Gina Trapani's new Smarterware blog, I read about another new web-based music player and playlist creator, MixTape.me. I've reviewed several takes on the same basic concept recently, so I didn't immediately write this one up. But I went ahead and gave it a spin, listening to a few of the popular playlists and searching for my favorite artists on the service. And, as it turns out, this application hits all the right notes in terms of interface design, plus its mere existence is a testament to the power of mashups.A few days ago, over at
On the surface, you wouldn't be able to tell that this web application is in fact a mashup. But after using the site for a while, you will start to notice that it grabs data from a lot of different places. Artist bios from last.fm. Lyrics from LyricWiki.org. Music videos from YouTube. And the music... where does the music come from? Good question. The answer is, a lot of places: cloud storage, web sites, SeeqPod. In fact, the site is careful to keep that information behind the scenes. What you are left with is a clean, very desktop music player-like experience.
That experience, we can assure you, is quite addictive. Even if you aren't looking for certain tracks or artists, there are plenty of playlists on the homepage to listen to. And playlists are what this site does perfectly. Easy to create, easy to populate, easy to manage, and easy to share. Drag-and-drop is all that is needed for most playlist actions. Each playlist gets its own URL, so your friends can listen to it without even having to create an account. And each one comes with an embed link as well, so you can show off all your hard work on your own web page. Also, each playlist shows who created it; you can use that link to follow that user to see new playlists they might generate in the future.
When you finally start to settle down after running around like a kid in a candy store, you will find each track has a purchase link that takes you to an Amazon music search page. And that link? You got it - it has an Amazon affiliate ID on it. As far as we can tell, that's the only method MixTape.me is using to generate a little scratch.
But you know what? We don't mind that so much, because we have found some really great music that we haven't found any other way.