The Origin of Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers as told by Fat Freddy

The Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers

The Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers, from left t...

A Letter

from the

desk of “Fat


High Warrior:

I want to say a few things about who Fat Freddy is and how he came to life as a human for all who don’t know about it. In the form of a comic book, Fat Freddy is a name that Gilbert Shelton created from his own mind in 1969. The comic book stories were conceived and written by Gilbert and others. I will now try to explain the truth about what has happened over the last 30 years.

Gilbert Shelton went to college at The Univ. of Texas and had some good friends there. Three of them were to become the basis for his comic book. There was Joe Brown and the real Fat Freddy, they were into getting high while they went to school. Joe Brown told this story to me before his death in 1988. While in school Joe brown met a man his name was Mable (Ralph Moore) he was a dope smuggler from Memphis Tenn. from 1954. I can say his name now because he to has passed away.

In 1954 Ralph took his family on vacation to Ft. Lauderdale Fla. He was a taxi cab driver in Memphis and when people would ask for him to take them to a whorehouse, he would take them to Mables. In doing so he got the name of Mable. In Ft. Lauderdale he met some bikers from California who told him about the starting trade in Marijuana smuggling from Mexico. He was interested in this so he went home and sold his house, cab and all he could, quit his job, got a divorce and went to Mexico to build his trade.

He worked at this until 1967/68 and then retired from it, in doing so he picked up a hitchhiker by the name of Joe Brown. Who then with his other friends in Austin became his friends. Mable moved into Austin and got to know Gilbert, Joe, and Fat Freddy well. In being a dope smuggler he was wealthy, so when graduation came for them Mable called them together and told them that he wanted to give each one a gift.

Joe Brown said he wanted to have a head shop, so Ralph bought a house and they named it Oat Willies. Joe said he owned it for three years and then sold it as he stayed to stoned, to keep it running. It has since become the largest one around.

Gilbert Shelton said he wanted to start a comic book so Ralph bought him The Rip off Press and gave it to him. He then started the Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers and others. They were named: Freewheeling Franklin (Joe Brown), Phineas (Gilberts imagination), and Fat Freddy (Unknown). These became comics of the early 1970’s.

The original Fat Freddy told Ralph that he had had enough and wanted nothing but his name never to be mentioned again. Ralph said OK to him. They then went there own ways Joe owned Oat Willies and after he sold it became a taxi cab driver in Austin where he was when I met him. Gilbert started The Rip off Press and was in California. Fat Freddy disappeared.

Now it gets to me, I knew nothing about the story above in 1976 when I met Ralph Moore and became his friend. I was working for Southwestern Bell at the time and due to a divorce I got into reading The Furry Freak Brothers (I like the Cat.). They had a concert in Austin that gave me the idea to put one on called The Furry Freak Brothers First Annual Freak Party Convention. I started to put it together in March 1976. Booking bands for October 1976. I was going to go on stage as Fat Freddy using Cheech & Chong as MCs. I talked to Cheech to book them.

I set up the bands and got an attorney to handle it, so it was set up as well as it could be. In telling my attorney that I was to go on stage as Fat Freddy, she said that he was copyrighted and I could not unless I got permission to from Gilbert Shelton. So I called The Rip Off press 8 Times in one day to get it from Gilbert, but he was always out of the office or not available. In other words, he was putting me off this pissed me off.

So in going home that night I went by my friends house (Ralph Moore) and in going in he said: “ You are mad about something, what is bothering you?” I said: “I’ve called Gilbert Shelton 8 times and he won’t talk to me about Fat Freddy. He keeps putting me off.” Ralph then said: “You want to talk to Gilbert? Then he then reached over and picked up his phone and dialed the # from his memory and said “This is Ralph I want to talk to Gilbert. Gilbert a friend of mine wants to talk to you.” He then gave me the phone. I talked to Gilbert and he gave me my copyright protection so I then became Fat Freddy to go on stage as him. Ralph asked me if I would be home later I said I would.

About an hour later he called me and asked if I would come over to his house. I went over and there was Ralph and a longhaired blond headed man with him. Ralph then said “I want to introduce you to the real Freewheeling Franklin, his name is Joe Brown.” They then gave me a comic book and told me that of all the stories that Gilbert wrote only one was true and it was in that book. It was about when Joe met Ralph and was only two pages long. In reading it I will have to say it was just like them in real life. Right down to the point where Ralph said he didn’t smoke Grass. I talked him into smoking a joint with me and Joe one time and was told by Joe that was the only joint he had ever smoked with him since they met.

I knew these two men and had the opportunity to learn a lot about there life of the past. I spent many a long hour with them both in conversation about how they lived. Mable was killed in Memphis in 1979 and was buried in Austin Texas. I, like Joe Brown have never been to his grave. We feel that the law is still video taping it.

I was hurt in a motorcycle accident in Oct. 1988 the same year that Joe Brown passed away. So now there is only Gilbert and I still alive in this world. I have no idea what is going to happen with this story now. The Rip Off Press has gone out of business and that leaves me free to put out a Fat Freddy comic book that is a true story of my life minus the CAT of whom I liked a lot. I hope some day that Gilbert will bring it back into my life – who knows.


As Always, With Love
Jess/Fat Freddy

A video recorded on 1-12-2012 with

Breezy Kiefair & Fat Freddy…


~ Jess “Fat Freddy” Williams

For more info on “Fat Freddy” of the Freak Brother’s Comics please visit:

Note from Breezy…. Fat Freddy now lives in Colorado. He is the proud holder of a Medicinal Cannabis License commonly known as a “Red Card”. He continues his activism fight.  He has been using Phoenix Tears Oil to treat his diabetes (both internally and skin symptoms of the disease topically) please visit the documentation of this amazing healing beginning here


Please also see the recent blog post about meeting  Fat Freddy in person written by writer and #Occupy Together protester Steve Bass here

Posted on 2012/01/13, in Arts, Cannabis, cannabis, cheech & chong, Collecting, Comic book, Comics, Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers, Fat Freddy Freak, FatFreddy, Freddy, Gilbert Shelton, Healing, Hemp, Jess Fat Freddy Williams, Joe, Joe Brown, Mable, marijuana smuggling, Medical cannabis, Phoenix Tears, Pot Pride, Ralph Moore, Rip off Press, The Origin of Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers, univ of texas, whorehouse and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. I do like the way you have presented this ptraicular challenge plus it really does supply us some fodder for thought. However, through what precisely I have personally seen, I simply just trust as other comments pile on that men and women remain on point and not get started on a tirade regarding the news of the day. All the same, thank you for this fantastic piece and whilst I do not necessarily go along with it in totality, I regard the standpoint.


  2. great articles, i hope you keep posting these nice and good examples. lista de emails lista de emails lista de emails lista de emails lista de emails


  3. I enjoy that cut and I love the print but I’m not crazy with regards to the two alongside one another. If the coat was solid and around a dress with that print I would love it.


  4. Thanks for the article, was interesting. I met Jess about ten years ago in Seattle at a show my band at the time Church of Hate was playing at Planet Hotrod. It was cool to meet the real Fat Freddy and smoke a Doobie with him. I still got the autographed picture he gave me. Thanks dude. Rock on

    Liked by 1 person

    • Breezy Kiefair

      I was his maid for about 3 years. He certainly is the kind of guy that’s good to smoke with. So many stories of the movement in years gone by.


  1. Pingback: The LIterary LIneage of Breezy Kiefair « Breezy Kiefair

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