Joe Rogan got emotional on his show when the subject of his late pal Anthony Bourdain came up, as he shared that he thinks he “could’ve helped” the late celebrity chef if he had been there.
During Spotify’s “The Joe Rogan Experience” podcast Wednesday, the host spoke with fellow comedian Sam Morril about a wide range of topics — and Rogan and Bourdain’s friendship came up. It was clear right away that the podcast host was having a hard time talking about his pal who took his own life in 2018.
“He [Bourdain] was a very moral and ethical guy,” Rogan explained, as he breathed a deep sigh. “He was a tough one. He died, I was f***ed for a while.”
Morril noted that Joe and the CNN host were close and that’s when Rogan’s voice changed.
“He’s just like a guy that I was so excited he was my friend,” the host shared as his voice cracked. “When I saw, when I first met him, I said, my wife says you’re my boyfriend and he was like, ‘okay.’”
“I was like, oh my god. F***,” the podcaster added. “I was like no, don’t f*** up. The only thing that saved me I think was I met him at a UFC and he was a giant UFC fan. And this was actually before he had gotten into jujitsu … and then he started getting into the UFC and then he started coming to the shows. And then he started coming to my stand up.”
“And then we started hanging out,” Rogan continued. “And then went to dinner with him a bunch of times. And going to dinner with Bourdain was f***ing amazing. It was like showing up at a rock show with Mick Jagger. … He just had this f***ing passion for things.”
Rogan admitted that even though he changed his number all the time, he still had an old phone and number he was not ever getting rid of because it was the one with text messages the two shared.
“I keep this number because I have text messages from him,” Rogan shared as his voice started changing again. “I’m just like, I’m not getting rid of them. I’m just going to keep that number just for that. Just to go over the text messages and see pictures and s*** he would send me.”
It was after that part in the conversation, that Morril said to Joe, “Damn, I’m sorry.”
“You know there’s a lot of photos of him and stuff around the studio to remind me but, yeah,” Rogan explained. “It sucks when you think you could have helped, that’s what sucks the most when a friend takes their own life.”
“And you’re like ‘God damnit I wish I was there,’” he added. “I think if I was there I could’ve helped.”
Morril told Joe that “there’s usually nothing you could do though. And you can’t blame yourself for that s***.”
Rogan noted the “terrible relationship” his pal was in before his death and admitted there always seemed to be a “fire burning” that Bourdain “couldn’t put out” no matter how hard he tried.
The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is a free hotline for individuals in crisis or distress or for those looking to help someone else. It is available 24/7 at 1-800-273-8255.