Tag: last.fm

And now a few thoughts about Spotify

And now a few thoughts about Spotify

Internet, Music
I've been hearing about Spotify, one of the seemingly endless number of music listening applications and sites out there, for months. But as it was not available in the U.S. I didn't pay it much mind. But that all changed today, as Spotify is now available to us here in the good ol' U.S. of A. And like every other service I've ever used, Spotify promises to change the way we listen to music. Just like their nifty little promo video says: Sounds good huh? I decided to take the plunge and download Spotify, so I could see just how much my world would be rocked. For reference, I already use the following services to one degree or another: Last.fm Rhapsody Slacker All of those services have their good and bad points, and between the three of them I pretty much get what I ne...
Listening Booth – Dream Theater, “The Answer Lies Within”

Listening Booth – Dream Theater, “The Answer Lies Within”

Listening Booth
In honor of scrobbling my 80,000th track on last.fm today, here's the lucky song.  It's a decidedly understated cut from modern prog rock stalwarts Dream Theater called "The Answer Lies Within", from their excellent 2005 album Octavarium.  It proves, if nothing else, that they can halt the noodling and still write good songs.  I just wish they'd remember that more often. .
Listening Booth – Tab Benoit, “So High”

Listening Booth – Tab Benoit, “So High”

Listening Booth, Music
This popped up on a last.fm mix the other day, and I stopped what I was doing and proceeded to dance around the room like a mental patient.  I figure this little blues boogie is as good a way as any to kick off the week, now that spring is at the doorstep and the last vestiges of snow are melting away. It's Tab Benoit with "So High", off of his 1992 debut album Nice & Warm.  This is recommended for fans of Stevie Ray Vaughan, although this has more of a New Orleans flavor than a Texas one.
Listening Booth – Ray Bryant, “Up Above the Rock”

Listening Booth – Ray Bryant, “Up Above the Rock”

Listening Booth, Music
I discovered this vintage tune quite by jazz pianist Ray Bryant quite by chance recently, when it came up on a random last.fm playlist.  Actually I should say that a remix of the song, by Irish DJ David Holmes, came up on a random last.fm playlist.  You won't find too many jazz songs that start with a drum break, but then this is probably one of the better jazz/soul hybrids I've heard in some time.  Joining Bryant are Grady Tate (drums), Ron Carter (bass), and the horn section of Dobbie Hiques and Snookie Young. Enjoy "Up Above the Rock" by Ray Bryant, the lead track from the 1968 album of the same name.
The sad, inevitable death of Pandora

The sad, inevitable death of Pandora

Internet
Music lovers will have one less place to discover new music if the worst comes to pass, and internet radio pioneer Pandora shuts down as threatened.  And that would be a damn shame for me, as I've discovered a lot of wonderful new artists and songs through the service. For those who haven't used the (free) site, Pandora basically works like this - you create a "station" by entering an artist or a song you like.  The site, taking advantage of the Music Genome Project, streams random tracks that share similar qualities to your selection.  As each song plays, you can issue a "thumbs up" or "thumbs down", and that further fine-tunes what you hear. It's a fantastic idea, and as I said I've found a lot of great stuff using it.  But its existence is now threatened, thanks to a 2007 ruling f
Turn up the radio

Turn up the radio

Blogstuff
A little housecleaning seems to be in order on the ol' site, especially since the sidebars are getting rather full.  So I took out a few things you probably won't miss anyway, and added one new feature - GFS Radio.  If your inter-webs browser is fully functional you should see it on the top of the right sidebar.  It's provided by last.fm and the playlist is comprised of songs that yours truly listens to.  Now I can be the tastemaker I always knew I should be.  So listen and enjoy!
Are you addicted to the Internet?

Are you addicted to the Internet?

Funny Stuff, Listcruft
There is no shortage of press and academic research covering the topic of so-called Internet Addiction. Of course, the first reaction of any true addict is "not me!" This denial is usually followed by surprise, realization, and then descent into an all-too familiar shame spiral. In the interest of science and self-improvement I've spent the last few weeks keeping a meticulous log of my daily activities, in order to better understand just how the Internet fits into my life. The results, needless to say, confirm that I totally have this thing under control. Just take a look at last Thursday's log (time spent is total throughout the day, not consecutive): 45 minutes spent updating my Wikipedia watchlist to make sure some snot-nosed high school punk hasn't vandalized one of my favor...
I am 27.98% mainstream! (whatever that means)

I am 27.98% mainstream! (whatever that means)

Music
As I opined about three weeks ago, joining Last.fm has taken my obsession with music and music statistics to a scary new level. Recently I found yet another way to build on this experience - the Last.fm Mainstream-O-Meter. Using some sort of high-tech algorithms and reverse polarities, this little tool can tell anyone who uploads their information to Last.fm just how mainstream (or not) their listening tastes are. As the site explains, it draws its numbers based off the 30 most-listened to groups, and how mainstream each of those groups is. I guess the higher the number, the more mainstream you are. Looks like I'm just outside the really meaty part of the curve. One thing I find interesting about this tool is it really shows you what the demographics of Last.fm's users are. For in...
As if I needed another excuse to be anal about music

As if I needed another excuse to be anal about music

Music
One of the great things about the iPod and iTunes is that, apart from the ability to listen to any song I want with just a few clicks, it feeds the habit of a statistics junkie like me. I am addicted to tracking the play counts of my songs, and have even gone so far as to scold Mrs. Suit for skipping a song on the iPod before it finished, because doing so meant it wouldn't count as having been played. Yeah, it's that bad. So now I've discovered last.fm, and my world of borderline-obsessive music tracking is even bigger. You see, it's no longer good enough for me to know how much I listen to certain songs or bands - now EVERYONE can know, and I'm loving it! Yes, the word scrobbling is now a major part of vocabulary, and I'm loving it. Now I've got charts and pretty pictures to show me ju...