Single Review: Toby Keith’s “Wacky Tobaccy”

Rating: 0/10

Congratulations country music, you’ve actually produced a stupider song than “Body Like a Back road.”

And before I even talk about this, let’s get two things perfectly clear. One, I don’t hate the majority of Toby Keith’s music like virtually everyone in the country blogging world would expect me to. Yes, he’s produced some terrible songs in his career, especially over the past five years, and he’s made an ass of himself politically and culturally many times over. Still, I own quite a few of his albums, and some of those early songs of his were great. Two, since I’m a more conservative-leaning redneck from Oklahoma–ironically not unlike Toby here–let me stress that I believe marijuana should be legalized medically throughout the country as soon as possible, and I’m not against it recreationally either. I think that should be decided state by state, but that’s more because of my political philosophy about states’ rights than my personal views on pot. I’ll even go so far as to say that if/when we get to vote on that in Oklahoma, I’ll vote for its legalization both medically and recreationally.

Now, I’m glad we got that out of the way because this is the stupidest “marijuana-promoting” song in the history of songs like this. I wrote that in quotes because it does nothing to further marijuana advocacy by reducing smoking weed to this list of stereotypical bullshit compiled here by Toby Keith. OH, and they also have Willie Nelson in the video because we need one more reminder that Willie smokes weed. We get it, you smoke pot–and that goes for all artists wearing this out until it’s become a tired cliché, not just Toby Keith and Willie Nelson. And if you truly want it to be legal, to help cancer patients or hell, even to have a smoke in your yard without consequence, you wouldn’t release this God-awful song to the masses. It does nothing but set back the progress by marijuana advocacy groups and supporters like Nelson himself; the last line is asking if there are any Fritos, of all things. I don’t think it’s making any kind of argument for why we should legalize weed when it portrays marijuana users like this, in the simplest, most stereotypical ways possible.

Look, I get it, Toby Keith, you’re trying to be cool with this song, and ironically it does say something that even ultra-conservative Toby Keith is now releasing stuff like this in support of it. It’s not just Kacey Musgraves and “Follow Your arrow” now; in short, it’s not just a “liberal” thing. But it also strengthens the point that marijuana use has long since been normalized. We’re well past the point of using pot references to be cool or shocking, and this song is just stupid and painfully outdated, not to mention lazily written. One more thing, it’s meant to be funny, and it fails at that too. So not only does it not work as a weed-promoting single, it doesn’t work as a fun novelty song either.

So, to sum it all up, this song sucks. One of the worst songs I’ve heard in 2017 so far.

Written by: Toby Keith, Scotty Emerick

5 thoughts on “Single Review: Toby Keith’s “Wacky Tobaccy””

  1. I agree with your rating for this sucky song yet I like Brandy Clark’s “Get High” (solely written by Brandy) and Ashley Monroe’s “Weed Instead of Roses” (Ashley Monroe, Sally Barris & Jon McElroy). Liked early TK but lost interest when he got obsessed with drinking songs like that awful Get Drunk & Be Somebody, etc. Never tried marijuana or smoked cigarettes but enjoy a glass of the reasonably priced Beringer’s white zinfandel now and then.

    1. “Weed Instead of Roses” is a great song. I liked a lot of earlier Toby Keith. People I think forget the pre-political version of him which produced quite a few great songs.

      1. I agree Megan. I’ve always quite liked early Toby Keith. Albums like Boomtown, Blue Moon, and Dream Walkin’ are pretty solid. “Who’s That Man” is one of my favorite songs of the ’90s.

        1. “Does That Blue Moon Ever Shine on You” and “Dream Walkin'” are two of my favorite songs of his, but “Who’s That Man” is pretty great as well. At this point in his career, with little hope of staying radio relevant, he could get back to doing good stuff like that instead of this…thing.

  2. Ugh, I had to shut that off after the first verse/chorus. :p (I liked Toby’s earlier singles, too — from “Should’ve Been a Cowboy” probably up until “Getcha Some” or “How Do You Like Me Now?!”)

    Toby should’ve just covered the NRBQ song “Wacky Tobacky” instead; it first came out in 1979, but it’s super catchy and the lyrics still hold up pretty well (“Everybody doin’ it / Smokin’ and a-chewin’ it / They shippin’ and buzzin’ it / And Congress is discussin’ it”)…

Enter your Comment