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Neo-Soul Legend, India Arie, Latest Artist to Defect From Spotify over Joe Rogan's Podcast

Photo credit: Benedict Evans
Neo-soul artist India Arie joined a growing list of prominent defectors from the Spotify streaming music platform on Monday.

The artist, who has been nominated for 23 Grammys and taken home four awards over the course of her lauded career, took to Instagram to declare her reasons for leaving.

“Neil Young opened a door that I MUST walk through,” Arie wrote, referencing the legendary Canadian-American singer and songwriter leaving Spotify last week because of Joe Rogan continuing to share vaccine misinformation on "The Joe Rogan Experience," Spotify's most popular podcast of 2021.

Young, in a since-deleted open letter to his management team and record label demanding they remove his music from Spotify, wrote, “I am doing this because Spotify is spreading fake information about vaccines – potentially causing death to those who believe the disinformation being spread by them. Please act on this immediately today and keep me informed of the time schedule."

The artist received his wish, and despite an apology from Rogan and assurances by Spotify that the misinformation spread on its podcasts would be debunked on its own popular science program, other musicians have continued to follow his lead.

Musicians Joni Mitchell, Nils Lofgren and Graham Nash are among the most prominent, along with bestselling author BrenĂ© Brown — who recently signed an exclusive deal with the platform.

Rogan and his guests' bad takes on science, however, were not the only reason Arie chose to remove her catalog. She cited the host's controversial comments on race in her post.

“I believe in freedom of speech. However, I find Joe Rogan problematic for reasons other than his Covid interviews. For me, it’s also his language around race,” Arie wrote. “What I am talking about is respect — who gets it and who doesn’t. Paying musicians a fraction of a penny? And him $100 [million]? This shows the type of company they are and the company that they keep,” she continued. “I’m tired.”

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