Pandora’s box (set)
I forgot how much I love Pandora.
We all know about Pandora, but in case you’ve been under a rock for the past two years – or, I suppose, without an Internet connection, which is probably pretty close to the same thing – I’ll explain.
Pandora is a part of the Music Genome Project, a collective that analyzed artists and songs in an effort to better recommend and create listener-generated radio. In other words, if you like Pearl Jam (for instance), the information gleaned from the Music Genome Project should be able to create a specialized radio station based on the music of Pearl Jam and the artists that other Pearl Jam fans similarly like.
On Pandora, all you do is enter a song or artist. A radio station will be created around that song or artist. As additional songs are played, you can give them the thumbs up or thumbs down. And, after a while, your radio station is learning your tastes.
It’s a pretty brilliant system, actually. It’s a million times more advanced than it was two years ago when I first started listening to it. I don’t know if it has remembered my likes and dislikes from back then, but the first five songs played on my Built to Spill channel (since renamed “Indie Rocker Channel”) were:
• Built to Spill – “Velvet Waltz”
• Radiohead – “Lewis (Mistreated)”
• Modest Mouse – “Summer”
• The White Stripes – “The Denial Twist (live)”
• 764-Hero – “Oceanbound”
All great artists, with a spattering of album cuts, rare EP items (Radiohead and White Stripes), early hits and “best known” songs. And on the sixth song, we revisited Built to Spill with one of my favorites – “Stab.”
It’s nothing new to seasoned Internet fans, but to me it’s a welcome remembrance. I’m glad to have Pandora back in my life. It certainly rocks, that’s for sure.
Finally – a (social?) network that I can actually enjoy.