The world is changing how it views cannabis, and as such, the cannabis world is changing its views – especially on who gets to be part of the sesh. Though legalization/decriminalization efforts have spread throughout the United States, the industry remains largely white and male. One of those challenging that perception is Ranagade PerRana, better known as the “roller to the stars,” having rolled blunts and joints for Snoop Dogg, Drake, Madonna, Rihanna, and more. “There is a global shift towards freedom for all and realizing that we matter,” she tells HollywoodLife when discussing her 4/20 partnership with Jimmy John’s.
“Women are coming together all over the world to ensure the next generation can have more opportunities than the last, Ranagade tells HL. “I’m honored to challenge the status quo every day, and Jimmy John’s going so hard for 4/20 this year is the perfect example of cannabis going mainstream and a super win for the girls! I can’t wait!”
Born in Iran as Rana Samarghandi, she and her family immigrated to America by way of Austria when she was young. Her seventh-grade Social Studies teacher called her “Rana Piranha” because, as she put it on the Really? No, Really? Podcast, it was an “easy way for people to pronounce [her] name and you have a big mouth… you’re feisty.” In high school, Jay-Z and Eminem dropped “Renegade,” and all her friends started to call her that because of the chorus (‘never been afraid to say /what’s on my mind at any given time of day).”
In 2016, she landed the gig when a mutual friend – who was growing with Snoop’s cannabis soil company, Snoop’s Premium Nutrients – introduced her to the rap legend, per Leafly. Rana had to show off in a roll-off with two other contenders, and after smoking the competition, she landed the gig. Since then, she has expanded into modeling, music, and entertainment, putting the “rana” into “RANAissance woman.”
“I’ve worked so hard my whole life to define success for me,” she tells HL. “Ultimately, to be able to make a living out of my life has been a revolutionary act of freedom. Being a woman in the industry is hard enough, but to have the odds stacked against you like this has been a challenge I don’t take for granted. Gratitude every day for my opportunity to live out a dream.”
Being conscious of what you consume is a tenement of cannabis culture. From being aware of who sells you what you smoke or knowing what’s in the sandwich you order when the munchies hit, it pays to pay attention on this 4/20. In 2023, it makes sense to buy (where legal) from women and POC when preparing to celebrate the stoner holiday (check out Essence’s guide to Black women-owned brands.) Similarly, it makes sense to enjoy the fruits of Ranagade’s collaboration with Jimmy John’s.
A year after Jimmy John’s offered a discount to those engaging in 4/20 activities, the sub-slingers are now offering The Munchie Crusher, a sandwich featuring turkey, provolone & avocado spread, cucumber, lettuce, tomato, sliced pickles, oregano-basil & mayo. Those who use the Jimmy John’s app can satiate their munchies the week of 4/20 with the code FREESIDE when used alongside any Regular or Giant size sandwich purchase.
Plus, those who visit the Jimmy John’s location in Long Beach will see Ranagade at work, as she will give a rolling demonstration. There will also be giveaways, a DJ, and swag.
“It’s a MATCH made in heaven,” Ranagade tells HL. “Rolling is an art, and I take a lot of pride in my art. I strive for perfection with everything I roll, the same way Jimmy John’s strives to make the best sandwiches every day. The Munchie Crusher is going to be perfect for those who are hungry on 4/20 because it’s an online and app-exclusive sandwich stacked high on wheat bread with turkey, provolone, avocado spread, mayo, cucumbers, lettuce, tomatoes (if you like them), sliced pickles, and of course… extra oregano.”
“But… the most genius part is that Jimmy John’s actually created real, smokable rolling papers that look like their sandwich wrap,” she adds. “Like, what! When they told me that, I was so excited to be a part of the collab. Pull up to Long Beach so I can roll you a sandwich! Only on 4/20, fans 21+ can get their favorite sandwiches wrapped in this special rolling paper. I can’t wait to bring the energy.”
That energy is what Ranagade brings to her days as a “celebrity roller.” She got a bit of the spotlight in 2022 when Snoop tweeted that her salary went up due to inflation after a report claimed she makes between $40k and $50k.
Does this mean she’s just hanging out with the D-O-double-G and providing him a fresh blunt whenever he wants one? Not exactly. “I get this question all the time [laughs]. I don’t travel with my clients’ entourage,” she tells HL. “The flower gets dropped off, I roll the most perfect joint, spliff, or blunt you have ever seen, and they have their entourage pick it up…but I’m all over the place all the time with my blunt bar, and I love it.
“I have so many celebrity clients that range from musicians, athletes, and actors to TikTok stars, no day is the same,” she adds. “I’m truly blessed to see because of all the hard work, I get to do what I love and meet so many celebrated world renown people as I do it.”
As more states legalize recreational and medicinal useage, there are new industries opening up – and rolling is just as an artisanal talent as any other. “It’s no different from peers in any industry,” she tells HL when asked if she communicates with other professional rollers. “We tend to keep each other updated on new trends and techniques that will help us improve our craft. We want to make the best work just like you. Just because you’ve been deemed a ‘master’ at something, that doesn’t mean you stop learning and evolving.”
Rolling is also an evolving art form. While there are plenty of tools and preroll cones available to help any novice get ready for 4:20 on April 20, a quick search online shows people getting wild with their rolls. A quick look at ‘blunt shapes‘ on Pinterest reveals witches’ brooms, helicopters, and various cartoon characters, all made out of rolling papers and cannabis.
“You know, there are many ways to get creative with rolling these days, and I love all the great shapes people create,” says Ranagade. “However, I have perfected the ‘classic shape’ – if you will [laughs]. It’s been around for thousands of years, tried and true. My clients are the truest smokers who want a perfect experience from the first pull to the last draw. Granted…if one of my clients asked me for a tyrannosaurus to smoke, I would make that happen [laughs].”
What does she prefer to smoke whenever she mixes business and pleasure? Rolling papers have expanded from flax to rice paper to organic hemp to unbleached paper – even papers with edible gold foil. “I appreciate the market providing so many options for everyone to choose from. I’m excited about the Jimmy John’s Sandwich Wrap Rolling Papers, which are rice paper,” she says. “I personally have always been a blunt smoker, but since the JJ’s stock is limited edition, I’ll definitely keep it for my stash in case I run out…which is so genius of JJ’s to hold down the community like that!”
Though the widespread cannabis accessories market will soon make rolling a smoke as easy as pushing a button, Ranagade isn’t concerned about her artform going extinct. “The art will never be lost because a perfect roll experience (especially by me) is pure magic that can’t be replicated through machinery or AI,” she says. “It is something only experience and wisdom can create.”
“With increased decriminalization, a variety of people are more open to trying and exploring the vast possibilities there are with the plant, and with it being less stigmatized than it used to be, there are opportunities for education and medicinal advancement,” she adds.
And for those who might be somewhat intimidated to roll their own, she offers advice. “It’s the same advice to anyone who’s trying to perfect a new skill. It takes time, patience, and dedication – you get better with knowledge and practice. I will have courses available soon for everyone who can’t roll,” she says. She also hints at something big on the horizon: “I will share my expertise with the world soon, details coming soon!”
In the meantime, she’s gearing up for a wild 4/20 in Cali. “You know I’ll be rolling at the Jimmy John’s in Long Beach for most of the day!” she says. “If you’re 21+, come hang and enjoy a DJ, swag, and, most importantly, get a glimpse of what my clients experience. Get you a Munchie Crusher for lunch and get it rolled by me in an exclusive Jimmy John’s Sandwich Wrap Rolling Paper!”
And if you are ordering her a bite to eat? “Cucumber, lettuce, mayo, turkey LOTS of oregano and basil because I love herbs!” she says. “NO tomatoes but def pile on the avocado…it really feels like the Munchie Crusher was made with me in mind – they should nickname it the ‘Ranagade.’”
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(With Inputs from hollywoodlife)