I am lucky enough to be able to participate in the private beta of a next-generation music service called Spotify.  As I described previously , Spotify is the real celestial jukebox - it has a seemingly bottomless collection of music - by every artist that I can think of (and I can think of a lot).  Today, the folks at Spotify released a new feature: Collaborative Playlists .  With Collaborative Playlists you can give your friends a playlist that they can not only listen to, they can add new tracks to, and any changes they make to the playlist you see (and hear) too.   Need help making a mix for friday's party - get your friends to help.  This is a pretty neat idea, and one that I've not seen before. What really makes this work is the fact that all Spotify users have access to the same huge music catalog - this makes sharing and collaborating on playlists not only possible, but dead simple.  To add a song to the playlist, just right click on the song and click 'add to playlist'. No more digging through music collections to see what songs you have in common with your friends, no more searching the 'net to find the set of tracks that your friends are listening to.  The music is all right there.

Spotify's collaborative playlisting feature just highlights how, when we all have access to the celestial jukebox, there will be so many ways for people to do things with their music  that has been hard to do so far. Collaborative playlisting  is just the tip of the proverbial iceberg.

Still, the Spotify collaborative playlisting could perhaps be improved  a bit.  Right now, there doesn't seem to be any way for a playlist editor to add any description to the playlist. It'd be nice if when I create a collaborative playlist that I could  include a bit of text that describes what the playlist is about - to give future editors a bit of guidance about what goes in the playlist.  Similarly, when someone adds a song to a playlist they should be given the option to explain why they've added that song.

Right now, I suspect that the world of Spotify users is still rather small, so the opportunities for collaborating on playlists are small.  But let me start a collaborative playlist to see what happens.  For this playlist, find a song that is slightly more happy than the current last song on the playlist and add  the song to the end.    I'll start with the very unhappy 'hurt' - as covered by Johnny Cash.  Here's the playlist :Make Me Happy .  Have at it. (Oh, if you are not a Spotify user, but would like to play along, I'll post the contents of the playlist here periodically.  If you have suggestions to add - just post a comment and I will add it.)

Update #1:  Four songs so far:

  • Hurt - Johnny Cash
  • Rape Me - Mirvana
  • Miss Li - Miss Li
  • Brimful of Asha (Cornershop FBS Remix) - Fatboy Slim

Remember - the goal is to make a playlist that will seemlessly pull us from the very depressing 'Hurt' - into happy or even giddy territory.  Feel free to insert or reorder tracks as necessary

 Update #2 :   20 songs and counting - we seem to be having no trouble finding the happy/giddy songs .. but the songs that cross the border on the valence scale seem to be missing.  Current songs:

  1. Hurt  - Johnny Cash
  2. Ain't No Sunshine - Woven Hand
  3. Rape Me - Nirvana
  4. This Place is  a prison - The Postal Service
  5. Smile  - Lily Allen
  6. Miss Li - Miss Li
  7. Run to the Hills - Hellsongs
  8. Giddy Up! - The Hives
  9. Brimful of Asha - Fatboy Slim
  10. Tomoko - Hafdis Huld
  11. Fly Around My Pretty Little Miss - Built to Spill
  12. Dancing in the Moonligh - Toploader
  13. Walking on Sunshine - Katrina and the waves
  14. Duke's Travels - Genesis
  15. Dashboard - Modest Mouse
  16. Dancing in the Streets - Martha and the Vandellas
  17. I just Can't get Enough - Nouvelle Vague
  18. Shake Me Baby - Junior Senior
  19. finally - Ce Ce Peniston
  20. Beautiful Day - U2
  21. I want you back - the jackson 5
  22. I'm so excited - the pointer sisters
  23. Always look on the bright side of life - Monty Python
(Clearly we need some reordering here)



Slightyl more happy is raising the bar pretty high :-) How about happier? :-)

A pick me upper for some slot in the list from the Fatboy Slim remix of Cornershop's Brimful of Asha.


Posted by Mark on January 30, 2008 at 09:22 AM EST #

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