You never really know what a Joe Rogan podcast will be about. Even if the guest might seemingly dictate that the subject matter should be about one thing in particular, the conversation can often go in completely unforeseen directions, which is one of the fun parts about listening.
The podcast host recently transitioned his monolith of a platform over to Spotify, and while some fans have been wary of possible censorship or other types of intrusion into Rogan’s method, so far it’s been pretty much smooth sailing. Rogan has maintained the level of quality as well as the level of output we’ve come to expect from his YouTube heyday, even keeping his so-called controversial guests on deck, like Tim Dillon and Alex Jones (albeit, not without a little bit of outrage, because, cancel culture).
With the move to Spotify, the streaming service received a pretty stellar look when Rogan finally hosted Kanye West, after much anticipation and discussion. The Kanye West interview had been a long time coming when it finally dropped in October. At the time, Kanye was still entertaining his presidency bid and offered insight on his view of the world (seen heavily through the Godly lens, so it would seem). The interview resulted in its fair share of controversy, considering just how polarizing Kanye has become in his later years, it’s not surprising.
“People were tryna medicate [Kanye] and people were tryna…if you have a choice between this medicated, overweight Kanye who doesn’t get anything done or manic, crazy Kanye who says wild shit, you want manic, crazy Kanye. Cause manic, crazy Kanye is the one who makes amazing music.”
Nonetheless, Rogan seemed to have enjoyed the conversation and has since offered plenty of insight into what went on behind the scenes, in working towards the episode, as well as his personal view on Kanye’s genius. These latest tidbits of information came during Rogan’s new episode with Tom Green, strengthening the fact that you simply never know where the conversation will go on The Joe Rogan Experience. In this same episode, Rogan decided to haphazardly reveal that he will soon have a residency with fellow comic Dave Chappelle out in Texas.
Just over an hour into the new episode, Rogan gives a pretty hot take when it comes to Kanye’s bipolar disease, stating that what you in fact want is a “manic, crazy Kanye” because that is the Kanye who makes amazing music, as opposed to a medicated, sloth-like Kanye.
“People were tryna medicate [Kanye] and people were tryna…if you have a choice between this medicated, overweight Kanye who doesn’t get anything done or manic, crazy Kanye who says wild shit, you want manic, crazy Kanye. Cause manic, crazy Kanye is the one who makes amazing music,” Rogan says.
“And I’ve been around him, he’s a nice guy, he’s a really, genuinely nice guy. When the cameras are off, same thing, he’s nice guy with all the staff and everybody– he’s cool, he’s genuinely cool. But whatever you wanna call mental illness– that’s the problem– when you call it ‘mental illness’ — ‘you gotta give him medicine. He’s got mental illness, you’ve gotta give him medicine.’ Do you, really? Cause that ‘mental illness’ is making pretty amazing shit. Look at his catalog. Look at all the music he’s made. That’s all because of mental illness? No. Whatever you call an illness is a particular style of thinking that he has, that’s sort of non-linear, and it’s wild, and it’s all over the place, but it’s also very focused.”
Rogan continued to speak on Kanye’s penchant for tooting his own horn, or rather, parading around his wealth and billionaire status. “This is not just a crazy person who buys his own bullshit,” says Rogan. “And by the way, the braggy stuff that he does, first of all, he’s being honest about where he is, he’s sort of re-affirming who he is. But also, he jokes around. Like he was joking around about it…It’s not just ego, it’s not just crazy, there’s brilliance there. He’s a complicated person.”
The conversation on Kanye picks back up forty-five minutes or so later, when Rogan details what exactly transpired in the lead-up to having Kanye on the podcast, explaining why it took so long to lock in.
“The first time he wanted to come on the podcast, he was recently unmedicated. Like he had done this concert where he said he supported Donald Trump, and everyone booed up him and next thing you know he’s in a mental institution. Awhile after that, he said he wanted to talk about things, but nobody wanted to do it, or people were afraid to have him on. And I put it on twitter, I’d be willing to have you on. And then it became this giant thing. And he and I had a conversation on the phone, and I really enjoyed talking to him. But my hesitation was that I really didn’t want to fuck him over. For lack of a better term, he’s a really special person.”
Rogan continues, “I was like, I don’t want this guy to have a bad time. So I resisted having him on, even though I knew it would be a big show, ratings-wise.”
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He goes on to reveal that “people” from Kanye’s camp soon began contacting him and his wife to prevent the episode from happening– apparently concerned about what Kanye would say or do, and how it would make him look.
As Rogan says, “Then I started getting messages from his people, and even some of his people got in contact with my wife and we’re like we don’t want him to say anything crazy or have it ruin him. So I was like alright, let’s just leave it alone. Let Kanye be Kanye. And then he reached out to me a bunch, and I was like alright let’s just do it. He and I had a conversation on the phone and he sounded super stable and creative.”
The rest, as they say, is history.
Check out the episode below, the time-stamp where the first Kanye discussion happens is around 1:09:00.