While Neil Young’s music was taken down from Spotify due to Joe Rogan’s contentious comments about the coronavirus pandemic, India Arie’s music was removed due to Rogan’s “problematic” language regarding the race.
Arie took to Instagram on Tuesday to clarify why she is joining Young in boycotting Rogan, citing his recent statements about how “strange” it is to call someone Black or White based on their skin tone.
“Neil Young opened a door that I MUST walkthrough,” Arie wrote in her post. “I believe in freedom of speech. However, I find Joe Rogan problematic for reasons OTHER than his COVID interviews.”
“For me its also his language around race,” Arie continued.
She also linked the argument over how much Spotify pays musicians to Rogan’s $100 million deal to host his show “The Joe Rogan Experience” on its platform.
“Paying musicians a Fraction of a penny? and him $100M?” Arie quipped. “This shows the type of company they are and the type of company they keep. I’m tired.”
Arie’s announcement comes only a week after musician Neil Young wrote an open letter announcing the removal of his music from Spotify as a result of Rogan’s ongoing dissemination of vaccination disinformation. Rogan’s podcast was Spotify’s most popular podcast in 2021, and the platform has remained loyal to him.
Musicians Joni Mitchell and Nils Lofgren declared they’re taking their music from the platform for the same reason days after Young’s revelation, according to CNN. In response to the outcry, Spotify announced that podcast episodes where Rogan discusses Covid-19 will now include a content advisory icon.
However, Rogan’s previous and recent comments on race are frequently disregarded. Rogan recently had a talk with Jordan Peterson, a psychologist and climate change denier, in which they discussed how Black people identify themselves.
“Unless you’re talking to someone who is like 100% African, from the darkest place, where they’re not wearing any clothes all day, and they’ve developed all that melanin to protect themselves from the sun, you know, even the term ‘Black’ is weird,” Rogan said on the podcast.
Rogan’s past occurrences of dropping the n-word with the hard “er” at the end, jokingly referring to Black people as “Planet of the Apes,” and claiming the most “powerful” combination of genes is when you have “the body of the Black man and the mind of the white man” have been shared on social media in video collages.