Thursday, January 24, 2008

rock stars and business models, the excellent online music site recently acquired by CBS, made just announced that they were going to allow full track streaming from their web page. This is very cool, as has one of the best search and recommendation engines around. I met their cofounder and CEO Felix Miller in Japan a year ago -- we were on Joi Ito's BlogTV together -- and thought he was a very thoughtful individual. Now that they have CBS' backing, it is exciting to see them expanding how they bring music to their members. 3.5 million tracks are now available for listening and you can hear them three times before you are prompted to buy them from iTunes or Amazon. I think this is a fantastic move, since -- much like my discussion on movies -- the content is already out on the web, only now you can offer listeners an easy way to pay for the music they like. Now, they're still paying for bandwidth -- although music is two orders of magnitude less data than video -- and I suspect the Rhapsody model of a flat subscription eliminates the hassles around per track purchases, but it is still a very good step toward doing what consumers want: make it easy for us to get -- and pay for -- content! Not all tracks by an artist are available, but enough are to give you a good flavor of a particular act. For example, my friend Salman Ahmad has a lot of his music available to stream or download.

However, what made my morning was the discovery that I could listen to Ryan Downe's music. Ryan runs the program management team at Linden Lab and I was lucky to work with him for over five years. However, I had foolishly never listened to his music until this morning when I was surfing Holy crap is it good! So, if you are fan of 80's prog rock, you should take advantage of and give it a listen now!

1 comment:

Taran Rampersad said...

Heh. I have been trying to remember the name of that site for about a week now, and couldn't remember it... finally got logged back in.

thanks for reminding me of the name. ''. Duh...