Unheard music is like fresh air. It infuses new feelings, evokes new emotions or refreshes old ones. Who doesn’t love to discover new tracks to get addicted to? You’d surely remember the first time you heard your now favourite artist, a new genre or maybe the new hit party anthem. If you find yourself cycling through those same old favourites over and over, if you want to add to your playlist, to explore music or keep pace with the ever-changing styles and trends, your search has ended. This post aims at helping you find your favourite music – that you haven’t heard yet.
So how do we go about searching for music we like?
To answer that, let’s review how we have been doing it for the past century.
Before the twentieth century, listening to music was a temporal, fleeting experience. One could only listen to it live, which made it quite a grandiose affair. It was a social event, bringing like-minded people together. The earliest ways in which man found unheard compositions, was by attending live concerts. Till this day, going to live shows remains one of the best ways to uncover trends, new artists and tracks. Live performances let you judge musicianship better and keep you updated on trending artists (look out for opening acts) and genres. It’s also an unforgettable experience because you attach a memory to the music you discover.
Recommended and hand-picked collections
With the advent of the twentieth century, the world was introduced to the gramophone (phonograph). A gramophone was the first device of its kind that could reproduce sound remotely, repeatedly. With sound being recorded on vinyl – which could easily be mass produced and sold, we could store and play songs at will. Due to the constraint on the amount of recorded time available on these records, artists started shifting to shorter songs, requiring less attention span from listeners and even lesser storage space on vinyl. Technology brought the listening experience into the comfort of our home, with a lifetime of music stored on records, ready to play on command.
Vinyl records went on to be replaced later by 8 track tapes, cassettes, CD’s and DVD’s to store recorded audio. Whatever the media, these were shared and traded among friends, acquaintances or kith and kin to expand each other’s taste in music. Letting someone else handpick songs from their collection for you saves a lot of trouble, even today. Go ask that guy who you know is into music for his recommendations. Word of mouth is how you find the great ones.
Soon after the vinyl, with the popularization of radio, music started airing on it all day. Folks could listen to songs whenever and wherever they wanted to, for free. With radio broadcasting everything from fresh hits to old classics, it got everyone hooked. Radio still is a great way to keep updated on the new chart toppers and popular music, especially while commuting. If you can bear the constant advertising and meaningless chatter that goes alongside it, that is.
Another great way to scout new genres, bands and their tours is to read magazines. From dedicated magazines and newspaper columns of the past to the online blogs of today, reading about music is essential to the process of unearthing the new (unfound). If you’re reading this, you already got this part.
After the mid-1970’s, rapidly changing technology radically changed the way we listen to music. The original 1979 Walkman cassette player, allowed people to listen to their music whilst on the move. This would go on to turn regular mundane tasks into pleasurable experiences, by adding a soundtrack to all activities in your routine. Portable music has evolved from the Walkman cassette player to the latest iPod. But the significant change between then and now isn’t the size, which is apparent to the eye.
Audio began to be stored digitally. Add to that the internet boom, give it a couple of shakes and voila! We have arrived at the present. Music streaming is the now and the future (today, almost all recorded music is at our fingertips). With a plethora of new apps and websites, staying updated on music trends and finding new artists and tracks has been made easier than ever. To search for your daily dose of fresh music, below are listed select streaming services – and why you should be using them.
Radio Garden: Radio garden lets you listen to radio stations around the globe. Point your tracker anywhere on the virtual globe on your screen and find out what’s playing, instantly. Really handy to discover new music in different languages.
Soundcloud: The go-to place if you’re searching for fresh, unheard music. Expect a ton of underground artists and a few popular ones too. Their whole library seems a bit biased towards electronic music, be warned. Can’t complain when it’s put out new genres (like Soundcloud rap) out there for us.
YouTube: The biggest library for music. Although copyright issues exist, you might even find restricted songs here uploaded covertly. Great, if you can tolerate the moderate quality and weird videos that go with it.
Shazam: Lets you find what you are looking for. They also suggest music based on what they assume is your taste.
Spotify: If you are in India, this is worth accessing a VPN and using. Their auto play feature and suggestions recommend music you’d definitely want to hear. A must have for those on the lookout for the unknown. (streaming rate is also significantly higher – 320kbps)
Saavn: Go to for Bollywood fans. The periodic adverts take a little getting used to unless you cough out the cash for the ad-free streaming.
Apple Music: Stay in touch with USA and UK charts with one click. If you frequently purchase online music, this is where you should be. “All the ways you love music. All in one place.” – to quote Apple.
Pandora: Pandora ticks all the boxes in the list. With a huge collection of artists and a user friendly interface, it’s easier than ever for you to discover all the works of your would be favourites.
That’s all for this time, folks. Hope this post has helped you on your quest for new music.
Got anything to add? Let us know in the comments. Until next time, keep humming.