More musical musings today.
After reading several good reviews on line, I decided that I was long overdue having a closer look at Spotify
Streaming music really has come a long way. Spotify has a library of 3.8 million tracks, and although there are apparently some big artists missing, it found everything I was looking for. And unlike iTunes where you can listen to just an excerpt from a track before deciding if you want to buy it, with Spotify you can listen to the whole song - hell, you can listen to the whole album.
You can queue up tracks to play, or just create playlists that you can listen to again and again, or send to others via Facebook or by sending the URL.
What you can't do, is copy the music onto a CD or mp3 player. But if you're just sat at home and fancy listening to Now! 72, then you can. If you can tolerate a short advert every 4 or 5 songs, it's completely free. If that bothers you, you can pay 99p for an advert free day, or a tenner a month to never hear an advert again. WIN.
If you're a bit geeky like me, you can hook up your computer to the surround sound, and it's like having your own radio station with 3.8 million tracks at hand.
But that's not the real selling point for me, it's the ability to make playlists and distribute them by the wonder of teh interwebs.
It's the mix tape of the future.
I don't have to sit by an old tape deck, patiently listening to each song as it copies. A pile of other music sat next to the stereo waiting it's turn to be added. Carefully writing the tracklist onto the cassette inlay, listening as you create. A mix tape was something special (or at least you hoped so), because there was a finite amount of space on the tape, everything had to be carefully selected. It had to be listened to in order, and you hoped the recipient understood that selection and creation took hours. It was special.
iTunes made things easier. I don't have to walk all the way to the shelves and start rummaging through CD's. Everything is already ripped to the hard drive. If I want to make a mix CD I just drag and drop files, and then burn it. You have to take a bit of consideration of how the recipient will play it. If they can play mp3s off a CD you can stick loads on, but if not, you're restricted to burning it at 78 minutes max.
But now there is Spotify.
And because I love you very much, I have made you a mixtape.
I like a good cover version, but am also quite partial to a bad one also, so on this very special mixtape you can expect to find a bit of both...
If you've never heard William Shatner and Joe Jacksons unique interpretation of Pulps 'Common People', you're in for a treat.
There are some pretty obvious ones. No mixtape of covers could be complete without Johnny Cash's haunting rendition of Nine Inch Nails 'Hurt'.
And there's stuff that is more famous in it's covered version that you may have never even heard the original - but that's not going to stop me chucking The Damneds 'Eloise' on.
And if you manage to stick it out to the end - get ready for Queensryche "doing" 'Scarborough Fair'. As I type Simon and Garfunkle must be busy digging themselves a shallow grave so they can dive in and have a damn good spin.
To listen to your mixtape, click here , and if you really love me, you could always make me one back.
Or just send one to someone you genuinely care about.