It's about quality control, he says


Neil Young has announced he intends to remove his music from streaming services.

He made the announcement on Facebook, and said it was motivated by “the worst sound quality available in the history of broadcasting.”

Neil Young's Facebook page

Neil Young’s Facebook page

He wrote: “Streaming has ended for me. I hope this is ok for my fans.
It’s not because of the money, although my share (like all the other artists) was dramatically reduced by bad deals made without my consent.

“It’s about sound quality. I don’t need my music to be devalued by the worst quality in the history of broadcasting or any other form of distribution. I don’t feel right allowing this to be sold to my fans. It’s bad for my music.
For me, It’s about making and distributing music people can really hear and feel. I stand for that.

“When the quality is back, I’ll give it another look. Never say never.
Neil Young”

Young is currently on the road with his Rebel Content tour with Promise Of The Real, in support of his new album, The Monsanto Years.

Among the highlights of the tour so far, Neil Young played “Hippie Dream” for the first time in 18 years during this show at Pinnacle Bank Arena, Lincoln, Nebraska on July 11, 2015.

“Hippie Dream” appeared on Young’s 1986 album, Landing On Water. Young last played the song on August 24, 1997 at the Coral Sky Amphitheatre, West Palm Beach, Florida.

During his 29 song set, Young also played “Bad Fog Of Loneliness” for the first time since 2008, “Words” and “Out On The Weekend” for the first time since 2009.

Young has also dusted down a number of other deep cuts on this current tour. On the opening night on July 5, 2015 at Marcus Amphitheatre, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, he played “Don’t Be Denied” for the first time in 12 years, Greendale’s “Double E” for the first time in 10 years and performed Ragged Glory track, “White Line”, live for only the sixth time.

The History Of Rock – a brand new monthly magazine from the makers of Uncut – is now on sale in the UK. Click here for more details.

Meanwhile, the August 2015 issue of Uncut is in shops now – featuring David Byrne, Sly & The Family Stone, BB King and the death of the blues, The Monkees, Neil Young, Merle Haggard and more.

Uncut: the spiritual home of great rock music.

  • Trevor

    As much as I love Neil Young, I think it is about the money…at least to some degree. Neil is starting a new “Hi-Res” music streaming company called “Pono”. It’s a really cool idea but the player retails for around $400. This system allows you to listen to music in it’s native, uncompressed, 24 bit format as opposed to the compressed 16 bit format that most CD’s are mastered to. It really is how music should be heard. Now…let’s go back 40 years to the early 70’s when Neil was just starting out. I remember, as a kid, hearing Neil’s tunes on a crappy AM car radio…and loving them, of course. Back in the day, AM/FM radios weren’t standard in a new car. Neither were good car stereo’s. The sound quality that you get from a streaming service like Spotify is way better then the lousy stereo I first heard Neil’s music on. Yet, musicians didn’t boycott AM radio stations for sounding crappy….There are lots of different ways to experience music and unfortunately, not every listening experience is going to be ideal in terms of sound quality. Some folks will never have a really nice stereo system but as long as musicians are still recording good music, people will find a way to hear it. The whole root of this problem is that with the advent of the digital age, record sales have declined siginificantly…too many people are “sharing” music with each other. Even though Neil isn’t hurting for cash, musicians aren’t making nearly as much from record sales as they once were because people aren’t buying as many records…they’re getting them for free. That’s the real heart of the issue….and it looks like it’s going to be awhile before it’s solved. Until then, we all will have to deal with $100 ticket prices…because that’s where they’re trying to make back the money they’re losing on record sales….