The experiments were unsuccessful – all we found is that 3G data speeds are insufficient for the constant playlist churn that we like to experience on our phone. But it wasn’t entirely a loss.
In the process, iTunes – arguably the worst software for a Windows machine on the planet – was ditched from my computer in favour of the incredible (and highly recommended) Media Monkey. And last.fm entered our life.
But you’ve been on last.fm since 2009.
This is true. In 2009, I wondered what this whole “internet radio” malarky was about. I got myself a last.fm account, and wondered how many plays it would take (with me loving or banning as many tracks as possible) to go from a blank slate to an accurate representation of my musical tastes.
I did no scrobbling. I answered no – or, at least, minimal – questions about my musical likes and dislikes.
That experiment, by the way, was another failure. I did not possess the patience.
But my Android Music Adventure experiments got me scrobbling. And I loved it — I cannot resist a good set of data about myself, with which to analyze what I actually like and dislike, rather than what I think I like and dislike.
I’m wise enough to know that I probably don’t actually understand what I enjoy.
Having stats on every song I’ve listened to (pretty much) over the last half year, we would now like to report on the following surprises:
There’s a four-way tie for the 50th most played artist since my last.fm revolution. And alongside Creedence Clearwater Revival and Bjork, is Andres Segovia.
I’ve always been a sucker for great guitarists, and Segovia is certainly that. But it is, nevertheless, surprising to see classical guitar land itself in the top 50.
#31: Frank Zappa
While Segovia gets credit for landing so high, Zappa is occupying a surprisingly low spot.
Your blogger listens to a lot of Zappa, or so he thought. And Zappa’s seemingly endless catalogue of music is the sort of thing that prompts increased listening, as there is more to listen to without listening to the same things over and over again.
And yet, he’s down in 31.
First thoughts were that “Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention” would push him up … but not really. Barely at all. And he’s hardly the only artist to appear as two (or more) in the chart.
#17: Lily Allen
I know I like Lily Allen. I know it’s a bit weird – she doesn’t seem, on the surface, to fit with other music I enjoy. But enjoy her music I do.
It’s just a little bit of a surprise to see how much. Lily Allen sits between Radiohead and David Bowie on my “top artists” chart.
Not the only sign of fatherhood in the list, but the one closest the top.
Raffi music was bought (amongst other things) so that we had some music we could play for Maggie (this was before we learned that she loved Kanye West). And I have played this music so often that it manages to rank in my top ten.
All the music I play for myself – to and from (and at) work. While sitting and typing blog posts. On airplanes. Except for a small group of six artists, I’ve heard more Raffi in the last six months.
That, for the record, is an awful lot of Raffi. The more we get together …
#1: Pink Floyd
Fitting and ridiculous, Pink Floyd sits at #1 on the list of most listened to music.
If this were high school, I would be saying: No shit, sherlock.
If this were university, I would be saying: Not much of a surprise there.
I was way into Pink Floyd. Given that I was three years old when The Wall was released, I spent a large portion of my youth far more into Pink Floyd than I had any right to be.
I owned every album. I owned every video. I bought books, t-shirts, bootleg albums, anything I could get my hands on. I knew – still know, pretty much – every lyric and every note of music of every song.
My wife doesn’t like Pink Floyd. It’s easy to see why people don’t like it. Above, I’ve linked to an album written and recorded by a white, male, mutli-millionaire who has the good fortune to be able to write and play music for a living. When he feels like it. Because he’s so rich he only needs to work when he feels like it.
And that album? Ninety minutes of self-indulgent whining about how hard it is to play music for millions of dollars, and how he misses his daddy. It’s easy to see why the teenagers who listen to Kanye West are more likely to get laid.
I like it all the same. But now that I’m a wise old man, it seems like I don’t really listen to it that much anymore.
Seems like that means listening to it more than anything else, all the same.