Two of my favorite things are music and technology, so naturally when I come across a product or website which combines the two in a new and useful way, I’m interested. There have been quite a few good sites recently; here’s a quick summary of the ones I like.
You go to http://www.pandora.com and enter a band or song that you like. Pandora uses the Music Genome Project to figure out similar artists and streams those songs for you to listen to. You then train Pandora by giving those songs a thumbs-up or thumbs-down. After a while, it’s pretty amazing how well it gets at recommending music you like. It all works through a web browser, no downloads necessary. Here’s my profile page.
Last.fm has lots of great features; if you enable the scrobbler, it will track what you listen to on itunes and windows media player, and import that into your profile online. Then, it shows your friends what you’ve been listening too. And they just recently opened up on-demand streaming of any song up to 3 times a day. I like last.fm, even if I feel a bit overwhelmed by the site. There are so many things to click on and so many links, but that’s ok. It makes me feel like I still have lots to discover on the site, so it keeps me interested. If you choose not to download the last.fm client, you can still use the browser to stream songs.
Seeqpod.com is basically a music file search engine. You search for songs or artists, and it returns locations on the web, and lets you stream that file through the browser. It’s great; I’m constantly using it to get a quick listen of a song or artist, especially when I’m with friends and we’re talking music.
4. Amie Street
At Amie Street, you can purchase songs based on how popular they are. The newer a song, the cheaper it is. As it gains popularity and purchases, it climbs in price. A pretty cool idea, it’s starting to gain some following and getting more artists.
Songbird is a web browser which has been modified to play music, and make it much easier to locate and download music files on web pages. When it finds mp3s on a web page, for example, it will provide download links in a special section below the browser. Songbird is a great idea, something I’ll be using more and more. It’s also open source.
Feel free to mention one of your favorite music services in the comments.