On the front page of Pandora’s website, there’s a statement that says “It’s a new kind of radio — stations that play only music you like.” How can it be that Pandora knows what you’ll enjoy? Isn’t liking music purely up to personal taste? Pandora, like many other digital music platforms, uses a complex algorithm to predict what their listeners want to hear. Other services employ human beings to curate their music discovery systems. So who’s the more effective tastemaker? Man, or machine? On today’s episode we tackle this question with writer and consultant Jim McDermott, then talk to two people who get paid to listen to music all day: New Music Scout and Artist Relations Manager for Marmoset Brandon Day and Rumblefish’s Senior Music Supervisor William Nix.
This month, the FCC ruled internet radio company Pandora could buy a small radio station in Rapid City, South Dakota. So why does Pandora want to run a small, Top 40 station in one of the nation’s smallest markets? It turns out this small station could reap big rewards for Pandora. We talk NMPA CEO David Israelite, Paul Resnikoff of Digital Music News, and Casey Rae of the Future of Music Coalition.