Veteran pulls music as he slams platform for “worst quality in the history of distribution”

Neil Young has pulled his catalogue from all streaming services, slamming the platform for offering “the worst quality in the history of distribution.”

The Pono co-creator says his decision is based mainly on protecting the value of his work – and that licensing is part of the move.

It follows his catalogue being removed from a British group deal, meaning that the BBC can no longer play his songs unless they negotiate on a one-off basis – which they say they’re not prepared to do.

Young says via Facebook: “Streaming has ended for me. I hope this is okay for my fans.

“It’s not because of the money – although my share, like all 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.”

But he adds: “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.”

Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich this week described streaming as the way ahead for the music industry, saying: “People sit there and go, ‘I’m not getting paid very much’ – but streaming is a choice on all fronts.

“It’s a choice for artists making their music available. It’s a choice by the record companies that represent the artists. Fifteen years ago, those choices didn’t exist.”

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