I've been a diehard, paying user of Spotify. I'll use Rdio, Pandora or Last.fm, but mostly Spotify.
Don't use iTunes unless I have to use it.
I've been 'streaming' all music for the last couple years - so much so that I recently backed up a few live albums these services didn't have, then deleted 300 gigs of old mp3 albums and 'ripped' music that I don't care to keep around even on extra hard drives.
From the Improbably Rise of NPR Music, to the New York Times article about Living with Less, and the growth of the major streaming apps, there are many themes today: we want discovery and experience but we don't want the overhead. We are non-committal and fickle.
Platforms for discovery and experience that will last will recognize that, just like Oscar Wilde wrote, "Fashion is a form of ugliness so intolerable that we have to alter it every six months." -- flexibility is a core competency. Spotify is even changing their business model.
So when I heard about 'digital ownership' services popping up (I get keeping vinyl to an extent) I was honestly baffled.
Why would I have a need to "own" mp3 files that I can stream - and will continue to stream more efficiciently the better LTE and other networks get - whenever and wherever I want AND layer apps that help me discover, share, refine, etc etc all that music on ANY device?
I'll gladly give up the "ownership" of a file for this next evolution. I don't own any other experience with music. Here's why:
- Sure I can buy a live recording of a concert, but the moment is rented. That is what makes it special.
- Emotions from music pass just like anything else. Listen to the same song at different times in your life or days of the week or times of the day and you'll get it.
- I have enough things in my life already that I own and managing more files is the absolute last thing on my list, especially for something I want to enjoy. When rearranging my iTunes collection is a todo I hate music.
- Sharing files still sucks (yes I'm also a diehard Dropbox user, but sharing a media file also means the person on the other end has work to do other than a single click most of the time...and ask people to do work to enjoy music?).
Along comes SoundSupply (a Chicago startup that recently raised some funding) and I'm surprised that this is something people would see as a solution to their music problem. Can't find good curated music? OK. There are thousand critic sites from Rolling Stone to Spotify playlist creators to Pitchfork's hyperhipster editorials.
But that is one problem. Can't find physical files of great music? That is another.
I actually really like the selection that SoundSupply put together. They are great at curation.
I've been listening to all the albums as fast as I could get to them. But the problem: 99% of the albums are already on Rdio and Spotify. If you are like me and already pay $9/month to Spotify, you can get all their #drops here:
After debating buying SoundSupply drops, I thought, "don't I want all these on my phone? and don't I hate iTunes and don't I love SoundCloud but don't have the time to mess with it?". Of all the SoundSupply drops, there are only 4 albums that I couldn't find on Spotify: Sister Suvi, Right Away Great Captain!, Gobotron, Via Audio.
So, if you have Spotify, click here to access all the awesome music that SoundSupply curated:
I believe that SoundSupply will quickly get into the partnership curation business (grow curation into themes and 'playlist' like lists) and leave the physical download model - or another similar change that Spotify is going through - or SS is proving that they have a better start. I'm not going to get into their business model. They and their investors no doubt focus on it enough. But then what makes them different than a previously mentioned curation app? I wish them the best because the music selections are great.