With social media shaping our daily lives in how we correspond and express ourselves, it’s no surprise that one of our mediums of expression, music, is being reshaped in the digital world of communication. Social media takes out the middle man of music and brings the artist directly to their fans, as it helps artists get noticed while promoting their own music. Take how Justin Bieber’s career was jumpstarted from social media, same with his protégé, Carly Rae Jepsen, who both were discovered off of YouTube. As exciting as it is being discovered by record companies or other artists, this may be a thing of the past. Record labels are losing their grip of control on the music industry for now it’s not about the best record deal, but rather what’s the best social media outlet to promote yourself. Look at artist Macklemore who is completely independent of a record deal. His music is topping charts without any help or promotion of music companies and he did this through social media. As promising as YouTube is for music artists, nowadays, it’s not the only social platform that can launch an artist’s career or bring music to the public. There’s a giant network of music sites or apps that bring their own unique spin to how we view and interact with music of all genres and ages through social media.
If you’re looking for a social network based only on music, Spotify, which boasts a gigantic library, is exactly what you want. Logging into Spotify through Facebook accounts allows users to see what their friends are listening to, as well as allowing them to share common music interests. The free version is perfect if you’re in the mood to search and create your own playlists, and is much like listening to the radio on your computer just with commercials. The premium version takes this to another level allowing you to listen commercial free and download anytime anywhere even offline on any of your electronic devices.
Consider this the Pinterest version of music platforms that prides itself on being the largest and best music collection provider out there for users and artists alike. Soundcloud creates a social network that focuses on sharing hot music. Search and discover underground music, amazing DJs, favorite and new artists, and sounds that go beyond music such as podcasts and comedy standup. Another perk about this platform is that artists experience little limitations even with the free version in that they are allowed two hours of uploaded music and artists can link their other music platforms accounts on their profile. Soundcloud makes it easy for users to upload music anywhere and its easy for users to maneuver the site, finding the music they truly love.
Personalized DJ mixes created by users for users, 8tracks finds playlists based off what the user is feeling or in the mood to listen to, while also offering users to browse artists and genres . Instead of focusing on a favorite artist playlist, this platform finds playlists that fit the vibe users want to hear. This platform is new and innovative giving control to users rather than artists, and with this control, 8tracks provides an infusion of genres perfect for mashups.
Much like Spotify, this social music service gives users a plethora of music to choose from, but playlists are based on similar artists rather than personalized playlists created by artists and users. One thing unique to Pandora is their new service, Pandora Premiers, which provides new features that causes this platform to not only stand apart from the other social music outlets, but also act as a leader in the social music industry. Pandora Premiers offers full-length albums weeks before their release dates, giving listeners an opportunity to decide if they wish to purchase these albums upon arrival in stores. It also is the only platform that offers users repeated listens of tracks in any order.