Neil Young urges Spotify workers to quit, says Joe Rogan is not the problem

Click to play video: 'Joni Mitchell joins Neil Young, pulls music from Spotify over Joe Rogan podcast'
Joni Mitchell joins Neil Young, pulls music from Spotify over Joe Rogan podcast
Joni Mitchell says she stands with Neil Young and has decided to remove all her music from streaming giant Spotify over their shared concerns regarding 'The Joe Rogan Experience' podcast, which also streams and is hosted on Spotify. – Jan 29, 2022

Neil Young continues on his anti-Spotify crusade, this time urging the company’s employees to quit their jobs as well as calling on creators and artists to stop using Spotify as a platform for their art.

Young penned a missive for his official website Monday, telling Spotify employees to “get out of that place before it eats up your soul.”

Several musicians, including Young and Joni Mitchell, have pulled their music from the streaming service, citing what Young called podcast host Joe Rogan’s vaccine “disinformation.”

Rogan apologized last week amid a backlash against COVID-19 misinformation on The Joe Rogan Experience; Spotify, which has exclusive hosting rights for the podcast, said it would add a content advisory to any episode featuring discussion of the virus.

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Rogan, a mixed martial arts commentator and former TV show host, has stirred controversy with his views on the pandemic, vaccines and government mandates to control the spread of the virus.

In his latest letter, Young also took aim at Spotify CEO Daniel Ek, who said last week that it was not Spotify’s job to “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.”

Click to play video: 'Spotify grapples with artist backlash over COVID-19 misinformation on platform'
Spotify grapples with artist backlash over COVID-19 misinformation on platform

“To the workers at SPOTIFY, I say Daniel Ek is your big problem – not Joe Rogan. Ek pulls the strings,” he wrote. “The only goals stated by EK are about numbers – not art, not creativity.”

Young urged musicians and other creators to “find a better place than SPOTIFY to be the home of your art.”

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He also called on baby boomers to “ditch the companies contributing to the mass fossil fuel destruction of Earth,” and proceeded to encourage people to take their money from JPMorgan Chase & Co., Citigroup Inc., Bank of America Corp. and Wells Fargo & Co.

Rogan has issued two apology videos in the past week – the first addressing the COVID-19 misinformation, and a few days later apologizing after footage resurfaced of Rogan using the N-word repeatedly in past episodes.

In his apology, Rogan said the montage showed him using the epithet in conversations on shows over the last 12 years, and included examples of him discussing its use by Black and white comedians and others. He said he had not spoken it in years.

Rogan said it was the “most regretful and shameful thing that I’ve ever had to talk about publicly.” During the video, Rogan said the footage had been taken out of context, but looked “horrible, even to me.”

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Spotify has pulled 70 episodes from its platform at the request of Rogan’s team, who wanted Rogan’s “racially insensitive” language taken down, reports Variety.

In a statement Monday, former U.S. president Donald Trump encouraged Rogan to “stop apologizing.”

“Joe Rogan is an interesting and popular guy, but he’s got to stop apologizing to the Fake News and Radical Left maniacs and lunatics,” Trump said in a statement.

“How many ways can you say you’re sorry? Joe, just go about what you do so well and don’t let them make you look weak and frightened,” he said. “That’s not you and it never will be!”

In a tweet on Monday, Rumble offered Rogan $100 million over four years should he choose to part ways with Spotify – essentially matching Rogan’s exclusive multi-year contract with Spotify, which reportedly has paid Rogan $100 million for the rights to his podcast.

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During a standup show in Texas Tuesday evening, Rogan said has no plans to leave Spotify.

“No, Spotify has hung in with me, inexplicably,” Rogan said in answer to an audience member’s question about whether he was entertaining Rumble’s offer, reports The Hollywood Reporter. “Let’s see what happens.”

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