The earliest I can remember hearing Howard Stern was in the 7th grade. Living on Long Island, Stern was on in pretty much every car, every morning, rain or shine. Even the moms driving in my school car pool all has Stern on in the car. From the most reserved and straight laced to the laid back and liberal, everyone listened to Stern. For better or worse, I took it all in, for decades. He’s fascinating and it’s been interesting to watch his career and witness him evolve and change, openly, and share that journey with his listeners. He is nothing if not authentic and I think that authenticity rang true in a place where life can become a rat race of keeping up with the Jones’s. At 65 years old, Howard has been making the rounds lately promoting his new book, a catalogue of some of his favorite interviews since he moved the show to Sirius. He was a guest on Conan O’Brien Needs a Friend and the two sat down to talk about the book, their mental health, and the gift of honest conversation. I’m still digesting a lot of it, I’ll be listening again, but so far here’s what I learned...
1. The two talk about something Conan refers to as the “undertow.” It’s this tide that pulls you under when you evaluate your work. The digging around to find the one less than positive thing. Never being satisfied. It’s interesting and worth a listen for sure.
2. “I have to work really hard at putting this stuff together and then I learned everyone else does too.” Howard Stern on learning that everyone who is dedicated to their craft works their fucking ass off. Just as hard and relentlessly as he does.
3. “It’s not your job to say this is the good stuff this is the bad stuff.” Conan on the realization that it’s the audience’s decision to figure out if your work is good or bad. The artist’s job is just to keep on making and try to put the result aside. The job is in the making, then to let it go.
What did you learn today? Join me by using the #thesethreethings and commenting below with your own These Three Things. I want to hear what you are learning, laughing about, and living through.