How I’ve taken this thing for granted!
Each Saturday morning as I write this blog post, I wonder to myself…. “What can I write about?” And most times I have an idea in mind, as I’d just finished watching this or that show, or I’ve experienced something which I’ve been dying to tell someone about! But oftentimes, I simply write about what’s been consuming my attention this past week. And this week it has been Spotify!
This all came about as we had an ice-breaker session at a work workshop I attended mid-week. As part of the ice-breaker, we had to share about a hidden talent of ours, and although I didn’t share about this. But a colleague shouted it out as their guess of my hidden talent. And that was my past interest in Djing, spinning those wheels of steel! And the next morning our Senior Manager asked me if I’d be interested to put together a playlist for an all-day planning session coming up next week. And of course, I agreed. But then it dawned on me, the pressure!!!!!
- Because it’s a work event, therefore song choice is critical i.e., no cussing and no sexually suggestive undertones.
- Inevitably people are going to judge you on your musical taste.
- And lastly, your personal life is now going to merge with your work life, and aren’t we all just a little bit different outside of work?
So, for these reasons I’ve been spending hours and hours on Spotify, attempting to create a curated 16 track playlist which will keep vibes up, not offend, and not sound too commercial or generic so that people think they’re just listening to another pre-made Spotify playlist.
And here is how I’ve taken for granted the fact that I’ve always had a paid Spotify premium account. I remember when I first got Spotify, I wanted to listen to music on demand. I wanted to hear the song that I wanted, when I wanted it just like my very own jukebox. So, the $12 per-month was a no brainer. I considered it as half the price of a physical CD album per month, but it enabled me to ‘own’ every song in the world (or close to it).
And as I was putting my playlist together, I had taken for granted that I could bring up whatever song I wanted, I could skip it after the first 20 seconds if the initial bars hadn’t grabbed my attention, and afterwards when I was enjoying my playlist I commented to my wife, “This sound quality is really, really good!” As the acoustic covers, you could hear each string ring out, a level of quality I greatly appreciated, when coming out of a simple Google Home Mini speaker.
And the access to songs is incredible! So, what I ended up creating was this. I wanted to create a body moving playlist, but nothing too outrageous that you felt like you had to scream to be heard, or that you feel like you’re in a club while at the office. So, I ended up pulling out all of my tracks from a work-out playlist which I had made for myself, but the songs which I kept were just the ones which had actual singing in it (unfortunately no rap or hip hop for my 50+ year old colleagues). So, I ended up with tracks like Miley Cyrus’ Party in the U.S.A, and Ed Sheeran’s Don’t. But also, not wanting to just sound like a playlist of songs which had been used in a recent TV commercial, I decided to also make a second ‘reimagined’ playlist, so the exact same songs in the exact same order, but they’re either remixes, covers, or mash-ups. So, when you hear the first few bars, your brain thinks it knows what’s to come, but boom! Then you’re thrown a curveball when a chick starts to sing (instead of Ed), or instead of a deep thumping bass note, it’s a more chilled acoustic guitar! So, with 2 playlists (the original and the reimagined), my Senior Manager can now elect which playlist to play, depending on the scenario e.g., background music during morning-tea- you need more up-tempo; or if it’s background music during team build activities- then you need the toned down version. Brilliant!
So yeah, back to the access to songs point…… Honestly, some of the more popular tracks, there are like 20 different versions of the same song! Either various edits by the original artist, unofficial and official remixes, covers, mash-ups, live performances, instrumental only, and of course those sped-up chipmunk versions. It was crazy, I lost myself in listening to so many versions of the same songs, liking a couple and then going back and doing my own little song battle. Pitching one version of ‘Love yourself’ with another, and then choosing one to keep for my reimagined playlist. So much fun!
So, without a paid account, this experience would have been so painful! Made to sit through ads, unable to skip to my hearts content, and most importantly, unable to listen to the songs in the order which I want them to be! And that’s important, as songs in a DJ set needs to be in an exact order to allow the songs to build off one another.
So, yeah, if you’re still sitting on the fence on a free account verses a paid account? Try the one month free trial of Spotify Premium, I promise you, once you have the power to listen to what you want, when you want it, as many times as you want, in high fidelity!? You’ll never go back! You’re hip pocket isn’t going to thank me, but your ears and sanity will!