Pandora.com is a site that helps you find music you’re likely to enjoy by having you enter songs and artists that you like, analyzing the various attributes of your favorite songs and artists, and then creating a radio station made up of songs that match that set of attributes.
So, for example, I started out creating a jazz station at work by entering “Cristo Redentor” by Donald Byrd as one of my favorite songs. Pandora immediately played a different song that had similar attributes to that song. However, since that would make for a rather boring jazz station, I entered more songs and artists like Art Tatum, Miles Davis, Otis Spann, I just entered songs and artists that represented different sounds, but all ones that I liked, from the jazz spectrum. The result is a pretty kick ass jazz station, made up of songs I pretty much like, though there are plenty of songs on the station that I’ve never heard.
Next I’ll create a rock station, and a metal station. Sometimes when I’m coding I enjoy heavy metal for some reason. It motivates me. Other times, when I’m just doing day-to-day stuff, jazz or more mellow rock will do just fine.
Anyway, I read a review of pandora.com recently that said their library was pretty deep, which was not my experience when I tried it about a year or more ago, and I had also heard that you could now listen for free if you didn’t mind occasional ads, which was also different from my first try. They used to just give you a two week trial period and then force you to subscribe, which it wasn’t worth doing when their library was a bit thin. I might subscribe at some point, but it’s nice not to be forced into it.
In short, I recommend everyone check out pandora.com.