An alternative to XM or Sirius (on the computer anyway)

3 04 2006


I’m enjoying a web music service more than I ever thought I would. You just type in the name of an artist or a song and it begins to play you similar music. Sounds simple, yes? Well, I suppose it is in the same way the Pete Frame’s Rock Family Trees was simple. The site is Pandora and I hope you’re not reading this because you just saw the link and jumped right over there. Pandora is the result of tons and tons of effort from the Music Genome Project. They’ve been paying several score (heh) of working musicians to listen to music and rate it on lots of different criteria. They play music that is similar to that you request based on the beat, vocal timbre, instrumentation..LOTS of stuff like that.

The big deal here is that the result is really amazing. I’m ordering a different ‘radio station’ based not just on a broad genre like Jazz or Broadway but on the kind of music that Buddy Miller or Kristin Chenoweth or Brad Mehldau makes. You have to try this.

There are free (with ads) and paid versions. If you use XM or Sirius just while you’re sitting at your computer, I’d suggest that you cancel that. Even the free version is better than either of those in my opinion.

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