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Tuesday, February 08, 2022

Neil Young to SPOTIFY Employees: "Get out of that place before it eats up your soul." | NYA

VIEWPOINT: Neil Young Archives
(Click photo to enlarge)

As the "COVID Years" rage on, Neil Young has issued another statement on his battle with SPOTIFY.
In a VIEWPOINT editorial on Neil Young Archives, he writes:

"In our communication age, disinformation is the problem. Ditch the misinformers.
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. The only goals stated by EK are about numbers—not art, not creativity."

To quickly recap, last month, Neil Young published a letter on his website Monday afternoon demanding that SPOTIFY remove all of his music due to Joe Rogan's "vaccine disinformation"And shortly thereafter -- all hell broke loose here on this blog and elsewhere. (See here, here and here) The magnitude of all of this was so great that even Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young reunited -- although only on paper -- in their opposition to SPOTIFY. 

Statement by David Crosby, Graham Nash, and Stephen Stills 
image via Rusted Moon
(Click photo to enlarge)

Neil also wrote that he would be moving his funds from top U.S. banks (specifically, Chase, Citi, Bank of America and Wells Fargo) because they continue to fund the fossil fuel industry:
"... ditch the misinformers. Find a good clean place to support with your monthly checks. You have the real power. Use it."


"Cough up the buck$", as Neil Young once sang, or maybe "transfer the buck$"?! 

As Neil Young fans well know, Neil is quite acquainted with what lies deeply within one's soul as evidenced by his song "Campaigner".  The song contains the enigmatic lines:

"I am a lonely visitor 

I came too late to cause a stir 

Though I campaigned all my life towards that goal 

I hardly slept the night you wept 

Our secret's safe and still well kept 

Where even Richard Nixon has got soul 

Even Richard Nixon has got Soul"

The song's lyrics to "Campaigner" have been altered over the years in concert to fit the times.  For example, from 1991-02-16, Memorial Auditorium, Buffalo, New York, USA | Sugar Mountain, Neil Young sang:

"Where even Ronald Reagan has got soul

Even Ronald Reagan has got it 

Where even George Bush has got soul 

Even George Bush has got it 

Muhammad Ali had it 

John F. Kennedy had it 

Marilyn Monroe 

I know my mama had it 

Jet fighter pilots got it 

Linda Lovelace had soul 

I know my brother has it 

Put your hand on the new guys 

Stand up and you got it" 

"Who will save your soul?"
Daniel Ek, co-founder and chief executive officer of Spotify ... or ..
"the new guy"?

Clearly, while Nixon, Reagan, Bush, etc had souls, SPOTIFY's CEO Daniel Ek's -- and his employee's -- soul status is in doubt. 
"Mr. Soul" 
Neil Young, Nils Lofgren & Bruce Palmer - Berlin 1982 
"Oh, hello Mr. Soul, I dropped by to pick up a reason 
For the thought that I caught that my head is the event of the season 
Why in crowds just a trace of my face could seem so pleasin' 
I'll cop out to the change, 
but a stranger is putting the tease on." 
And again, who better to ask the question than "Mr. Soul" himself -- Neil Young?

Merck Mercuriadis - Founder, Hipgnosis Songs Fund Limited
But maybe the more appropriate question is whether Merck Mercuriadis (Founder, Hipgnosis and owner of 50% of Neil Young's catalog) has a soul?

"Campaigner" was the Song of the Day on the Neil Young Archives  on September 7, 2018.  "Campaigner", from the 2017 album Hitchhiker, includes a newly relevant verse deleted from the version that appeared on 1977's Decade

"The speaker speaks, but the truth still leaks."

But what does Neil Young know about politicians anyways? Or, what do politicians know about Neil Young?

Neil Young in "Mansion On The Hill" video - 1991

And further more, what does Neil Young really know about the human soul and it's existence?  Well, quite a bit, actually.

"Did God give me my voice so that others could silence me?"
Neil Young sings "When God Made Me"
Live 8 Benefit Concert - July 2005

In 2015, Neil Young issued a statement on Donald Trump's use of the song "Rockin in the Free World" during his U.S. presidential candidate announcement, plus comments on The Monsanto Years by Neil Young + Promise Of The Real.

"I choose to speak Truth to this Economic Power. When I speak out on corporations hurting the common man or the environment or other species, I expect a well financed disinformation campaign to be aimed my way.

Such is the case with the reaction to my new album The Monsanto Years, which covers many of these issues. I support those bringing these issues to light and those who fight for their rights like Freedom of Choice.

But Freedom of Choice is meaningless without knowledge.

Thats why its crucial we all get engaged and get informed."

The Monsanto Years by Neil Young + Promise Of The Real


More on "Campaigner" and the album Hitchhiker.

More on the Joe Rogan and Neil Young controversies swirling about below.

Neil Young and Joe Rogan

Labels: , , , ,


At 2/08/2022 02:10:00 PM, Blogger PreciousDust said...

Neil, I took your advice and quit to save my soul, now my baby can't eat, please send money.

At 2/08/2022 03:44:00 PM, Blogger medward said...

Old man yelling at the music cloud

At 2/08/2022 04:46:00 PM, Blogger Jonathan said...

I wonder when the last time was when Neil had to worry about paying his bills?

The disconnect is now staggering & has reached epic levels of stupidity

Eric Clapton squandered his legacy years ago - but not for this dumb shit like this

Dylan has been silent as far as I know

I thought this was about COVID so-called 'vaccine' disinformation?

Then it was allegedly about sound quality...

Now banks that do business with fossil fuels are = with Spotify?


In a previous life, Neil would have been in Ottawa supporting the truckers against the mandated tyranny that sissy-boy Trudeau is bringing to the Canadian people/working class

Can we just get Archives III on order please?



At 2/08/2022 05:09:00 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

The gilded horse rides into the night
The eagle flies a darkened flight
The earth, the sky, the sun, the moon
The creatures are asleep but soon.

The river cries into the sea
The sound of silence from all thee
The hand of fate, the velvet glove
The Lord above still gives the love.

Stay the course Neil. You alone decide
what is for you. Rock on.


At 2/08/2022 06:46:00 PM, Blogger The Metamorphic Rocker said...

On a distinctly unrelated note, I’m working on a LP-length play list combining Trans and LOW tracks. After a lot of experimenting, the current list is:

Side one:

1. Computer Age
2. Sample and Hold
3. I Got a Problem
4. Pressure
5. Hold on to Your Love

Side 2:
1. Violent Side
2.Hippie Dream
3. We are in Control
4. Transformer Man
5. Touch the Night

43 minutes.

Thoughts? Wanted to focus on the vocoder part of Trans, sorry Like an Inca didn’t make it.

At 2/08/2022 06:59:00 PM, Blogger Dan Swan said...

@ Ian: I’ve been away from the madness for awhile, but I must say that your sequencing is perfect just the way it is. I personally would move anything around, as the ebb and flow seems spot on.

Peace 🙏

At 2/08/2022 07:45:00 PM, Blogger Tomatron said...

Ian, super rad playlist. Most of my comments around here are ambitious-playlist-related, so, respect. I do find a line of continuity between those two albums, connecting them with maximum tensile strength. For a while I had crafted one that was like an expanded Lucky Thirteen with all my faves of Neil’s 80s output. It got deleted once I fell in with LOW as a whole, rendering the playlist obsolete. Now with playlists I’m more in an Archives mindset (since the release of Vol II) which is more inclusive than selective, to the great delight of my friends and family. Neil talked about putting out the Trans EP with just the vocoder tracks. What I’m craving is an expanded edition of Trans that would reintegrate If You Got Love to it’s original seat as well as any additional tracks from those sessions and all of the Island recordings!

At 2/08/2022 07:45:00 PM, Blogger Richie Cruz said...

I'm sure all the employees at Blackstone and Hipgnosis Songs are all just dripping with soul, right Neil?

And how bout those Canadian truckers? I bet a lot of those folks have spent a lot of their hard earned money on your music. A comment about what's going on up there might be cool.

Btw, I just listened to a 3 minute clip of Joe Rogan talking to an Indian comedian about why The Simpsons have basically eliminated the character of Apu because of cancel culture. It's possible I lost a little bit of my soul, but I really can't tell just yet.

At 2/08/2022 08:41:00 PM, Blogger The Metamorphic Rocker said...

Thanks for the responses. I’ll probably keep experimenting later. Yes, by all means, bring on Trans EP, (Johnny’s)Island in The Sun, and whatever else may be in the vaults.

As to the Simpsons, I just wish we’d stop attaching our sense of society’s progress (or lack thereof) on these things. Much less our souls! I mean no disrespect, but I wish people see more of this culture war nonsense for the facile distraction it is. Obvious, superficial wedge issues designed to goad people into voting for certain candidates who don’t actually give two hoots about any of our values.

“Don’t forget love.”

At 2/08/2022 08:56:00 PM, Blogger Abner Snopes said...

I love that song "Hard Luck Stories." I enjoy the transformation of a cliche.

At 2/09/2022 01:24:00 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

I always thought Spotify sucked, but I sure didn't know about these soul-eating qualities. Perhaps all Spotify employees could go work for Neil-approved Amazon Music?? I am sure Jeff Bezos would take really good care of all their souls. It's way more fun listening to high audio bitrate levels while peeing in a bottle.

btw, why do all these big corp CEO's seem to look like Bond villains in the making. Bezos, Ek, and especially the guy running GoFundMe. Do you lose one hair every time you screw your employees over or what?

At 2/09/2022 04:15:00 AM, Blogger ViP said...

@Ian nice list, I don't see how to improve on it. I guess you went with the CD/'Lucky Thirteen' 8'03 version of 'Sample and Hold'.

Btw after a years-long infatuation with 'Weld', I seem to have now fallen into an 'In Berlin' obsession. Is anyone aware of other good recordings of the same tour/era ?

At 2/09/2022 07:13:00 AM, Blogger Harm said...

@Ian: I'd replace Hold on to Your Love for Computer Cowboy and Violent Side for Hard Luck Stories.

At 2/09/2022 10:03:00 AM, Blogger Abner Snopes said...

Get under the surface just a bit, I mean just scratch it, and in the US system we see a grotesque inequality in wealth and pay, continuously perpetuated by US Corporations and the useless stooges in political office. It is not hard to see "corruption on the highest floor." Much of this inequality in generational wealth and current income is closely tied to race. The CEO of Spotify, well I don't know him, but I know I would be fired from my job for such disgusting use of slurs (that have vast historical significance). Talk radio, podcasts, so much of that stuff is a total waste of the human spirit. Try reading a book. Someone who values money over human worth and human dignity is, by definition, a soulless scrap of spreadsheet.

Secondly, much of US system is denying climate change and spewing CO2, methane and nitrous oxide. We are not even close to controlling emissions responsibly. Blame Biden, I don't care.

At 2/09/2022 02:11:00 PM, Blogger Dan Swan said...

@ Abner : I think we’re all to blame, because as a species we’ve been programmed to react, rather than think independently. Some have seen the big lie for what it is, while others are still stuck in the tape loop of Us vs Them. This tape loop will result in our self destruction if more people don’t wake up, and recognize that they are being manipulated in order for those in power to profit from their ignorance.

Peace 🙏

At 2/09/2022 03:19:00 PM, Blogger Abner Snopes said...

Dan, I totally agree, this is a "species problem" and specifically, a lack of awareness with respect to our own limits and natural limits. Immature species.

At 2/09/2022 03:29:00 PM, Blogger Dionys said...

Hey guys, don't be so pessimistic.

Currently yet another title in my imaginary library of books that no one will ever read is taking shape: "The Case for Neil Young Being a True Neo-Romanticist - A Transatlantic Dialogue" written by the Thrashers' Wheat Sanity Collective. I have started with the obvious and go through the lyrics in search of romantic symbols. Have gotten as far as "The Moon" up to letter B (Songs beginning with B) and then got lost in listening to music. Other typical romantic symbols will be "The Window" or "The Noble Savage". But there are many more, of course.

Actually it will be more difficult to identify albums, that do not contain at least one moon in one of their songs. That's not surprising, most of them if not all have been recorded under a full moon (very conventional wisdom).

Even when totally exhausted at the end of a tour, Neil Young wrote
“Lights are shining in the German sky
Cosmic walls between the moon and I
Don't know where I started from
So won't you take me, take me, take me, take me,
Take me, take me, take me, take me,
Just the way I am Ah, take me, just the way I am
After Berlin.”

I am through with the daily grind for tonight and there is some Cabernet-Sauvignon waiting.

At 2/09/2022 05:25:00 PM, Blogger Dan Swan said...

& Dionys : Thanks for the post, it brought a smile. Much appreciated. ‘Thrashers Wheat Sanity Collective’ was especially gratifying.
I truly enjoy the efforts from the ‘Collective’, attempting civility with knowledge and wisdom. Enjoy the Cabernet and I look forward to reading your next post.

Peace 🙏

At 2/09/2022 05:32:00 PM, Blogger Dan Swan said...

Also… A wonderful article on NYA’s Contrarian under ‘Viewpoint’ concerning our rights towards our fellow humans and our rights to free speech. Definitely worth a read for everyone who has posted here over the last week or so.

Peace 🙏

At 2/10/2022 03:20:00 AM, Blogger Steve L said...

Just noticed a new concert performance has been launched on the NYA site - from the Solo Trans tour. Buffalo, Feb 1983.

At 2/10/2022 04:23:00 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

We need so much alternative voices to the pharmaceutical complex with their legion lobbyists! Robert Malone should be heard! It is against human rights to coerce silence. What about bringing good arguments?

At 2/10/2022 02:55:00 PM, Blogger Abner Snopes said...

Unknown, do you want us to believe that science in the U.S. is "group think"? Have you ever seen the peer review process or been to a scientific conference?

Big Pharm is one thing, virology is quite another. And, to work on arguments, here is a tip on what is called "validity." Just because Robert Malone is an "alternative voice" it does not follow that we need to listen to him.

Secondly, just because x and y choose not to listen to z, it does not follow that z's right to free speech has been violated (in any sense).

In a sound deductive argument, if the premises are true then the conclusion must be true. Some of what you say fit inductive forms a little better.

At 2/10/2022 02:58:00 PM, Blogger Dionys said...

Unfortunately all you get is a much needed alternative voice criticising the underinformed part of the American audience and their toxic re-iterations as to the capacity of Mr. Malone, who is a RNA specialist with great merits regarding cancer therapy, but not a pandemic expert.

At 2/10/2022 04:18:00 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

You totally nailed it.

At 2/10/2022 06:39:00 PM, Blogger Richie Cruz said...

Of course, if x or y demanded that z no longer be allowed a platform to state z's views, then that is a direct attack on z's ability to have free speech.

I believe that's what started all of this hubbub.

At 2/11/2022 09:28:00 AM, Blogger Abner Snopes said...

Richie, I thought this was settled.


Joe Rogan has the right to free speech, therefore Joe Rogan has the right to speak his mind on Spotify.

No way does the premise force the conclusion or even support it.

Neil Young demand Joe Rogan is removed from Spotify
Suppose Joe Rogan is removed from Spotify
Therefore, Neil Young violated Joe Rogan's right to free speech

Again, it is clear without comment that the conclusion does not follow.

Joe Rogan is censored and taken off Spotify
Hence, Joe Rogan's right to free speech was violated

Again, no.

what is the trouble? The right to free speech is limited, like every other right. I do not think the right to free speech includes the right to be given a soap box or an unlimited right to talk about anything in any context or be given public air time for a podcast. So poor Joe's rights have not been violated or potentially violated. The better strategy is to argue that we should listen to many views if we want to be informed. However, this does not include any views as some are totally misinformed.

At 2/11/2022 03:25:00 PM, Blogger Richie Cruz said...

We have different views of free speech, obviously.

I believe EVERYONE has the right to say whatever they want, just as EVERYONE has the right to ignore what anyone says, ane just get on with their lives.

You seem to think that free speech is only applicable to the ideas that you agree with, and anyone who thinks differently shouldn't be allowed a platform to state their views.

At 2/11/2022 04:26:00 PM, Blogger Abner Snopes said...

I need to keep at this. No Richie, you are misunderstanding what I have said and it is getting to the point where it seems like this is intentional. Joe Rogan has the right to say whatever he wants and so on. But that does not entail the right to be given a platform or a private space (or even a public space) to speak. Joe Rogan, with the right to free speech, does not have the right to enter any seminar room and start yapping and neither do I. You and I both have a lot to say and neither one of us has a right to a podcast on Spotify.

At 2/11/2022 04:40:00 PM, Blogger Richie Cruz said...

So free speech is okay, but not in public spaces? Huh???

And I'm not exactly sure about Spotify's rules, but I'm pretty sure either you or I have the right to have a podcast on a channel. Obviously, the channel has the right not to broadcast our show, but I know that we have the right to have one.

Once again, it seems like we have different views on what free speech actually means.

At 2/11/2022 05:38:00 PM, Blogger Tomatron said...

In the US we have the right to free speech as part of the 1st amendment to the Constitution, so it would be misleading to talk about “free speech” as some kind of concept of “how I see it” rather than as a legal protection for an American program host. We are always free to tell someone to shut the fuck up. But the government may not impede their right to speak except when words are “used in such circumstances and are of such a nature as to create a clear and present danger” according to Supreme Court Justice Holmes in 1919.

It could be a violation of the first amendment for Rogan to be jailed for hosting misinformation peddlers on his podcast, but that’s not on the table here. And his free speech is fully intact if Spotify were to make the decision to pull more of his content or cancel his exclusive deal with their platform. He could still do the thing, just not in Spotify’s house.

At 2/11/2022 06:23:00 PM, Blogger Dionys said...

Spotify is a private company (in Sweden). What a private company does on their digital premises solely is at the discretion of that company (and maybe the Swedish jurisdiction) it does not have anything to do with American's right to free speech. The implication that one has a right to a podcast (on Spotify's channels or elsewhere within the private sector) is bordering on the absurd as any head of a private business will tell you.

At 2/11/2022 06:27:00 PM, Blogger Dionys said...

Read their general business terms and conditions. There is no right to free speech included.

At 2/11/2022 07:26:00 PM, Blogger The Metamorphic Rocker said...

Richie, I think I understand where you may be coming from. I won't repeat what others have posted, as I sense hearing the same thing over and over will not help.

However, your response comes across as misrepresentation of what Abner said.If I have misread you, I will accept that, but all I can do is respond honestly to my understanding of what's being said, even if you think I'm being idiotic in the process.

Generally, when it comes to this topic, I feel like I've gone out of my way to make concessions and avoid assumptions--and it's just not being heard, because your comments truly read like you're assuming that anyone who disagrees with you is in bad faith.

That's a shame, because we could have useful conversation here on things like breaking up big tech monopolies, producing more independent or community-funded media, and how to deal with the free flow of ideas in the digital world, but it's hard to get there when it feels like the other person isn't listening, but is instead arguing against their own preconceived idea about me.

This is just a reminder to anyone who may happen to read it: there are more choices than "my opinion" or "jerk who hates freedom". If we hope to get anywhere through dialogue, it's important not to be reductionist about each other's views.

"Don't forget love."

At 2/11/2022 07:27:00 PM, Blogger Richie Cruz said...

It's really cool to see so many here arguing against free speech. Odd to see so many of you siding with Big Tech and Big Corporations.

But hey, Neil's now part of Blackstone, so why not follow the leader?

I'm singing for Blackstone
I'm singing for Pfizer
I'm singing for Spotify
Joe Rogan's a joke

This Note's For The Man!!!!

At 2/11/2022 07:50:00 PM, Blogger The Metamorphic Rocker said...

Dionys, I just want to thank you for your non-US perspective here; it really broadens the conversation even to remember that, while many of its users are US citizens, spotify is a multi-national corp with presence around the world, not strictly speaking an American company.

Because so much is privately owned and operated in the US, I think we sometimes have problems here delineating public and private sectors in the pertinent sense. Which is a little concerning. Private corporations are not the government, and should not be treated as extensions of it. I'm not assuming anyone here is doing that--but it's a point worth making.

Private ownership has its benefits and disadvantages, like any system. I'd go so far as to maintain that functioning democracy requires some mixture of private and public ownership. All I'm suggesting is that when so many of our shared spaces are privately owned, including online, it can get legitimately confusing to sort out freedom vs. privacy.

"Don't forget love."

At 2/11/2022 08:12:00 PM, Blogger The Metamorphic Rocker said...

Richie, I have explicitly siding against big corporations and big tech here. I welcome opportunities to open *that* conversation. I've actually said this multiple times. You either didn't see that or are choosing to disregard it.

If you really want to deal with these issues, let's do it constructively. There's nothing to lose here by talking about prospective solutions rather than just anger.

I'll say it again, as often as I have to, because it actually matters: there are more options than "my opinion" or "jerk who hates freedom".

"Don't forget love."

At 2/11/2022 10:03:00 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

making claims that with freedom of speech you can say anything you want probably isn't helping the argument here. There are other laws to consider. At least here in Finland there are often news of court rulings concerning hate speech, discrimination, slander, or encouraging violence against a group etc. Even as we speak the jury is out on a Christian politician for quoting the Bible on gays on a live radio show.

Then again, having a top level cardiologist and a researcher with nine mrna-patents on your show stating their opinions probably isn't violating any laws. Whether their concerns are accurate or not, time will tell. Some have already turned out to be true. Hopefully the rest of them will not. Meanwhile, I still believe if you make big decisions on your life solely on what you hear on a podcast hosted by a comedian, the world is a very dangerous place for you.

On a side note, the black singer who quit spotify and first aired the horrible sounding compilation of decade old quotes, has accepted Joe's apology and said she doesn't believe him to be racist, so I would think all the butt-hurt white folks out there can do the same.



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Hey Big Brother!
Stop Spying On Us!
Civic Duty Is Not Terrorism

The Achilles Heel
Orwell (and Grandpa) Was Right
“Emancipate yourself from mental slavery.”
~~ Bob Marley

The Essence of "The Doubters"

Yes, There's Definitely A Hole in The Sky

Even Though The Music Died 50+ Years Ago
Open Up the "Tired Eyes" & Wake up!
"consciousness is near"
What's So Funny About
Peace, Love, & Understanding & Music?


Show Me A Sign

"Who is John Galt?"
To ask the question is to know the answer

"Whosoever shall give up his liberty for a temporary security
deserves neither liberty nor safety."

~~ Benjamin Franklin


(Between the lines of age)

And in the end, the love you take
Is equal to the love you make

~~ John & Paul

the zen of neil
the power of rust
the karma of the wheat