How We Listen to the Music We Love

This wasn’t what I planned on writing about today… But since I’ve updated my gaming machine the other day (Goodbye Vista!  – yeah, I was surprised too, to see it was still running that…) I’ve been doing a little bit of clean up on it. The usual, tune settings, update drivers, remove unused or broken programs… That’s when I spotted something I haven’t used for a very long while.


Oh, my. Now that’s a blast from the past. I felt a bit sentimental when removing it. But these days I’m addicted to Spotify. It’s funny how things evolve. I don’t have many paid subscriptions, especially for things that aren’t related to running my business. Spotify is one of the few exceptions.

As a kid I started out with cassette tapes, but during my teens we quickly moved on to CDs. And then there were mp3s. I used to hoard those. Although I didn’t have a portable player for a long while. Though, funny enough I can’t quite remember what I used for on the go music in the period between tapes and an mp3 player – since I’m pretty sure I didn’t have a portable CD player… But back to my hoarding habits. Although mp3 players and then phones allowed me to take a selection of my files with me it wasn’t quite the same as having access to everything. And then I lost it all. Or almost all in a hard drive disaster. My fault really since I didn’t have a backup.

I tried restoring that collection and overtime grew my hoard a bit again. But before I had a chance to go on a proper shopping spree I found Spotify. At first I was a bit doubtful if it could replace “owned” music for me.  But as time went by I found, that pretty much anything I wanted to listen to was on there. Almost everything… and on that in a moment.

Funny enough I didn’t start paying for Spotify for it’s mobile use or to get rid of the ads. I actually enjoyed the ads. Most of them were funny, at least back when I was on free. No, what got me to pay were my bad listening habits. Yes, I’m one of those annoying people who listen to something over-and-over-and-over-and-over-and… you get the point. Playlists, sometimes an individual song. So when they introduced a play limit on the free option that was it. I had to become a subscriber.

So, you might wonder what  is it that I’m missing with Spotify. Well. The one thing that still isn’t there is non-English music. That’s something I lost when my hard drive died – a whole lot of Polish music. Some of it I could in theory recreate from the CDs I owned (or tapes??? As if anyone still had something that plays those…), but there were a few random indie/local bands I just had a song or two of. But in the end you just move on.  On a positive note, I’m actually seeing more and more Polish artists on Spotify too. It’s frustrating that sometimes they’ll just have one, latest album on there, when I’m looking for the classics I know.

I remember the awe and excitement when instead of a single album or a handful of pre-selected songs I moved to my extensive playlist on an mp3 player. I get the same awe now when I stop to think about the music I have at my fingertips through my phone. Everything available anywhere you are (OK, abroad trips can still be a challenge).

Just as I never though I’d move on from mp3s stored on my drive, I can’t imagine moving to some other way of consuming music over Spotify now. But maybe the successor is already out there. Anyone know of a revolution going on?