Favorite Music Sites

January 3, 2008


I feel its time to give credit to some of my favorite music sites on the web.
While at the gym today, I was listening to a podcast and realized how much I appreciate the work and generosity of the site that produced it- in this instance, Bending Corners, a site that produces an hour or so of music based around a general theme such as Celestial Jazz Expansions, Zawinderful, and Jazzatronic. The quality and amount of work that goes into these productions and the generosity of the producers is greatly appreciated and enjoyed.

Another great site, great in a different way, is Ropeadope. Their home page is a frequent destination for me since I find it to be informative about what’s happening in a certain corner of the music world- jazz, underground hip hop, and lots more between and around- as well as interesting and fun. The links they offer on the home page are a main attraction for me, along with the ever-hip commentary. Check out the original art designs by a variety of artists on their clothing lines and the music produced by Ropeadope. My favorite music to date from Ropeadope is the Philadelphia Experiment, which is an inspired live concert recording of jazz/hip hop. I attended the live concert in Philadelphia and I can tell you the recording gets it right and is one of my favorite albums of recent years. Click here to go to the Ropeadope web site to hear a song from that album and see an amusing animation that goes with it.

Still another is WWOZ, the radio station in New Orleans. I have loved New Orleans music for a very long time and was glad to find this public radio station that plays a variety of New Orleans style music as well as provides community services. After the Katrina tragedy WWOZ listed the many performers that were found to be OK and the ones that were still missing. It was heart wrenching. If you love New Orleans styles of music, give this site a listen.

And last for now are two similar sites that provide “internet radio”. Pandora and Slacker both provide streams of music you choose by genre. Both allow you to influence the playlists one way or another, and both play a good selection. Slacker is a bit slicker and busier in their site design- Pandora is a bit simpler, more direct and easier to understand. I like that I can suggest musicians to influence a playlist on Pandora. At this point I am still using both sites and have not chosen one over the other. See what you think.

Addendum: September 10, 2008:

The Roadhouse

I have another music site to add to the ones I wrote about above. Although I still listen to them, for the last month or so I have been listening to podcasts downloaded from The Roadhouse. (OK, its true, I listen to a lot of music.) 

This site offers about an hour of blues music- for free! The owner of the site has worked out an arrangement with a long and growing list of independent music labels to play their music in his podcast. After listening to 6 or 8 podcasts I can say that I really like this site. The choice of  artists and songs is excellent and I rarely come upon one I want to skip.

There are also options for subscriptions to Deluxe ($15) and Premium ($25) which offer higher bitrates (better sound), chapterization, additional tracks, album art, and purchase links. The quality of this podcast is so high that I went ahead and subscribed to support his endeavor. 

Instead of restricting the availability of music through Digital Rights Management heavy-handedness I am hoping that what we see here is a model for cooperation that will make music more available for free or low cost with the opportunity to buy what you like. One can hope!

If you like blues, try it out and let me know what you think.


2 Responses to “Favorite Music Sites”

  1. Geoff Says:

    Thanks for sharing this. I use many of the same sites. I have also started using some relational sites like last.fm which actually works with my media player so it gives me great suggestions and concert information.


  2. Bob Says:

    Thanks, Geoff. Last.fm looks like a good addition to this list


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