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Dave Mustaine talks to Jay Mohr on “Mohr Stories”

I wasn’t surprised to hear MEGADETH’s Dave Mustaine was this week’s guest on Mohr Stories. In fact, Mohr has managed to get more ’80s metal notables (and Lita Ford) onto his show than any other podcaster, by my count, not that any were seeking that mantel.

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It’s actually getting kind of weird. And maybe I missed something. Maybe Mohr clearly explained at some point why his show was starting to cater to the likes of Duff McCagin, Sebastian Bach, Jerry Cantrell and Matt Sorum, and I scrolled past that episode. Or maybe this is some kind of selection bias on my part, if that’s the right terminology. It could be that I’m only listening to Mohr’s shows when I see a name I recognize. Which I should know by now is no way to cruise podcasts. Some of the best shows I’ve ever  heard had guest whose names I didn’t recognize.

My only beef with this trend would have to be that Mohr, a known audiophile and music trivia buff, was so close to falling into another superior genre (in my opinion), with Sex Pistol Steve Jones and Stewart Copeland from the Police. But I’m guessing word got out about Mohr’s willingness to promote these metal guys’ latest projects respectfully. Because, let’s be honest, it’s hard to promote Sebastian Bach’s newish album, “Give ‘Em Hell” without taking a jab here and there (see photo).

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Anyway I took the bait again this week when I saw Dave Mustaine was on. And I was glad I did. Because this is a weird dude. And he was promoting an album of course, but he has a lot of other things going on. A lot of things atypical to your average metal god, small ‘g’.

Mohr delicately danced around the fact that Mustaine is prone to stirring the pot. He takes his beefs to the airwaves and the internet, and again they are weird beefs. Mohr called him a lightening rod more than once in this interview. Not sure if I’d use that expression to describe him, but he does not back away from confrontation. I recall an article about his distaste for The Men’s Warehouse on Huffington Post and their “I guarantee it” tagline. Which is, after all, just a tagline. But apparently Mustaine took them to task on it. I hesitate to call him touchy, as he is a “Goodwill Ambassador of the World for the World Taekwondo Federation” (official title).

There was some very cool stuff  about his performance with the San Diego Symphony and his childhood as a Jehovah’s Witness. And there was some stuff about his intense belief in the validity and existence of black magic.

Mustaine talked about how he put hexes on a couple schoolmates back in the day, and those hexes came to fruition. Yep, that’s what he said. And he delivered that little tidbit in a cogent tone. The listener is left with the impression that Mustaine believes completely in the existence of dark supernatural forces.

Mohr does a good job navigating the sometimes dicey waters of spirituality, and this episode was no exception. But be warned, Mustaine, though a pleasant  and intelligent guy, is a far cry from the atheists and religious wishy-washies you hear in podcastia. There’s some real conviction behind his beliefs, and it can be hard to digest, particularly for a religous wishy-washy like myself. But a good listen nonetheless.

Jay Mohr Goes to Once a Week

Mohr Stories has quickly become THE most consistently entertaining podcasts in my queue. Jay Mohr, already an accomplished stand-up and actor, proved (to me at least) that he has what it takes to carry a dynamic dialogue. I know he’s been a fixture in terrestrial radio for awhile, but I had no idea he was such an engaging interviewer — every episode generously peppered with enough potty humor to keep the twelve year old in me satiated.

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That’s why I was sad to hear Mohr Stories is scaling back its weekly episode count to one per week. On a recent episode with Will Sasso, Mohr cited backlog bottleneck as the real issue. He said listeners couldn’t keep up with his shows. I imagine it probably has more to do with workload capacity — podcasts don’t make themselves. Either way, I hope this is temporary. Two’s better than one.

 

 

Jay Mohr Talks to Tom Arnold on Episode 190

Jay Mohr likes gossip, and Tom Arnold’s quite the raconteur. There are the Roseanne stories, the Chris Farley stories, the Hormel pig processing stories. Name a star, and Arnold’s hung with him or her, and something invariably went down. But he’s a very entertaining and gracious guest, and promotes whatever he’s working on with subtlety. He’s quite the get in podcastia.

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He’s so frenetic he can be hard to keep up with though. I’ve had to take a break from some of his Carolla spots just to catch my breath. On episode 190 of Mohr Stories, the listener may even get the impression that Mohr, who’s been known to step on a story from time to time, is doing the same to Arnold. But Arnold’s trademark ADD is the real culprit here.

Arnold was more relaxed and a bit less revealing this time. And that’s OK; a little Tom Arnold goes a long way. He was still all over the map, but he took his time. And it made for a nice hour.

There was a story about Julie Louis-Dreyfus taking his parking spot when he was shooting a series next to the Seinfeld lot. Apparently, he still carries a torch for that altercation.

He also touched on the relationship he had with Bob Hope. Mohr unleashed a deep-cut zinger on the legend (something having to do with Hope’s “leaky eyes”). I laughed, but Arnold didn’t. He just maneuvered around it, and brought it back to how Hope was the only thing that made his dad laugh.

There is one thing Arnold does that throws me a bit. Out of nowhere he drops a “here’s what I like about (host)” line and the host understandably reciprocates. The first time I heard him do it on a podcast, it made me happy. I felt good for a solid three minutes. But the second and third times it happened it came off like a form letter. A little too gracious. In Arnold’s defense, I can be a crotchety cynic. He could very well be this genuine. It just sounded a bit perfunctory in this interview.

Anyway, back to the important stuff. The guys talked wrestling, a thematic touchstone for many of Mohr’s guests. And they kept the ball moving throughout. My biggest takeaway from this episode was a little aside Mohr threw out there that I now intend to use in an applicable situation to make myself sound cooler. It was a wrestling reference, and it could work in so many boring day-job issues I’m faced with: “If I could just get this fight to the ground I’d be fine.”