By Scott E
Every couple of months I get on this kick where I try to discover new music. I know that it is out there, I am just not sure where to look. Today I revisited a website that I had been told about almost 6 months ago, and it was well worth it. The website is called lastfm.com and it is a wonderful site for investigating the diverse and abundant collection of music that is waiting to be discovered by you. The website bills itself as the “social music revolution” and it has all the stuff that the myspace generation demands of its social websites for those of you who need/want another excuse to spend more time on the net: profiles, groups, chats, messaging, and it is all built around the love of music.
Truth be told, I am still messing around with all the bells and whistles, but the reason I felt like sharing this site is because its basic function is to help you discover new music, and you do not even have to create a profile or mortgage your first born to do it.
All you have to do is type in a favorite band or artist of yours, such as Elliot Smith or The Smashing Pumpkins, and the website will create what they call a “similar artists playlist.” This playlist is a collection of musicians and bands that are influenced by, sound like, or are related to your favorite band. Hit play and you will hear artists that you have never heard, as well as some you are very familiar with, singing songs that may or may not appeal to your particular moods and tastes. If you do not like one of the songs you are hearing, just hit next, and another song is presented for your listening pleasure. Furthermore, the site provides a short bio of each artist as their music floats from your speakers, you know, just in case you need to know where the band is from and how they got started.
I have found this site great for investigating bands and artists that I have heard about for one reason or another, but have never heard. The site also provides videos and tour dates for each artist. If you are into music and discovering new music, this site could prove to be a valuable tool for you.
While I am at it, I would love to mention a radio show that I am hooked on right now. It is called “KCRW’s Morning Becomes Eclectic.” This show is taped in a small public radio station in Santa Monica Ca. and the format has artists come into the studio in order to play a 45 min set. In the middle of the set, the artists take a break and the host, Nic Harcourt, chats them up for a couple of minutes with some fun and intelligent music talk. Go to their website and check out there archived shows, which go back as far as 1990. There have been a very diverse group of peoples that have passed through this studio. The website provides a catalogue of past shows, snippets about the artists, and all you have to do is click on listen when you see something you are interested in. For some of the more recent shows, you can even watch the performance and see some of your favorite artists performing in a very intimate setting. If you love music, I promise you will be able to find something truly memorable on this site...GO NOW.