This is the final episode of the Joman Show on KUHS Denver.
The decision to end this series is mine and mine alone. Everyone at KUHS has been nothing but kind, compassionate, supportive and exceedingly patient with me. Even as I have struggled to maintain my momentum and motivation, they have stood by me and given me a platform.
In the two years that I have worked with KUHS, I have grown a great deal. I have been challenged in many different ways. In some cases, I have sat across the room from people with whom I vehemently disagree and managed to find common ground, even forging lasting friendships – a concept previously alien to me. I have been forced to refine my diction and articulation. I chipped away at the last bit of performance anxiety I had. I am confident that these skills will serve me well in whatever career field I ultimately find myself in, in the event that my artistic endeavors fail to sustain me.
But I have recently come to some realizations about myself and who I want to be that are at odds with my ability to continue to produce this show.
The rise of opinion news has not been a positive thing for society, and though I have tried my best to be objective, I have nevertheless oftentimes been stubborn, dogmatic and fueled by hatred of the manufactured opposition – all traits and attitudes that closely resemble the very things I oppose, and are therefore averse to who I really am. Freidrich Neitzche once said, “battle not with monsters, lest ye become a monster, and if you gaze into the abyss, the abyss gazes also into you.” The first time I heard that quote, it was directed at me, by someone else.
In my self-righteous desire to platform myself as some kind of unique, all-knowing purveyor of truth, I have let arrogance consume me. And I think the largely mediocre results of many of the things I’ve done over the past few years signal that other people have been able to sense that from miles away. So it’s time for me to step back and reflect.
Somebody recently said to me, “Joey killed Joman.” It’s hard to argue with that. And it has taken me a long time to not only face that truth, but accept the fact that you can either be right, or you can be happy. Seldom can you be both.
There are a lot of different directions I could have chosen to take this show in from the get-go; I could have focused more on wit and humor, following in the footsteps of some of my greatest inspirations such as the National Lampoon Radio Hour. I could have offered more production tips and tricks. I could have had more guests on, and I could have talked over them less. Moreover, I could have spent less time in the studio drunk or high, and more time alert and focused. It is only after 20 days of sobriety—quite possibly the longest stint of sobriety in my entire adult life—that these realizations have come to me with such razor-sharp clarity.
But to dwell in the past is pointless. All I can do is move forward, acknowledging my mistakes and learning and growing from them. That’s all any of us can do.
Unfortunately, a part of that is the realization that in order to make this show what I want it to be, I would have to devote my entire week, every week, to preparing for it. And I simply have too many other things to focus on right now, especially when there is, quite literally, no payoff from this. Without sponsors willing to pay me directly in addition to paying KUHS, I’m doing this for free, and I don’t have time to grovel to companies and convince them me yelling on the internet is worth thousands upon thousands of dollars. They say money is the root of all evil. But in our society, it’s a necessary evil. You can live in Lala Land, or you can pay the bills. You can live a lie, or accept reality. I have to choose the latter.
I also have way more original songs and remixes to do, that I’ve procrastinated on or come up with excuses not to do. I have years and years of severe alcoholism under my belt to reflect on, which has left me at this juncture with little more than a fleet of burnt bridges, some of which are at least worth attempting to repair. As for my “voice,” I already know what I hate, everybody else knows what I hate, and it’s all the things most people hate anyway. Why keep wallowing in it? Focusing more on what I love is imperative to me. And what I love is my family, the friends I have left, electronic music and art in general.
Which isn’t to say this show hasn’t served as a platform for those things. It certainly has. But I’ve realized that releasing music is as much an art form as the music itself. And too many “sneak peeks” and “previews” can cause releases to lose some of their luster by the time they come out. It’s silly to expect anyone to react with excitement and surprise to something they’ve already heard.
As an artist, I crave knowledge and inspiration in any form I can get it. I have devoured every second of the news since Trump was elected, at a great expense to my physical and mental health, when I could have been injecting that energy into my art and more direct civic engagement. I will always and have always been politically active. But my approach in the future will be quite different.
Reading the book “Zucked” by Roger McNamee about the ways in which Facebook has fostered addiction, radicalized the political landscape and jeopardized Democracy made me realize that nothing I have been doing is any different than what most people are doing. Our outrage translates to one thing on social media: advertising revenue. I have just been another victim of data mining. I am not a special snowflake, and neither are you.
I’m really not beating myself up, even though that might be what this sounds like. In retrospect, I think this show has been exactly what I needed it to be at this particular time in my life. Some of my drive to just write songs had died down, due to a lot of personal turmoil and an unsatisfactory response to my album “Aperture,”, and I think this show served to fill some of that space in my life, and in my head. But to quote Heraclitus, “the only constant is change. And to quote Shpongle, who quoted Terence McKenna, who paraphrased William Blake, “nothing lasts, but nothing is lost.”
I don’t want to be the leftist version of Alex Jones. I don’t want to just be another sensationalist podcaster. I just want to get back to making music, go to school to ensure a stable future, work hard so I can provide for the people I care about, and further explore a world from which I have largely been sheltered, having lived my entire life in Colorado and never leaving the United States. As useful of a resource as the internet can be, it can’t replace real life experience.
From the bottom of my heart, thank you to everyone who has supported this show. And I hope you will follow me into the next chapter of this topsy-turvy journey that has been my life.
As for my enemies, take no comfort in this. The amount of growth I’m going through right now surpasses anything I’ve ever experienced, and will thus surpass anything you have ever seen from me. I will be so, so much better from it. This is definitely not the last you’ve heard from me. I have so much more art to make, whether you like it or not.
Echoing the aforementioned quotes, a wise person in my life keeps repeating to me, “sometimes you have to go away to come back.” And she is absolutely right.
Have a great night.