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Musings on Music

Don Lipari's picture

As a new radio broadcaster here at KVMR, I feel inspired to find music that will delight KVMR listeners.  That blurb I added to my bio about having to look through every birthday card before selecting one is kind of true.  I feel it is my responsibility to know as much different music as I can so that I can have a wider palate from which to make the selections I play on my shows.

Now, most of us discover music at each period in our lives through various means:  friends, the Internet and, of course, listening to the radio.  We find artists and songs that appeal to us all the time.  As we grow tired of certain music, new music appears to take its place.  Listening to KVMR is a great way to grow and rejuvenate the music you surround yourself with.  I have found that music broadcasters on KVMR take pride in what they program and look to make every show an enjoyable and exciting experience for the listeners.

But what can one do to paraphrase Star Trek, “seek out new music and new orchestrations”?  What can one do if, like me, you want to discover new music that you will immediately like?  This could include music released last month or years ago that somehow never caught your attention.

Over the past 10 years, the resources to introduce a person to new music based on personal tastes have improved considerably.  The basic idea is that you enter some artists and songs that you like.  The software searches its internal database of recorded music and finds music similar to the music you entered, and hopefully music you have never heard of before.  One such example is, http://www.gnoosic.com/

But sometimes, it would be nice to see a map of all music.  Then, instead of seeing countries on a world map, you would see different music genres and where they are positioned in style from one to another.  To my surprise, I have found two such sites on the Internet!

At https://www.music-map.com/ , you enter the name of one artist.  The search engine then returns with an ecosystem of artist names that are similar to the one you entered.  You can click on any of the names to see people’s comments on their music.

The second site, http://www.musicmap.info/, gives you a real map to look at with all the main music genres depicted as if it were a geographic map.  Each genre can be clicked on to present greater levels of differentiation. Click on a style at the most granular level and you will be presented with samples of actual recordings that exemplify the style.

It’s hard to imagine any one person holding the knowledge available on these sites.  It is a true treasure trove of for the musical explorer.