Jack Post might not be the ‘main character’, but he’s got plenty of stories to tell
My first question to Jack Post somewhat stumps him.
If he were me, or any journalist really, interviewing Jack Post, what would his first question be? What is the Jack Post story of the moment, as it were?
He’s really not sure, perhaps also a little rattled that he is having to do the heavy lifting for me, in providing both the questions and the answers.
The question is, he says, a genius way of me getting out of doing my job, and he’s slightly uncomfortable acting as his own PR machine and storyteller.
Yet, despite his seeming uncertainty around his own narrative, Post does have a story to tell.
In recent months, he’s signed new deals with both ARN to remain on Melbourne’s #1 FM Breakfast show, The Christian O’Connell Show, and SCA’s LiSTNR to stay on board with the country’s #1 podcast, Hamish & Andy.
With this prominence comes some stories, perceptions and inside jokes which might not quite be true – that he’s a tight arse (always trying to find ways to shirk economic responsibility), a weasel (always trying to sneak more freebies and get out of hard work), and maybe a little bit lazy (not paying enough attention to push the right button at the right time).
Part of the risk of not being the main character, the face on the billboard, the name of the show, is you don’t necessarily get to decide how your story is told and your character perceived.
“I’m trying to actively fight against the ‘I’m a tight arse’ one. But there’s only so much you can fight and pull away from it,” Post tells Radio Today of the ongoing jokes at his expense on the Hamish & Andy show.
Andy Lee, Hamish Blake, comedian Tracy Morgan & Jack Post back in 2013 (Photo: Hamish & Andy)
“I honestly think in real life I’m a generous person, but the more that you say [that], try to plead your case on that show, the harder you get shut out. So there’s no winning that argument.
“But yea, I do feel like sometimes I get probably misunderstood a little bit, but never enough to be worried about it.”
Being a sidekick, however, does have its rewards.
Post can work on the country’s #1 shows, have all the fun and all the success, without the same pressures.
He isn’t, he tells me, gunning for The Jack Post Show, complete with merchandise, marketing and media attention.
“I honestly feel weird getting interviewed and an article being written, because my natural state is to stay in the background, really. My role on Christian’s show is a sidekick role and my role on Hamish & Andy for so long has been that third voice, but only chipping in here and there, and I’ve never been the name on the poster or my face on the billboard or anything, so I feel more comfortable not having the spotlight on me.
“Obviously I love being part of creating what we’re making and being part of those shows, but I’m never trying to strive for attention,” he says.
Post with the Christian O’Connell team
He says he’s learned a lot from how O’Connell and both Hamish Blake and Andy Lee interact with their fans and listeners in public, but concedes it would come at a cost.
“I actually reckon it would be hard. I think of Christian sometimes or even Hamish & Andy, like when their face is plastered everywhere, and I just feel like there’s a lot of pressure on that and I don’t really want it,” he says. “I don’t have an ambition to be that famous or be that recognised in the street. I like being able to walk down the street and people not know who I am.
“And I know Hamish & Andy and Christian, any time they get approached in public – and I’ve seen it happen hundreds of times – they’re always so nice to the people they meet, and you know, they’re great to their fans, but I also see that it would be kind of annoying to lose your anonymity.”
It must be somewhat of a delicate balance then, to want to be part of the #1 shows, but not have any of the downsides? Does that mean he doesn’t get to enjoy the same successes and ride as high as those more prominently featured on the programs?
Will a day come when Post wants to exit the Hamish & Andy universe and form his own?
Post says he doesn’t think about it that way, as so much of his life, success and happiness has been intrinsically linked to the show and the duo.
“The period that we’ve had together has been such a ride. It’s honestly changed my life, and that’s an understatement to say that my life would be so different if I never came across the show. I learnt everything I know about radio from those guys, everything I know about comedy. Because I worked on their TV shows, I flew all around the world, went to all these crazy cities, I met my wife in New York because we were in New York doing Gap Year. So our relationship transcends the show and any working relationship. They’re such great friends and I can’t now imagine ever not working with them.”
Re-signing onto the show, he says, was a no-brainer, and he’ll be more shocked and surprised the day he gets the call saying the dream run is over.
This year, however, has been slightly more challenging due to Blake relocating to Sydney with his family.
The show, Post says, hasn’t suffered, and it’s unlikely listeners will notice a difference in quality or enjoyment.
Pictured: Blake & Lee read Post’s private notebook on the podcast when they were all together
Behind the scenes though, Post says it’s the moments between the moments which have changed.
“This year has been more challenging… with Hamish in Sydney… We’ve always been in Melbourne, so it’s a little trickier to do it… What I miss about that – and I don’t think the show suffers because of that – but what I miss about that is the parts in between. Like the five minutes or 15 minutes when you first rock up to the station and you’re just mucking around and talking crap with your friends. You don’t have that because you’ve got to wait ‘til you’re linked up on the video call,” he concedes.
Ultimately though, it’s all worth it. And in addition to the accolades and freedoms that come with being on a #1 show – whether radio or podcast – Post says he derives satisfaction from knowing that people enjoy what he’s doing.
“So when I was a kid I loved Merrick & Rosso. Had their CDs. They even released a book and I remember I had the book. And they were kind of like my comedy heroes on radio as a kid. My comedy heroes as a kid were definitely Lano & Woodley and Merrick & Rosso, I reckon,” he says.
“What I’m looking for is just the satisfaction, always what I’ve been looking for is the satisfaction – making work that people enjoy. And that goes from anything with Hamish & Andy, with Christian’s show to just stuff that I make myself and put up on social media. I get my satisfaction from making something that puts a smile on somebody’s face.”