So, I was talking to ryan, and saying "Ryan, I am very dissapointed with the radio in regina. I want to hear new music, not the same top 40 crap all the time". Ryan then directed me to a website called Pandora . For some strange reason, the link doesn't work. It is at www.pandora.com.
This website is hooked to the Music Genome Project, which is an online project that took contemporary music from all genres (except classical, strangely), and broke it down to 'genomes' or defining characteristics (such as 'strong guitar' or 'accoustic instrumentation' or 'vocalcentric aesthetic'). It says it does not group things by genre, but it has characteristics like 'country roots', 'twang in voice' or 'electronic roots', so they are often grouped by genre in general.
When you open the page, it asks you to type a name of an artist or song that you like. It then creates a playlist for you based on that original song/artist you choose. This is a fully legal (in the states) way to create your own interactive music radio station. It is interactive because with each song you can tell them if you like it or not. If you like it, they will narrow the specifications of what you like in characteristics. If you do not, they will remove it from the playlist and tweak the playlist to avoid some of the characteristics you often don't like. I love it! I especially love how there is no advertising. I loved live365 radio, but i hated the costant commercials. Pandora has ads for itunes along the side of the page, but that is very easily ignored. :) Also, for live 365 you have to download the player. For pandora, there is NO DOWNLOADING, you play it directly from the website.
As far as i can see, there are only three downsides. Firstly, you have to sign up for this. There is a anonymous trial when you first get there, but after some time you have to sign up. But, for a compulsive signer-upper like me (haha, that's so not a word lol), it's not a problem. Secondly, it isn't hooked up to messanger. I love how windows media player hooks up to microsoft messanger and shows what song you are listening to. It's great. Pandora doesn't do that, although it does show the song name on the top name of the page, so you can still see what song it is when the window is minimized. Thirdly, as a minor thing, it is only licenced in the states. They are very careful not to break copyright laws (you cannot make the player play a specific song, it is random like a radio station) but it is only licenced in the states. When you sign up you have to give a zip code. It's not really a big deal, since you can just make one up (mine is 90210 hahaha, the only one i know. For my american and soon to be american family, this is not a problem for you at all. And the rest of us can just make one up. They are very careful about copyright, and i'm sure that if they tried it would be legal here in Canada.
This is the greatest thing for me. I especially like it because i can station and genre hop all i want. Anyone who has been in a car with me knows i am a compulsive station hopper. I jump all over the place. I am shameless in my lack of station loyalty lol. In this, i can jump all over the place with the click of a mouse, no waiting. As well, i can show you guys what i'm listening too. I've created a 'favorites' page, and i can e-mail that to anyone i want or even e-mail my station. Here is the link if you are nosy or just curious haha. This is the eclectic types of music i like I'm loving this :)
If you check this out, make sure you leave a comment. Even if you hate it lol. Let me know what's up.