Ag Huff

Written by Ag Huff

Modified & Updated: 01 Jun 2024

Jessica Corbett

Reviewed by Jessica Corbett


Jann Wenner, the renowned co-founder and publisher of Rolling Stone magazine, is a celebrity in his own right. With a career spanning several decades, Wenner has made an indelible mark on the world of music, journalism, and pop culture. His influence and achievements are nothing short of extraordinary. In this article, we will delve into the fascinating life of Jann Wenner and uncover 24 remarkable facts that showcase his immense talent, entrepreneurial spirit, and iconic status. From his early days as a student to the creation of one of the most influential music publications in history, Jann Wenner’s journey is a story worth exploring. So, let’s dive in and discover the incredible world of this legendary figure.

Key Takeaways:

  • Jann Wenner co-founded Rolling Stone magazine in 1967, shaping music journalism and pop culture. His vision combined music and politics, creating a platform for iconic interviews and societal discussions.
  • Despite controversies, Jann Wenner’s leadership transformed Rolling Stone into a global authority in music and pop culture. His commitment to emerging artists and critical discussions secured the magazine’s lasting impact.
Table of Contents

Jann Wenner co-founded Rolling Stone magazine.

Jann Wenner, alongside Ralph J. Gleason, launched Rolling Stone magazine in 1967, making it one of the most influential publications in music and popular culture.

He was born on January 7, 1946, in New York City.

Jann Wenner was born and raised in Manhattan, laying the foundation for his future success in the media industry.

Rolling Stone magazine started as a small newspaper.

Initially, Rolling Stone began as a small newspaper in San Francisco, catering to the counterculture movement of the 1960s.

Wenner had a vision to create a magazine that focused on both music and politics.

Unlike other music publications at the time, Jann Wenner had a unique vision to combine the worlds of music and politics in Rolling Stone, creating a platform for both cultural and societal discussions.

The first issue featured John Lennon on the cover.

The debut issue of Rolling Stone magazine featured none other than John Lennon on the cover, solidifying its commitment to covering influential musicians and artists.

Wenner expanded Rolling Stone’s coverage beyond just music.

Under Wenner’s guidance, Rolling Stone’s coverage expanded to include politics, pop culture, and social issues, making it a comprehensive source of information for its readers.

He interviewed numerous iconic figures for Rolling Stone.

Jann Wenner conducted interviews with iconic figures such as Bob Dylan, Mick Jagger, and Bruce Springsteen, providing readers with unique insights into the lives and careers of these legendary musicians.

Rolling Stone faced legal challenges throughout its history.

From controversial articles to lawsuits, Rolling Stone faced its fair share of legal battles, but Jann Wenner remained steadfast in defending the magazine’s journalistic integrity.

Wenner played a vital role in promoting emerging artists.

Throughout his career, Jann Wenner actively sought to promote and support emerging artists, giving them a platform to reach a wider audience through Rolling Stone.

He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

In 2004, Jann Wenner was recognized for his significant contributions to the music industry and was inducted into the prestigious Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Wenner launched the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Foundation.

Jann Wenner played a pivotal role in establishing the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Foundation, an organization dedicated to preserving the legacy of rock and roll music.

Rolling Stone faced controversy due to false reporting.

There have been instances where Rolling Stone faced backlash for publishing articles with inaccurate information, causing damage to the magazine’s reputation.

Wenner’s leadership helped Rolling Stone withstand financial troubles.

Amid financial challenges, Jann Wenner’s strong leadership and strategic decisions helped Rolling Stone overcome obstacles and remain a prominent publication in the industry.

He stepped down as editor-in-chief of Rolling Stone in 2017.

After five decades of leadership, Jann Wenner stepped down as the editor-in-chief of Rolling Stone magazine in 2017, passing the torch to the next generation.

Wenner received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Society of Magazine Editors.

In recognition of his outstanding contributions to the magazine industry, Jann Wenner received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Society of Magazine Editors in 2003.

Rolling Stone launched its website in 1995.

Realizing the significance of the digital revolution, Jann Wenner oversaw the launch of Rolling Stone’s website in 1995, expanding the magazine’s reach to a global audience.

Wenner published a memoir titled “Sticky Fingers: The Life and Times of Jann Wenner and Rolling Stone Magazine.”

In 2017, Jann Wenner released his memoir, providing readers with an intimate glimpse into his life and the evolution of Rolling Stone magazine.

Rolling Stone faced criticism for its lack of diversity.

Over the years, Rolling Stone received criticism for its lack of diversity in its coverage and editorial staff, prompting discussions on inclusivity and representation.

Wenner sold a majority stake in Rolling Stone in 2017.

Seeking new opportunities and ensuring the magazine’s continued success, Jann Wenner sold a 51% stake in Rolling Stone to Penske Media Corporation in 2017.

He married his longtime partner, Matt Nye, in 1995.

Jann Wenner has been in a committed relationship with fashion designer Matt Nye since the mid-1990s, and the couple eventually tied the knot in 1995.

Wenner’s son, Gus Wenner, became involved in Rolling Stone.

Gus Wenner, Jann Wenner’s son, joined the Rolling Stone team and played a significant role in the magazine’s digital expansion and adaptation to the changing media landscape.

Rolling Stone celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2017.

In 2017, Rolling Stone magazine marked its 50th anniversary, commemorating half a century of influential music journalism and cultural impact.

Wenner faced controversies related to the #MeToo movement.

Jann Wenner faced allegations of sexual misconduct from several individuals, highlighting the pervasive issue of sexual harassment in the media industry.

Rolling Stone continues to be a prominent voice in music and pop culture.

Despite the challenges and changes in the media landscape, Rolling Stone magazine remains a leading authority in music, entertainment, and pop culture, securing its place as an iconic publication.

These extraordinary facts about Jann Wenner provide a glimpse into the life and career of the influential co-founder of Rolling Stone magazine. Through his visionary leadership and dedication, Wenner transformed the world of music journalism, creating a platform that celebrated not only the sound but also the social and political movements of the time. From its humble beginnings as a small newspaper to its evolution into a global publication, Rolling Stone under Wenner’s guidance has shaped the cultural landscape and influenced generations of music enthusiasts. While facing controversies and challenges, Wenner’s commitment to promoting emerging artists and providing a platform for critical discussions has solidified Rolling Stone’s status as a prominent voice in music and popular culture. As we celebrate the 24 extraordinary facts about Jann Wenner, we also acknowledge the lasting impact he has made on the world of media and the legacy he leaves behind.


In conclusion, Jann Wenner is undeniably one of the most influential figures in the celebrity and entertainment industry. With his visionary leadership, Wenner has created a lasting legacy through the establishment of Rolling Stone magazine and his relentless pursuit of excellence in journalism.

From his early days as a young entrepreneur to his success as a media mogul, Wenner’s journey has been marked by numerous accomplishments and groundbreaking decisions. His ability to identify and promote talent has been instrumental in shaping the careers of countless musicians, actors, and writers.

Through his fearless and bold approach to covering cultural and political events, Wenner has left an indelible mark on the history of American media. His passion for music, his keen editorial eye, and his unwavering commitment to the truth have earned him the respect and admiration of both his peers and the public.

In short, Jann Wenner’s extraordinary career is a testament to the power of passion, drive, and determination. His countless contributions to the world of celebrity and entertainment have forever changed the landscape of popular culture.


Q: How did Jann Wenner start his career in the entertainment industry?

A: Jann Wenner started his career in the entertainment industry by founding Rolling Stone magazine in 1967. He started the magazine with a small loan and a mission to create a publication that would cover the emerging rock and roll scene.

Q: What is Jann Wenner’s contribution to the field of journalism?

A: Jann Wenner’s contribution to journalism is immense. He revolutionized the way music and cultural events were covered by bringing a new level of detail and authenticity to the stories. He also introduced long-form interviews and investigative reporting, setting the standard for quality journalism in the entertainment world.

Q: How has Jann Wenner influenced the careers of celebrities?

A: Jann Wenner has played a significant role in shaping the careers of numerous celebrities. Through Rolling Stone magazine, he provided a platform for emerging musicians and actors to gain exposure and build their fan base. He also championed artists who may have otherwise gone unnoticed, helping them achieve mainstream success.

Q: What is the significance of Rolling Stone magazine in the entertainment industry?

A: Rolling Stone magazine has been a cultural touchstone for music, entertainment, and pop culture enthusiasts for over five decades. It has provided in-depth coverage, interviews, and analysis of artists and cultural icons, shaping the way audiences consume media and influencing popular culture trends.

Q: How has Jann Wenner’s leadership impacted Rolling Stone magazine?

A: Jann Wenner’s leadership has been instrumental in making Rolling Stone magazine a leading publication in the entertainment industry. Under his guidance, the magazine has remained relevant and influential, adapting to the evolving media landscape while maintaining its commitment to high-quality journalism.

Jann Wenner's extraordinary journey showcases his passion for music, journalism and cultural impact. Dive deeper into the world of rock 'n' roll by exploring fascinating facts about The Rolling Stones, learning about legendary artists inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and discovering how pop music has shaped our society. Wenner's legacy continues to inspire generations of music enthusiasts, making these related topics essential reads for anyone curious about the history and influence of popular music.

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