It's All About Audio Quality Says Neil Young In Announcement That He Is Pulling His Catalog from Streaming Outlets

Posted by Billyjam, July 15, 2015 12:58pm | Post a Comment

Neil Young is back in the news this week after announcing on his Facebook page that he will pull all of his music off of streaming sites, writing that "streaming has ended for me" due to the inferior sound quality that he labels "the worst quality in the history of broadcasting or any other form of distribution." Although Young did not name specific outlets such as Spotify or iTunes, it was implied that those were among those he was talking about, for the time being at least. "When the quality is back, I'll give it another look," he wrote, stressing "I don't feel right allowing this to be sold to my fans. It's bad for my music" and derives from deals "made without my consent."

Not specified as yet is if Young is including in his definition of "streaming" the online stream versions of terrestrial radio stations such as say KFOG  in the Bay Area or KLOS in SoCal. If so, that might mean no radio play for Neil Young in the US as well as on the BBC. And what about artists signed to his Vapor label such as Main Attrakionz who recently played an Amoeba in-store. Will their music also be pulled too since they're also subject to the "worst quality" of music ever. And is YouTube included as a "streaming" outlet for his and his artists' music?

Based on the comments to Neil Young's Facebook announcement this morning, it appears that a good deal of his fans/followers do not agree with the artist. Many stressed how they only use services like Spotify to figure out what music they like enough to purchase in hard copy at record stores like Amoeba, where you will find such Young albums as On The Beach or Harvest Moon, and that he is merely cutting off a lot of potential new fans by this move. One unhappy camper posted, "Between this announcement, the ridiculously overpriced digital music player you supported and the anti-gmo fear mongering, I think I'm ok with never giving you another cent for music." Meanwhile many others (mostly longtime fans of the prolific artist) are applauding him for sticking up for his principles.  

This latest Neil Young news story comes on the heels of last week's report, via the Guardian, that the BBC's legal department had advised its DJs and program producers to not play Neil Young (along with Bonnie RaittThe Doors, and Journey) or even songs that sample or cover Young and those other three acts due to the fact that each of them had withdrawn from the Mechanical Copyright Protection Society (MCPS) resulting in the British broadcasting giant having "no means of paying the artists for broadcast of their music, and so it cannot play their music without breaching copyright." 

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