Last month, Neil Young got into a dustup with Spotify that resulted in the streaming service dropping his music in favor of keeping Joe Rogan’s podcast. Now, the legendary musician is using his voice to issue more unique appeals.
In a post on his website Monday, the “Heart of Gold” singer urged Baby Boomers to withdraw their money from big banking corporations in order to help the environment. He also asked musicians and creators to join him in pulling their works from Spotify and told Spotify employees they should quit their jobs.
“In our communication age, disinformation is the problem,” Young wrote, adding it’s time to “ditch the misinformers.”
“To the baby boomers, I say 70 percent of the country’s financial assets are in your hands compared with just about 5 percent for millennials. You and I need to lead,” the 76-year-old continued. “In our age of Climate Chaos, I say ditch the companies contributing to the mass fossil fuel destruction of the Earth.”
The activist musician then listed Chase, Citi, Bank of America, and Wells Fargo as the major corporations responsible for funding “fossil fuel damage even as the global temperature keeps climbing,” and asked older Americans to join him in moving their money away from those “damage causers.”
Then, Young turned his attention to Spotify.
“To the musicians and creators in the world, I say this: You must be able to find a better place than Spotify to be the home of your art,” he wrote.
He wasn’t done there.
“To the workers at Spotify, I say Daniel Ek is your big problem — not Joe Rogan. Ek pulls the strings. Get out of that place before it eats up your soul,” Young said. “The only goals stated by EK are about numbers — not art, not creativity.”
The singer issued an ultimatum last month demanding that Spotify either remove episodes of “The Joe Rogan Experience” from their catalog or remove his music. The company opted for the latter.
In an email to staff this week, Spotify CEO Daniel Ek shut down further calls for the wildly famous podcaster’s content to be removed.
“I want to make one point very clear — I do not believe that silencing Joe is the answer,” Ek said. “We should have clear lines around content and take action when they are crossed, but canceling voices is a slippery slope. Looking at the issue more broadly, it’s critical thinking and open debate that powers real and necessary progress.”
Rogan is an immensely popular figure in American politics and pop culture. However, he has come under fire from the left in recent months over his support for controversial COVID-19 treatments and expressing skepticism about the transgender agenda.