Today, Twitter and The Echo Nest have announced their partnership to make it easier for music app developers to pull in tweets from and about music artists. You can read our full news story here.

Developer Filter Squad is the first to benefit, adding more Twitter features to its Discovr Music app. We asked Filter Squad’s David McKinney how significant the partnership is, and what it means for developers.

“Most of the information about music artists in the world right now is static. There are bios and reviews and blog posts, but it’s hard to find out what’s happening around a music artist right now.

Previously, you could follow one of your favorite artists on Twitter, but there was no way to deal with the hundreds or thousands of music artists in an efficient way.

There are some great music artist Twitter lists around, but they’re really patchy, and this new data set allows us to build out richer, deeper experiences around an artist more effectively.

It also means that music fans who don’t actually use Twitter (shock!) get to view and be involved in the artist’s ecosystem and conversation.

Basically, the Echo Nest Twitter data set gives developers a simple API method that associates Twitter handles with Echo Nest IDs. This means we can then build out our own Twitter functionality around those handles to show what artists are talking about right now, as well as what other people are saying about them.

The new version of Discovr Music uses this partnership to show you Tweets from artists, as well as any mentions of an artist on Twitter. This means that you get to see conversations coming from the community around that artist.

You get to hear what the community is saying right now about the artist. It also means you can uncover unofficial photos or videos or other media that the community might be tweeting, like photos from a concert, or short videos at a festival.

All of this integrated into the Discovr app into our artist details page, so it’s all part of a consistent, familiar experience. As well as the artists tweets and mentions, we also make it easy to follow an artist, or search for tweets around an artist directly from within the app.

Really what it means is it gives us the opportunity to bring realtime information and conversations into Discovr – fans can now follow and listen in on the conversations around artists.

This is really just the beginning of the artist handles data set and what we could do. We had very little time to add the new functionality (it all happened over Christmas) so the Discovr Music integration with Twitter / Echo Nest is a good example of what can be done in a very short period of time.

From here on, there are a huge number of music artists handles that are yet to be collected. It’s a big job to curate or validate those accounts, but these types of data are incredibly important as a way for bands and fans to be better connected.

NB: We’d actually already built a large database of artist Twitter handles (as we were expecting to have to build this out entirely by ourselves) but it’s a big job and it’s better to have all of those data in one central place where the data quality can be controlled or verified.

This new partnership means we can focus on creating great experiences around data, and our partners can focus on creating great data for developers to work with.”

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