Shiri? Isn’t that what you talk to on your iPhone when you’ve had a few-too-many gins? But no: Shiri is actually a new music app launched by the National Library of Israel, with a catalogue of more than 400k tracks by Israeli artists. It’s been launched to promote local musicians, as well as to make better use of the National Library’s music archives. “It answers a need. People really want to connect to Israeli music with the mediation of a radio editor. YouTube is great, but it has advertising, Spotify is nice, but it costs money and their Israeli music collection is small. Apple Music isn’t even in the same playing field in terms of its Israeli music collection,” head of digital access Yaron Deutscher told The Times of Israel.
This idea of services supporting local music is a wider trend. For example, Wales has a new ‘bilingual streaming system’ going live this month, which will play Welsh and English music in markets, leisure centres and other public spaces across the county of Carmarthenshire. “By creating this exciting initiative we hope that everyone will enjoy music that reflects our bilingual community in Carmarthenshire all year around,” politician Peter Hughes Griffiths told the South Wales Guardian.