Spotify will no longer stream the music of Neil Young. For what it’s worth, he asked for it.
One day after the musician expressed in a now-deleted post on his official website that he no longer wanted his music on the platform over its relationship with divisive podcast host Joe Rogan’s comments about Covid-19 vaccinations, the company says it honoring Young’s request.
“We want all the world’s music and audio content to be available to Spotify users. With that comes great responsibility in balancing both safety for listeners and freedom for creators,” a Spotify spokesman told The Washington Post in a statement. “We have detailed content policies in place and we’ve removed over 20,000 podcast episodes related to covid-19 since the start of the pandemic. We regret Neil’s decision to remove his music from Spotify, but hope to welcome him back soon.”
In his post, Young asked his managers and record label to remove his music from Spotify because he said the music and podcast platform is “spreading fake information about vaccines – potentially causing death to those who believe this disinformation spread by them.” (Rolling Stone originally reported the text of the post.)
“I want you to let Spotify know immediately TODAY that I want all my music off their platform,” the 76-year-old said in Monday’s post, according to Rolling Stone. “They can have Rogan or Young. Not both.”
On his podcast, Rogan has made frequent false and inaccurate claims surrounding vaccines and Covid-19. Earlier this month, a group of more than 250 scientists, doctors and nurses penned an open letter to Spotify condemning the streamer for platforming Rogan and calling on Spotify to warn its listeners about misinformation.
“The Joe Rogan Experience” was Spotify’s most popular podcast globally in 2021, according to Variety. It became a Spotify exclusive in 2020, when Rogan signed a multi-year exclusive licensing deal with the streaming servic.
CNN has reached out to Young’s manager, his publicist at Warner Records and Spotify for comment.