With the hyper-production of music that technology has enabled over the last decade, the Internet has also enabled people to not only share their music easily and find fans worldwide with little problem, it has also made it much easier for fans of music to seek out new and interesting artists that might appeal to them. There are literally hundreds of ways to find out about new music these days on the Web – whether you are reading blogs, getting recommendations from friends on Facebook or listening to Internet radio stations, it has never been easier to find mew music.
Let’s take a look at some of the best ways to find new music on the Internet:
Last.fm is a social networking site that is geared towards people who are obsessed with music. You can install their scrobbler and link it to whatever program or device you are using to listen to music and it will keep track of what you have been listening to, whether its at home on Winamp or Windows Media Player or on your iPod. It displays this information on your personal page, and shares your music listening habits with the world. You can add friends just like you can on any other social networking site, and post on their walls as well. Using Last.fm, there are many different ways for you to discover music. For example, when you visit another person’s page, Last.fm will tell you the level of similarity you have with any given user and it will also list what artists you have in common in your listening library. If you have a high similarity with a person, you can look at their charts and see if there are any artists there that sound interesting to you, or you can even ask the person for some personal recommendations based on the artists that you have in common. Also, if you visit the official page of a band you enjoy, listed under the band’s description and biography is a group of similar artists that you can check out. You can also browse music by genres, since users on Last.fm are able to tag each artist as being part of a specific genre that they deem fit. Last.fm has a paid radio service as well that lets you listen to its enormous database of artists in high quality streaming audio, but also, there is a free music player that you can download and use with the Google Chrome browser. Once you download and install the player, you can go to any artist’s page and listen to their songs free of charge. The opportunities for discovering new music through Last.fm are truly limitless.
The opportunities for listening to new music are fairly limited on Amazon. They do have streaming audio, but the site only offers you short snippets of songs to check out. However, there are other ways that Amazon can help you discover new music. If you click on an album that you know you love, listed under the album are users who have purchased this album from Amazon. Amazon also lists other albums that these customers have bought, which serves as a recommendation, since the person who bought an album that you love probably has similar tastes in music. You can literally spend hours on Amazon going from album to album and customer to customer, checking out what they have bought and seeking out these different albums if they sound interesting to you. Amazon also allows its customers and users to write reviews of the music that they have purchased. The users who purchased the music are able to write a review, many write small blurbs, but others go into great detail when they write reviews, and they also rank the album by way of a five-star system. Amazon does a great job of creating a multifaceted service that will not only allow you to seek out new music, read in-depth reviews of albums and songs, and see what else people who have bought an album you like have bought, but it also allows you to purchase the music right there on the site without having to search any further.
This site is very unique and much different for the first two mentioned. This site is not specifically for people who are looking for recommendations based no their tastes, it is more for people who are just looking to hear new things and to stay on top of all the latest trends in popular music. The Hype Machine is a music site for people who are fans of Reddit and Tumblr – sites that have constant streams of new information coming in at all times. The site actually aggregates all types of different blogs that offer mp3 into one location. It takes songs that were posted on a selection of about 1,500 different music blogs and it lists them on the main page of the site. After listening to a song, you can click on a button that says you “love“ it, and at the end of the week, the site will show its popular list that shows which songs received the most “love“ that week from users. There is also a Listening History section, which allows users to see what songs their friends have recently listened to as well. Also, above every song you will find links to online music retailers from which you can purchase the track. The site operates thanks to the commissions it receives from these sales. If you are someone who loves staying on top of all of the latest trends in music and you are interested in what critics and fans are enjoying the most currently, then this is the site for you.
Forums and Message Boards
No matter what kind of music you enjoy, there are found to be dozens, if not hundreds, of forums and discussion boards where people with similar tastes hang out daily and discuss music. Chances are, you will probably be able to find local message boards for any type of music you like as well, no matter what country you live in. Message boards are fun because they are highly interactive and also very helpful. You can discuss topics with people in real time and you can hear various opinions on any specific band or album from a large group of people who still represent one community. If you are interested in hearing a variety of opinions because taking the plunge and buying an album, then forums and message boards are the places to be. Once you have spent some time as a new member observing the discussions, feel free to join and give your opinions on bands and artists you are familiar with. Forums and message boards are also great places to ask for recommendations based on music you already like. Once you have spent some time on a certain message board and you are familiar with the personalities that post there, you will know who the experts are on certain topics, and who the people are on the board who have the most in common with you as far as musical tastes are concerned. Once you have located these people who share similar tastes with you and are clearly well-informed, checking out albums and artists they are excited about is usually a great way to find out about new music that might be right up your alley.