Pandora

Pandora is a new subscription music service based upon the work of the Music Genome Project. I signed up for a beta account a few days ago and now I have a 10-hour free trial.

So far, it’s suggested some great music for me, based on my favorite artist, Matthew Sweet, as a starting point. Here’s the playlist thus far.

  1. Millennium Blues by Matthew Sweet
  2. Radiation Vibe by Fountains of Wayne
  3. Follow Through by Gavin de Graw
  4. Happily Ever After by The Gufs
  5. The Big Cats of Shambala by Matthew Sweet
  6. Lazarus by Porcupine Tree
  7. Adelaide by Ben Folds
  8. Dandelion by Matthew Sweet

Here’s the official message I got via email:

Thanks for checking out Pandora. We recently launched the public version
of the site, and would love for you to give it a try. You’ll be able to
listen for 10 hours for free:

We want your feedback – the good, the bad and the ugly – so we can make the
service as good as possible. It’s been a long haul getting here and we want
to get it right! Truth is, the Music Genome has always been a pretty insane
idea – to listen to almost a century of popular music, one song at a time,
and capture literally hundreds of musical qualities for each composition.
But now that we’ve been at it for close to six years, we’re very excited
about what it’s become.

Thanks again for your interest – we very much look forward to hearing what
you have to say.

Cheers.

Tim Westergren
Founder
Pandora Media, Inc.
(formerly Savage Beast Technologies, Inc.)

I don’t know yet whether I’m willing to plunk down $36 a year for the service, but it certainly is very interesting.

I think the best thing about Pandora is the fact that you can influence the recommendations it makes, helping to refine the system while you listen. They’ve got a very blog-like ethic, as evidenced by this quote on their site, which explains the genesis of Pandora as an extension of the Music Genome Project:

Everybody started joking that we were now their personal DJs. We created Pandora so that we can have that same kind of conversation with you.

Music service/recommendation engine as a conversation between users and administrators. A very cluetrain business model.

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