Jul 262011
Turntable.fm Icon

Image by ChrisLTD via Flickr

I noted how much it reminded me of when I was an actual DJ on the radio many years ago, where so much of the fun wasn’t just in playing music, but in hanging out with a bunch of friends and playing music together.

Others are recognizing this as well. In one of the most splutteringly gushing reviews of the service, ever, Sam Grobart at the NY Times highlights this same key point by noting that sharing music is communication:

It doesn’t matter if you start a room with some nearby cubicle mates or with friends scattered across the globe: what you begin to realize — almost instantly — is that taking turns playing music with friends is a kind of communication. One song leads to another. Music, enjoyable in and of itself, becomes a sort of shorthand when played among people who have shared memories attached to it. Someone plays a song that was popular when you were college, then another friend plays another song from that same period and — just like that — you’ve traveled back in time. It’s like you’re all sharing in the same inside joke.

And this feeling is reflected not just in the choice of songs, but in the comments that friends post. Someone digs a lost hit out of the crates and the message board lights up with comments from friends (O.K., my friends) saying things like “!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!” and “my head is exploding.”

Using Turntable can even help you make friends with people you only know in passing. If you’re D.J.-ing in a room with co-workers, you may never have realized that you and the guy across the floor both like Afropop. Now you have something new to talk about at the soda machine.

Later, he notes: “When your old college roommate surprises you with that Deee-Lite song the two of you used to rock out to, you know it’s more than just music: it’s a message.”

Indeed. After writing my original post on Turntable.fm and how it reminded me of hanging out and DJing with a group of others — people who I was close friends with at the time, but have mostly lost contact with — I reached out to many of my former co-DJs to talk about setting up a “reunion” via Turntable.fm. It’s hard to use Turntable.fm and not recognize that sharing music is a very legitimate form of communication.

Read more . . .

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