Neil Young Loses Chicken Game With Spotify
Neil Young Loses Chicken Game With Spotify
“Well, I hope Neil Young will remember/That Spotify don’t need him around anyhow.” (With apologies to Lynyrd Skynyrd).
Dinosaur rocker Neil Young didn’t want his music to be on the Spotify streaming service along with Joe Rogan’s podcast. It’s because, he said, Rogan is sharing Covid misinformation.
So on Monday he posted an open letter on his website asking Spotify to remove his music from the platform:
“I am doing this because Spotify is spreading fake information about vaccines — potentially causing death to those who believe the disinformation being spread by them. Please act on this immediately today and keep me informed of the time schedule.”
“They can have Rogan or Young. Not both.”
Well, apparently someone on Team Young got cold feet since the letter had disappeared as of Tuesday.
But he returned! On Wednesday Young posted another diatribe at his website. Called “In the Name of Truth,” it started with this broadside:
“SPOTIFY has recently become a very damaging force via its public misinformation and lies about COVID.”
“SPOTIFY has become the home of life threatening COVID misinformation. Lies being sold for money.”
Then Neil Young made good on his threat. On Wednesday he had Spotify remove his music.
So how did the streaming service respond?
Basically like this:
Credit: Sherdog Forums.
Okay, they weren’t quite that flippant. However, Spotify was much more gracious than Neil Young was. After claiming that they’ve already “removed over 20,000 podcast episodes related to Covid since the start of the pandemic,” they issued this basic PR statement:
“We regret Neil’s decision to remove his music from Spotify, but hope to welcome him back soon.”
Spotify had good reason not to fret over Young pulling his tunes from their service. That’s because in 2015 he took his music down from all major audio streaming services, including Spotify and Apple Music. He had a snit over the sound quality on streaming. But, he quietly returned. Money walks, you know.
Frankly, I think the biggest problem with sound quality is in Neil Young’s singing. His voice sounds like what would result if Yoko Ono and Alvin the Chipmunk had a love child. And I’m old enough to remember him in his (ahem) “prime” during the 1970’s.
Or, as Dana Loesch once tweeted:
My stepdad likes Neil Young. I always thought Neil Young had the vocal tonality of a dying cow fart. He’s also hard of hearing. My stepdad.
— Dana Loesch (@DLoesch) June 17, 2015
Simply because “The Joe Rogan Experience,” to which Spotify has exclusive rights, is the Number One podcast in the world. Rogan attracts 200 million listeners each month, while Neil Young has a little over 6 million per month.
Not only that, but the response from social media was: Who is Neil Young?
But if anyone thinks that Neil Young is making an enormous financial sacrifice for the “truth,” consider this: one year ago Young sold 50% of the publishing rights to his entire song catalog to Hipganosis Songs Fund, a UK investment firm. The deal was worth a cool $150 million, and gives the firm worldwide copyright and income interests from 1,180 songs Young wrote.
Yep, always follow the money.
After the Spotify breakup, Young posted two letters thanking his label Warner Records/Reprise and Hipganosis for their support. However, Forbes reported that Hipganosis did not respond as to whether or not they would actually honor Young’s request to pull his music from Spotify. That could be interesting. As I said above, follow the money.
Among the young-and-dumb liberal denizens of Twitter, Neil Young is a hero for Truth.
in a world of Eric Claptons, be a Neil Young https://t.co/SEwikg4P1F
— shauna (@goldengateblond) January 25, 2022
However, those of us who are old enough to remember Young as a bloviating hippie with a whiny attitude and voice to match know that he’s pushed his own scientific misinformation.
Neil Young has been a member of the anti-biotechnology movement, which began in the 1990’s in opposition to GMOs — genetically modified organisms. In fact, in 2015 he released an entire album, “The Monsanto Years,” completely composed of protest songs against GMO agribusiness. To accompany the album, Young also released a short documentary entitled, “Seeding Fear” (get it?). He also appeared on “The Late Show with Steven Colbert,” which was a train wreck.
Colbert cited scientific evidence that GMOs were safe. To which Young replied:
“That must be a Monsanto study that didn’t notice the terrible diseases and all of the things that are happening.”
Whereupon a man dressed as a GMO corncob came on stage, asking Young “why do you have to label me?” Young told him:
“I don’t normally like to label things but you’re so dangerous, and you’re dangerous to me personally and my family, and the rest of the planet.”
That was cringey. Imagine telling a guy in silly costume that he’s “dangerous.” But that episode also reveals Neil Young’s hypocrisy when it comes to Covid vaccines.
That’s because vaccines use genetic engineering. And while Young railed against people eating genetically-modified foods, he wants to force Covid shots into everyone’s arms. So through his ranting against GMOs a few years ago, he set the stage for Covid skepticism, which is something he can’t tolerate in people like Rogan.
What a hypocrite.
So Neil Young’s music has now disappeared from Spotify. The question is: will anyone miss it? After all, it’s not as if aging hippies won’t be able to stream his cranky protest music at services like Apple or Amazon Music.
Just wait a while. Young has a history of pulling bombastic stunts like dumping out on Spotify before, only to come back. He’s narcissistic enough to think he still speaks for truth and justice to all generations. Meanwhile those under 30 ask Who’s Neil Young? And many who are older probably didn’t know he was still alive.
Go away, Neil Young. And don’t let the back door hit ya.