We’ve had a great time in the past year visiting college campuses all across the country. I’ve given lectures to music classes, business school classes, entrepreneur clubs, engineering groups… you name it. We’ve held discussions on everything from starting and financing your own company, to music theory to product design, to digital rights management to RIAA lawsuits… and everything in between. Always a great experience to speak directly with the generation on the cutting edge of digital media.
We’re looking forward to more this year… already plans for Northwestern, USC, UCLA, Columbia, Tennessee, Georgia and more. If you’re faculty or staff, or an enterprising student or alumnus interested in getting involved, drop us a note. We’ll be traveling throughout the year and are always looking for help.
Cheers. Tim (Founder)
It’s true: while you’re listening to music on Pandora, we’re listening to what you have to say about Pandora.
Pictured above are most of the people who answer your email when you write to Pandora. No robots in sight!
We like to keep in touch with our listeners. It’s been a pleasure for us to meet so many thousands of you, virtually and in person.
We want to know what works well for you on Pandora, and what doesn’t work for you. We answer your questions the best we can and your suggestions directly affect our priorities in terms of what features to add and what music to collect. Indeed, many of our added features and songs over the years have come from your feedback.
We’ve always responded personally to every email we receive and we read every comment you leave on our blog. Thank you for all of your insightful commentary. We especially love the personal stories you tell us about music and your use of Pandora, and I’ll share a few stories next time I post here. (If you’re one of the many people who has asked Pandora to marry you or “run away” with you, don’t worry, I won’t out you.)
It’s really easy to get support from us: you just write us an email, and we write back. No automatic reply from “no-reply,” no ‘thank you for your email, here’s your tracking number.’ Just one human communicating with another.
As always, you can suggest music at suggest-music [at] pandora.com.
You can suggest features, get tech support and ask questions at pandora-support [at] pandora.com.
Whether your feedback is about the music, your “playlist,” the advertisements or the web site itself, you can rest assured that we’re sharing your feedback with the people who can do something about it. Pandora’s music analysts, music buyers, engineering team and ad team are only a few steps away from our desks.
Besides email and this blog, here’s a few more places you can find us:
We’re on Twitter: we answer your questions, note your feedback, and post tips and announcements.
We post photos on Flickr.
We have profile pages at MySpace and Facebook. (The Pandora Facebook application is here.)
And of course, we continue to tour the country meeting with you in person.
We love music and our mission is to guide you to music you love. And while you’re listening, we’re behind the scenes making Pandora the best it can be.
We thank you for your generous feedback over the last 2 1/2 years.
Lucia, and the whole communication team
Our guest this week is Chris Horgan, the captain of Pandora’s Dance Music Genome. He’s a rhythmatist, and the subject this week is time changes — specifically, abrupt changes in BPM that use a beat subdivision to pivot to the new tempo. That’s called “Metric Modulation,” and it can be a startlingly effective way for a full band to jump immediately into a new feel, without the potentially awkward process of speeding up or slowing down.
p.s.: To subscribe to all of these free audio shows: Pandora.com/podcast.
As usual, your comments astonish me. And even though I admit that it’s a bit odd to be asking music listeners the kinds of questions that music makers ask themselves, I stand by the effort, since who knows, some of you might discover a whole new band or even a world of music that had previously been difficult for you to get into. Mainly though, it’s just profoundly surprising and fascinating for me to learn more about how you all experience music. So thank you all for that!
In any case, Glenn Gould made an analogy that pertains here. Paraphrasing Gould: it’s not necessary for me to know exactly how my car works in order for me to feel that it’s either tuned up fairly well or that it needs some work. Similarly, music listeners don’t need expert knowledge (of the architecture of music or the critical perspectives of the kind that musicians use) in order to determine whether they like something or not.
The fact that musicians need that expertise (and mechanics do, too) doesn’t mean that such expertise is at all relevant to listeners.
Ok, so I’m wondering what y’all think about that. Specifically, though, I’m interested in the exceptions to the rule: what expertise do you have about music that benefits you as a listener? And in a tangential request, what music do you think the rest of us really ought to be exposed to, that you think we might not have been?
And lastly, if you have those kinds of expert suggestions, doesn’t that imply that you, too, have your own critical radar?
Play on, playas.