Bad news for those of you relying on the “Joe Rogan Experience” to help keep you sane through COVID-19 quarantine. The No. 1 podcast in the world has been struck down temporarily itself by the Coronavirus, with producer “Young” Jamie Vernon testing positive for the virus.
Rogan himself took to Instagram to explain the situation: while Jamie’s case is mild (and Joe has tested negative thus far), they will be shutting down the show for at least a week ... which means a planned visit by Kanye West on Friday is off (unless re-scheduled).
Here’s Joe Rogan’s statement on the whole thing:
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Young @jamievernon tested positive for COVID-19. I tested negative, and the rest of the staff tested negative but we’re shutting everything down until we get an all clear from our doctor. I was out of town last week and the shows that aired had all been previously recorded, so I haven’t had any contact with Jamie in the past 9 days except for briefly today, but I’m staying away from everyone and being tested every day until I know I’m in the clear. I’ll keep you folks posted as to when the show will resume.
“So we have a situation: Young Jamie Vernon tested positive today for COVID-19,” Rogan said. “I tested negative. The rest of the staff tested negative. But Jamie tested positive. He thought maybe he had a sinus infection or allergies, but he has COVID.
“We were off last week, the episodes we aired we had previously recorded so I hadn’t seen Jamie in 9 days,” he continued. “And he said somewhere around this past Thursday he felt like s**t for a day, and then started feeling better on Friday, and by Saturday he was mostly over it. Today he says he feels 90%-ish over it. But it’s COVID so we cancelled all the shows. We’re happy he had a mild case but we cancelled all the shows.”
“I’m keeping away from everybody and testing myself and testing the staff every day until we’re in the clear,” Rogan continued. “There’s nothing we can do. So we’re cancelling all podcasts this week and I won’t know when we can do them again until we can get a clear from the doctor. I think it has to be 10 days and 3 negative test results in a row. So that takes us deep into next week.”
“I don’t know what we’re going to do, we could do some shows remotely, we could do some shows with a substitute producer which I really don’t want to do. But ... we’ll figure it out and I’m happy Jamie has a mild case and I’m happy he’s feeling better but obviously this is a f**ked up situation.”
“My apologies to the guests, my apologies to all of you,” Rogan concluded. “It’s out of my hands, obviously. And I’ll keep you posted.”
While Jamie was fortunate enough to have a mild case, we’re sure he’s feeling terrible about everything if only because he’s the biggest Kanye mark out there. And getting West on the podcast has been a bit of a white whale for him and the whole “Joe Rogan Experience” team for a while. Kanye himself had recently confirmed an appearance on Friday Oct. 23, 2020, which obviously isn’t happening any more ... at least not in person.
Perhaps remotely? We’ll keep you updated.
And for those wondering whether or not this will affect Rogan’s ability to commentate for UFC ... it won’t. Joe’s current deal has him only on the mic for pay-per-view (PPV) events held stateside, so with UFC 254 going down in Abu Dhabi he wasn’t scheduled to work it.