Favorite Music, Bands, & Artists of 2014

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My Spotify Year in Review for 2014

My Spotify Year in Review for 2014

As someone who loves discovering new music on a regular basis, and as someone who always needs to have music playing in order to work, pass the time, or function on a basic level, figuring out my favorite music of the year is a difficult task. (The only other list that even rivals in difficulty is the Best TV of the Year list.) Thankfully, Spotify does a helpful roundup of what its users have been listening to throughout the year, which made this list a bit easier to compose.

However, I do take issue with some things that came up on my Spotify Year in Review — especially that my most listened to songs are not necessarily my favorite songs of the year — so I’ve made my own lists. These are my top 5 bands/artists of the year and my top 10 favorite songs (I had to make a lot of really difficult cuts down from 20).

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8 Fantastic 8tracks Playlists

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Photo via 8tracks.

Photo via 8tracks.

I have applauded and raved about Songza, but more recently I’ve been getting into 8tracks. (Don’t worry Songza, I’ll never leave you forever.) The trick with 8tracks is finding good playlists to listen to, which can be hard because there are so, so, so, SO many.

The way I got into 8tracks was through people I follow on Tumblr. I started noticing these playlists popping up on my Tumblr dashboard with cool graphically designed cover art that had some really great music. So I began listening to the playlists, which made me start looking for more playlists and before I knew it, I was hooked. I’m still wary of finding good mixes on the 8tracks site, especially since it’s difficult for users to display the song listing. (In fact, it’s impossible without listening to the mix unless the user includes it somehow.) But as long as the people I follow on Tumblr keep reblogging good mixes, I’ll keep discovering new music to love. Here are some of my favorite playlists I’ve found so far.

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6 More Great Songza Playlists

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I've saved over 40 playlists to my favorites. Yikes. (Photo courtesy of Songza.)

I’ve saved over 40 playlists to my favorites. Yikes. (Photo courtesy of Songza.)

About a year ago, I wrote about Songza, the fantastical wonderland of curated playlists created by professional music nerds for music nerds like myself. One of the most unique aspects of Songza, is the ability to choose any time of the week, then an activity, then a genre of music, then a particular playlist to fit your needs. It’s a wonderful way to discover new music by finding the perfect soundtrack for your day. Or, there are plenty of mixes full of well-known songs, contemporary chart toppers, and classics that are sure to be familiar, and might even be on your current Spotify playlist. In addition to being a super-cool website, Songza is also an extremely popular music app that’s great for any music lover on the go. So, since it’s been a year since my last list of great Songza playlists, here are some more I’ve discovered.

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6 Fantastic Songza Playlists

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If you haven’t heard of Songza, here’s what you need to know: it puts Pandora and Spotify Radio to shame. Songza streams music online–either on their website or through their app–for free (with no ads!) through pre-made playlists based on genre, decade, moods and the time of day.

What are you doing on this Friday afternoon?

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