The English word "tobacco" originates from the Spanish and Portuguese word "tabaco". The precise origin of this word is disputed, but it is generally thought to have derived at least in part, from Taino, the Arawakan language of the Caribbean. In Taino, it was said to mean either a roll of tobacco leaves (according to Bartolomé de las Casas, 1552), or to tabago, a kind of Y-shaped pipe used for sniffing tobacco smoke (according to Oviedo; with the leaves themselves being referred to as cohiba).
Little is known about Tobacco, as he, along with the rest of Black Moth Super Rainbow, is very private and rarely does interviews. It is known that Tobacco grew up in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, and graduated from Hampton High School in 1998 along with bandmate Seth Ciotti. In a 2009 interview with Skyscraper Magazine, Tobacco said that his name derived from "a character that freaked me out as a kid, the Tobacco Man," referring to the character from the film Redneck Zombies.
Tobacco released his first solo album, Fucked Up Friends, on Anticon on October 14, 2008. It was recorded using entirely analog equipment.Rolling Stone said of the album, "one of the year's best stoner-rock records - only it's powered by synths, hip-hop beats and vocoders instead of guitars."Exclaim! called it "worthy of obsessive listening." The album featured a guest appearance from Aesop Rock. A DVD of the album had been released more than a year prior, on September 3, 2007, by The 70's Gymnastics Recording Company.