If any of you live/work in or near Vancouver, WA, you may have noticed the crazy people who live there. I too have noticed these people. While I am at work, I have witnessed at least three car crashes in the last year – just on this one corner too. Also there are many people who walk down the street yelling at trees or having arguments with their other personalities or the other people they are with. (It should be noted not all persons from Vancouver are crazy. Hell I live there and no doctor has to me I am crazy – just my ex-gfs – ha I kid. Moving on.)
As you might image this is quite distracting; even if it is hilarious to listen to. A few weeks back, I had had enough and purchased some earphones to listen to music while working. This has made work much more productive and relaxing. It has also made me realize online radio stations are crap. Let me explain…
I have been using Yahoo! Music to get my music addiction at work. Go ahead and listen to Dustin’s Yahoo! Music Station. This service is mostly what I want in a radio station. I can rank my artists, songs, albums, genres, etc to build a customized play list based on my music likeness. Let me tell you, those Yahoo! servers are probably working overtime on me too since my preferences include country, oldies, grunge rock, new rock (indie, emo, etc), and classical just to name a few. I now have a very nice station customized for me with Yahoo!, but it is not enough. With this system, I have to either pay an nominal monthly fee or listen to ads.
Well dammit, I don’t want to do either. I want to listen to a station for free and not listen to ads. I am willing to look at ads, but I don’t want the Navy asking me to join anymore. I am not going to join the Navy. If I was going into the service, I would choose the Air Force so piss off. I am also not going to buy any songs from you. If I have a service from you, why can’t I just listen to it from wherever in the world I am instead of buying songs from you too. So, in summary, I want a free online radio station which I can customize to my listening needs which does not make me listen to ads.
Now, I realize these stations need to pay their bills including paying the artists each time the songs are played. There is also the threat of having these royalty prices going up potentially putting many of these services out of business. Well I ask these services to adapt and find a business model which will allow them to become free. I will even say please.
Now that my rant is over, I am on a search. I am now in desire of finding the best service out there which comes closest to these needs. There are tons of online radio stations including (off the top of my head) Last.fm, Pandora, Deezer, Yahoo! Music, AOL, and Live365.
Remember, although I have 50 Gb of music on my home computer, this library is not going to cut it since these services have all songs ever available with any Internet connection.
I also ask all of you out there what service you use or don’t use or how else you get your music. I am curious what creative alternatives I may have.
(Dustin was listening to The Shins while writing this post)