Joe Rogan: How He Asks a Question (JRE Interview Tactics)

Joe Rogan: How He Asks a Question (JRE Interview Tactics)


– My name is Alex Berman and you’re watching “Selling Breakdowns.” Joe Rogan is a stand-up comic, an MC, and the host of the
staggeringly successful podcast, “The Joe Rogan Experience”. – But how many years ago was
it that you guys came on last? – [Man] Three years.
– [Lady] 2013. – So, that was when we
were getting probably like four million downloads a month? – [Man] Probably triple that now, I’d say. – At least. – [Man] From what it was three years ago. – At least triple. – [Alex] Today we’re
going to delve into his interview style and how his singular way of posing a question has
catapulted “The Joe Rogan Experience” into the history
books as one of the most successful and profitable
podcasts of all time. One of the keys to Rogan’s popularity is that he allows himself to be
interviewed at the same time he’s conditioning his guests. – When I was interviewing
that dude, like, I’ll start welling up right now. When I was interviewing him
after that fight I was like, “That guy just emptied
out, I mean emptied out his whole soul.” I mean, he took a fucking beating. – [Alex] In reality,
Rogan’s a conversationalist rather than a typical interviewer. – I don’t interview anybody. I’m not interviewing you, am I? – Nope. – I’m not an interviewer. I suck at that. I kind of interviewed
Ron Miscavige yesterday. I talk to people and I
record it, that’s it. – [Alex] Maybe it’s his years of training in the subtleties of martial
arts or maybe he just has a gift for it. Either way, he’s skilled at
breaking down the defenses of his subject in a
nearly undetectable way. It’s easy to be taken in
by Rogan’s self-declared ignorance, but again, in
reality you’re dealing with a dedicated host that
knows how to elicit a reaction. Today we’re going to break
down a few of the longstanding interview tactics that
Rogan’s managed to weave into his most successful interviews. Columbia School of Journalism
has laid out the following. See if you can pick out the way that Rogan is able to slide these
fundamental principles into his conversations. – I would love to play you the “Dinosaurs Are Not Real” video. – [Alex] He’s talking to Trevor
Valle, paleontologist and assistant lab supervisor
for the La Brea Tar Pits. Valle is incredibly
passionate about his work and actually gained some
notoriety in a Twitter war with pop star, Keisha, when she supposedly dirtied an exhibit he
painstakingly restored. As you’ll see, Rogan does his research and he’s a master at finding
people’s hot buttons. – Don’t bring your flattered
bullshit into my profession. Now I’m pissed. (laughing) – Keep going. – [Valle] Yeah, keep us rolling. – [Alex] While Rogan’s
known in some circles as a conspiracy theorist
himself, he takes a lot of pleasure in debunking
counter culture science and he’s brilliant at
finding guests that will relate well to his audience. – [Narrator] By teams of
evolutionists, archeologists, purposely out looking
to find such fossils. – [Valle] I’m glad I
brought a lot of beer. – [Narrator] And that it’s
even more dubious that such fossils have supposedly
existed for millions of years. – [Alex] As you become
familiar with Rogan’s style you’ll begin to realize
that he rarely asks a direct question. He doesn’t have to. He’s done his research and
knows a few carefully placed words will easily direct
most of his guests. – Alex Jones and Eddie Bravo
together on Episode 911. – [Alex] His subject, Alex Jones, is a known conspiracy theorist. Rogan’s effort to give
Jones Episode 911 is a nod to one of Jones’s most
popular theories regarding the World Trade Center
bombings on September 11th. You’ll notice Jones’ immediate
sense of reciprocity. He’s flattered and eager to please. – Let me just say I’m
very envious because I’m in my studio under bright lights and I’ve talked about going
back to when I was just on radio, that darkness
where you can really think. This is a wonderful studio. – [Alex] We should mention
here that this interview gets a little inflammatory. Jones is beyond controversial
and this episode ended up with four and a half
million views in its first few weeks on YouTube. Rogan even got a little backlash for it. – Why does he legitimize
quacks like Alex Jones? – [Rogan] I absolutely don’t. – He creates a false equivalence problem. – Oh, no, no, no, no, no, that’s not fair. – Why does he interview
so many bad faith actors like Alex Jones? – [Alex] This is a brief
clip of the conversation as Jones starts to devolve. – You want me to tell you? – [Eddie] Oh shit. We shouldn’t
have let him smoke weed! – There’s a huge war going on. It’s beautiful! We are kicking their ass on every front. – And yet nobody’s investigating? What’s going on here? – This is what Hitler freaked
out about and picked up. – What does that mean? – Stop Trump! He’s the devil! Stop him! Anything we’ve got, stop him! – What? You’re just making things up! – Do I have to wear these headphones? – [Rogan] No.
– [Eddie] No. – [Alex] Rogan later made this comment. – Alex Jones has been
my friend for 20 years. He’s fucking crazy. – [Alex] Rogan also added, – He doesn’t give a fuck.
– [Man] Really? – [Man] About his custody battle? They asked him a question about his kid he couldn’t remember. He goes, “Ah, I’m sorry. I had a large bowl of
chili for lunch today. I can’t remember.” (laughing) He’s fucking crazy. – [Alex] Here, Rogan’s
discussing champion UFC fighter John Jones’ decision to flee
the scene of an accident during his difficult battle
with substance abuse. – But give me the thought,
like, probably the most I was disappointed in you,
and I love you as a person. I think you’re a great guy. – I love you, too, Joe. Thanks. – I really do. I’ve always had a good
time hanging out with you, but I was very disappointed with you with that car accident thing. – [John] Yeah. When you ran away from that
car accident, that, to me, was like, “God damn,
John’s in a bad place.” – Yeah, I was in at bad place. It was…” – [Alex] Rogan never asked a question. His simple statement
starts Jones on a deep and personal explanation
about the accident. – And I think I just took
everything that I had for granted because
everything for the majority of my career has gone my way. – [Alex] Was Rogan always this skilled at quickly pulling out information? Alternative historian, Graham Hancock, is a favorite guest of Rogan’s and during this early interview Rogan
quickly endears himself. – Graham Hancock is probably
the one guy who’s influenced my view of history more than anybody ever and it’s from this book,
“Fingerprints of the Gods.” – [Alex] While product
promotions are a part of most interviews, Rogan
is known for going further. Here, he transitions Hancock
into a comfortable place by mentioning something
obscure about his guests’ area of expertise. – Of humanity and one of my
favorite terms that you use is that we’re a species
with hypnosis, or excuse me, with amnesia. – [Graham] With amnesia, yeah. – Yeah, and please tell
me, how did all this get a cracking? How did this get started for you? – [Alex] Hancock perks up with this quote and it transitions him
into a personal take on his journey into alternative history. – [Graham] It’s when
all through my childhood I always felt I was on the edge of things, not in the middle of things. Other people were in the
middle, I was on the edge. I just always felt that way. – [Alex] This conversation’s
a great place to introduce another of Rogan’s successful practices. It’s something that’s often highlighted in journalism courses and it
can prove to be invaluable. That is, bring a buddy. – [Graham] Is using the
vine as an access point into humanity. And, oh, I just lost my thread. How did I get to that? – We were talking about the
– Well, no, that idea comes from the Amazon which is being… – [Graham] Yeah, yes, exactly, exactly. At the very time when our – [Alex] Any interviewer or
interviewee will struggle with staying on point
during a conversation and having a cohort that
understands where and when you can use support is a huge asset. Rogan also plays the
gentle mediator during parts of his interviews. – Your instincts obviously
were to produce this book and to talk about it
very openly and honestly, and to do interviews
like this and, you know, have discussions like this
where you talk about it. And you know this right now is going to reach half a million people. They’re going to consider
what you’re saying and they’re going to look into it, and they’re going to
go, “Whoa, do you really think that there’s some
fucking vine that you can take from the jungle that
allows you to communicate with the spirit world?” – [Alex] He knows that
Hancock has a tendency to romanticize his
findings, but he also feels the need to express the
sense of responsibility that all three men feel on the subject. With the slightest
nudging he’s able to get what he needs from the author. – [Graham] I, personally,
do not believe that psychedelics are appropriate
for recreational activity. I think if somebody chooses to do that, that’s their body, that’s their choice, but I don’t think it’s
the right thing to do. We need to treat these amazing
substances with respect. – You’re so in your element
when you’re around cars and when you do that show. It’s so different, you
know, and I said this, with all due respect, you were a great host of The Tonight Show. – [Jay] No, I know what you mean. – You’re a great comic. – [Alex] Again, Rogan’s
done enough research on Leno to know what lights him
up in a conversation. He also creates enough
rapport to drive out some of Leno’s more candid stories. – You know, talking to,
like, dopey celebrities – [Rogan] Yeah. – I mean, there are some
really interesting ones, but then there’s like
– Like me, right? – Yeah, yeah, but then
there are like just really, like reality stars. – [Rogan] Yeah. – [Alex] Rogan’s mention
of the contrast of Leno’s passion for his work verses
his previous frustration spills out into another deep story. – I remember one time we
had this ice skater on. Oh, she’s famous, she was in the Olympics. And then like 10 years later
she was in Playboy magazine. She hadn’t done anything for 10 years then she’s in Playboy. So, we get a call from Playboy, “Would you put so-and-so in?” Okay, yeah, she was America’s Sweetheart, now she’s naked. Okay, that could be an
interesting second guest. Okay, fine. – [Alex] You’ll notice that
Leno has lowered his voice, almost as though he’s
forgotten he’s streaming live to millions of viewers. – So, she comes in and
her manager takes her, “Mr. Leno, can I speak to you? We are not mentioning
the Playboy article.” I go, “Really?” Why don’t you take your
client and go home, okay? I can get a comic here in four minutes. This is why your client is here. You called us because
you’re naked in Playboy. – [Alex] Another example of
Rogan’s ability to elicit a candid response happens
throughout his interview with actress Leah Remini. Remini, a former Scientologist,
is clearly a guest that has experienced past criticism and Rogan makes an early
effort to reassure her that she’s not being judged. – We’re live. Going to change subjects,
– [Leah] Okay. – Leah Remini. We’re going to abandon all that crazy talk we were just talking about. – [Leah] I thought it was a good talk. – It was.
– [Leah] Yeah. – It was definitely a good talk. – [Alex] The interview
starts with the tail end of a conversation that the two have as Rogan eases Remini into
an uncomfortable subject. A short time later he
sensed her hesitation and offered further reassurance. – [Rogan] Pretty fucking normal, you know? – [Leah] For a Scientol…right. – Well, I met John Travolta
once too, and I said the same thing, like, he’s pretty normal. – [Leah] Nice guy. – Kelly Preston, she’s pretty normal. – [Leah] Yeah. – She’s normal.
– [Leah] Yes. – [Alex] This opens the door
for her to delve quickly into the intimate areas
of her life that have been a source of shame for her. – Like, I would never tell when I was in, a non-Scientologist, my real problems. It would be kind of bad for the Church. – [Alex] As Rogan begins
to sense her discomfort, he offers a defense that’s
resonated with her in the past. – Christianity. And that word is the correct word – If you want to just look at it – [Leah] Sure. – In terms of the actual literal definition of it. – [Leah] Yeah. – But it’s automatically got
this negative connotation. – [Leah] Yes. – You say the word “cult”
and people think you’re brainwashed, you’re lost, but – [Leah] Right. – [Alex] This isn’t a
disingenuous comment, either. Rogan’s long been an open
critic of religion in general and it’s clear that he wants to express that he doesn’t hold one
belief above another. – There’s a natural
inclination that people have to be tribal. There’s a natural inclination
people have to be on a team – [Leah] Yes. – And we like it when we’re all together. – [Leah] Yes. – [Alex] You’ll rarely hear
Joe Rogan boast unnecessarily about his own successes and
you may find, like we did during the making of this video, that he tends to offer a sincere
and consistent philosophy when it comes to human interaction. Want to learn more about
business theory and pop culture? Be sure to “like” and
subscribe to be notified of our next segment.

About the Author: Michael Flood

100 Comments

  1. this was great. i dont really understand the thumbs down that you're getting. this was pretty spot on. not a bad assessment.

  2. The editing in this one is balls bad. When you're talking about one of his guests, don't show random shots and clips of other guests.

  3. LOL, JRE amateur with less than a 100 podcasts under his belt. . . BUT. . . he did take a liberal arts college course of psychology. . . so I guess we should all take this as gospel. Thumbs down.

  4. Joe is not too smart ( enough in US ) He acting all time like he is curies, doing sound like: Aha? Really? Wow! Amazing! I talk like this with my wife when I'm tired and don't even listening her.

  5. i hope that you dont take all of these legit critiques as hate comments. You should look through them to see where you can improve

  6. Personally am I big fan of joe rogan and as a journalist I'd avoid using such biased terms against video just as an attempt to propound your point in an objective manner

  7. Hey man, i feel the need to comment due to all the unfounded hate. It is unfortunate some people dont like the video but dont let it get to you. I really enjoyed the video. You have a great point, dude has a special style of interviewing.

  8. Rogan is a social chameleon. Most actors are. He's got very little philosophy of his own, besides trying to stay positive.

  9. even if youre "over thinking it", or your "editing sucks"… (i dont agree with either):
    you still provided good content. great clips and commentary. you made many valid points. nice!

  10. I guess this is relevant for Journalism? Watch this breakdown of Joe Rogan being himself, so you can emulate him if needed is what I got from this.

  11. No…Rogan just naturally talks to people and asks questions about stuff. He's not some manipulator or journalist or something.

  12. I get why some might dislike the editing, but it's not deserving of that many downvotes. I really enjoyed your analysis.

  13. I think this is reading to far into how he talks to people. I love how Joe framed how he does the show. He says he pretty much just talks to people and records it. I don't think he studied on how to elicit desired responses from people as much as you seem to think. Honestly I talk to people almost exactly how he talks to people in his interviews. He tries to talk to people and have deep conversations with them like you would with your friend when you're just sitting around chillin. Sometimes he brings out alcohol and weed to make things more interesting and it definitely can help lol. I didn't study how to do all of this shit and I would probably "interview" people joe rogan style if I could because it seems like the most comfortable, smooth and interesting way to communicate with people.

  14. I understand the hate. There's a better way to portray your point without talking over everything and making it about you. Rogan is my idol, let him do the talking and post a compilation of great questions, that's my advice.

  15. People don't like to embrace the complexity of the choices we make or admit that so much finesse can be exercised in conversation. You've identified the mechanics that are at play in the conversation accurately working with just fact but the superimposition of idea that Rogan is aware of the systems he implements during conversation draws this unusual hatred. People can be genius without knowing their genius and insane without knowing their insanity. Keep doing what you do man thanks for this video. Fucking loved it.

  16. That alex jones part was very disingenuous. i dont even care for alex jones, but that is not how it went down…

  17. Great job! Stayed locked in through the whole video and learned a few things along the way!👍

  18. you should pay attention to how the video flows. its hard to do because you can lose track of what it looks like to a fresh pair of eyes after hours of editing but it comes with practise. the content itself is very interesting though.

  19. Why so many dislikes? This is a good run down on a rare skill very few people have: genuine curiousity and open mindedness.

  20. 1. He has a strong enough ego to admit things he doesn´t know so isn´t boarish when talking to people. 2. He is intellectually curious about a wide range of issues and seeks experts and isn´t afraid to show his ignorance and learn from them.. 3. He has a unique history, a cross between a world champion martial artists combined with a stand-up comedian. But really it is about intellectual curiosity and being able to be humble enough to listen.

  21. Dude, what in the world are you doing with that editing? It's unfortunate because this is pretty interesting and it kinda gets all ruined by all the nonsensical cuts.

  22. Stumbled across your video and found it very interesting, and was surprised to see the like/dislike bar. Like other, just leaving a comment to tell you to keep it up.

  23. I used to strongly dislike Joe Rogan. He was just undoubtedly an arrogant asshole in my book. However, I have become a huge fan of his podcast which has changed my opinion of him drastically.

    I find him to be refreshingly consistent in his morals and beliefs. He is an intellectual and where there is a lack of knowledge there is an insatiable desire to learn.

    Most of all I am addicted to the Joe Rogan Experience. The eclectic mix of guests and topics is incredible. His ability to get his guests talking about the most interesting things in their lives, not necessarily what they intended to talk about, is so compelling.

    My favorite aspect by far is his political view. I used to think he was a flaming liberal, and he may have been. I have watched him form his political identity based on facts gleaned from his guests which has rounded him out quite well.

  24. There is no secret, if you analyse his character he is high on openness, sincere and has some people skills. He holds a conversation with people… two way dialogue, is relaxed and not too confrontational. People do this all the time in the civilised world, some people can even argue about religion and politics without fighting (mainly outside of the US)

  25. awesome commentary. I don't see why the downvotes. This is an excellent video. Overexplanation, but that's the fucking point! lmao he's breaking down the obvious and extrapolating practical information.

  26. Rogan's tough conversation with Brendan Schaub was a particularly powerful and sincere moment as well. It did much to raise my opinion of him.

  27. wow this was a waste of time. he is popular because he used to be a tv star and a known stand up and have one of the biggest podcast in the world. thats why he is famous u dumb fucks.

  28. opencipher 215 points 5 months ago
    I LOVE The Joe Rogan Podcast…… but this is over analyzation at its finest. This is the same type of over intellectual culture that breaks down the intricacies of hip hop artist and the hidden way they came of with their bars when they just look for cool shit to say that rhymes. Someone makes a video describing the culture norms in the black community and the strife placed upon…blah blah blah.
    Joe Rogan is a pothead who loves to learn shit…knows a lot of shit and loves to ask questions to learn shit….simple as that.

  29. Alex, when recording your voice, getting rid of the ugly reverb is not that difficult
    You can google how to do that, or you can just throw a blanket over your head (and the mic).
    Seriously, make some effort. Why should I be hearing your bedroom?… Amateur stuff

  30. Just found and re-watched this video again. Thank you for putting this together, I'm doing some research into what leads to good conversations, since I'm about to start a podcast!

  31. I feel like Alex kept us in the dark if this was pro/con Rogan, until the very end, then his plan was to hit us with the one two punch. The last sentence he reveals by using words like sincere that he respects Rogans kraft.
    I still hit the like button. Good job.

  32. Joe's podcast is the best out there, really. For me, I listen to it everyday, no matter what episode. It keeps me engaged and I learn at the same time. Doesn't matter who he has on, it it brings out knowledge and information from different viewpoints of people in all walks of life. There's a reason why Jordan Peterson called Rogan a "good figure for the times", he is.

  33. I think it would be interesting to contrast Rogan's UFC interview style with the podcast style. He did UFC interviews for a long before he did the podcast, and he's very effective at getting interesting interviews out of most people he talks to in the cage.

  34. I regularly listen to Joe Rogan and I wanted to learn more about how he drives his conversations in his podcast. With a background in comedy, Joe might also understand the nuances of how to manage his audience attention. I noticed he even injects some humor in much of his conversations, which always helps. I think that he's easily able to do this due to his background in being a comic. He probably better understands when to inject humor, how to do so, and how to use it to his advantage. I would love to learn more about how his background in comedy helps him in his podcast.

    Great video by the way! This is the only one I could find that explains some of the techniques used by Joe Rogan in his podcast.

  35. While he would be popular anyway, he has been ALLOWED to become as popular as he now is by agreeing to not address certain topics, while belittling other topics that may have otherwise gained more recognition and validity, had he expressed his (former) true opinions. Don't be naive. But hey, those of you fan boys who want to knock him down and suck his dick……. have at it.

  36. whatever footage you're using to fill in when you're talking, is very distracting 🙁 I don't know most of the people in this video and for the first 5 minutes I was struggling to keep up 🙁 Besides that, it's a great video and very useful information. Thank you 🙂

  37. Give your video to someone else to watch before you post it. The editing made no sense. As a helpful tip don't show a clip on one subject and then start talking about said object only to change the clip to someone else while you're talking. It's just not easy to watch.

  38. I like the style of finding journalist principles in joes work. Theory in practice. Good stuff for people that want to imitate Joes podcast like me.

  39. Dude its pathetic that youd even make this video. U make these videos that include his name just to get urself views. And its almost like u have some passive agressive built up animosity towards joe from when u bombed like an unfunny dumbfuck

  40. What makes Joe so popular for me, is that he posts clips that simply aren't clickbait. He doesn't use yellow backgrounds, or red arrows or circles, or make the 😲 face in his thumbnails. He doesn't title his videos something clickbaity like "You won't believe what Leah Remini says about Scientology"

  41. 05:15 this part really helps if you have 2 microphones. If it's just one, you would have to pass the mic over and it would be an awkward, oh I respond to that? moment.

  42. If you want to grow your business and start working with clients that can afford you, check out our free presentation at Email10k.com

  43. This is honestly kind of silly lol. OP plays a video of Rogan specifically and genuinely saying he doesn't interview but instead has a conversation and then he says "joe rogan knows that a specific few carefully chosen words will get the whole job done" like JR really consciously and deliberately is choosing specific words but doesn't even follow simple rules of traditional interviewers lol!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *