Joey Scarborough shares 5 lessons his dad taught him

Joey Scarborough (l.) and dad Joe Scarborough on the set of Morning Joe
Joey Scarborough (l.) and dad Joe Scarborough on the set of Morning Joe
Drew Katchen |

As we approach Father’s Day, we here at the Mo Joe blog asked Joe’s son, Joey, to cobble together some of the lessons he’s learned over the years from his dad.

By Joey Scarborough

Things I learned from my father:

Music is a much better outlet than golf
Outside his religion, his family and his country nothing inspires my dad more than music. He instilled in me at a young age that the Beatles are the Alpha and the Omega and that Joe Strummer, Elvis Costello and Thom Yorke are inspirational figures in their own right. Through writing thousands of songs and playing in bands for the last thirty years, he has been able to find a satisfaction that I have been able to relate to ever since he got me my most valued possession - a black squire Strat - for my tenth birthday.

Listen twice as much as you talk
From his temperament on his show to his responses to my youthful rebellion, naïve arrogance and other obligatory mindsets of the angst-ridden teenager, my dad has taught me that you are only capable of learning and evolving when you are open to new ideas. Also, much like the great Ronald Reagan, it is much easier to succeed when your opposition underestimates your intelligence.

Always remember where you came from
Despite all the complications of his schedule, there was nothing more important to him than heading down to his hometown of Pensacola after it was ravaged by Hurricane Ivan. Earlier this summer, he quickly responded to promote and assist relief efforts in Tuscaloosa after his alma mater was devastated by tornados. He even made it his personal mission to get Nick Saban [the head coach of the University of Alabama’s Crimson Tide football team] hired when Tuscaloosa was devastated years earlier by the Mike Shula era.

Don’t be discouraged by failure
My grandfather went to painstaking lengths to put food on the table for my dad’s family throughout the sixties, but used every rejection from potential employers as added motivation to wake up the next day and work even harder. That mindset has empowered my dad to never take anything for granted and perform as well as he is capable in all aspects of his life. My brother and I (and my younger brother and sister will soon take notice) have seen it first hand and know the dedication it takes to be great at something. After we beat him in basketball last Sunday for the first time in his life, he spent hours shooting baskets in the driveway, because he knew he could get better. If he can’t out rebound me anymore, he understands the importance of developing an outside jump shot.

Make use of the seven-second delay
Make use of the seven-second delay.

Joey Scarborough shares 5 lessons his dad taught him