Joe Rogan, multimillionaire king of podcasting, is bringing his fans into the pre-show party.
On Friday, Spotify announced a multiyear deal renewal with Rogan, who hosts the industry’s No. 1 podcast. Under the new agreement, worth as much as $250 million, “The Joe Rogan Experience” will end its three-year exclusive run on Spotify, which instead will widely distribute the podcast to third-party platforms including Apple Podcasts, YouTube and Amazon Music and handle ad sales.
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Along with the renewal announcement, Rogan released a Spotify playlist of hype songs he’s compiled over the years to get ready for a show. His Green Room playlist currently comprises 221 tracks — totaling 15 hours and 16 minutes.
It’s an eclectic potpourri of genres, spanning classic rock, country, hip-hop and blues. Rogan’s playlist includes songs from Run the Jewels, The Black Keys, Janis Joplin, The Rolling Stones, Nas, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Bob Dylan, AC/DC, 50 Cent, Liz Phair and Kanye West. “A lot of the songs are recommended by my fellow comics and there’s some gems in there that I also picked up from Spotify’s suggestions,” the podcaster and stand-up comedian said in an interview that Spotify posted on its blog.
Rogan started the Green Room playlist “when I realized it’s more fun to turn the green room into a party” — a tactic he copied from Dave Chappelle. “He would always come to the Comedy Store and bring a big Bluetooth speaker, and Dave has dope taste in music,” Rogan explained. “It changed the vibe of the room and it actually enhanced the conversations.”
Spotify has seen a salutary flywheel effect when popular podcasters feature music or artists on their shows. With Alex Cooper’s “Call Her Daddy,” for example, Spotify has seen song streams of music guests more than double or even quadruple in a 48-hour period after they appeared on the show. Clearly, Spotify is hoping “The Joe Rogan Experience’s” millions of listeners will shuffle over to his Green Room playlist.
According to Rogan, he usually plays the pre-show playlist randomly. “Sometimes I’ll start at the last song on the list. Sometimes I just spin the scroll and let my finger land anywhere,” he said. “I love the vibe you get from shit-hopping from [South African hip-hop group] Die Antwoord to Nina Simone right to Wu-Tang Clan and Led Zeppelin.”
Rogan added, “If I had to pick one song to get the party started, it’s KC & The Sunshine Band‘s ‘I’m Your Boogie Man.’ That’s the best song ever to be listening to while you walk into a sold-out arena green room. It just sets the mood perfectly.”
Rogan’s Green Room playlist, garnished with a photo of the “Get It Together Bitch” neon sign at his Comedy Mothership club in Austin, is available at this link.
Of course, Rogan’s playlist does not include any songs by Neil Young. Young was among a handful of artists who pulled their music from Spotify in early 2022 in protest of Rogan‘s statements about COVID vaccines on his podcast. Recordings controlled by Young remain unavailable on the streaming platform.
Meanwhile, also in the interview, Rogan admitted that when he first started podcasting, “I definitely sucked at it… I didn’t know when to shut up and listen, and I didn’t know how to make someone comfortable so that you can get the most out of their perspective.” He continued, “I’ve learned how to assist the conversation’s flow instead of waiting for my turn to talk. I learned how to be fully locked in with what the other person is saying.”
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