Singer Rob Thomas Recalls His Stony Visit to High Times in 2005

High Times, Sept. 2005 issue, Rob Thomas in the burst

In a new article, High Times catches up with pop star Rob Thomas from Matchbox Twenty.

The opening graph reads:

Rob Thomas has a story to tell. In an interview over Zoom, the prolific songwriter dives right in, sharing an anecdote about a high encounter with High Times years ago. “Two times in my life I’ve been the highest I’ve ever been, and one of them was at High Times for a photo shoot,” Thomas said. “I thought the set up was amazing because you had the door to High Times and then you had the door to High Times’ attorney right next to it. I figured that was pretty practical back then.”

While times have changed and legalization has expanded since Thomas’ 2005 High Times interview with Shirley Halperin, one thing has remained constant: The relevancy of Matchbox Twenty.

The article's main focus is the new Matchbox Twenty album, Where The Light Goes, their first in 11 years. In the cannabis discussion at the end of the Q&A, Thomas reveals:

"I took a break for a bit because I was an all-day everyday guy. I would show up to a writing session and the first thing I would do is pull out my bong. A little while ago, I got back into the joy of getting to the airport and getting a little high, putting on headphones and then just going through how everything is a part of some film that you’re in – wherever your head’s at in that music– because music is way more 3D. You can kind of reach inside of it and it has depth. So I went back to the joy of my 16-year-old-self, where I’m just high for no reason at all, other than it makes the walk through the airport so much better, and sometimes, that’s enough."

The High Times interview link above refers to the story he wanted to tell. In 2005, I was one of the editors of High Times. One of our former editors Shirley Halperin knew Rob and that he was a big stoner. So she set up an interview and photo shoot that took place at the High Times office at 419 Park Ave So.

Rob Thomas in 2023 reminiscing about 2005: "Two times in my life I’ve been the highest I’ve ever been, and one of them was at High Times for a photo shoot." (Photo by Brian Jahn)

Photo shoots with big stars usually happen at studios but Rob wanted to visit the office so we did it there. He noted the two entrances on the floor - one to High Times and the other to Michael Kennedy's law office (Kennedy was one of the owners). Brian Jahn snapped the photos. Rob and others passed joints and we gave Rob a gift pack of buds from the shoot, plus edibles and hash - whatever we had handy. And then he split.

Shirley explained in her article what actually happened:

But the moment that clinched my eternal fondness for Rob Thomas came on the day of his High Times photo shoot, when he received a goodie bag as a parting gift and ended up immediately misplacing it. Classic space-out move, right? But here’s the kicker: Five minutes later, in the midst of his interview-packed schedule, Thomas returned to the office inquiring about the lost bag. Now that’s a true, dedicated stoner. “If it was a watch, I wouldn’t have come back. But for weed….” He was given a replacement goodie bag. (The lost bag ended up on the street near the office and, luckily, was found by a High Times employee.)

Her interview with Rob, which is brilliant, ends on this quote:

"I thought that because I smoked a lot of pot, I was a professional pot guy, but I just left a photo studio full of professional pot guys. They reminded me of the characters in High Fidelity, but with weed. So I just discovered that I’m an amateur. I’m a hobbyist. And I also figured out what kind of job, other than the one I have, I could see for myself: interning at High Times!"


More High Times Links

Celebities on the Cover

My Potted History

Cannabis Cup Memories

High Times and Willie Nelson

Fron HT to CelebStoner


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Steve Bloom

Steve Bloom

Publisher of, former editor of High Times and Freedom Leaf and co-author of Pot Culture and Reefer Movie Madness.