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Going Undercover

Infiltrate new music territory by following chains of cover songs between artists

About Going Undercover


Going Undercover lets you create a playlist of songs that takes you from one artist to another by following cover song chains.


How does it work?

Type in the name of a couple of artists, and if we can find connections between them, we will generate a playlist that connects the two artists via cover songs. If you don't like a particular song, you can bypass it by clicking the bypass button. (Note if the song is the only path between two artists, you won't be able to bypass it). If you like a playlist, you can save it to your set of Rdio playlists.

You can create a random cover walk by starting with a single artist.

If you are a logged-in Rdio subscriber you will hear full tracks, otherwise you will hear excerpts.

How does it really work?

We've used cover song data from the wonderful site called SecondHandSongs to build a large graph of artists connected to each other via cover songs. We use this graph to find paths between artists.

How come you didn't use the cover that X did of Y to make a shorter path?

We don't have all the cover songs in the world in this app. The app is built on a subset of the SecondHandSongs database that is then aligned with The Echo Nest database and the Rdio Swedish catalog (the hack was built in Sweden during Music Hack Day Stockholm). All of these intersecting databases mean that we may not have your favorite cover in our database. For example, The Beatles is probably the most covered band in the world, but Rdio (just as every other music subscription service) doesn't have very many Beatle songs in their collection. If you want to see a cover song in this app, the best thing to do is to make sure it is in the SecondHandSongs database and eventually it will find its way into this app.

Who made this?

This app was built by Paul Lamere at Music Hack Day Stockholm on January 20, 2013. If you like this sort of thing you may be interested in my blog at Music Machinery.