Interview with a Cannapreneur: SUR, a singer, a songwriter, a producer, and an engineer

June 04, 2018


SUR is the brainchild of musician/producer Zack Arnett, who also adds to his credentials visual artist, poet, medicinal farmer and apothecarian.  Frustrated by the confines of Los Angeles, Arnett built a makeshift studio in the back of an RV and set out on a journey through the desert, national parks and Big Sur. While out on the road, Arnett began creating a sound both gritty and melodic, nuanced and volatile, reflective and deeply life-affirming. SUR released his debut SAVAGE BEAST EP  May 18th on Interscope Records. The six-track set features the anthem-like rockers “LEAN BACK” , “STIX + STONES" and “MAKE IT TO MORNING”; songs that have been synched for various television shows and brand campaigns.

The lifelong musician’s SAVAGE BEAST EP fully embodies the forces at the heart of SUR: love, violence, and nature.

How do you describe yourself personally and professionally?

Artistic weirdo. I'm a musician, my company would be SUR which is the name of my band. I'm signed to Interscope now for almost a year. The debut E.P. - Savage Beast was released May 18th. Almost every song on the E.P. has now been placed in the tv, film, gaming world, Budweiser, HBO, EA Sports would be a couple  of the big names that have used SUR's music.

Describe your passion for the herb and/or role in the marijuana industry?

I am the creator of SUR (singer, songwriter, producer, engineer).... I grow in my backyard and use the shake for a healing salve I make in my kitchen which I call SUR SALVE which we will be selling as merch as soon as we are permitted.

What made you take the leap into marijuana industry?

I wanted to grow my own trees for many years and when I learned how to make the oils which we turn into the salve it was a no brainer. It gives me joy to create and nurture and experiment, especially when it can heal.

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How did you get into the marijuana industry? What ignited the spark? And why

The magic of the flower is vast and completely twisted in American culture as to the healing benefits it provides. I'd like to be attached to the education of how to use the plant to replace pharmaceuticals and get the world off the pills.

marijuana-celebrities-cannabis-singers-songs (4)Is it different starting a business in the marijuana industry than other ones?

    I have to whole heartedly believe in something before I put the time and effort into it to call it a business, I believe in marijuana and its potential more than I believe in most things. 

    What are the struggles/obstacles you’re facing in the cannabis industry? On a personal level and/or professional.

    Everything worth doing should be a struggle. I'd like to be able to legally sell SUR SALVE on our website for all to enjoy but that is currently not the case, until then you gotta come see us play and buy it straight from me which is kinda cool, just not as lucrative. 

      Due to the stigma behind marijuana, have you ever dealt with contention from your family concerning your pursuits in the cannabis industry? How being in this industry has affected your personal and/or professional life? How did you handle it? What would you do differently in hindsight?

        I have an outstanding family that supportsjust about everything I do. My Jamaican roots shine bright within the views of my fam.

        If you smoke weed and you’re comfortable talking about it, how did it help you in your personal and/or professional life? And what that piece of advice you would like to give to stoners?

          Smoking puts me in a nice head space to make music. I find that I can focus deeper on the project and tune out the rest of the world, the flip side is that the rest of the world still demands my attention, so it's a balancing act I gladly perform.

          How do you see the competitive environment in the industry?

            Healthy fair competition is great. Only when big business comes in do the waters get muddy and toxic.


            What would you like to see changes in the industry?

            More certified studies and research on the medicinal benefits.

              What do you know today that you wish you would have known when you first got started in this industry?

              Eating the plant is good for you and can give you loads of energy.

              What’s next for you?

              More music, more shows, more love... I'm trying to build a community of like minded people through the music and create a progressive conversation about how we can improve ourselves and lives and operate on a higher frequency so we can properly address the issues in our culture today and more importantly the one's that will effect the kids of tomorrow.