Neil Young wants his fans to keep on rockin’ in the free world — but on Amazon Music, not Spotify.
On Friday, Young announced a special deal with Amazon Music, giving new subscribers four months free of the streamer. The move by the 76-year-old music icon comes four days after he demanded that Spotify pull his tracks off its service in protest of Spotify’s failure to curb COVID misinformation in “The Joe Rogan Experience” podcast.
On Friday, the Neil Young Archives website directed fans to Amazon Music to take advantage of the offer of the service’s premium Unlimited tier (at this link for U.S. visitors). Normally, Amazon Music Unlimited (regularly $7.99/month) is free for 30 days to new customers.
“Amazon has been leading the pack in bringing Hi-Res audio to the masses, and it’s a great place to enjoy my entire catalog in the highest quality available,” the Neil Young Archives account on Twitter posted Friday. The tweet added, “Thanks also to Apple Music (I LOVE APPLE) and Qobuz for sticking with my High Res music.”
Young is not getting compensation from Amazon to promote the special deal.
Amazon Music Unlimited offers access to 75 million songs, without ads. The ecommerce giant was the first of the three big music services to introduce support for HD music, more than two years ago. That was ahead of Apple Music’s HD launch last June. Spotify has indefinitely delayed the rollout of HiFi, its own high-quality audio tier, originally slated to debut in select markets in November.
Earlier Friday, Young blasted Spotify for its decision to choose Rogan over keeping his music catalog on its platform, and also dinged Spotify for “shitty” audio quality.
“Private companies have the right to choose what they profit from, just as I can choose not to have my music support a platform that disseminates harmful information,” Young wrote in a blog post. “I am happy and proud to stand in solidarity with the front line health care workers who risk their lives every day to help others.”
He continued, “If you support Spotify, you are destroying an art form. Business over art. Spotify plays the artists’s music at 5% of its quality and charges you like it was the real thing.”