February 2013

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Music

Comedy Central's The Ben Show Rocks Out On Rdio

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Fresh on Comedy Central’s new Thursday lineup is The Ben Show. It’s an original hybrid of sketch comedy and man-on-the-street reality starring Ben Hoffman, whose previous writing credits include Sports Show with Norm McDonald, MTV Movie Awards, and Current TV’s infoMania. Whether in real life or fictional situations, Hoffman’s humor is outrageous, as you’ll see in this week’s first episode, when he attempts to buy his first gun, imagines obituaries as announced by a rapper, and interviews Diff’rent Strokes star Todd Bridges for a wild animated cartoon.

Hoffman is also a big lover of music — fun fact: His brother Scott Hoffman, aka Baby Daddy, is in a little group called the Scissor Sisters! Every Thursday The Ben Show shares Hoffman’s exclusive playlists, including this playlist of songs that inspired the first episode “Ben Buys A Gun.”

Make sure to follow The Ben Show on Rdio and catch the program when it premieres on Comedy Central tonight!

Developer App

Developer App: Talk Radio

Talk Radio

Talk Radio is to Rdio as Siri is to the iPhone. With just the sound of your voice, this month’s Developer App plays what you want to hear without navigating with a mouse.

First, make sure your browser of choice is Chrome, version 25 or later. Then head over to Talk Radio to start the music. Hit the spacebar and tell the app what you want to hear — say an artist like, “Play Jim James,” or a genre such as, “Play indie pop.” You can even get niche-music-nerd levels of specific like, “Play chill music in the style of smooth jazz.”

Talk Radio utilizes Chrome’s brand new Web Speech API and The Echo Nest’s snazzy search function to make beautiful music together. When the speech recognizer hears, “Play music by dead mouse,” The Echo Nest can smartly resolve to “deadmau5.”

The app was built by Paul Lamere who also created Boil The Frog, our pick for last month’s Developer App. Follow Lamere on Twitter to see what he’s cooking up next.

Want to learn more about the Rdio API? Visit Rdio’s Developer page, register for an API key, and start building. Feel free to check out our sample code and libraries on Github and join our API Google Group. Need more incentive? You can even earn some cash via the Rdio Affiliate Program.

MusicNew Music Weekly

New Music Tuesday - February 26, 2013

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Ready for some brand new beats in your ears? The last release date in February includes the long-awaited full-length debut from Seattle’s Ivan & Alyosha, the latest from Berlin techno DJ Ellen Allien, and the fourth LP by Kansas City rapper Kutt Calhoun. We also have a little somethin' extra for you today: Rdio-exclusive bonus tracks from California indie pop act Finish Ticket's debut album.

Our New Music Tuesday playlist will quickly give you an idea of the breadth and depth of this week’s offerings. The Playlist Notes below point out more key releases, and if you’re like Depeche Mode and you “Just Can’t Get Enough” (music nerd humor alert), there’s even more to explore in the Rdio New Releases.


PLAYLIST NOTES

  • Kavinsky - OutRun
    After seven years of dropping singles, the French house producer emerges with a full-length debut said to be influenced by Miami Vice and early video games.

  • The Mavericks - In Time
    Miami’s platinum-selling, neotraditional country band has reunited to release the first album in a decade (and seventh overall).

  • Shout Out Louds - Optica
    The fourth album from these Swedish indie rockers pays tribute to ‘80s pop stylings.

  • Boy - Mutual Friends
    The debut from this Swiss-German pop duo called Boy (who are actually two women) has been described as reminiscent of Feist.

  • Mount Moriah - Miracle Temple
    North Carolina’s favorite “alt-Americana” act returns with its Merge Records debut.

  • Icona Pop - "I Love It” (Remixes Pt. 2)
    The Swedish duo’s Charli XCX-guested single gets a dozen re-dubs from the likes of Cobra Starship and Sick Individuals.

EventsMusic

Oscar Nominees and Winners Shine on Rdio

The Oscars

While there might be some discussion about which films or people might have been snubbed at this year’s Academy Awards, the nominees in the music categories have been praised for being both diverse and deserved.

We’ve assembled three playlists below for your pre-Oscar partying pleasure. The Oscars: Nominees for the 85th Academy Awards - Original Song pits Adele against Hugh Jackman, while The Oscars: Nominees for the 85th Academy Awards - Best Original Score finds pictures like Skyfall and Lincoln duking it out for top honors. But the big “award” here goes to The Oscars: Academy Award Winning Songs, an epic retrospective of all of the Oscar-winning songs from 1934 to the present.

Use these to get in the mood for the 85th Annual Academy Awards, which is hosted by Seth Macfarlane and airs live on February 24 on ABC.



MusicNew Music Weekly

New Music Tuesday - February 19, 2013

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This week’s music releases finds the spotlight shining on a number of unique artists. Among the diverse selection of offerings are Buckcherry’s rock opus about the seven deadly sins, a live album from British soul singer Emeli Sandé, Oklahoma folk singer-songwriter Samantha Crain, and the latest “jamtronica” from Lotus.

Our New Music Tuesday playlist brings you what we consider to be the best songs of the week. The Playlist Notes below point out the week’s sonic highlights as you listen. And if too much is never enough, make your next stop at the Rdio New Releases for even more new music.


PLAYLIST NOTES

  • Beach Fossils - Clash the Truth
    The Brooklyn indie rockers aim for a wider palette of sounds on the second album.

  • Jamie Lidell - Jamie Lidell
    After making music in his native England and in Germany, Lidell’s fifth album bears his name and the influence from living and recording it in Nashville.

  • Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds - Push the Sky Away
    The legendary group’s 15th album is the first recorded in France and without original member Mick Harvey.

  • Kylie Minogue - "Whistle"
    The Aussie pop star turns in a beautiful and unexpected collaboration with Iceland’s experimental group múm.

  • Phoenix - "Entertainment"
    Coachella’s French headliner offers the first taste of the fifth album Bankrupt! Expect it to drop in April.

Exclusives

PVT Discusses the Making of Homosapien on Rdio

PVT

British band PVT (once known as Pivot) made the leap from an experimental and improvisational instrumental act to having thoughtful vocals and aiming at a more widescreen sound on its third album Church With No Magic. The new fourth album Homosapien continues along this path with even more confidence.

Rdio listeners get bonus insight into the making of Homosapien with this exclusive commentary album recorded by PVT themselves. Give it a spin and get into their heads now.

Music

The Virginmarys Celebrate Their Debut With a Playlist of Favorites

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The Virginmarys, who just released their debut album King of Conflict took a moment to ponder their favorite songs of 2012 and put together this playlist for the Rdio massive. This young British band’s reputation for making intelligent rock songs is reflected in the selections on this playlist, which includes Tame Impala, Alabama Shakes, and Arctic Monkeys, to name a few.

Press play on this immaculate conception below.

Exclusives

Australian Rapper 360 Drops Album One Month Early on Rdio

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Melbourne rapper 360’s second album Falling & Flying has enjoyed top five chart success and platinum sales in Australia for its world-wise blend of beats and rhymes. Born Matthew Colwell, 360’s honesty also helped him earn an ARIA, Australia’s biggest music award, in the category of Breakthrough Artist.

Now he’s breaking through all over the world. Falling & Flying isn’t officially out on these shores until mid March, but we’ve got an exclusive one-month preview of the album for your ears only.

Follow 360 on Rdio to see where he’s headed next, musically.

Music

Darwin Deez Selects The Most Underrated Pop and Rap Songs Ever

Darwin Deez

Darwin Deez is both a boy and a band, but not quite a boy band. The affection that the double Ds have for bright and bubbly pop records shines through in their work, including the group’s new (and second) full-length album Songs For Imaginative People.

Frontman Darwin Deez (born Smith) blessed Rdio with a playlist of tunes he consideres to be some of the most underrated of all time in the pop and rap music categories. Listen to it below and read his playlist notes to see if you agree with his calls, which includes a multi-generational palette of artists such as Toto, Aly & AJ, Garbage, and Princess Superstar.


PLAYLIST NOTES

  • will.i.am featuring Britney Spears - "Scream & Shout"
    Nice droopy club beat. will.i.am is a pro, he always writes a bridge for you. This is just a favorite of the moment.

  • Avril Lavigne - "I'm With You"
    From The Matrix in their heyday. Where are they now?

  • Aly & AJ - "Potential Break Up Song"
    Disney got beatz too y'all.

  • Toto - "Afraid of Love"
    Excellent use of the major scale.

  • Earth, Wind & Fire - "Can't Hide Love"
    Just so good.

  • Huey Lewis and the News - "Back In Time"
    How much do you love the movie? That's how much I love the song. It's a cheap trick and it's working.

  • Garbage - "Special"
    The harmonies!

  • Mystery Jets - "Two Doors Down"
    People just don't know it in the USA.

  • Paramore - "All I Wanted"
    Their best song in three albums. Monster chorus.

  • The Bird and the Bee - "Meteor"
    So jazzy and infectious. Go Geggy Tah!

  • The-Dream - "Shawty Is Da Sh*!"
    His best song. So timeless. Should have been bigger.

  • Busta Rhymes - "Woo Hah!! Got You All In Check"
    His originality is underrated in general and the sample is so amazingly timeless.

  • Princess Superstar - "Bad Babysitter"
    So funny and I love Mr. Lif or is it eon on the last verse?

New FeaturesNews

Rdio for iOS Gets An Update

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iOS users may have noticed a spiffy, new update to our mobile app today. We’re excited to share the first in a series of updates that we’re rolling out this year, all to make the Rdio experience more social and seamless no matter how you’re listening to music.

First and foremost, you’ll find the refreshed look and design makes navigation even easier. You’ll also discover new features including:

  • Long Press — It’s simpler to interact with the music. Just hold your finger down on any piece of music to share, sync, add to playlist or Collection, or play later.
  • Badges — Now on the lower right of any album art, new badges indicate which music you’ve added to your Collection (green) or synced to your mobile device (orange).

Download Rdio for iOS now and tell us what you think on Twitter and Facebook.