HBO apparently cut about three minutes worth of material from Howard Stern’s speech preceding Bon Jovi‘s Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction, and the radio host spent about twenty minutes of Monday morning’s SiriusXM broadcast eulogizing the jokes left out of Saturday night’s broadcast. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction took place on April 14 at Cleveland’s Public Auditorium and aired on HBO over the weekend, after the broadcast version of the show was edited down to a tidy three hours.
“Who is the fucking genius who decided to cut me talking about the women [guitarist] Richie Sambora banged?” he asked, likening the Hall of Fame speech edits to his early days in radio when program directors insisted on having a heavy hand in slicing up his shows to his eternal consternation. “I want to know the comedy genius…I’ve sat in on these sessions. It’s kind of like, ‘Yeah, cut that!’ It’s like a butcher shop. ‘Cut the fat off!’ It’s like, ‘Yeah, well we gotta cut something.’ No, you don’t! If something’s good, you don’t cut it!” Stern said that he would have been okay with the edits, had producers come to him beforehand with an agreement that he would have approval on cuts.
In the days leading up to the induction, Stern agonized on-air about writing the speech he’d use to induct his old friends into the Hall of Fame, and to his credit, he got some pretty good zingers in a monologue peppered with dick jokes and references to Sambora’s alleged “anaconda penis.” The King of All Media also stood amid the crowd at a hallowed rock institution and told Bob Dylan to “eat shit” on behalf of a hair band from New Jersey, which is a certainly a crowning achievement, but the final edit left Stern feeling cold.
“You can’t fly me to fucking Cleveland and ask me to make a speech and then edit the shit out of me,” Stern said while pointing out that some punchlines fell flat because their setups were cut. “I wasn’t there talking about my career. I spent a lot of time on that and they spent three minutes deciding what should be in and out…They completely…gutted me. Like a rotting fish, which I am. That’s how I feel inside.”
The ballsiest parts of the roast have nothing to do with Bon Jovi, but entail Stern roasting Rolling Stone co-founder Jann Wenner, who accompanied Stern to Cleveland via private jet to make sure the homebody actually showed up.
You can watch the entire 20-minute induction speech below: