Neil Young’s Music Returns to Spotify After 2-Year Feud Over Joe Rogan

March 13, 2024 - Music


Neil Young Ends 2 Year Boycott With Spotify Over Joe Rogan Podcast Misinformation Claims

Neil Young.
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Neil Young’s music catalog has returned to Spotify, marking the end of the musician’s two-year feud with the streaming service.

“Spotify, the #1 streamer of low res music in the world — Spotify where you get less quality than we made, will now be home of my music again,” Young, 78, announced in a statement via his website on Tuesday, March 12. “My decision comes as music services Apple and Amazon have started serving the same disinformation podcast features I had opposed at SPOTIFY.”

Young announced he was removing his work from Spotify in January 2022 in protest of the company continuing to distribute “The Joe Rogan Experience” podcast. At the time, Young accused Joe Rogan of spreading misinformation about the COVID-19 pandemic and vaccines on his podcast. Rogan, 56, signed his latest podcast deal last month, which renewed his multi-year deal with Spotify, but also allowed for his podcast to be streamed on other services such as Apple Music and Amazon Music, according to Variety.

Unlike Young’s previous decision to take his music off of Spotify, he wrote on Tuesday that he can’t do the same with other streamers “because my music would have very little streaming outlet to music lovers at all.” As a result, he’s returned to Spotify with “sincere hopes that Spotify sound quality will improve and people will be able to hear and feel all the music as we made it.”

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He continued: “I hope all you millions of Spotify users enjoy my songs! They will not all be there for you except for the full sound we created.”

After Young pulled his music in 2022, Spotify cofounder and CEO Daniel Ek wrote an open letter.

“We know we have a critical role to play in supporting creator expression while balancing it with the safety of our users,” Ek’s statement read. “In that role, it is important to me that we don’t take on the position of being content censor while also making sure that there are rules in place and consequences for those who violate them.”

Neil Young Ends 2-Year Boycott With Spotify Over Joe Rogan Podcast Misinformation Claims
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Ek, 41, also revealed that a content advisory would be added to podcasts that discussed the COVID-19 pandemic.

Rogan subsequently responded to the controversy via an Instagram video, stating he did not believe any episodes of his podcast contained “dangerous misinformation.”

“Many of the things we thought of as ‘misinformation’ just a short while ago are now accepted as fact,” he continued. “I do not know if [my guests] were right. I’m not a doctor, I’m not a scientist … I’m interested in having interesting conversations that have differing opinions. I’m not interested in talking to people that have one perspective.”

Rogan went on to clarify that he had no bad blood with Young specifically, adding, “I’m a huge Neil Young fan.”

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At the time, several creators and celebrities, including Joni Mitchell and Sophia Bush, followed in Young’s footsteps and removed their content from Spotify. As of March 2024, all but one of Mitchell’s albums is back available on Spotify, while Bush, 41, has since resumed airing her “Work in Progress” and “Drama Queens” podcasts on the app.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, who had a deal with the streamer at the time, also took a stand against Spotify’s alleged spreading of misinformation.

“Last April, our [Archewell] cofounders began expressing concerns of COVID-19 misinformation on its platform,” a spokesperson for the couple shared in a January 2022 statement. “We have continued to express our concerns to Spotify to ensure changes to its platform are made to help address this public health crisis. We look to Spotify to meet this moment and are committed to continuing our work together as it does.”

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