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Way Cool Music Search

By - January 26, 2004

I found Grandaddy by using Amazon’s collaborative filtering technology – when I bought a Flaming Lips album on the advice of a friend, the Amazon filter said “folks who bought ‘Yoshimi…’ also bought…” I bit, and am glad I did. Now, take this idea to search, at least in a way. Thanks to Scoble for this gem: MusicPlasma. More proof of what can be done on top of a search platform. This takes a Grokker-like interface to show how your musical tastes relate. Type in one band you love and it will show you others you’d like. You can drill down in sort of a Venn diagram-driven search – say “Radiohead” then “The Shins”. As far as I can tell, this is built on the Amazon API (perhaps someone more astute than I can figure this out?). This is why, as I will say again, Yahoo and Google should really rev up their API programs.


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6 thoughts on “Way Cool Music Search

  1. tim says:

    geez, you coulda just asked me. ;P

    there is a layer of editorial/human filtering that’s really necessary (and missing) in most of this, which is why Amazon’s muliple filtering strategies are so great.

    In examining a “The Shins” search, for example, it’d be nice to know that Doug Martsch is the frontman for Built to Spill (admittedly a close pair on the graph), or that Ugly Casanova is a Modest Mouse side project (not so close on graph).

  2. Yoshimi is amazing. There are also a ton of live tracks on LimeWire you should pick up!

  3. That reminds me, it’s time to beat the API drum (or horse?) again…

  4. Maybe this kind of tools if good for dummy discovery, or exploring a fresh domain. But the Amazon DB is far from being complete in music, or if you really want to harvest a musical domain.
    I wish all music retailers would use a kind of Amazon API. We would be able to share DB-sources, and, most important, Amazon wouldn’t say that I could love a product I already own, bought at the Fnac.com for example.
    Personally, I discovered the Flaming Lips via Russell Beattie Notebook, blogs are everywhere ;-)

  5. Mohammad Abed says:

    What about a combination of Amazon, MusicBrainz, FreeDB, and user’s would upload the metadata of music they own, this would make a nice semantic soup, I meant semantic web.

  6. Tony Two Tone says:

    The ultimate music database is over at allmusic.com. Related artists, influences/followers, where born? where died? when formed? ratings, bios, reviews, cover art, and streams. It is so complete… I would not be surprised if musicplasma was based on the allmusic.com database.