Where do I find good new songs?

In this thread, **Jophiel ** introduced me to this song, “Casimir Pulaski Day” by Sufjan Stevens. An amazing song by an artist I have never heard of, and probably never would have heard of had it not been for that thread.

There’s great music out there that I know nothing about. How do I find it? (And don’t anybody dare say “American Top 40” with Ryan Seacrest.) I’d love a website that publicizes really good music. If it has clips, great; if not, I can listen to clips on YouTube or Itunes before buying. But I’m tired of my music and want to know where to find more good stuff. Please help!

You can plug in an artist or song, then it will feed you similar material. You can ‘thumbs up’ or down particular songs to adjust the ‘station’ to what you had in mind. I find relatively few artists who don’t make good seeds, but overall, whether it’s jazz, funk, gospel, big band, latin, or funky latin jazz with a gospel bent, Pandora delivers.

You can quick-mix your stations, and their genre stations (premixed) are fantastic and fairly well detailed (i.e., not just ‘classical’ but about ten different types of orchestral categories to choose from).

Yeah, I was going to say that. Unfortunately, for me, this is no longer available outside the U.S. due to “licensing constraints.”

**Sophistry and Illusion ** I admit I was fully expecting to be extremely disappointed in a new song by Sufjan Stevens(???), entitled “Casimir Pulaski Day.” I stand corrected. That was beautiful. I will be looking for more of that! Thanks.

Hey, don’t thank me; thank Jophiel. Credit where credit is due.

I will check out pandora. I don’t always live in the US, but I always maintain a credit card with a US billing address. Comes in mighty handy, I find.

What did the “(???)” mean there?


Pandora monitors your I.P address and will only allow access from within the U.S. It has nothing to do with credit card origins.

Just that I’d never heard of the guy: nothing more, nothing less.

Bastards. It works with some sites.

Let me briefly mention the KEXP Song of the Day podcast. It’s mostly “alternative”, therefore hit and miss, but most of the artists are full-on indies and I’ve pulled some real gems from there.

I also subscribe to the Live on Fair Game podcast, which is more generally-independent musicians, but the recording quality isn’t great and the MP3 quality is even worse.

I hadn’t heard of him before either, but my wife bought a Christmas CD box set of his which has some good stuff on it. I’m having a hard time comparing his music to anyone else’s, though.

Is there an overseas equivalent to Pandora? I listen to a lot of Afrobeat, and while Pandora’s library is huge, I can only imagine what a station pulling directly from Mali would offer. There are a lot of regions I’d love to tap into to get a grass roots feel for things.

I’d like an alternatve too. I’ve been trying to remember a song I heard that at the time I tought reminded me of the Beastie Boyz, but I never knew what the song was and I was never able to figure out what it was from the radio station’s playlist. All I know is what else was on the radio around the same time frame, but Pandora sounds like just the perfect tool to help me narrow it down.

If you’re interested in indie (and apparently rap going by the year’s top 50 which was about 1/3rd rap I never noticed all year), The Hype Machine links you to what cutting edge stuff people are blogging about.

Stop Me If You’ve Heard This One Before. A pretty decent music blog with plenty of samples to download. I’ve discovered a number of cool indie bands through this site. Currently loving “The Pendletons”.

Emusic. Yeah, it’s a pay site but it’s well worth it, IMHO. Even the cheapest monthly subscription will get you plenty of music to sample at much cheaper rates per track than iTunes. And it’s all DRM-free MP3s, not crippled encrypted windows or itunes formats. Highly recommended if you’re into non-label indie artists, jazz and classical music.

Hey, a post with my name in it! Glad you liked the song, Sophistry and Illusion & Leaffan :slight_smile:

If Pandora doesn’t work for you, a poor man’s equivalent might be to use Music-Map and then seek out artist clips on YouTube. Rhapsody gives you 25 free listens a… week? Month? Anyway, you can play stuff on there as well to test drive artists you find on Music-Map.

My understanding is that Pandora was based off of Music-Map in so far as its artist selections go.

I spend far too much time at these sites:

last.fm - formerly Audioscrobbler. You can track what you listen to and get recommendations, or just cruise through songs, find similar artists, etc.

MOG - very similar to last.fm

Musicovery - This site makes it easy to find songs based on your mood and what genre of music you are looking for. And I like the web-like display that links you to songs and artists that are similar to what is currently playing.

And seeqpod and songza come in really handy as well.

So, I’ve listened to more of Sufjan now. Thanks muchly! Music may not be dead after all.

Not only can you get the KEXP SotD podcast as was previously mentioned, check out their stream @ kexp.org. They also archive live performances from their studios, and the last two weeks of certain shows.

Daytime (pacific) they play a huge variety of music. Evenings (6-9) they focus on related genres, then back to variety at night. I don’t like everything they play, but I am never bored.

Hooray, KEXP!

I had never heard of him until I listened to Snow Patrol’s album Eyes Open. They mention his name in a song on there. Hands Open is the song in case anyone wants to listen to it.

try pandora.com

Ditto on last.fm

They’ve been absolutely uncanny in pegging my musical tastes… about half of their recommendations turn out to be bands I already like to some degree, and they’ve introduced me to a handful of very good (and somewhat obscure) artists that I hadn’t heard of before and ended up liking very, very much. Even the small number of recos I don’t like tend to be more “meh” than “ew”.

Mind you, the recommendations are only as reliable as the data you give the site, so it does take a little bit of time to build up enough listening history to start getting suggestions for stuff you’d like. The “Express Your Love” and “Don’t Play This Again” buttons are especially useful for giving the site a good handle on your preferences.

The other benefit of last.fm is the “similar artists” streaming radio. Pick a band you already like, scroll to the “Radio - Play Similar Artists” link, and they’ll play you a selection that’s in the same vein. Sufjan Stevens, for example, will probably land you a few tracks by Cat Power, The Shins, Elliott Smith, and Iron and Wine, among others.