Thursday, February 21, 2008

Opening Pandora's Box

So for the past two years I've spent my summers working in a bike shop (freshman year back in my hometown, last year here in Iowa City), and one of the staples of my experiences at the shop was Pandora Radio, cranked up full blast.

If you don't know about Pandora (, it's a streaming music website which creates play lists based off of songs (or artists) you type in. For instance-- If I were to type in "Konstantine", It would select songs for playing that all have similar qualities to the song "Konstantine", by Something Corporate (in this instance, a lot of songs with mellow rock qualities, piano accompaniment, and vocal harmonies).

Anyway, Pandora is great not because it cycles songs from your favorite artists, but because it introduces you to artists you may not have heard of before, assuming you’ll like them based on your already established taste in music. Most of the time, they assume correctly. Don’t worry if they don’t, you can simply veto a song, and it will be forever removed from your playlist.

Pandora has introduced me to some amazing bands I would have never heard of before. Here’s a list of some of the bands Pandora has so gracefully introduced me to:

Elliot Smith Radio:
Heatmiser - Plainclothes Man, The Miles Hunt Club - Amongst the Old Reliables, Sun Kil Moon - Dramamine

Kings of Leon Radio:
The Last of the Bad Men - Get in Line, The M’s - Big Baby Bottoms, The Cribs - Mirror Kissers, Rock Kills Kid - Are you Nervous?

Konstantine Radio:
Missy Higgins - Nightminds, Rosie Thomas - Farewell, Aqua Lung - Brighter than the Sunshine, Collin Herring - Into the Morning

Rodrigo y Gabriella Radio:
Lara & Reyes - El Castillo, Georges Street - The Tartar Frigate, Rafael Canizeras - A Tu Vera, Gypsy Kings - Faena

Something Vague Radio:
Junior League - Nameless, Black Lab - Run Circles, Sean Hayes - Calling all Cars, Blue Rodeo - It Makes Me Wonder, Straw Dogs - All the Things, James - The Shining, Days of the New - The Down Town

Wilco Radio:
Paul Brill - New Pagan Love Song, David Gray - Nightblindness, The Go-Betweens - Crooked Lines, Son Volt - Back into Your World

I’ve included some songs to listen to, as well, because it would take me FOREVER to link a bunch of songs/videos. You’ll have to do some detective work to make up for my laziness. But it’s worth it.


A Kay said...

I love pandora! it helps me study!

rachel said...

omg i LOVE brighter than sunshine by aqualung. its an AMAZING song.
and i have to second a kay. i love pandora too. but i dont know if it helps me study... more like it distracts me lol

Hotcizzle said...

So thats where missy higgins came from...

RAB said...

don't you guys find that sometimes you hear the same song too much when listening to pandora?

Lucia @ Pandora said...

We're thrilled to hear you're enjoying Pandora so much!

That's a completely impressive list of music you've discovered -- nice work putting it together.

You MUST see Rodrigo y Gabriela live, if you haven't already. They are astounding.

RAB - If you'd like more variety on a Pandora station, feel free to add more inputs to your station. Add more songs or artists, or just thumbs up more songs.

There's also QuickMix, which lets you mash a bunch of your stations together temporarily, for the extreme variety show.

cheerio, Lucia from Pandora

bright eyed fool said...

I was actually about to say "Use the Veto/Thumbs up button"... but someone FROM pandora beat me to it.

It should also be noted that besides the "relatively unknown" bands you'll get on Pandora, you also get a wide variety of bands that (based on your music taste) you probably already love.

For instance? Radiohead radio last night:

The White Stripes, The Arctic Monkeys, The Strokes, The Smashing Pumpkins...

it was like an alternative rock orgasm for my ears.

Stephanie said...

I've never heard of Pandora, I'll have to check it out. There is another streaming radio site where I found my happy song... Crash-Big Ass Love (hint hint, go find it, listen to it & Smile!!!) For anyone interested that site is www.Last.FM