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(Credit: Gage Skidmore)

Music

Ted Nugent calls Neil Young a "birdbrain punk" following Spotify boycott

@SamWKemp

Ted Nugent has spoken out about the Neil Young/Spotify controversy, weighing in on the singer-songwriter’s decision to boycott the music platform. At the end of January, Young demanded his music be removed from Spotify in an open letter in which he accused the service and its affiliated podcasts, The Joe Rogan Experience, of platforming Covid-19 vaccine misinformation.

Young’s actions sparked a Spotify boycott which has seen the likes of Joni Mitchell, Crosby, Stills & Nash, Crazy Horse, and E-Street Band member Nils Lofgren pull their music from the site. Now, the famously controversial musician Ted Nugent has thrown in his two cents worth, calling Neil Young a “complete punk”.

Speaking on his The Nightly Nuge live stream on Friday, Nugent, said: “Well, Neil Young, God bless him. I’m sure that there’s many people that appreciate Neil Young’s creativity and his talents and his creation of wonderful music for those people who love that kind of music. I’m not a big fan. I happen to know that he’s got a lot of soul… But now that I’ve praised him for all the positives, the guy is a complete punk.”

He went on: “If you’ve done that much mind-altering chemicals throughout your life, then you can proudly claim in one moment that you should be rocking in the free world but then in the next moment witness all the evidence supporting everything that Joe Rogan’s been saying, that I’ve been saying, the truth, logic, common sense, the indisputable evidence to support it, and then claim that we’re guilty of misinformation when actually the stoner birdbrain punk, he delivers misinformation.”

Adding, “So this is a funny moment because he made an ultimatum to Spotify – whatever that big tech is – and he said, ‘If you don’t take Joe Rogan off Spotify, then you have to take my music off Spotify.’ That’s a pretty easy decision, Neil. Thanks for making it so simple, because Neil Young on Spotify – adios, mofo.”

Nugent went on to praise Joni Mitchell, going on to assert that the things both Young and Mitchell have been saying are “just stupid”. Detailing further, he said: “I’ve seen Joni Mitchell do interviews; she’s a smart gal, and her musical dreams she literally has perfected. And on behalf of those people that love that kind of music, I can only salute them and celebrate the happiness that Joni Mitchell and Neil Young’s music brought them.”

Ted Nugent’s live stream has seen the right-wing musician offer up all manner of controversial opinions. In the last year alone, he has labelled Bruce Springsteen a “communist”, criticised the inclusion of Joan Jett on a list of the 100 greatest guitarists of all time, argued against the induction of Grandmaster Flash into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, and claimed that systemic racism doesn’t exist in modern America.