Neil Young to Spotify Workers: Quit ‘Before It Eats Up Your Soul’
Neil Young continued his battle against Spotify, encouraging other artists to follow his lead and remove their music from the platform, while also suggesting employees of the streaming giant should quit.
“To the musicians and creators in this world, I say this: You must be able to find a better place than Spotify to be the home of your art,” he stated in a letter posted to his Neil Young Archives website. “To the workers at Spotify, I say [company CEO] Daniel Ek is your problem — not Joe Rogan. Ek pulls the strings. Get out of the place before it eats up your soul. The goals stated by EK are about numbers — not art, not creativity.”
This war with Spotify has been going for weeks now. On Jan. 24, Young demanded that his music be removed from the platform in protest to their support for The Joe Rogan Experience, a popular yet controversial podcast that has come under fire for promoting misinformation surrounding COVID vaccines.
“They can have Rogan or Young. Not both,” he famously said at the time.
Spotify complied, pulling Young’s catalog of music, as he had requested. Several notable musicians soon followed suit, with Joni Mitchel, Nils Lofgren and Young's CSNY bandmates David Crosby, Stephen Stills and Graham Nash all removing their material from the streaming platform.
While further artists continued voicing their opinions on the matter, Spotify made changes to combat medical misinformation. Approximately 70 of Rogan’s podcast episodes were later removed due the host’s unrelated use of the N-word, however the show – which is exclusively heard via Spotify – continues.
“I want to make one point very clear — I do not believe that silencing Joe is the answer,” Ek has explained. “We should have clear lines around content and take action when they are crossed, but canceling voices is a slippery slope.”
Though many predicted this battle with Spotify would cost Young significant money, statistics show a reverse effect. The singer-songwriter has actually seen his total streaming numbers substantially increase in the last two weeks (via other outlets like Apple and Amazon), while Young's album sales rose 80 percent following his ultimatum to Spotify.
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