With a guitar in his hands and a straight tube by his side, Max Needleman is a classic example of just how well music and Cannabis go together. Pay him a visit at Verilife in Westminster to find out what “being obsessed with guitar culture” is all about – and of course, for some amazing Cannabis recommendations.
Where did you get your passion for music and playing guitar?
My dad has always been a huge influence – he was always into listening to classic rock. I am kind of grateful he always pushed me toward guitar lessons. I also went to a summer camp at Park School, where you would bring a guitar, learn music, and play concerts at the end of each day. Jack White of the White Stripes was also a big influence on me learning guitar and being obsessed with guitar culture.
How does Cannabis influence the music you play and listen to?
There was a point where I was reflecting and saying to myself, ‘I’m decent, but not sure about making a career out of this.’ When I went to college in Savannah, Georgia I started to smoke more and play for my roommates. They gave me confidence in how good I was, and then I met a professor who was an expert in sound design. That influenced me to listen to my recordings and get better. Cannabis makes me more open-minded, allowing the music to flow and happy accidents to occur when playing.
What about Cannabis and technology fascinates you?
I’ve been really interested in Puffco Peaks lately and how well they can match form and function in their devices. I’ve always had a straight tube – I don’t need all the percolators in bongs these days. What makes me want to go over to the dab side is the Puffco Peak, because of how easy it is to use.
What made you want to get into the Cannabis industry?
It was a perfect storm during the pandemic. I was doing my side thing teaching music. I even delivered this very magazine at one point for Maryland Leaf. A friend of my uncle recognized me and offered me a job. I quickly realized how easy it was for me to talk about Cannabis on a regular basis and make it meaningful for patients. I’ve been here for the past year and it has been really amazing.
How good of a job do you think current POS providers are doing for the Cannabis industry?
There is always room for improvement in a POS system. I get it, there has to be a very formal process of communicating sales with the MMCC, but it could always be better. Sometimes POS systems limit what a budtender can do without calling their manager to do specific tasks – like voiding sales. Also when the wi-fi is down, the system can be laggy and we have to go back when we get wi-fi back to adjust everything and make sure it is accurate.
Do you see technology changing the job of budtenders in the future?
I think when people are coming in here, they are looking for a personal experience that cannot be replaced with technology. We used to do a lot of curbside pickup, which limits the time spent with budtenders and rules out a lot of the potential questions patients have about products. This industry could potentially see deliveries by drone in the future, but I’m sure that is a long way out.