Po It Up: Pharmacist Hopes "Lean" Will Slo Up Syrup Use

"Relaxation Just Got Sexier"

Paul Wall is torn between Purp and Easta Pink.
Paul Wall is torn between Purp and Easta Pink.

If you pay attention to rap lyrics from Southern artists, there are countless references to drinking cough syrup. "I got that syrup in my cup, I got that lean, I got that drank in my cup." But the recreational drug has a dark side. Texas rap legends Pimp C and DJ Screw both died from "sippin' syrup."

After realizing that the use of illicit cough syrup was a rampant part of Southern hip-hop culture, one pharmacist decided to do something about it.

Born and raised in a very small town in Louisiana, Marco Moran was inspired to become a pharmacist by his high school physical sports trainer, who was also the town pharmacist.

After graduating from Louisiana State University and North East Louisiana University's pharmacy program, Moran began to do research into the prevalence of cough syrup abuse in urban communities. He discovered it was a widespread epidemic, affecting not only urban youth but many other races and age ranges.

"While working part-time at night at a drugstore, I noticed massive amounts of young people coming from nightclubs or going to nightclubs with prescriptions for codeine, Robitussin with codeine, Tussionex and so forth in the middle of the summer when people weren't really catching colds," says Moran.

He decided he wanted to do something to get people off the negative and harmful drugs and replaced them with all-natural ingredients. So he created Moran's Lean Slow Motion Potion, advertised as a "safe combination of pharmaceutical grade herbs and syrup-based flavors that promotes a desired level of swagga to get you feelin' right any time day or night!"

Moran said that when he first launched his product people thought they had the "real" syrup.He sais Lean is the "premium, most potent relaxation drink that causes sippas of all ages to chill out, especially during times of high stress."


Moran wants to decrease the number of people, especially kids, who will overdose from the misuse of cough syrup. He feels that people want to emulate rappers and their lifestyles, so he is on a crusade to get rappers to promote Lean as a positive alternative. Lean's three flavors, Purp, Yella and Easta Pink, are common words rappers use in their lyrics when referring to their potentially fatal concoctions.

"We want to desensitize the youth on what the real Purp, Yella and Easta Pink is," says Moran. "When people hear the references in the lyrics, we want them to associate it with the Lean they see in the stores."

Moran developed Yella for those sippas who like to "Po It Up" in pinapple-based Fanta sodas (like rappers in Tennessee). Purp was designed for the traditional hardcore Texas-based Lean sippas who like it raw or mixed with Sprite and various candies.

"Dat Purp is hood-recognized and street-certified," says Moran.

The third urban based flavor is Esta Pink, which was of course inspired by Lil Weezy's favorite Lean mixture. This flavor was made to attract the ladies, but it's among the favorite of all the fellas.

Moran on Esta Pink: "We got the game on lock with this one."

Although Moran's product is in the category of relaxation beverages, his marketing campaign is geared toward the urban community by incorporating influential rappers Lean is endorsed by platinum-selling artists from Lil Wayne to Kanye West, as well as Houston artists like Paul Wall and Lil Keke.

When asked about the success of his brand, Moran says "a lot of people fail to give hip-hop the credit it deserves in shaping our culture. It doesn't matter what race you are or profession you're in, rap music has such a crossover appeal.

"Everyone wants to be a part of it, and that's why Lean is growing prosperously."

Lean Slow Motion Potion is currently in 27 states, Canada, and Mexico. If you're looking to "get your lean on," check your local convenience store or visit to "po it up and slow it up."

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