Neil Young calls out Tidal



TIDAL is calling their files of my songs Masters. But TIDAL’s MQA files are not my masters. I make my masters - not TIDAL. I made my masters the way I wanted them to sound. If TIDAL referred to their titles as TIDAL MASTERS, I would have no problem, but they don’t. They call them Masters. I had my music removed from that platform. They are not my masters.”.

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Previewfuzztone
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Don't think it's all about maximizing return on investment and profits (if they ever get there)? Companies like TIDAL and nugs.net are charging a hefty premium for content encoded with MQA. Take a look at the following chart taken from the nugs.net site. The cost of the MQA encoded format is twice the cost of the MP3 and $2.00 more than a lossless "HD" version encoded using FLAC. Give me the "HD" FLAC version. FLAC is an excellent codec, it's FREE, and lossless. In fact, MQA "comes is a lossless FLAC file." Why pay more for something you can get for free?
Mr. Stuart didn’t roll out MQA out of charity or his love for the music :-)

I never cared for MQA, they do sound ‘bright’ in upper frequencies. I dumped Tidal shortly after Qobuz entered US market.
From Doc Aix letter:

EDITOR'S NOTE: MQA claims, "...you get exactly what the creators intended," is patently false! You get what MQA or TIDAL decides sounds "better."
It does look like most of his music has been pulled.  I’m subscribing to both Tidal and Qobuz right now but may ditch Tidal after my discounted subscription expires.
i have both and make up my mind....by listening. More power to Neil if that is how he feels.
Respect his decision, obviously. But I have missed his albums.  It is sad.  I sure hope they can reach a compromise. 
Lol, pandora sounds just fine to me, and it’s free. I am not paying to stream, no way. When I stream it is absolutely not for critical listening, it Is for when I’m lazy and for low volume background music. Using a topping bc3 bluetooth module connected to my v90 dac, sounds great to me. Total investment...$369.
I just checked and "Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere" and "Harvest" are the only Neil Young albums I see on Qobuz.   Hopefully he will get more of his work to that platform.  Meanwhile I'm going to kick back and listen to the NY albums that I have access to.  Thanks everyone for the reminder!

Mark
All Neil Young albums are up on Qobuz in Europe. 
I just checked and "Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere" and "Harvest" are the only Neil Young albums I see on Qobuz.
@ebanksms, I just looked now and I see dozens of Neil Young albums on Qobuz. I'm in the US.
If a person wants to stream Neil Young's music in full fidelity the way he wants it heard, buy a subscription to his Archives web site.  I only paid $20/year, and it's a proverbial rabbit hole full of rabbit holes.  Highly recommended.
We lose something we find something. Metallica just joined Tidal with eleven their albums in master quality. Happy listening. 
When his (Neil Young's) Pono venture went dark a lot us got orphaned. It was not at all handled well. Poof.

I'm in the US and on Qobuz there are dozens of his Albums..American Stars 'N Bars through to Zuma 
Thankfully, I have a lot of Neil Young on CD and hence in my music server.  These squabbles are irritating though so hopefully they can work through it.  I use Tidal without MQA and get along fine.
We are aware that MQA, or "master quality", is a brand name, not a description --- right?:)
... Southern man don't need him around anyhow!
It's misleading to say Tidal is charging a premium for Masters or MQA. The premium service is for lossless (non-compressed) streaming, which includes MQA when it's available. I've been paying for the premium service since before MQA was available because MP3s are not audiophile quality files. MQA, when it came around, was a bonus. 
Are there really any NY recordings of "Master" quality?
Hello,
I might get rid of Tidal after my subscription runs out in a year. It’s too expensive to pay full price. My DAC reads out the resolution of the track. Half are in CD Redbook. If they don’t offer an extension I will go to Qobuz. I also have Amazon HD. With prime it’s not much more. I can have CD through Amazon plus a huge collection and Qobuz for HiRez. Mr Young is a very serious musician and is proud of his accomplishments. I have seen him around the vineyard. He is really an every day guy. 
There is a rumor out that Tidal is in financial trouble.
Desperation move?
If you can get your hands on the BluRay release of Neil Young Archives Vol. I you’ll find the sound as good as it gets.
big disappointment to me he abandoned that format.
There's been a rumor for years that Tidal is hurting. So what! Who listens to Neil Young with all of his ranting on politics and audio? Not me. As for Tidal/Qobuz, I find Tidal to have better SQ, as well as MQA albums over Qobuz and Amazon. Now with the Best Buy discount, that much better
Maybe he’s just petty and jealous because his audiophile alternative failed...
Love Neil but he can be a little judgmental sometimes.  Don't we all as we get older?
Vinyl is forever! (unless you melt it or damage it yourself). He rereleased all his best albums on vinyl a couple years ago and they sound great.

Neil is quite grumpy, but he's an old man. He should have a better outlook being married to Darryl Hannah. Don't know what Jackson Browne was thinking....
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Actually Mr. Young became an American citizen a year ago today.  Happy Anniversary, Neil!
cmaier3
Maybe he’s just petty and jealous because his audiophile alternative failed.
Not likely. And Qobuz has tons of his music.
Yes, Qobuz shows over 300 Neil Young albums. Plenty are hi-res and although I do enjoy some of his work over the years, I don't care what ole Neil thinks about politics outside of the music industry.

Some years back, I saw Neil Young at Madison Square Garden. Good show but he didn't play "Rocking in the Free World."
I think he doesn't like how the "anthem" was adopted by people who love America. On the way out, I said amidst the departing crowd, how could he not play it? 

A little girl of about five atop her father's shoulders heard me and replied, "Me too, it's my favorite song."

Her disappointment has stayed with me all these years later. So Neil, it's your music, do what you like. Qobuz it is.


Some of you guys should be ashamed with the rudness and the ignorance.

Firstly, he’s Neil Young. American Citizen, cultural icon, a success with a net worth between 50 and 80 million. More than you made I bet.

One of the greatest artists of his era or any era. His guitars and amps are all about sound quality. His records are too. He was an early adopter of Pacific Microsonics. Neil KNOWS GREAT TONE.
And you ? Who are you? Internet trolls with spending money for HI Fi. You are consumers, nothing more.

More importantly the truth is the truth, and there is no room for compromise or mincing words with the truth. Five solid years of 45 lying daily should have us all on the side of truth telling by now.

MQA is NOT a brand name. It is sold to be AUTHENTICATED BY THE MASTERING ENGINEER in the mastering room. And that’s a lie. The blue light means nothing but distortion added on top of the master.
The actual master is the sample depth and bit rate of the mastering session. There is nothing better, full stop.
There are some great sounding 16/44.1 masters out there from the 80s. The numbers mean nothing much to quality.

MQA is sold to be fixing PCM and closer to the source and that’s a lie. After years of Bob Stuart saying PCM was all anyone needs to hear everything, he changed his tune for cash. Sad end to a good life.

It’s an open filter on the top end resulting in some harmonic distortion you might enjoy ... yet it’s changing the sound that was approved by the production team and the artists, to make Bob and Co. money after Netflix killed their DVD $$$. It’s a bold scam and it’s rude and it’s unscrupulous.

Instead I read ...
Neil is "petty and jealous".  Neil should "Go to Hell".   Neil should have played what you wanted in a concert.
Pathetic.

Rude.

Stay in your lane men, Neil is correct and has the principles you lack.

He plays whatever the hell he likes at solo concerts and couldn't care less what anybody thinks. I bet he thinks if right before he plays it. When he is with Crazy Horse it's more planned.

I'ver seen him probably 8 or more times and each time is different. The short tours are the best. I have several of his most popular/best albums and sometimes I only know half the songs. Plus he'll play a cover or two that is always better than the original.

He is the real deal. No BS - as he says, "what you see is what you get".

I don't think he is the best businessman. Kind of a hippie with money. I'm sure he lost a ton trying to fight Apple with that Pono thing for better quality. He is a true artist and cares tremendously about quality of records, sound at concerts, etc.
Hmm well no Neil Young on Tidal is a big downer. It’s not such a big deal. Just work it out IMHO. Call it whatever makes everyone happy. As long as it’s there and sounds good. Nobody really cares about the politics.  Everyone needs a chill pill. 
I have always loved Neil Young’s music. Him personally, meh. But I don’t get it. It seems like he’s ranting over semantics. 
Several years ago I met Mr. Stuart at an audio show introducing TIDAL. I had a question. Since the bitrate supported, speed and bandwidth of the interweb was increasing exponentially, and solid state storage was shrinking in price, I asked him how long it would be before true hi resolution master files could be streamed natively. I also asked him when that day came, what would that do to his business?
He had no answer then. Today, reality is pressing on his business. I guess that is the answer.
After NY's recent 50th Anniversary "reissue" (with a small "r") vinyl, and its lame price, plus promoting it on Qobuz as a reissue to get plays, well, I was pretty much done with him.  What will he stoop to next to make more stinkin money?   IMHO, this is pretty messed up.  What a freakin marketing deal this is.  Old Hippy?? Really?  He's a walking contradiction.  I've got most all his vinyl I bought in the seventies and eighties, so I'll just enjoy those.  I'm glad I bought them, and I love his old music.
Kudos to Mr. Young. It’s not about the quality of the file or the format. It’s about misrepresentation. When someone says it’s the Master, it should mean The Master, not some version of the Master. That "semantic" plays into getting more people to download the music than without it, which profits the company. I’m on NY’s side.
Let’s cut to the chase here. This is not about sound. It’s about getting paid. Let’s just be honest here. At the end of the day, that’s what the artist is truly after. I can’t blame Neil because that’s how he makes a living. I just don’t settle for BS. To tell you the truth, most artists could care less about HiFi or Hi End Audio (Equipment). If they are a guitarist, that’s their focal. If they are a drummer, they typically only care about their drums. This is the truth. Spend time with these artists, and you will see. I have very close friends that went to The Juilliard School. They will tell you straight up. Folks, don’t believe the BS unless you were born yesterday. It’s really sad folks try to push this nonsense. Like I said, it’s a business and I do understand his position about money and how he makes it and gets paid. Don’t try to sell smoke and mirrors because they truly don’t care how you listen to music, they only care about how you are gonna pay for it. If you want to strive for what they call their best sound, go see them in person (at a concert). 
I just wish any streaming service with really good audio had a jazz channel as good as XM/Sirius.  I will sacrifice quality of sound for quality of programming.  Life could be worse.
Some artists really do care and that’s one of the reasons there is so much information on their recordings for hifi to recover for us.  But more importantly it doesn’t matter whether they care or not so long as the detail is there to recover.  The recording engineers care.  Qobuz cares, as do other hi-res order prividers.  We care.  So listen to their best sound over and over again at home.  On great hifi- that’s what it is for.  . 
I believe you’re still missing the point. As you say, none of that matters when you cut to the chase. It’s a business at the end of the day. How an artist gets paid. That’s his prerogative on how he negotiates his contract to get paid. His finances should be the last thing I need to worry about. That’s what his attorneys are for. What’s  funny is that I remember similar conversations about the argument on the rights to SACD and before that CD’s. Oh, and don’t forget about the IPod classic. I remember when Wadia came out with a docking station and all of a sudden we were all in. It’s amazing how we forget about our past. Another point is you can have what one may call the best Board/ recording engineers in the world but 2 individuals will here the same song at the same time differently. It’s how we absorb and process information different from one another. It’s human motor learning behavior. Who are we to force our notion of what’s right or the best with music, engineers, artists, etc. The more I think about it, the more we are approaching the art world on how we think and discriminate an artist, their music, the composer, etc. Enjoy you music however you like because I definitely do. Being a former DJ who can appreciate all types of music allows me to be a sponge and absorb information. For the newbies who are getting into HiFi Audio, it’s great to ask questions or get specific opinions but at the end of the day, it’s your money. Spend it how you want. Don’t get caught up in the theatricals. 
PS
I listen to TIDAL, Qobuz With MQA and Hi Res, Albums with a Turntable, CD’s (Redbook & SACD), Reel to Reel and Tuner (FM Radio, HD). I’m very flexible and enjoy switching from one source to another. I have a pretty extensive system and I’m very fortunate.
Sorry to be this "real", but Neil is far from a recording perfectionist so I doubt there is any discernible difference between his "masters" and Tidal's offerings.  It sound's like Neil's getting to be a bit of a curmudgeon in his old age.

Ray
grab em by the free world....well i don’t think King Dotard who hijacked the song said that...he did say something else...

and i know the stacked set of monitors he uses ( for the spl ) and who delivered them to his studio and how revealing they are....fun, he can still hear..and discern..

crank up Cortez...... 
While I've never been a big fan of Neil's music, I love that he IS passionate about the final sound of his music.  Too many artists don't have control over the final sound, and are not thrilled with it, or simply don't care about it.  
My experience with MQA is that I don't find it to sound better than the non-MQA version (it's just a little different).  Usually, the MQA version is a recent 'very loud' mastered version of an album, and if I'm able to find a 20yr old version of the same album, it sounds better with greater dynamic range, and thus more true to the original.
I agree with the technical benefits of the MQA codec process, but I usually don't like mastering that they do before the encoding, so it's garbage in, garbage out.   
TIDAL is the only streaming service i've had so far, and it's OK, but it leaves me frustrated.  I'm almost ready to try another.  Their automated tracklists are stagnant and repetitive.  The Track Radio feature could be great, but its selections are very narrow, and don't change enough from day to day. I don't understand how, with millions of songs to choose from, what it chooses to play for me is boring.     
The post is not about Neil Young so much as a content creator thinks that Tidal sux.
Go Qobuz.
Like his music, he is a arrogant self righteous scheißekopf!