Spotify can be overwhelming with its endless abundance of music and playlists—how to navigate through it all and find the best tracks? Here are a few hacks to help.
1. Make playlists with your friends
If you trust your friends’ taste enough to let them DJ, make your playlists collaborative by choosing that option in the options menu. Anyone who has the link to that playlist can edit it.
2. Organise your playlists with folders
If your playlists are out of control, go to the file menu on Spotify’s desktop app, and create files by genre or mood. The Playlist Manager third party app is also a good way to see all of your playlists at a glance, and lets you move tracks between them.
3. Keep your guilty pleasures secret
Everyone listens to embarrassing earworms or breakup songs on loop—or even the odd cheesy boyband hit from the early 2000s. Spotify is a social app, but not everything needs to be shared! Use the “Private Session” option to hide these choices, or go even further and, in the settings menu (preferences menu on desktop) disable the option to publish your listening activity to Spotify.
4. Connect Spotify to Tinder
Sometimes, you want to advertise the music you like. You can add an “anthem” to your profile—a theme song to give potential matches an idea of your tastes and what you’re into. Just launch Tinder, and then go to the “Edit Info” section of your profile, and choose to connect to Spotify.
5. Check out Related Artists
If you like an artist, go to the top tracks section of an artist’s page in the app or their overview tab on desktop, and Spotify will suggest pages of other artists you might like, based on the preferences of other fans.
6. Use third party apps and Spotify tools to find amazing playlists
Why not look beyond your own social network and tap into the music knowledge of the entire Spotify user base? The Playlist Miner app lets you search the top tracks from popular public playlists based on a keyword search, and you can save the top hundred results as a new playlist. MagicPlaylist will generate a new playlist based on a single song title, and Spotify’s “Fresh Finds” playlists, in the Browse section, list 30-50 new songs every Wednesday, taken from a pool of early adopters of new music across all genres.
7. Let Genius figure out the lyrics
Spotify’s partnership with annotation service Genius is beyond helpful when it comes to looking for lyrics—or, sometimes, the stories behind the making of a track. Pull the full album art up onto the screen when you’re playing a track, and if there are Genius annotations, there will be a black tab at the bottom of the image that you can click to expand. For more obscure tracks, you may still have to Google—but not for long.
8. Keep track of new discoveries
If you use Shazam to identify cool new tracks that you hear when you’re out for coffee, now you can link the app to Spotify, and add these discoveries to a Shazam playlist. Just go to the settings section of your Shazam app and click “Connect to Spotify”.
9. Take Advantage of Daily Mixes
Spotify’s algorithm selects a set of playlists for you each day based on tracks from your playlists that are similar in mood or tempo. It then mixes in new tracks that are similar, or were liked by other people who liked the songs on your playlist. As you listen to your Daily Mixes, you can favourite or ban songs—and Spotify will remember your preferences and refine its future selections.
The more music you discover and the more playlists you gather, the better Spotify gets at understanding your tastes, and it should serve up more interesting surprises.
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