Analysis

Streaming music discovery is more than just showing album credits


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This week, Spotify rolled out a long-awaited new feature: its Discover Weekly playlists. These gems of exploration are now nicely slotted into every user’s library on the service, and are truly an excellent addition. So take a bow, Team Spotify!

I hope we’ll see all other services follow suit. And despite Spotify telling Music Ally that seeding tracks won’t be part of these playlists, I sincerely hope that these new avenues for discovery and connection can be used properly with listening-habits data to help fans find new songs from artists they actively listen to, whether they follow them or not.

(Something Spotify’s WIll Hope and I debated on a panel at this year’s The Great Escape conference.)

Make no mistake: discovery is the key to success for music old and new on streaming services, be that via listening-habit recommendations, curated playlists, seeding, or search. And it’s search that I’d like to have a little look at today.

Stuart Dredge

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4 responses
  • Jon Tufnell says:

    I couldn’t agree more. Discovering a song you like is actually a cover of an obscure artist and then being able to click through to other tracks they have written seems like a simple way to discover music easily.

  • David Delbridge says:

    Technically speaking, this sounds like another appeal for a universal repertoire database, such as the recently-abandoned GRD. Unfortunately, without a standardized, reliable repository for such meta data (and self-service management – frustratingly unavailable through AllMusic/Rovi), there’s no clear path for developers to implement such data into their respective music services. We need a universal repertoire database.

  • Nina Condron says:

    Yes I agree with everything you have said it is very strange that the Industry hasn’t cottoned onto this yet. We deliver this data to them through our distribution network yet it isn’t displayed.

  • Jonathan says:

    In follow up to David’s comment (which I agree with), the question comes: is the universal database a private venture (such as AllMusic) or a joint venture of Recording Academies and Performing Rights Organizations from each country? Unregulated (aka users/labels/publishers directly uploading info) and things get messy real quick. I’d suggest there needs to be a hybrid between users uploading data, then moderation through an organization

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