5 Ways to Discover New Music

If you’re a music lover, chances are that you’ve gotten to the point where you think you’ve listened to everything. You put your library on shuffle, but nothing catches your attention. It’s time to update your song collection, but the process of finding new artists that you’ll like sounds so tedious. As someone who loves finding new music to listen to, the process of expanding your tastes doesn’t have to be hard. Here are five easy tricks to discover new music that matches your tastes.

1.) Use a music tracking service.

This might sound creepy, but these services actually just keep track of what songs you listen to on your preferred platform, whether that’s Spotify, iTunes, Tidal, or whatever else. My favorite is the website last.fm, which keeps track of how many times you’ve listened to a song, which artists you play most often per week or all time, and other interesting stats that can give you a lot of information about your music tastes. You can see which genres and artists you tend to gravitate toward, and last.fm will give you recommendations personally tailored to you. It’s basically like having Spotify’s Year in Music available to you whenever you want.

2.) Take advantage of curated playlists.

Most platforms have playlists that are either based on your listening tastes, like Spotify’s Discover Weekly, or created based on mood or genre. I tend to overlook these playlists because I honestly just forget they exist, but they can give you some really cool new songs to listen to. The playlists that platforms create for you tend to match the artists and genres you’ve been into recently, so it gives you opportunities to try other musicians or discover new songs by people you already like. The mood and genre playlists are also great tools when you feel like finding something really specific.

3.) Keep a “to-listen” list.

How many times has a friend recommended you a song or artist and you’ve said you’d check them out, but then you forgot about them? It’s become a lot easier for me to find new music since I created a list of artists I want to check out. I just keep a running list in my Notes app on my phone, and when I feel like listening to something new, I already have a list going so I don’t have to start searching for something. It’s also easy to add new artists to the list when my phone’s always on me.

4.) Go to a record or music store.

Maybe it’s just the newfound vinyl collector in me, but good album art can definitely inspire me to listen to an artist. There’s something fun about searching through the records in a place like Newbury Comics and seeing what jumps out at you, even if you’re not actually buying a record. Being around so many physical copies of albums in the era of streaming and downloading can be a breath of fresh air.

5.) Use a music search engine.

Gnoosic is a favorite new discovery of mine. The website asks you to type in a few of your favorite bands or musicians, and it makes new suggestions based on your pre-existing favorites and how you respond to their recommendations. It will give you an artist based on your favorites, and you can tell Gnoosic whether you already like the artist, if you don’t like them, or if you haven’t heard of them. From there, it continues making recommendations based on your answers. It’s a fun way to find new music and possibly rediscover artists you forgot you liked.