured into the film industry, starring in a series of successful movies, starting with “Up in Smoke” (1978), followed by “Cheech & Chong’s Next Movie” (1980), “Nice Dreams” (1981), and “Still Smokin” (1983), among others. These films became cult classics and further solidified their status as comedic legends.
Aside from his work with Cheech, Tommy Chong has had a diverse career in entertainment. He has appeared in various television shows, including “That ’70s Show,” where he played the character of Leo, a lovable stoner. He has also made guest appearances on other shows and participated in reality TV competitions, such as “Dancing with the Stars.”
Throughout his career, Chong has been a vocal advocate for the decriminalization and legalization of cannabis. In 2003, he faced legal troubles when he was targeted by the U.S. government in an investigation known as “Operation Pipe Dreams,” which targeted businesses selling drug paraphernalia. Chong served a short prison sentence and became a symbol of the fight for cannabis legalization.
In addition to his activism, Chong continues to perform stand-up comedy, tour, and engage with fans through social media. He remains an influential figure in both the comedy and cannabis communities, known for his unique humor and his dedication to promoting the benefits and destigmatization of cannabis use.
Tommy Chong’s 5 most popular quotes
- If more people were stoned there would be less violence in the world.
- When you smoke marijuana, you are in the moment and you are happy. You forget about any worries of the past or the future.
- When you hit a groove, it’s not you; it’s the spirit world. The spirits whisper the ideas in your brain and prod you along. They’re the ones that are really happy.
- More than anything, the weed really helped with my mental state, because marijuana works on the brain. And if anything, it soothes the brain.
- I really love what [Donald] Trump is doing. He is doing a great job of exposing the republicans for what they really are.
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