The Daily App: Songza -- You Don't Need No Stinkin' DJ
It's hard to find the right music for every occasion. A playlist you spent hours making for yoga on the beach probably won't fly at a cocktail hour, and a compilation designed for finally breaking that 30-minute mark on your 5K may not set the mood for a romantic evening.
If you don't have time to cultivate an appropriate set list for each specific life event, or your current roster of music bores the bejeezus out of you, don't despair -- or shell out for an overpriced, over-hair-gelled DJ -- just download Songza.
What's the App?
Songza is a free music streaming and recommendation service, and it offers extremely specific tailored playlists for all musical tastes. We imagine DJs loathe it, because it's the most flawlessly curated music app on the market. You can find your ideal track set a few different ways: you can browse through the most popular choices, you can hunt for specific genres, or you can select the Concierge option.
Once you sign into the app, the Concierge option will pop up first, telling you what day and time it is and offering you a list of possible activities. For instance, on Tuesday afternoon it says "Play Music for..." and then lists a few different options, including "Driving," "Office Crowd-Pleasers" and "An Energy Boost." Select an option. Then you're given even more choices. For instance, if you select "An Energy Boost," you're then prompted to choose between six different genres, from "Hype Rap" to "Energetic Indie." And from there, you're given three different hyper-specific and expertly curated playlists. If you select "Energetic Indie," you can whittle your playlist down to "Rooftop Indie Rock," selecting breezy jams selected especially to lift you out of the mid-week doldrums.
The Concierge option is a great way to find a fresh playlist based on what you're doing at the moment. And if there's one that really sparks your interest, you can save it as a "Favorite" so you can find it easily in the future. For a social option, you can log into Songza using Facebook. You don't have to share what you're listening to, you can let your friends see what you're playing, and see your friends' recently played tracks. There's also an option to press a button along the side to tweet or post about the songs you love.
Songza is still fairly new, but it's expanding quickly. It's now available for free for iOS, Android and a few other platforms, and if you don't want to download it as an app, you can just go to the website.
You'll Want It If...
If you're looking for a playlist for a specific event, this is the best app on the market. Watching the president deliver a rousing speech? You can play "Barack Obama's Favorite Songs." Getting ready for a night on the town with your friends from high school? You may want to check out "Vodka Escapades: Ladies Be Pre-Gaming."
These painstakingly assembled collections take the guesswork out of assembling a copacetic, appropriate playlist. If you want to set a 1960's dinner party mood or you're going for a grungier vibe, the hyper-specific playlists can help you set a mood or find the right songs instantaneously. For instance, you can craft a swinging, "Mad Men"-esque soiree by choosing the "'60s French Pop" playlist, while a garage throw-down feel is quickly established with "Guitars and PBRs."
It's Not My Thing -- What Else Ya Got?
If you'd rather hunt down each song than use playlists, you won't love it, since you can't listen on command. You can skip tracks, but you can't decide exactly which song to hear. If you must hear Missy Elliot's "Work It" and nothing else, you won't be able to play it immediately. Instead, you'll want something like Spotify, which allows you to select songs to stream. Unfortunately, you can't download songs with Spotify anymore, so if you're not a huge fan of streaming, you'll be happier just going to iTunes or Amazon and downloading MP3s.
Still, Songza is wonderful, but if you have a limited data plan, you need to make sure to do most of your song streaming over Wi-Fi, since continually blasting these awesome playlists may result in bloated data charges. ♦
Categories: Music | The Daily App