Think of Songza as Pandora (complete with free music streaming) but organized by playlists rather than individual songs. Whether you want to find a playlist to help you chug through that Tuesday afternoon at work or you’re looking for a collection of tunes that includes your favorite artist, Songza has a playlist for you.
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Once upon a time, music was a gift from a radio disc jockey. Or it was earned from a trip to the record store, a flip to “Side B,” or patiently listening your way through the record just to hear that perfect transition between your two favorite songs. For the last several years, of course, the name of the game for music lovers has been access: Who can put the most songs into your eardrums for the least amount of money?
But this greatly increased access has come at a price: loss of curation. Now it’s rare to have a trusted local DJ to introduce you to thoughtfully chosen new music or to be force-fed an entire album because that’s the way it was meant to be listened to. This quandary is precisely what Songza aims to address.
Songza is an app of all playlists. Not albums, not radio stations, but playlists. And while from one perspective that seems limiting, the practical result is actually pretty nice. They have thousands of different playlists thoughtfully arranged for different activities, moods, genres and interests. And most of them are well over 50 songs. Pick a mood, start the playlist and get to work (or to whatever it is you’re doing), without having to worry about what to listen to next once the album’s over.
If you find playlists you like, you can save them to spin some other time. And if you connect through Facebook, you can view and share with your Songza-streaming friends.
Best of all, Songza is miraculously free. That alone makes it worth having, even if you’re a paying customer on another music service.
In some respects, you’re getting what you pay for. You can’t make your own playlists, and all of Songza’s music comes in playlists only. There is a nice search feature to find artists and keywords, but it’ll only find you playlists that meet your criteria (as opposed to just giving you songs by that one artist).
But you should take Songza’s playlists for a spin. While he might not have a name, or a face or a regular slot on Tuesday nights at 9, Songza might just be your radio disc jockey of the future.
Reviewed: Jul 23, 2012 | Nick HurwitchAlso featured on: iTunes Radio vs. Pandora vs. Google Music All Access, Also featured on: 6 Best Music Apps of 2012, Also featured on: 5 Best Music App Alternatives to Spotify