Scrobble with Deezer

Friday, 6 January 2012
by gilda
filed under Announcements and Stuff Other People Made
Comments: 10

[Pour la version française, lisez plus bas!]

Last.fm has a mission: to find out what music you already listen to, so that we can recommend new music you will really like. So every time you listen to a track, we want to know – be it on Spotify, your smartphone, your iPod, your Xbox, iTunes or anything else that you play music on. We do this by letting all these websites, phones and devices “scrobble”. Scrobbling means that with your permission, we are sent a message every time you listen to a track.

There are already over 600 websites, phones, applications and hardware devices that scrobble, but we won’t rest until every single music player in the world talks to us! This is because we don’t want to miss any of the listening that makes your taste unique, and because the more scrobbles we get from all around the world, the better our recommendation system gets.

This is why we are very happy to announce that Deezer are now scrobbling. Their 20 million users around the world can now get our personalized music recommendations based on the tracks they listen to on Deezer, and by doing so participate in the great Last.fm project.

Setting up scrobbling on Deezer is easy – just click here and enter your Last.fm username.
Otherwise follow these instructions: when you’re logged into Deezer, click on your avatar on the top right, select “My account”, and then go to the “Alerts & Sharing” tab. Voilà!

We are really looking forward to working more closely with Deezer – we’ll keep you posted with any updates.

Happy scrobbling!

Last.fm a une mission: découvrir ce que vous écoutez déjà pour pouvoir vous recommander de nouvelles musiques que vous adorerez. A chaque fois que vous écoutez un morceau, nous voulons donc le savoir – que ce soit sur Spotify, votre mobile, votre iPod, votre Xbox, iTunes ou par n’importe quel autre moyen. Nous atteignons notre objectif grâce à ce que nous appelons le “scrobbling”: nous permettons à tous les sites web, mobiles et autre machines de prévenir Last.fm – avec votre permission! – à chaque fois que vous écoutez quelque chose.

Plus de 600 sites webs, téléphones, applications et appareils musicaux scrobblent déjà, mais nous ne serons satisfaits que quand tous les lecteurs media du monde nous parleront! Il y a deux raisons à cela: nous ne voulons rater aucun des titres que vous écoutez et qui forment votre profil musical; et notre système de recommandation musicale s’améliore à chaque fois que nous recevons un nouveau scrobble.

Voila pourquoi nous sommes très heureux de vous annoncer que Deezer vous permet désormais de scrobbler! Leurs 20 millions d’utilisateurs à travers le monde peuvent maintenant recevoir nos recommandations personnalisées basées sur les morceaux écoutés sur Deezer – participant ainsi au grand projet Last.fm.

Configurer le scrobbling sur Deezer est très facile: clickez sur votre avatar en haut à droite, choisissez “Mon compte” et ouvrez “Notifications & partage”. Voilà!

Nous avons hâte de collaborer de façon encore plus proche avec Deezer – on promet de vous garder informés.

A bientôt et bonnes découvertes musicales!

Announcing Last.fm Discover

Thursday, 15 December 2011
by Matthew
filed under Announcements
Comments: 15

“Let a thousand flowers bloom”

Mao Zedong never said that. It was actually a hundred flowers.

As you take a look at our new Last.fm Discover app, you will find we don’t have a thousand tags either. It’s close to 2 million tags that have been created over the years by our members to describe the music they love.

It’s these user-generated tags that power our HTML5 Discover web app. We launched it yesterday and it’s available around the world, without restrictions and without advertising interruptions.

Last.fm Discover is a personalised music player that introduces you to bands from around the world by letting you browse through musical styles that you may already know or want to learn more about. You won’t find the latest X-factor winner or the latest plastic boyband manufactured by evil scientists in a lab somewhere. Some of them are quite rough around the edges – make use of the ban button when you come across something unlistenable – but you’ll also reach for the love button as you discover diamonds in this amazing library of tracks.

This diversity and eclectic view of the musical landscape is what Last.fm is all about. We don’t live in a cookie cutter world of hackneyed generic labels for music. Most music sites include the standard dozen genres (pop, rock, urban, etc.) and that doesn’t adequately describe the diversity of music out there. Our tags system encourages the weird and the wonderful, the micro-communities and new scenes that are springing up as fast as new, independent bands are formed.

Last.fm Discover celebrates this, and features more than 500,000 artists and labels who have uploaded their music to reach the ears of the Last.fm community. For many of these bands, the main desire is to be heard and enjoyed. They don’t have a piracy problem, they have an obscurity problem. Supporting independents has always been core to Last.fm. At least 20% of the music played on our streaming radio services already comes from these independent artists (and they are all paid via our Artist Royalty Program).

We hope you enjoy discovering new music via our new app, and that you support the independents who make it. They, more than any shiny new gadget, venture-capital supported music service or giant record label, are the future of music.

New Charts section!

Wednesday, 14 December 2011
by Sarah Ransome
filed under Announcements and Trends and Data
Comments: 17

Our Charts section has been a bit neglected of late. We’d all got a bit fed up of seeing Coldplay, Radiohead and Adele lead the ‘Top Artists’ chart week after week, especially when we could see our Hype Charts and internal data was telling a far more compelling story. So we decided to do something about it.

This week we have launched the first in a series of improvements to our charts section to make them more relevant, giving you a more dynamic picture of what is popular from week to week.

What’s live now?


The most important set of charts is now our Hype Charts. The Hype Charts are core to what we do at Last.fm – drawing attention to upcoming artists – so it was an easy decision to make these more prominent.

We’re also emphasising how much things change in our weekly charts by making it easy to go back and view them by a weekly pull-down menu.

Each chart now has its own page, and we’ve added buttons to each entry so you can quickly add artists to your library, love them, buy their music or add tags.

What’s next?

Every year at this time, most music sites give you a run down on the best acts of the year. We’re also going to have a Best of 2011 feature, but we have pushed it back to January this year in order to include a full year of data. While everyone else’s lists are pretty similar, we think you’ll be surprised by the story that Last.fm’s data is telling about 2011.

We hope you enjoy these changes and we look forward to hearing your feedback.

Last.fm for Spotify

Wednesday, 30 November 2011
by steve
filed under Announcements
Comments: 28

Every now and again two things come together that make perfect sense, sometimes by design and sometimes just by natural affinity: gin and tonic, cheese and tomato, Jagger and Richards, Lennon and McCartney… two things that get better when they’re together.

Today Spotify announced that they’re opening their platform up to apps, and Last.fm is going to be one of their launch partners.

Introducing Last.fm for Spotify: personalised recommendations based on the music you play.


Track: “Calm Down” by Canterbury

Ever since Spotify launched, I’ve heard many people suggest that Last.fm and Spotify each do different but essential things they want from a music service. Spotify integrated Last.fm scrobbling into their service almost from day one, but scrobbling on its own really didn’t connect the two services meaningfully enough.

I remember saying the exact same thing long before coming to work at Last.fm. “Wouldn’t it be cool if you could somehow use Last.fm’s recommendations to decide what to play on Spotify?” Some of our community even used our APIs to build homebrew versions of it.

So when, earlier this summer, Spotify came to us to talk about their new platform and asked us “what would you do if..?”, it took us just a few seconds to agree that this was a massive opportunity to create something that we’d want to use ourselves, every day. It was a chance to take the scrobbles we were getting from Spotify users and then pay them back, with interest, in the form of great recommendations.

So what does Last.fm for Spotify do?

You can:
• Sign in to Last.fm, or start a new profile (new users have a very easy setup process)
• The overview page displays the listener’s recent top albums…
• …some recommendations
• …their recent tracks
• …and some of their loved tracks
• The Albums and Recommended tabs in the app will offer a deeper insight into those lists
• The app will allow users to build playlists of recommendations, top albums, recent tracks and loved tracks with just one click
• It also powers a Now Playing screen, which features scrobbling stats about artists
• …and users can launch a Similar Tracks playlist from the song currently playing in that tab
• And yes, it scrobbles too

Spotify users without a Last.fm account will be able to use the Now Playing view and Similar Artist playlists, but the personalised experiences are only available to new or existing Last.fm users. As ever, the more you use it, the better those personalised recommendations get.

The one-click playlists really are effortless, and you can play them on any Spotify app (mobile, etc.)

If you want to try this out for yourself, Spotify have a preview version you can download now. It’s going to be going out to the wider world very very soon. You can send us feedback in the Last.fm for Spotify forum as soon as you start using it.

We’re really excited to see this in the wild. We’re big fans of Spotify at Last.HQ, and a lot of work has gone into making this a great experience for old and new users.

Enjoy!

The Brainz are Back in Town

Thursday, 24 November 2011
by adrian
filed under Announcements and Stuff Other People Made
Comments: 18

Many moons ago Last.fm set up a collaboration with MusicBrainz, the open-source music metadata database and community. MusicBrainz use special keys known as MusicBrainz Identifiers (MBIDs) to uniquely identify artists, labels, songs and many other music-related entities. One of the main ideas behind them is that anyone can use these keys to identify and cross-reference musical entities, even if they come from different sources.

For example, an album review site could publish the MBID for an album being reviewed and someone could take this MBID and look up the album on MusicBrainz (or some other site supporting MBID lookups) to find out more information about it.

That was then

The plan at the time was to regularly synchronise MBIDs with the artists, albums and tracks in Last.fm’s catalogue. The MBIDs (or should those be MBIDz?) could then be used to query for these entities using our API, or to link across different services using the MusicBrainz ids as an external mashup key. Last.fm API calls also return MusicBrainz ids where applicable (see artist.getInfo for an example).

This continued successfully for a while until a few shake ups and changes over here resulted in us temporarily dropping the ball on this one and the regular updates stopped (we did however keep the historical data).

MusicBrainz members hanging out in Last.fm’s ball pit back in the day (photo by Mayhem).

This is now

The good news is that we reconnected with MusicBrainz while we were visiting San Francisco for this year’s Hadoop Summit and are recommitting ourselves to being good citizens of the MusicBrainz community.

Our first step is to once again synchronise Last.fm artists, albums and tracks with their relatives over at MusicBrainz using their Live Data Feed which means we’ll be updating these once an hour. We’ve already started doing this and have more information on the technical details over in our development discussion forum.

To the future and beyond

Once we are in synch again we will start looking at other ways we can more actively work together with MusicBrainz and also with others like The Guardian and the BBC who use MusicBrainz Identifiers too. We also hope to leverage MusicBrainz’s experience with handling artist and album disambiguation to improve how we model music on Last.fm. We currently have the pleasure of hosting one of their developers (OCharles) at our London offices a couple of days a week to work on these and other related issues.

So, if you have any questions, comments or requests for features please ask them over on the forum, catch you there.

Last.fm shares the Label Love

Friday, 16 September 2011
by Stefan Baumschlager
filed under Announcements
Comments: 8

Luckily the rioting in the UK last month didn’t hit Last.HQ, but some of the labels nearest and dearest to us were hit badly by the PIAS warehouse fire, destroying the stock of hundreds of independent labels – big and small.

Heading Last.fm’s Music Team means looking after all our relationships with record labels on a daily basis, and naturally I’ve got a lot of affection for them not to mention their skill for finding, building and releasing new artists into the world.

Every day Last.fm plays its part in that as our recommendation engine promotes new artists and tracks to listeners around the world. Usually this is based on almost half a billion tracks the Last.fm catalogue knows about, but we’ve put together something a little special for the labels affected by the PIAS fire.

Label Love provided us with a list of all the labels hit by the fire, and we’ve compiled a special recommendation tool that brings you recommendations based only on the artists affected.

Last.fm users now can enter their username at our Label Love site to find out about more artists they can support. Every recommendation comes with links to purchase music and gig tickets, making it easy for all of us to show a little support.

So share the love and spread the word, and follow @_label_love_ to find out about more ways you can join in.

Farewell Summer!

Monday, 5 September 2011
by katy
filed under Announcements
Comments: 6

It’s been an amazing summer, but sadly the festival season is over and it’s time to head home. The Last.fm Presents team wrapped up in style at SW4, and you can check out our photos on Flickr now.

Don’t worry though, we’ll be back on the road soon enough, with our Live Fridays just around the corner and much more. Keep up to date with what’s coming up over on the Last.fm Presents page and on twitter – @LastfmPresents.

See you next year!

Last.fm Presents Live Fridays

Thursday, 25 August 2011
by matts
filed under Announcements
Comments: 2

After Ghostpoet’s awesome session at The Big Chill Bar on Monday we’re pleased to announce that more live music from Last.fm is just around the corner.

In October the Last.fm Presents team kickstart Live Fridays; a showcase of the hottest bands from our Hype Chart on the first Friday of every month, curated by you*.

Our first three shows will come to you from the Relentless Garage in Islington, and we’re excited to announce that the first headliner will be CocknBullKid on 7th October.

As an exclusive treat for Last.fm users the first tickets are available now here, before they go on sale to everyone else… If you’re joining us then don’t forget to mark your attendance on the event page.

Art Brut will be our second headliner on November 4th, and tickets for that show are on sale now too.

We’ve got more headliners and support acts to announce over the next few weeks, so stay tuned to the Last.fm Presents group page for the latest, or follow Last.fm and Last.fm Presents on Twitter.

* Because each Live Friday lineup is based on artists appearing in our Hype Chart, the music you play directly influences who’s going to be on the bill.

The festival season continues...

Thursday, 4 August 2011
by
filed under Announcements
Comments: 2


Pet Moon photo by Ian Taylor

Truck Festival took place on the 22nd – 24th July and Last.fm was there to capture all the action.

Another stop on our road trip of festivals this summer (which Helen wrote about back in May), we were gently rocked by the likes of Gruff Rhys, Saint Etienne, Graham Coxon, The Go! Team and Young Knives.


Dead Jerichos photo by Pooneh Ghana

We’ve partnered up before with Truck in the US and UK, and it was great to be back hosting a stage this year down at Hill farm in Steventon.


Mr Shaodow photo by Andrew Kendall

We’re super excited about this weekend as well with Underage Festival taking place on Friday (5th August) swiftly followed by Field Day on Saturday.

If you haven’t checked out the evnts pages for those two yet, then we’ll be bringing Labrinth, Roll Deep and Maverick Sabre to Underage before The Horrors, Mount Kimbie and James Blake all play our very own stage at Field Day. If you’re heading to either of them then be sure to mark your attendance, and do your homework by listening to the festival radio.

We’re not leaving it there though. We’ve got Summer Sundae coming up on the 12th August and SW4 coming up on the bank holiday weekend. Check out the Last.fm Presents page for more information.

Don’t forget, our Last.fm lobbyists will be on hand to shower you with Last.fm goodies, including our tag stickers, plus we might have a few competitions coming up for those of you eager to come along.

We love Festivals! Shame the summer has to end at some point…


ODC Drumline photo by Ian Taylor

You're all very sweet

Wednesday, 20 July 2011
by
filed under Announcements
Comments: 14

We had a lovely message of support arrive this morning from one of you thanking Last.fm staff for their hard work over the last few days. It is was delicious.

We want to take a moment to say a big thank you to all of you for your patience and support earlier this week. It’s meant a lot to us while we’ve been restoring service across Last.fm.