Way Cool Music Streamer

Today I shall be the pigeon...

I enjoy listening to tunes while I work. I have an ample collection of MP3's I've amassed over the years. I even pony up for the RealPlayer DRM songs once in a while when I like something. In the past I've really enjoyed the smarts of the LaunchCast service (now owned by Yahoo) which plays songs it thinks you'll like. You rate the tunes and it learns your tastes. It's even free with commercials (or you pay a few bucks a month to lose the commercials). The thing I didn't like was that you had to restart the stream hourly if you didn't pay, plus you had the commercials. But the worst part was that it was IE only, and didn't work in Firefox.

A friend at work today turned me onto a new service you have to check out. It's called Pandora and does everything LaunchCast did, plus more, and so far I haven't even had any commercials (though I'm sure they're there; they also have a pay service that eliminates them for under $40 a year.) It uses Flash in a surprisingly OK way, and supports Firefox. You tell it what kinds of music and artists you like, and it plays them for you. Then you rate the stuff it throws at you. Pretty spiffy.

You can also share playlists and other assorted stuff with your friends. So sign up and let me know and we'll see how well it works with a group. My profile is at http://pandora.com/people/klinebch.

There's nothing to install; it's all through the browser.


Becky said…
Kyle has used that before and really liked it. I need to do something like that to broaden my music repetoir. I still listen to the same 20 songs from 1996-1998
Jenn said…
Oh yeah, pandora is great! I listen to it all day every day while I'm working- mostly just a Jason Mraz or Ben Folds station (the only two artists I know from the last decade). It's helped me find a few new cool artists I would never have known otherwise.
I've never seen commercials either, though the ads on the site do rotate quite colorfully. I do know pandora was fighting some legal battles as well.
Shakes said…
Pandora is the bombdiggity. Not sure on the PC side, but I have a standalone player for the Mac that brings up the Pandora player independent of my browser and lets me run it through an EQ.

I go through phases. I'll listen to nothing but Pandora for a while, then abandon it completely while I fall back in love with my iTunes library. Then it's back to Pandora when the love wanes.

If you really get into it, Slim Devices makes the Squeezebox that will stream Pandora to your home stereo.
Mia said…
My brothers recommended this to me I just never got around to trying it. I will though since everyone seems to like it so much.
Brett said…
Been using Pandora for a while, it's pretty cool. There are no commericals, however you can only skip 5 or 6 songs in an hour, so if you get a bunch of crappy songs in a row you have to listen through them or go to a different station. Pandora turned me on to a few new bands and I actually went out and bought some new music.

Chris, If you're going to share your music tastes, wouldn't you want to at least hide the embarrassing ones like (Bon Jovi, Def Leppard) - grin.

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