Once again, the world’s most popular podcast brought us a captivating three-hour conversation with one of Country Music’s top talents, Zach Bryan. From Bud Light to Black Mirror, Zach’s flip phone to running, and of course, music, the topics were diverse and revealing. Here are the top three biggest takeaways from this engaging conversation.
First and foremost, we have never seen Zach Bryan this out and open in conversation in a very, very long time. As Rogan and Zach are discussing vulnerability, the positives and negatives with being known public figures, they speak about the “bullshit” that can come with having such a huge following. He eventually brings up in the conversation, “I haven’t talked to anyone like this in four years“. He continues, “it wasn’t worth it to me…I write enough music, you know me from that. I didn’t feel the need.” In a way, this really is no surprise coming from Zach. If you’re a genuine fan of his music, you come to understand how open and vulnerable Zach is with his lyrics. So why in his world, would he feel the need to jump into a spotlight behind microphones and open doors to critiques and criticism when his music can do his talking for him? Of course stating this on the most popular podcast in the world can seem hypocritical, but A, if there’s a platform for Zach to speak his words into existence, it’s this one. And B, when you get down to the roots of who Zach Bryan is as a human, you see someone who wants to steer the Bronco away from conflict, not directly into it.
Secondly, Zach was lied to by his military recruiter just like every one of us who has served in the military. Ironically enough, his recruiter was his pops, but that’s a conversation for another time. Zach had every intention in his body to serve the United States of America while in the U.S. Navy for the rest of his life (or till retirement). Zach mentions to Rogan “my old man was in the navy for 25 years, mom was in the navy, grandpa was in the navy, imma be in the navy till the day I die, and that was it, that was gonna be my life”. He began putting videos on twitter in 2017 and was pleased with the “five or six” likes that his music was getting. Obviously, those videos caught steam with his raw Heading South version leading the charge, and Zach’s life was forever changed. Zach’s Gunner at the time (supervisor/boss) informed him that this was a conflict of interest, and that only in a week, he would be out of the Navy. For any of us that are familiar with the government, we know how this ends… Roughly eight months later Zach was finally released. However, it’s not an everyday occurrence for a military member to be discharged for music, in fact, Zach mentions that to his knowledge, it has only been him and a man that went by the name of Elvis Presley.
The final takeaway from this conversation is that Zach Bryan can be called many things in life – artist, musician, singer, and more. However, one aspect of his identity remains unwavering: his passion for writing. Writing is undeniably at the core of who he is as a person, and writing is why he is where he is today. We can thank his continued passion for writing during his time in the Navy. Zach states “In the Navy “I had a lot of shit going on, didn’t believe in therapy, cause that’s crazy in the Navy, ya know?” Let me stop him there. This quote is interesting for a couple of reasons. First, if you have served in the military, depending on your career field, if you are continuously seeing a therapist no matter the reason, there’s a strong chance you can be pulled from your job due to psychological reasons. Now, I am not saying Zach Bryan may be a loco upstairs, but what I am saying is that Zach’s writing in the Navy may have originally stemmed from him wanting to simply keep his job. In other words, if he had begun seeing a therapist consistently, he may have been pulled from his jobs/and or deployments. For Zach, his writing was his outlet, it was his therapy. Zach mentions “I just wanted to be a writer, I think writing is the most beautiful thing in the world…I thought it was so crazy that someone can put words on a page, and it can make you feel something…so I started writing poems when I was a kid.” He continues “Those turned into songs, because writing poems is lame right? (comedically)… What way can you write poems and it’s not weird?…and that’s when I started playing the Guitar.” This incredible domino effect of how Zach found music is truly remarkable. Why did he begin writing? It was a therapy session. Why did he pick up a guitar? Poems could only get a person so far.
In conclusion, the conversation on the Joe Rogan Experience gave us a glimpse into the multifaceted personality of Zach Bryan, showcasing his authenticity, resilience, and unwavering passion for writing and music. As he continues to captivate audiences with his soulful and genuine creations, it is evident that Zach Bryan’s journey is far from over, and the world eagerly awaits the next chapter in his remarkable career…and his upcoming album release this August. The Oklahoma native may not appear on other podcasts for a while, but if there’s one thing we know about Zach, his uniquely authentic music will continue to speak for him.