Joe Rogan may be known today for running the most popular podcast in the world, boasting over eight million subscribers on his YouTube account alone. However, the UFC commentator originally got his start in stand up comedy and sitcoms.
During his June 26 sit down with former Daily Show personality Jon Stewart, the host opened up about finding success with his online show. The commentator explained how he transitioned from being a comic to interviewing some of the most famous people in the world.
Joe Rogan explains how he achieved podcast success
For over a decade, Jon Stewart hosted the popular Daily Show before retiring in 2015. The comedic commentator sat down with Joe Rogan during his latest episode, and discussed a variety of topics from current events to cancel culture.
However during the discussion, Rogan detailed how he became one of the top podcast hosts in the world. “The early episodes sucked. I didn’t know what I was doing, and I didn’t think anyone was listening. It was just for fun. There was a lot of just hanging out with comics,” he said.
He then explained how the show went from hanging out with friends to more serious interviews. “Along the way, I started interviewing actual interesting people, and talking to them, and having conversations. There is a place for comedy. But I make a point to never force comedy where it does not belong.”
Rogan followed that up and detailed how it was a learning process to become a good host. “It wasn’t that it was a big transition, it was that I had to learn how to do this thing that I didn’t think was a skill. I thought like being on the radio or podcasting was just talking,” he said.
The UFC commentator stated that you have to speak in a way that people will want to listen. “You’re making it entertaining, and keeping your ego in check. You’re moving the conversation along, without being overbearing. You’re not letting people ramble too much.”
He then revealed how viewer feedback helped shape the show. “Along the way, I read a bunch of criticism about what is wrong with the podcast. We talk over each other, I talk too much, whatever it was. And I took it to heart. I got to consider people are listening to this,” he said.
(Topic starts at 47:25.)
While Rogan stated that he separates his comedic chops from his hosting gig, he compared the skill of keeping a conversation engaging to that of stand-up comedy – in that the audience allows the comic to take them on a ride with their routine.
The 52-year-old continues to interview some of the world’s most interesting people, with Jon Stewart being no exception. In May, he also revealed that he had signed a multi-million dollar deal to bring his podcast exclusively to Spotify by the end of the year.