India Arie, Grammy-winning musician, pulls her music from Spotify 0n racial abuse

The Grammy-winning musician posted video of the podcaster saying the slur approximately two dozen times on his show to explain her decision to have her music pulled from the streaming service.

India Arie is opening up about why she asked to have her music pulled from Spotify.

On Monday, the Grammy-winning singer-songwriter shared in a post on her Instagram that she was taking her music off of the streaming service over Spotify podcaster Joe Rogan’s “language around race.” On Friday, she explained her decision further in an Instagram Story Highlight titled “Boycott,” providing a mashup video from YouTube clips of Rogan saying the N-word approximately two dozen times on his show in the past.

“He shouldn’t even be uttering the word. Don’t even say it, under any context. Don’t say it. That’s where I stand. I have always stood there,” she said. Another video shared by Arie shows Rogan referring to Black neighborhoods as “Planet of the Apes.”

Arie is one of several musicians and Hollywood figures who have asked that their work no longer appear on Spotify, albeit for different reasons — most having cited discontent over the streamer’s role in spreading COVID-19 misinformation through Rogan’s podcast, The Joe Rogan Experience. Both Neil Young and Joni Mitchell pulled their music from Spotify last week in protest of what Mitchell called “lies that are costing people their lives.” Young’s former bandmates David Crosby, Stephen Stills, and Graham Nash later publicly asked for their music to be removed as well.

In response, Spotify published “long-standing platform rules” for the first time and began adding a content advisory to any podcast that includes a discussion about COVID-19.

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In her videos, Arie emphasized that she agrees with artists leaving the platform “for the COVID disinformation reasons” and that she believes “that Joe Rogan has the right to say whatever he wants to say,” but that she also has the right to say what she wants. “Spotify is built on the back of the music streaming. So they take this money that’s built from streaming and they pay this guy $100 million, but they pay us .003 percent of a penny? Just take me off. That’s where I’m at,” she says. The title of the musician’s first slide called for supporters to “Delete Spotify.”

Rogan addressed the COVID-19 misinformation controversy on Instagram earlier this week, saying: “I don’t always get it right. I will do my best to try to balance out these more controversial viewpoints with other people’s perspectives so we can maybe find a better point of view.”



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