If you weren’t able to pick up a Google Home Mini for someone on your holiday shopping list, don’t fret—Google and Spotify are giving them away for free to all Spotify subscribers.
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It’s that time of year again. Spotify is here to tease you remind you about your musical habits over the past many months. Most people should have a pretty good idea of what albums and songs you’ve binged over the year—Hadestown, for me. For a friendly reminder, all you need to do is pull up your brand-new Spotify annual report, but you might want to prepare for a surprise or two.
Let’s think all the way back to the end of the last decade. 2009: well before streaming services dominated entertainment, when you had to either a) purchase these items from an online store (like iTunes), b) purchase them from a physical store (remember those?) or c) mine your roommate’s music library hoping they had Kid A on mp3 already.
“What song is 10/10, yet hardly anyone has heard of it?” redditor depressinqq asked. AskReddit users replied with 435 songs. Redditor BubblyBullinidae put them in a Spotify playlist.
Who would have thought that one little widget — rather, the deletion of it — would piss off so many Android Spotify fans? That’s exactly what happened following the company’s recent decision to kill its Android widget, and here’s the good news: It’s back, and you can download a version of Spotify with that restored widget right now.
I can’t work in silence. And if I’m working with words — which is most of the time — I can’t work while playing typical pop, rock or hip-hop. So I collect instrumental and foreign-language music on a scale better measured by weeks than by hours. Here are some of my greatest sources of background music for work, studying, and creativity.
As a longtime Spotify user, I grab my digital pitchfork and join the masses of Android users who are pissed off about the latest Spotify update, which removes the Android home screen widget that made it incredibly useful to play and pause songs from your smartphone’s screens.
Falling asleep to podcasts has become the geeky equivalent of a glass of warm milk before bed. It’s so popular, in fact, that there’s an entire podcasting genre dedicated to dry topics and gentle conversations to help lull you to sleep. It’s also a terrible catch-22: put on your favourite podcast before bed, and you might have to go find the last spot you remember hearing once you wake up. If you’re not careful, you might even sleep through an entire playlist of backlogged shows.
Listening to classical music is a bit different from listening to modern pop music. The music is built differently - most recordings aren’t performed by their composers, and there’s rarely one definitive recording of a piece. Multiple works are often released on the same album. Track titles are very long, including a work’s catalogue number, its movement number, possibly its speed and even its fan-given nickname. Most streaming services aren’t built to accommodate this. A few are, and the best one is Idagio.
Writing is 1% writing, 1% staring into space, and 98% doing little errands to “prepare” for writing. My favourite method of not writing is to compose a very specific playlist to “soundtrack” the thing that I’m writing. If you go hunting for the right music to write to, sorry, I’ve just ruined your excuse: here is Lifehacker’s four-hour playlist of writing music.
Of the many pleasures of working in the place that you live, blasting your own music might be the best. (That or going pantless.) To help you get into that chill workplace groove, we built you a playlist for cranking up in the home office, or pumping through your earbuds to drown out the Starbucks crowd.
Every morning Flow State emails subscribers a set of background music, mostly wordless, to soundtrack your work day. And they’re pretty good at digging up non-obvious music, some of which isn’t even available on major streaming services (though almost all of it is on YouTube).
Have you ever picked a song on your phone using Spotify and found yourself looking at a 5-10 second looping video? That’s a “Canvas,” a new type of complimentary content Spotify added last year, similar to Genius’ “Behind the Lyrics” annotations. They’re currently attached to new songs from artists like Ariana Grande, Logic, and Demi Lovato. If you listen to any of Spotify’s top playlists, you’ve probably already seen them.