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May 4, 2022

Joey West of Disciple

Joey West is best known as the drummer for veteran Christian rock band Disciple, a band that has accumulated Dove Award nominations and a win, Grizzly Awards, and multiple #1 singles (such as “Erase,” “Dear X,” and “After the World”). But beyond his role as drummer for one of the most recognizable names in faith-based rock, Joey is a voice of hope and solidarity for those questioning their calling or struggling with mental health.


That’s exactly what you’ll find on this episode of Trevor Talks, our first-ever episode featuring a drummer! Joey opens up about how his passion for drums and daily desire for faithfulness in his walk with God led him onto stages across the world. He also generously shares his own mental health journey of heartache and healing, a journey that motivates his commitment to be real and authentic— both on and off stage. 


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Joey West  0:00  
Being faithful in the small things, always will lead to bigger things. Because I firmly believe that when we show God like that, if he gives us a little, if we're irresponsible with that, or we're taking that and just being like, you know, ungrateful with it, like, oh, I deserve more than this, blah, blah, blah, like, probably not going to break out of this, because it's like, God can't trust you with more like, you're gonna go off the deep end over here. But I've always believed, like, whatever opportunity, like if it's sweeping a floor, or taking out the trash at a church, or whatever, I've always believed in those opportunities, where it's like, do that to the best of your ability, like do that 100% To the best of your ability, with the most joy and passion that you can muster up and do it well. And God in those moments, I think that that handling those small things that we're giving faithfully, God's like, oh, my gosh, well, I can trust him with a little bit more. What's up everyone,

Trevor Tyson  1:01  
and welcome to another episode of Trevor talks. I'm your host, Trevor Tyson. And I'm so excited that you have taken time out of your day to join us for this very special interview. Today's guest is one that I know is going to bring so much value, grace and a pretty unique perspective with us to the show. He is the first drummer that we've actually had on the show, which is not an intentional thing I will bring up. I have not, like gone out of my way to make sure we don't have any drummers on the show. It just hasn't happened. And almost I think we're almost at 90 episodes out and it's our first drummer, so I'm excited about this. I hope you guys are he's the drummer of the dove and grizzly award winning Hard Rock Band disciple and formerly of the band after Edmond. Please help me welcome the monster himself. Joey West. Joey, What's up, bro?

Joey West  1:51  
What's up, dude, I had no idea. I was the first drummer on your show. So I feel pretty dang honored.

Trevor Tyson  1:57  
I didn't know either. Until like 20 minutes ago, if we're being really honest, I had absolutely no clue. I was like, we've almost done 90 episodes like release at this point. And I haven't had one drummer. Now somebody could like know how to play drums, but like an actual drummer we haven't had which is interesting to me.

Joey West  2:17  
Wow, dude. Well, I feel I feel completely honored. And apparently my dog also feels honored to you probably heard her bark. I apologize about that.

Trevor Tyson  2:27  
You know what, sir? But, dude, it's funny that we first connected at Joshua Fest in 2019. And I didn't have a podcast at that point. But we were recording interviews trying to figure out what Trevor talks was right. So I was out emcee and festivals doing that stuff. But the podcast itself didn't start until the pandemic shut towards down. So it's funny that we get to circle back here in 2022, and kind of pick up where we left off in Quincy, California and 2019. So we're finally getting it done. And a lot has changed since we connected there too. You just got married and moved into a new home, which is always a plus, but a lot of stuff has been changing in your life personally. So even your wife like had that car issue earlier this week, which posted on socials about house like what the heck like man, what else

Joey West  3:19  
are you? It's been a crazy week. Yeah, man. You mentioned in Joshua fest, like rest in peace. I don't think they're doing that festival anymore. Like it was one of my favorites. So there's so many great festivals that shut down over the years but man Joshua fest is has always been one of my favorites to go to was that the year I played with Project Eddie six in the same day to do you remember? Yeah,

Trevor Tyson  3:41  
I can't I think so. And so you your bus driver had a little issue like health issue there. Yeah.

Joey West  3:48  
And actually that that stemmed to further health issue and he unfortunately he is no longer with us. I don't mean to bring the podcast down. But yeah, whatever was going on was completely undetected by multiple doctors. And unfortunately, he passed away like six months later. But Richie was a great guy. And you know, it's it's very unfortunate, but will will transmit shout out to Richie for you. Yes. Yeah. Richie, Richie love NASCAR. So I'm a huge NASCAR fan. So me and Richie always got along, talking, talking NASCAR, but I know he's, I know he's probably enjoying the view from from from up there watching the races but but yeah, man, so much has changed. I mean, 2019 the good old days, you know, like that was when we were all like, you know, hugging each other. We weren't afraid of each other sneezing. You know, we were we were all buddy buddy. And and then, you know, a few months later, you know, life just stopped for everybody. And we were all like confined to our homes and everything for I mean for the entertainment industry. I mean, we were home a year and a half in disciple and You know, like, the first couple months was like, Okay, this is cool. Like, it kind of felt like a little bit of vacation because we had just started a new tour with war of ages. And it was gonna be like, I think like 35 dates. So I mean, we had, we had a very busy tour, and we were five shows in, and then it just our manager was like, you're done, like, everything's just shutting down. And we never, never started up again. And we still have not been able to finish out that tour. But, you know, those those first couple months was like, oh, yeah, you know, vacation, you know, at the time, me and Tabitha were dating, she got laid off from her job. So it was almost like everyday was like a Saturday, we just go hiking or whatever. And, and yeah, and then after that, you know, just being locked in the house. Like, you know, the, the mental battle, I think was the toughest part of all of it. And, you know, I think that is true for everyone that was in that situation. But hey, you know what we made it through it. And during the pandemic, I fell in love with Tabitha. And it led to me knowing like, hey, I want to spend the rest of my life with this girl. And it would be a mistake if I didn't spend the rest of my life with her. So in August of 2021, I asked her to marry me. And then we just got married January 22 of this year. So we're, we're going on a couple months of marriage, now we got a new house, this, she she is the best wife, she gave me my own room for all my drum stuff in my office area. And she puts up when I would when I have to practice and, you know, drums or drums are very hard to live with, because there's just nothing quiet about them. And I've already made friends with my neighbors who texted me and asked me to stop occasionally, because their baby needs to sleep, which I totally respect. Hey, you know, if I had a sleeping baby, I would probably want someone else to like, not wake them up. So neighbors are super cool. They allow me to practice they just sometimes asked me, Hey, you know, can you stop because our baby's sleeping.

Trevor Tyson  7:03  
And it's good that you have that relationship where you can communicate though because you I mean, the fact that they even tolerate it. At some degree is dope. And yeah, hopefully they work during the days where you can get some practicing it right.

Joey West  7:16  
Yeah. And that's, that is the good thing. My wife does work during the day. So you know, when it's like mid afternoon, I can practice and not really have to worry about it though. The only people or beings that have to be here I guess are our animals and they have to put up with the noise but they have a downstairs so they can escape escape from all the loud stuff. So that's kind of nice, but yeah, man. I mean, I literally went from, you know, touring and just kind of like entering into this new relationship did I mean and even at Joshua fest, I, I can't even remember if I met Tabitha then but it I met her in July of 2019. So it would have been either slightly before slightly after Joshua fest that I met her. And, you know, we were just kind of like, just going out on dates. We weren't even a thing and you know, and now she's my wife. You know, it's it's crazy. And yeah, a lot of stress.

Trevor Tyson  8:07  
And I think I think this might be the first I love story we've heard out of the pandemic, as far as I know, like, people started businesses like I started the show in a business like yeah, it you got you got hitched bro so yeah, did that.

Joey West  8:25  
Yeah, it is definitely is definitely I guess it was a love story. Because, you know, we kind of fell, fell in love in the pandemic because we got all this time to spend together you know, it had that not happened, you know, it would have just been business as usual. You know, her busy with her job and me busy being on the road and being gone, we wouldn't have had as as much time to like, be face to face and connect and talk. And I mean, honestly, like hiking is pretty much what we did, because that kind of kept us sane. She lived up in Asheville, North Carolina, and I live down here in Spartanburg, South Carolina. So I drive up the mountain and we go hiking almost every day. And that was just a great way to get out in the sunshine and just learn about each other. And that's how we fell in love. So

Trevor Tyson  9:09  
I love that man. And I know that a lot of people know you as Joey from disciple. But I don't really want this to be a disciple like based conversation if people want to hear that there's several interviews you've done, where you talk about the band in particular, but I really want to talk about like, when you got birthed into this planet, there was obviously a calling on your life to be a drummer. And you know that now but I want to know the story behind Joey West, like, not necessarily Joey West, the drummer but Joey west as a person and a drummer, like drumming is something you do it's not your identity, your child of God all the good things, but would you mind just sharing your life story with us and help us understand like how you become the man you are today?

Joey West  9:56  
Yeah, I mean, you know, I don't I don't feel like I have Have any like, you know, impressive story? does? You know it's, uh, I mean, I was born at Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, one of the most beautiful places in the world. I'm a coastal kid, I always want to be back at the beach, being three hours from the sand right now hurts my heart a little bit, you know, because I'm always trying to get back to the sand and get to the water. But, you know, I'm an only child, I didn't have to share love with any other siblings. Like, uh, you know, I was, my parents decided, like, this child is perfect. And we don't need any more like, we can just stop. And so. So yeah, I grew up an only child. So I was very close with my parents who are two of the most kind, loving and generous people in the world. And, you know, I would say, like, growing into the man that I am automatically is like, I point to them, because they really, really shaped who I was the compassion that I grew to have in my heart, the love I had for people. And I mean, honestly, dude, like, dad's job moved us to Spartanburg when I was like, six, I believe, and I grew up in this town, did all the normal things, went to middle school, went high school, marched some drum line, you know, fell in love with drums, and went to college for four years for what

Trevor Tyson  11:30  
I know to go to college to study.

Joey West  11:33  
I graduated with a degree in Radio Television producing with a minor in film and photography, because I thought I wanted to be a radio show host and I actually interned at a local radio station here in Spartanburg while I was in college and quickly figured out, that's not what I wanted to do. You know, it was it was cool being on the mic doing like the live shows and whatnot, but I was just like, I want to be out like playing I want to go tour and you know, at the time, I was working at a Christian hardrock rap alternative station and I was spinning disciple songs before I was ever in the band. I was I was a huge fan of disciple. So while I was in college, you know, I was just kind of bouncing around doing the school thing, not really sure what I wanted to do, I was playing at a church that, you know, fortunately paid their musician. So I was able to, like, start making a living off of drums at a younger age about 19. And, you know, graduated college at 21. And I just thought I was just gonna play in church for the rest of my life. And then I got, you know, to where I was like, man, like, I love this. But also I have this dream of like, I want to go tour, I want to go see the world and see what I can do with this music thing. And in 2011, I lucked out and just through connections, got an audition with the indie pop rock band after Edmund, who was based out of Atlanta, Georgia. And I basically got that job by knocking down the door of Mitch the lead singer. I annoyed him so much after I submitted my my audition tape on YouTube, I was like 13th in line, and they shot mine to the top. So Mitch could get me to stop texting him. And I've always kind of had that mentality where it's like, hey, the person that knocks the hardest is probably going to get in, you know, like, at least they're gonna get the door open. Not saying that the opportunity is going to happen. But I was like, at least they'll know who I am if I'm a little bit annoying. And so they moved my audition tape up to watch it. And then they were impressed. And Mitch called me he was like, he's like, You were kind of annoying me. He's like, but after watching your video, I'm kind of glad you did. And so I started playing with him. toured with him for two years and then that band just kind of you know, everybody was wanting to do different things. And after Edmund just so happened to be opening for disciple and one of the last runs we ever did in America. And so we got to open for disciple for like nine shows, I want to say.

And it was like a short little two week run and disciples drummer just so happened to be leaving the band. So Kevin saw me play and was like, Hey, man, what are you doing after this after admin thing, I'm like, floating around, you know, probably just go get a random job, you know, to pay my bills and everything. And he's like, Well, he's like, I'd love for you to come audition for disciple. And then I auditioned. And I mean, I was nervous, so nervous, I did not think that it was going to ever work out and then they called back and gave me the job and I just couldn't believe it, you know, and I started with them at the beginning of 2014. And, you know, here I am eight and a half years later, kind of in all that just being in the right place at the right time. God just looking out for me and you know, putt putt me exactly where I needed to be. And through all that, you know, I was growing up to, you know, I was, I come from a long history of dealing with with mental health issues with depression and anxiety that started, I can pinpoint it back to about the 10th grade in high school. And, you know, it was really bad in high school got a control over it for a little bit in my early 20s. And then it was like, when I hit like 25, or 26, it was like a mountain fell on me. And, and so through this whole time of like touring and being in bands, I was also like dealing with, you know, personal issues and trying to make myself better. And, you know, all those experiences is as painful as some of them were even in church or out on the road or whatnot. Like, all that pain just compounded and taught me so much about life, and it grew my character. So nice. Now, as a 33 year old man, I can look back, like whenever I go through painful experiences, now I'm like, Okay, I've felt this pain before. And this is what I learned last time. And here's how I can better deal with it this time. And, and I know that that's just going to keep stacking on the older I get. However many years I have left on this earth, I hope that that stuff keeps compounding to where every time I faced something more difficult or challenging or whatnot, I can look back and be like, Okay, I was prepped for this. I've been through this pain before, I've been through this challenge before. And I just hope that my character continues to, you know, just compound and get better as as I live on. So I would say I mean, I don't I don't know if I've really covered who I am. But you know, like, I'm just an imperfect dude who like, happens to play drums and got very lucky and was in the right place at the right time. And I don't consider myself to be anything special. You know, I always say like, I get up and put my pants on the same way everybody else does. And I tried to live my life like that way I treat everyone like that. You know, because there's no, there's no stage or status that's ever going to fill me up and keep me satisfied. And there's no, there's no amount of Instagram followers, there's no amount of money it's never going to satisfy. Because, you know, we think there's like always this number or this thing we're trying to achieve. And it's like once you get it, it's like how quickly that feeling fades, you know where it's like, okay, now I need more to be happy. Now I need more to be happy. And so I gave up on that a long time ago. I was like, man, you know what, if I've, if I've got like, if I'm happy and secure in who I am my identity in Christ, I've got a loving family. I've got a loving wife. Like, that's, that's all I need to hang my hat on at the end of the day. And I can I can sleep great at night. You know, I don't need anyone affirming me or, or telling me great job. I mean, I like to hear those things, obviously. But you know, it's it's one of those things like I'm not, I'm not needing that anymore, like I did when I was younger. So

Trevor Tyson  18:08  
well, there's so many things I want to touch on. Like, yeah, we'll go back to high school and talk about drumming and all that good stuff. But the touch on what you were talking about with mental health. That's something we talk about quite a bit on the show. And that's kind of why I started it because I had gone through a season of anxiety and depression and like letting it take over my life. And when we met at Joshua fest, they were like the first people like I guess it was 2018 when they had like the bigger one y'all played mainstage like outside the year before the 2019 one. So they were the first ones that invited me after my whole like anxiety depression spew after I graduated high school. Like before I graduated high school, I was doing events all the time, I started struggling with anxiety and depression. My senior year. And Joshua festivals, a first festival Aaron from their crew reached out I was like dude, like, come on out. And I accepted it went through therapy thought I was ready got there like right before I introduce y'all the first year like dude, I hit it pretty well. But like I was behind the stage throwing up, like, behind trailers like of just panic attacks and stuff. But God helped me make it happen, right? Yeah. And so so many people out there struggling with anxiety and depression and they feel like the same way I did and you have in your life. It sounds like like, we don't know exactly what's going on in us. But it doesn't feel right. But we shouldn't let it take our lives over. And I can speak from personal experience. I know that it's a whole lot easier said than done. But there are things that you can implement in your life to help you get through those. For me it was therapy, medication, a lot of prayer, a lot of fasting and just seeking God through it. And that sounds cliche to say and I I know there's unbelievable unbelievers that are listening to the show. And they're like, dude, this whole God thing isn't me, but like, it's me. And I'm not gonna hide it like, yeah, exactly. I've found a personal relationship, and that works for me. But from a personal experience, man, like those things are often shied away from in conversation, especially with dudes. Yeah, because it seems very wimpy. But it's not like it's not why do you think we see so many people dying by suicide that are on these huge public platforms, they're on these huge platforms, looking out at the seas of people, telling them that life is good, let's go party or smoke some whatever, and just live a good life and they get home and there, they have nothing. Like they sacrifice all their friendships for the fame and the money that they thought was going to heal them. And it doesn't so right all that to say, like, even down to the high school senior like me at the time that was struggling, like, people are hurting, and they're broken. But for you in particular, one thing I want to map out, before we dive into your story, again, is you've even had like a body transformation over the past few years, right? Yes. And getting into like p90x and bulking up, it hasn't always been a thing for you. Like you've been very vocal on your journey to getting there. But when it comes to mental health, how has getting your physical health and shape help helped strengthen your mental battles?

Joey West  21:27  
Yeah, dude, it's impacted it so much. I remember going to the doctor. What year was it, I want to say it was either 2017 or 20 2018. And just doing a normal checkup. And, you know, it's kind of like one of those things where I didn't realize, like, how unhealthy I had gotten, you know, because you just kind of just kind of get used to looking at yourself in the mirror. And I was never really like, other than playing drums, I was never really one that like went out and just went on a walk or intentionally worked out, you know, I was that I was that gym guy that would join at like the New Years, it'd be like, new year new me, you know, and it's like, never works. It's a new year, but it's the same you like you're still the same person like you, but you got to do the work. You know, and you know, it lasts for like a week or two. And then you know, I'd give up just because I get frustrated or get down on myself. But I went to the doctor, I just did like a normal, you know, checkup and in my bloodwork, there was some scary stuff, like some numbers that were off in my liver. And I mean, you want to talk about ramping anxiety through the roof. You know, like, here in here in numbers at a doctor like I already have, like, health anxiety, like white coat syndrome, I hate going to doctors, hospitals, like I get woozy walking in the door. They're like, fill out this paper and I'm like, is it okay? If I lay down and fill out this paper? Like I'm that I'm that kind of worse when it comes to medical stuff. And from what from a bunch of friends that I talked to there's a lot of men like that in that boat. So, so yeah, that that was kind of like a wake up call. Because my doctor was like, you know, he's like, this is this is concerning. He's like, but he's like, there's ways to fix this. And he's like, I can either get you living dependent on medication for the rest of your life, because I come from a pre diabetic family, like, my grandfather had type two diabetes and all that. So we're at risk for that stuff. We have to, we just have to watch that stuff, my dad and all that. And he was like, he's like I can, he's like I can get you set up to where you're going to be reliant on pills for the rest of your life. He's like, but he's like, I would love for you to give it a shot, and try to go about the natural way of like healing your body and all this stuff. And he's like, and also when it comes to your mind, he's like, I think you're going to find that this is going to help you a lot with that. So I just took that man and I used it as motivation. I was like, You know what, I can't do a single pull up right now. But I'm just going to start and so I started doing p90x three, which is the 30 minute version of p90x and it sucks like that. 30 minutes is the most brutal 30 minutes ever. But you know, I went from you know, not being able to do a pull up and kind of beat myself up and feeling like a failure to busting out 15 Pull Ups and I went from 215 pounds down to 180 pounds, you know, I lost 35 pounds and you know, I fluctuate now because you know, like, different life things happen. You know, I got COVID last year and that totally took me out of the workout game. I lost a ton of weight because of COVID just slap this thing over your my bed. You're good man. Yeah, I lost a ton of weight with that very unhealthy weight. And I lost my taste and smell for like a month. So when all that came back, I was just eating anything and everything. Because I was like Oh, I'm If I missed the taste of cookies, I missed the taste of, you know, pasta and all this stuff. So I was like crushing it. And a couple months ago, I was like, I probably need to get back on this working out thing, so I don't show up at the doctor and he'd be like, What did you do to yourself? So, so yeah, once I started working out, and I stopped being so dang hard on myself, and um, and when I say that, I say that loosely because I still am my own worst critic. And I spend a lot of days speaking death into myself, and I'm trying, that's one thing I'm working on right now is like speaking, positivity and life into myself. Because if we're constantly being negative on ourselves, like, we're not going to go anywhere, like there's a ton of power of life and death and the tongue that I'm learning.

But yeah, so when I started, when I started working out, like, I started kind of gaining a little more confidence, I felt better, you know, I felt, you know, clothes were fitting better. And like, mentally it started helping me. But honestly, like, even that, like it started helping, but I still was not at a place where I was like, I feel okay. You know, so I went and talked to my doctor, I don't, if I'm talking too much, you can totally show your good man. But how I kind of went about it, I went back to my doctor. And he was like, so how are you feeling? I was like, I feel much better physically, I was like, but I still just have my days where mentally I just, I cannot get out of this. Like, it just feels like an anvil sitting on my head and I just too much weight on my shoulders. I don't know what's going on. And he was like, he's like, okay, he's like, there's some there's another blood test we can do. He's like to determine like, you know, rule out a few factors. Well, they did this blood test called MTHFR. And it, I couldn't explain what all that means. If if you're out there listening, definitely google it. But this blood test talks about mutations in people's DNA. And I think, if I'm correct on this, a human can have up to three mutations at a time in their DNA. Most people commonly have to, and the other portion of people have one, I was in that other portion where I only had one mutation in my DNA. Well, this blood test pointed to that mutation in my DNA, my brain does not create the chemical, methyl folate, which is a chemical that helps neurotransmitters go wherever they go. But it controls stress, anxiety, and mood. And so I'm starting to sit there with my doctor and figure out like, Okay, some of this is self inflicted some some of this anxiety and depression is because of bad choices I've made in the past things that I still feel guilty for, you know, there is some of this that's self inflicted. And I've got to, like, face that, deal with it and own it. But there is also this other factor over here of, Hey, I can't control this over here. And I'm starting to get answers like, okay, my brain does not my or my body is not producing the certain chemical that helps with this. So what do we need to do to get this, and methyl folate is a natural substance that they put in a vitamin, and you know, in vitamin form, so my doctor is like, he's like, let's start pumping your body full of 15 milligrams of methylfolate a day. And let's see how that goes. And he told me, he was like, he's like, it's going to take about six months for you to feel like the effects of this because it's gotta like, get in your system, and your body's kind of got to process it and all that. And he was right, you know, six months, I was just, I was taking it every day just being like, God, please. Like, is there anything that's going to happen from this? And dude, about the six month mark, it was as if my life completely 180 lead, and I was starting to be able to handle things better in my mind. I was and not to say, I don't have bad days, you know, like, sure. It wasn't, it wasn't like it just cured everything. And all of a sudden,

Trevor Tyson  29:09  
they need him did not slap you in the face. Inhale you there. Exactly,

Joey West  29:13  
exactly. You know, it's not it's not every day, I'm just walking on rainbows and sunshine, and everything's just fine now. But my body was starting to get the chemical that it needed to produce these neurotransmitters that when a stressful situation, or a sad situation, or a anxious situation came my way. My mind was in a place where it was firing on all cylinders. And it was like, Okay, I'm not going to worry until there's something to worry about. You know, because I am a worrier. I've always been that way. And you know, I'll lose sleep over stuff. You know, if I feel like, a person's mad at me or something. I've lost tons of sleep in my life over that. Yeah. But yeah, you know, it was so awesome to start figuring out like okay, I've spent so many years being like, what's wrong with me? Like, what? Why am I this way and blaming myself and, you know, saying, there's something wrong with me, I'm damaged goods and all this, and then I'm starting to figure out like, Yo, I'm not any of those things like, there's, there's a lot of this, like, I have no control over. And I thank God for doctors and these blood tests and this technology to be able to look into this and be able to tell like, Oh, hey, you know, it's as simple as your body is just not producing this chemical, and it needs a little bit of help. And then, you know, on the other side, like I said, there's also stuff that I have to own there's stuff that I have to take responsibility for, because I'm a human being, I've made 1000s of mistakes in my life, just like everyone else, I have a ton of regrets. I have things that I still guilty for these days. But, you know, I have to look at those and be like, you know, what, yes, I did that. God's grace is sufficient for me. And, you know, move forward and try not to repeat the same mistakes ever again, like leave leaves in leave mistakes in the past. And, and so, so yeah, I mean, like, it was so freakin cool. That my doctor, instead of like, telling me like, you know, we're just going to give you this, and it's going to fix you in five minutes, because he told me that he could do that. And he's like, he's like, and you might need that he's like, but I want you to try the natural way, first. Sure. And I tried the natural way first, and it and it produced great results for me. Now, that's not to say the people that need the stronger stuff or something to help fix them in five minutes. That's wrong. Because it's not like, that's a beautiful thing that helps a lot of people and I am in full support of it, and had that natural way not fix me, I would have gone that route too, you know, but those were the things that I figured out about myself. It was like, Dude, if I'm out in my garage or in in my living room, and I'm doing something difficult everyday, putting myself through the wringer like heaving on the floor, you know, like, out of breath, dripping sweat. If I do that every single day, I've accomplished something very difficult that I don't necessarily wake up wanting to do. I'm not one of these people that enjoy working out. I hate it. I do not enjoy it. The least I enjoy it either. And the people who love it, I'm like, You guys are crazy. Like y'all got like a mental screw loose because I hate it. But but man after doing something difficult, it leads to okay, what's my next task of the day, I can do that, you know. And then if I face something challenging throughout the day, again, here it is like a one action compounds on to another to where it's like, Okay, I did that. I made it through it. I have confidence now. And so if another situation arises, like you mentioned, my, my wife's car situation, when that arises, it doesn't throw me into a frenzy of panic and stress. It's like, I've dealt with something difficult today. And this is just another difficult thing that I've just got to figure out. And the best thing for me to do is remain calm and just walk through it, you know.

Trevor Tyson  33:11  
And so it's so powerful to hear. I think for people to hear that mental health, like issues for se, aren't always mental, like these things can be chemical imbalances. You absolutely need extra vitamins you need, could need to get blood work taken. You could need Zoloft or some sort of medication to help you regain control of your body. Right. So for the longest time, mental health was had this huge stigma wrapped around it, like, Oh, they're just overreacting. They're just doing this. They're just doing that. But there's this whole thing that people need to grasp onto and it's like, yeah, it's okay to not always be okay, but it's not okay not to get help for it, right. Yeah, exactly. What indirectly gonna happen is you're just gonna keep diving and diving into this dark rut and it's like, let's talk about it. Yes, have two dudes sitting here you got a crazy amazing bear to shirt on, which I respect the crap out of because I love bear tooth saying but let's have a conversation about mental health. Like you're a whole lot larger than I am. That's why I called you a monster at the beginning of this loss or your rip like, you rip through the drums like nobody's business. And let's have a conversation. Right? And for someone out there to hear that, okay, Joey was going through it but it wasn't all worry. It wasn't all just something that's being made up in your head. Or it was a chemical imbalance that you needed in your life.

Joey West  34:43  
It's so crazy. Like there's so many situations where people even just different health issues. It sometimes comes down to literally like if your body get just gets the vitamins that it was intended to get. Like, whether that's through food, or supplement, like it fixes so many situations. It seems like I'm even on vitamins for other issues in my life, like, you know, even controlling my pre disposition to is that is that a word? Did I say that right predisposition to

Trevor Tyson  35:13  
we're gonna we're gonna be I have no clue. Yeah, me neither,

Joey West  35:17  
you know I graduated college so now it's my world I can play in it make up words if I want. So here we go. So yeah, so my I guess my I don't even know what word I'm looking for the potential for me to get diabetes, the vitamins that I take along with my exercise, it keeps my blood sugar perfect and I don't have to take like blood sugar pill or anything like that. So it's crazy how much that stuff helps for sure. And another thing too, like just while I'm on this, you talk about like the mental health stigma and kind of being seen as weak. I used to think that way too. And, you know, I think that's why when I was younger, I didn't really want to like, talk about it, or, you know, it wasn't whatever. But as I got older and like, especially when I got into a band where people just assume that we have like, the most glamorous life and everything just goes perfect for us. And nothing bad happens to us. And because people only see us on stage for an hour and a half, two hours at night. They see they see a tour bus and they're just like, Oh, you must be millionaires. Oh, you must be like, you know, eating the finest foods and go into the coolest places. And it's like, yeah, occasionally, like we do get to see some cool places. Occasionally, we do get to eat some cool food. But dude, when we're out on the road, we get calls from home, Hey, your Grandma's not gonna make it. That happened to me, you know. And then all of a sudden, we're we're literally cutting our show short. I'll never forget this. We were in Alabama, we cut our show short. We were supposed to headline that night, the band that was playing before us, let us go before them. And we played like six songs. And then the crowd actually helped us load out all of our stuff and get our trailer loaded. So I can make it home to say goodbye to my grandmother, before she passed away. So like real life still happens to us. And for me, I was like, You know what, I want to break this stigma of like, just because I'm on stage, my life is perfect. It's like I want like all these people who connect with our music or if any of our songs have helped people, which I know it has, because I've heard countless stories. All these people who connect to this music, I'm like, I want y'all to know that the guy up here playing these songs is just like you like, and it's okay. And I've heard from so many people. They're like, Hey, thanks for being open about your mental health stuff. Because that helps me knowing that I'm not alone in this. And there's just there's power and talking about stuff. Because whenever we put it out there, it's not in here. And it's not, you know, sitting on our shoulders, like there's so much release, and just talking about it or like getting with a friend that we trust and just be like, Hey, I've been feeling weird, or I've been feeling crappy about this. And I just, I just need to voice it and do wait just falls off of you. So that's where I got to just being open about, hey, you know what, I go through this stuff, man, I have some pretty bad days, there's days where I don't want to get out of bed. There's days where I feel like, you know, every breath is gonna be my last and I'm in panic attack mode and whatnot. And it's like, you know, if it can help other people, if, if anything about dealing with this unfun stuff, this pain can help other people, then I want to use that I want to life's too short to not use the pain and the good to help others, you know, so yeah, just trying to capitalize on you know, dude, making people feel less alone, because this world has done a very good job at making people feel isolated. Especially like through social media. So many people feel like, oh, god, look, they're on this beach. And he's got this perfect girl over here. And wow, look at that car and all this. And it's like, you're only seeing the highlight reel of everybody's life. So you feel like you look at your own life. And you're like, oh, I don't have any of this cool stuff. And it's like, in reality, they don't either. That's just a highlight moment, you know? And so it's just trying to make people feel like, Hey, we're all in this together. We're all normal human beings. And it's fine. It's fine. Like, let's keep let's keep marching forward together.

Trevor Tyson  39:20  
Yeah, we have to keep marching forward together. And it's ironic that we live in one of the most connected times and everyone does feel alone. Like I've never felt more alone than walking on the street in Times Square in New York City. All by myself, like you have literally millions of people around you at all times. And nobody really cares to see the person in front of them. They're just like face forward go into the destination doing what they have to do. They're irritated with traffic irritated with this like, and they let it out on each other and it's so damaging. And especially with social media, like you said, everyone feels like they have to compare their lives. To someone else's. And that's something I've even struggle with, like, Man, I wish I could do that, or I wish I can do that. And so many people struggle with it. But to kind of shift the conversation a little bit for you, as a touring musician, you often get asked, How can I do what you're doing one day? What is your response to people and kind of like a call to action for those who strive to do music full time.

Joey West  40:22  
Man, I feel like whenever I talk to young musicians, always tell them, you know, like, just play music because you love it. You know, where, where I'm at right now, I didn't have a formula or ever set out to get to the position that I'm in. And where it all started was me playing in my bedroom for hours on end, to my favorite songs. pod is my all time favorite band, I had like this mom and dad had this Bose sound system that was like this tall tower. And I would turn it up to 10. So I could hear the music and drum along with it. And I would just do this for hours on end. And I mean, there were so many years where I just played drums in my bedroom, much like this drum kit sitting in my bedroom, I would just play because I loved it. I didn't have a band to play for I didn't have people to play for other than my parents and my grandparents occasionally when they came over, you know, I just played because I loved it. And then it just kind of led me to where I'm at. And I always tell young musicians to I'm like, hey, you know what, like, don't sit around and just be like, lazy in your life. You know? And like, cuz the stereotype and there are musicians like this, they'll they'll live in their mom's basement be like, I'm just waiting on this opportunity. But what are they doing all day, they're like, they got their hand and a bag of Cheetos and other hand on the Xbox controller and they're just doing that all day thinking that I'll just wait around for the next opportunity. And maybe like one and a trillion chance that those there that will work out for somebody, but I'm just like, dude, like, you know, take care of your responsibilities play music because you love it. You know, if you got rent to pay and musics not paying the bills, go do go do whatever you got to do to pay the bills, like you know, don't abandon your responsibilities just because you think like, oh, well, I deserve, you know, to be making music off this. Like, if it's not, like take care of everybody deserves

Trevor Tyson  42:25  
anything like that dude, like, nobody deserves it. And I'm much like you like, I'm the guy that's gonna bust in and kick the door down where I can lie. Yeah, I started volunteering at like winter jam events like over 10 years ago, and just kind of slowly progress and networking and everything to get to where I'm at today. And God uses that, like, if you're willing to sweep up the floor, he's gonna give you access, as well. But if it's not his will, which goes into my next question, Are you actively pursuing an idol that you have? Or you're calling? And so to kind of wrap that into a question? If someone is idolizing being on stage drumming like you, when they're actually called to carry the sticks? Or deliver the gospel message through speaking or something completely different than that? How can you differentiate the difference between idolizing a platform and being called to something? Mm.

Joey West  43:21  
Think that my that question feels above my paygrade I'm not sure. You know, for me, man. Like, whenever I was like chasing music, I would always pray, I'm like, God, if this is not what you want me to do, let it blow up. You know, like, you have the ultimate control of my life. And if I'm pursuing something that you don't want me to pursue, I pray that you just like, just make it not work out. And lead me to where you want me to go. And so that's kind of how I've operated. It's like, you know, there's always say, like, if you're, if you're in something, and you don't question like, Yeah, six times a week, am I doing what I'm supposed to be doing? You're probably not doing the right thing, you know? Because like, There's definitely times where I'm on the road where I'm like, Is this really what I'm supposed to be doing? Like, because, you know, like, missing my wife now and all that, you know, I've had those questions. But I'm like, Dude, I'm gonna do this until the Lord tells me to like stop, or he brings about another opportunity and says, Okay, this is where I want you to go now. So I think that yeah, man, it's so hard because you know, I firmly believe that if God calls you to something, or he has something for you, or that he's going to put you there one way or the other, and we can go willingly or we can go kicking and screaming, and sometimes, sometimes I totally, I guess, I believe in, I guess, the free will. And there's like a bunch of theology stuff. I'm not like super versed in theology. So this isn't me trying to get in into a theology debate with anybody. But I guess I believe in the freewill stuff to where God Sometimes we'll just let you kind of go do what you want to do. And be like, Okay, you want this so bad? Well, I'm gonna let you go figure it out for yourself. And sometimes we get ourselves in a situation that's like, oh, I can see why I was not supposed to be here originally. But in those moments to man, God is so loving, like He lets us learn sometimes it's kind of like a parent, letting a kid learn how to walk, like, that kid is gonna fall down and bust his face, you know, a bunch, but sometimes you just gotta let them do that to where like, they're learning, like, okay, like, I don't want to feel that again. So their brain and body's kind of adjusting to like, Okay, now I'm walking. And just like a loving parent, like, anytime we fall down or go down the wrong road or make a mistake. You know, the parent that has the kid fall while they're trying to learn how to walk. They're not going over there and just like blast, and I'm like, Oh, you suck. You, you, you can't walk and all this stuff. It's like, No, you're going over there and you're picking up the baby. It's like, hey, let's try this again. Like, I love you. Like, let's try this again. And that's how I've always viewed my relationship with Jesus is like, I'm just constantly learning how to walk. And when I fall down, he's a loving father that walks over. He's like, picks me up on my hands. It's like, sets me back on my feet. Like, alright, take another step. Like, I love you. Like, let's try this again. And so I don't even know if I'm answering the question at this point.

Trevor Tyson  46:25  
From Uncle Joey, yeah.

Joey West  46:27  
But I also do believe like, in this might be getting off of the idolize thing. One thing I've always said to myself is, or reminding myself of is being faithful in the small things, always will lead to bigger things. Because I firmly believe that when we show God like that, if he gives us a little, if we're irresponsible with that, or we're taking that and just being like, you know, ungrateful with it, like, oh, I deserve more than this, blah, blah, blah, like, probably not going to break out of this, because it's like, God can't trust you with more like, you're gonna go off the deep end over here. But I've always believed, like, whatever opportunity, like if it's sweeping a floor, or taking out the trash at a church, or whatever, I've always believed in those opportunities, where it's like, do that to the best of your ability, like, do that 100% To the best of your ability, with the most joy and passion that you can muster up and do it well. And, God in those moments, I think that that handling those small things that we're giving faithfully, God's like, oh, my gosh, well, I can trust him with a little bit more. And then there's going to be a bigger job opportunity. Like I've seen people go from taking out the trash at church to where they're like people recognize and like, that dude's attitude is amazing. Like, we've got to have him on our staff. And all of a sudden, he goes from just taking out the trash to, oh, here's a paid position for you, where you're caring for people, and then they go on to you know, maybe eventually plant a church or, you know, whatever it is. And so that's something I always keep in mind for myself. And I've always done with even music. It's like any opportunity I've gotten, I've wanted to give 100% of my effort to it. I don't care if I'm playing for five people or playing for 50,000 people. And even with disciple, there's some nights we play for 50 people, and that's okay. And there's some nights that we've played for 10s of 1000s of people on winter jam, and I mean, all that stuff in between, it's like if I'm, if I can't perform for 50 people, at 100%, there's no way I'm going to get in front of 50,000 people and perform 100%. So that's why like, anytime I step on stage, I go as hard as I possibly can. There's some nights I might be off because I'm tired, or maybe I'm sick or whatnot. But I'm gonna give 100% of my best because I'm like, You know what, all this again, is compounding to where it's like, I'm being faithful with what I've been given. And I'm gonna let God do the rest. And my future is in his hands and I'm not gonna really worry about it. I'm just gonna do the best what I have right here. And, you know, I worked I worked all those small jobs. Like I started scooping ice cream at 14. I worked at UPS loading trucks from 2am to 9am. I've worked in a textile plant. I've worked at Hollister, I've worked at Mo's burritos I've worked at there's something else in there a Christian bookstore, my senior year of high school selling disciple CDs, it just all, it all has come full circle. You know, it's kind of crazy, but remaining faithful in the small things, dude, I've always been such a firm believer in that. You know, and it's not. It's not one of those things where I'm like, well, if I'm faithful, and this guy is gonna give me more it's like, no, I'm just I'm just happy to be here. And I'm just going to give the best that I can be the best of myself to every situation. And if something more comes of it great and dude, if I'm still doing this, at least I know this is where God's got me in If that's what he wants me to do, you know, and again that makes me sleep well very well at night.

Trevor Tyson  50:06  
And how wild is it you go from selling disciples CDs but in their albums or the records at the radio station to playing full time in a band that's such a testimony on its own. I was like that's I didn't know that about you at all. Yeah. And so they hear that it's like, that has to be encouraging like if it's encouraging for me I can only imagine like the Joey West diehards in the rebel society here in those being like, dude, what? Thank you for being so vulnerable. And just sharing your story in depth, I think that a lot of people are going to hear it or I know for a fact people are going to hear it and be like, dude, like, I can I like God's told me to do this. And I've been withholding from doing it because I'm scared. But I actually want to pursue this thing. So I'm in to kind of close this thing out. What would the message from Joey West be for that person that is working that nine to five job and pursuing their calling? Just on endurance and just treating this thing as a marathon? not a sprint? What's the message from Joey West?

Joey West  51:13  
I firmly believe every single human being was created for a purpose. You know, there is a, there is a reason why, when you look down at your hand, your fingerprints are the only one of its kind, you know, so. Not everybody's calling is going to be the same. It's not, you know, in the world has definitely put stigmas on different things where, you know, you got rockstars, playing in front of 10s of 1000s people, I'm not, I'm not that Rockstar, like, there's plenty of people who far exceed anything that I've been able to accomplish. And there's probably people who don't live that life that see that glamorous life, and they think, oh, you know, like, maybe they just going back to the trash, maybe they pick up trash, like for a trash company or something. And they just think like, Oh, I'm not, I'm not worth as much as this person. And that's like, the least true thing ever. Like, there. There is something inside of every single person that I believe God has predestined for them to do. And the finger prints are unique to you. Your personality is unique to you, your gifts, your abilities, they're unique to you. And so why sell yourself short on the comparison game, like, you've got to be you at all costs, because that's who God created you to be created you in His image. And whenever we start putting down ourselves, we're actually putting down the creation that God, you know, made. And I think that kind of breaks God's heart. So my message would be, Hey, man, look down at those fingerprints, and just know, these are the only one of its kind. And no one else can do what you do like you do it. There's no one else on this planet that can do what you do. Like you do it, you know, like, for me, was just relating it to me. When I play the drums, I play like Joey West plays drums. Am I the best drummer on the planet? Absolutely. Not super far from it. No, that is not it's not true skill wise. There are people that run like circles around me. And that's totally fine with me because I have a personality and I have a voice behind the drum kit that when I get behind there, it's like I'm playing like myself. Now if all I'm doing my whole life is trying to be like Matt Greiner, and all that it's not going to work out because I'm not Matt, I don't have his fingerprints. I don't have his personality. Matt is one of the most incredible drummers to ever walk the face of the planet. And I admire that and I want to learn from him. I always want to be learning from people, you know, it's not, I'm over here in my little basket, like, no, don't teach me how to play drums. Don't tell me how to play drums. It's like, No, I will. I want to like learn how to get better. But the day that I start trying to be someone else, it all is going to fall apart because I'm going to be constantly trying to find my identity and things that aren't me. So find the thing that you love, find the thing that you do well and just do it. Do it because you love it. And you know what, like, if you're working a job where you're picking up trash or you're you're working a job where you're you're serving food, people, food to people do it with 100% of your ability, your personality, because let me tell you something, you can make a difference in those jobs man like a waitress waiter. You could be serving food to someone who is going through something who might be sitting at their last dinner where they've decided I'm going to go home in my life tonight. And the kindness and the the appreciation that you showed to your customer or the Excellence in which you like, serve the food and like tell them like You know, whatever, you never know, that could keep someone on this earth longer just by you giving 100% at whatever you're doing. So always be aware that you are valuable and that you have something to offer and that you can make a difference literally doing anything. Literally anything. It does not matter it. It really you don't you do not have to be on a stage to make a difference. You do not have to put out a record to make a difference. Like you have the ability to make a difference and impact people's lives doing what you do best.

Trevor Tyson  55:34  
Man What an amazing episode that was with the one and only Joey west of disciple. Now honor and glory. If you haven't picked up the new Honor and glory record, it is available everywhere and honor vor and disciple both have some amazing merch bundles going on on their websites, which will link in the description below. Special thank you to Joey for even coming on and making this episode happen. And if you're struggling and feel like you're in a place where you just need someone to talk to, I do want to end this episode with giving you some resources that are readily available to you at all times. Our friends at heart support, death to life organization, the Crisis Text Line and the teen hope line beneath the skin. These are all resources that are free and readily available for you. If you're in a time of crisis. We love you so much here at Trevor talks, we strive to bring you some amazing content, some amazing interviews, some amazing stories, as you know real people real topics, real stories until the day this thing ends and we love you guys so much. Thank you so much for joining us for this episode and we'll talk to you guys next week. Bye now
Joey WestProfile Photo

Joey West

Joey West is the drummer for Dove & Grizzly Award winning rock band 'Disciple'.