In the wake of Kanye West’s antisemitic and white supremacist tirades, people aren’t exactly eager to stream his music anymore, with several brands and celebrities severing ties with him. While there’s no clear indication that his music is taking a hit on streaming platforms like Apple Music or Spotify, Billboard reports that after Instagram and Twitter made the decision to restrict West’s accounts earlier this month, the rapper and designer’s radio play fell 21.1%.
Despite Ye’s controversial remarks, Spotify CEO Daniel Ek has confirmed that the streaming service will not remove the artist’s catalog from the platform. Ek told Reuters that West made “just awful comments,” and that his remarks would warrant removal from the platform based on the company’s policies—if only they were actually in his music. Ek explained that since none of West’s lyrics cross the line Ye’s comments crossed, his catalog won’t be removed from Spotify.
“It’s really just his music, and his music doesn’t violate our policy,” said Ek, as quoted in Reuters. “It’s up to his label, if they want to take action or not.”
While Spotify isn’t blocking West’s music from being streamed, that doesn’t mean you can’t. Spotify allows users to block certain artists from playing on their profiles but only through the mobile app—you cannot block an artist on Spotify for desktop. Here’s how to block Kanye West on Spotify:
- Head to Ye’s artist page on Spotify
- Tap the three dot menu next to the “Follow” button
- Select “Don’t play this artist”
Blocking an artist on Spotify will then grey out any song by them on the platform as well as prevent the platform’s algorithm from recommending their music in mixes it creates. The only time this gets dicey is when the artist is featured on another performer’s song. So, for example, upon blocking Ye, you will not be able to listen to his 2008 song “Heartless” but you will be able to listen to “Hot Shit,” which is a Cardi B song that features West. Further, you will still be able to access all of West’s catalog on Spotify through the desktop app.
Currently, other platforms like Apple Music offer no quick option to hide an artist like Spotify does.