I must admit I am a bit of a music junky; I’m always on the look out for new artists to add to my music collection. I tend to waste hours on end on a Saturday or Sunday morning just browsing around on forums, iTunes, Twitter, YouTube or wherever my clicking takes me searching for new sounds. A recent discovery of my travels has been soundcloud.com. Described, as “a platform that puts your sound at the heart of communities, websites and even apps. Watch conversations, connections and social experiences happen, with your sound as the spark.” I was intrigued so I signed up to see what the site had to offer.
The experience is a little bit like twitter, you can follow artists and others can follow you, except instead of sharing quirky one-liners, observations or news, you share music. Each track is visually displayed on the site as a waveform along with any comments attached, literally. Users are able to post comments on the waveform of the song at certain points in time, so as the song plays the comments are displayed.
The interface on the site is pretty cool but the real power is sound cloud is the ability to take your music and share it, pretty much anywhere. Each track has the option to be pushed to Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, WordPress, StumbleUpon and the list goes on. There is also the option to embed the player on your own site, with some built in customization options. If you’re really feeling adventurous Soundcloud also has an API for even more customization. All these options make this a great tool for up and coming musicians to get their music out there, but Soundcloud isn’t just for the local bar band or the basement DJ. It was recently used by the Foo Fighters to stream their new album “Wasting Light” off of their site a week ahead of its release on foofighters.com.
There are a ton of tools, blogs and groups on this site to help you share your music and connect with other musicians. The best part being Soundcloud gives you space for 2 hours worth of music for free – and no limit to file size, perfect for housing and sharing all of my GarageBand experiments at no cost and minimal effort.