While many people may know him from his long-time gig as the host of NBC's Fear Factor, Joe Rogan has also become a major player in the world of stand-up comedy. Rogan was born in Newark, New Jersey, but was raised in Massachusetts where he became a four-time Full Contact Tae Twon Do Champion when he was only a teenager. After a successful career in the martial arts, Rogan began to explore the entertainment industry and initially began performing at open mics. As his comedy career began to take off, Rogan began to attract the attention of casting directors and began to land a series of acting gigs that would help him become a star.
After a short-lived appearance on the sitcom, Hardball, Rogan earned his first breakout role in 1995 when he played Joe Garrelli on NewsRadio. The show was a surprise hit and was a steady role for Rogan until its cancellation in 1999. In addition to his role on the show, Joe Rogan would also become the post-fight interviewer with the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) and would eventually become a color commentator and is credited with helping build the sport's popularity.
In 2000, Joe Rogan earned his breakout role as the host of NBC's Fear Factor. The show featured contestants performing death-defying stunts and eating all sorts of disgusting foods, and Rogan was a natural match for the show's intense action scenes and sometimes comical moments. Rogan would remain with the show for its entire run until 2006, and soon after the show concluded, the performer would delve back into stand-up comedy.
After touring extensively throughout the United States, as well as the United Kingdom and Ireland, Rogan began to seriously retool his stand-up act and soon became one of the biggest acts on the scene. He would release a successful stand-up CD in 2007, Shiny Happy Jihad, which would hit No. 6 on the Billboard comedy charts, as well as Talking Monkeys in Space in 2010, which would hit No. 3.
Along with the increasing strength of his stand-up act, Rogan's received a major popularity boost for his on-stage confrontation with fellow comic Carlos Mencia, and has become a major voice in the fight against comedians who steal material from one another. Rogan has become one of the most refreshing voices on the stand-up comedy landscape, brimming with energy and a delightfully forceful delivery that should bode for plenty of success in the future.