Comments made by Neil Young on the subject of homosexuals and the AIDS epidemic have resurfaced, following the musician’s controversial spat with Spotify and podcast host Joe Rogan.
“In an interview with Melody Maker in 1985, Neil Young backed Reagan’s gun control policies and said of AIDS, ‘You go to a supermarket and you see a faggot behind the f***in’ cash register, you don’t want him to handle your potatoes,” Young said, Rolling Stone reported in 2013.
“Needless to say, Young almost certainly regrets that horrific statement and quickly moved away from right-wing politics,” Rolling Stone added. “He wrote the furious anti-George H.W. Bush screed ‘Rockin’ in the Free World’ in 1989 and was one of George W. Bush’s most vocal critics in the 2000s.”
Last week, in a now-deleted message to his management team and record label, musician Neil Young issued an ultimatum, saying he would not allow Spotify access to his music catalog unless they cut ties with podcast host, Joe Rogan.
“Please act on this immediately today and keep me informed of the time schedule,” Young shared in the letter, as reported by The Daily Wire.
“I want you to let Spotify know immediately TODAY that I want all my music off their platform,” he continued. “They can have [Joe] Rogan or Young. Not both.”
“With an estimated 11 million listeners per episode, JRE, which is hosted exclusively on Spotify, is the world’s largest podcast and has tremendous influence,” the letter continued. “Spotify has a responsibility to mitigate the spread of misinformation on its platform, though the company presently has no misinformation policy.”
Rogan responded on Sunday to Young, after his music was pulled from Spotify, saying that he is a huge fan.
“First of all, I’m not mad at Neil Young, I’m a huge Neil Young fan,” Rogan said. “I’ve always been a Neil Young fan. When I was 19, I was a security guard at a place called Great Woods in Mansfield, Massachusetts. It’s an outdoor concert amphitheater. And Neil Young was playing there. And that was the last day I worked there, I quit during the Neil Young concert.”
“So one day during a Neil Young concert, the amphitheater the way it’s set up is, there’s a covered area outside that has seats, and then there’s a lawn area behind it. And the lawn area, during the Neil Young concert, they got a little rowdy, it was cold out and they started bonfires. So they had these raging fires on the lawn. And we were supposed to go and put these fires out and stop them. So we tried for a little while. But then brawls started breaking out and it started getting crazy. And I was like f*** this, so I put my hoodie on, I zipped it up and I left and I drove home. And as I was driving home, I was singing, ‘keep on rockin in a free world.’”
“That was my last day on the job,” he said. “I don’t even think I collected my last check. So no hard feelings towards Neil Young. And definitely no hard feelings towards Joni Mitchell. I love her too. I love her music, ‘Chuck E.’s In Love’ is a great song.”
Ian Haworth is an Editor and Writer for The Daily Wire. Follow him on Twitter at @ighaworth.