Pandora Radio is the Cat’s Pajamas

Here is something fun for you to do:

  1. Go to our new home on
  2. Click on the Create a Station button.
  3. Commence with rocking out to Half Acre Day and like-minded artists.
  4. Keep on rocking.

We in HAD are just pleased as punch with this development, which for any recording artist is many months in the making; first you gotta make an album. A REAL album – you know, all shrinkwrappy with liner notes and a barcode and all that – and get it up for sale on Amazon; then you submit some MP3s via email to the Music Genome Project.

Then, you wait.

You wait for so long, in fact, you forget you were waiting.

But you have to wait because your music is queued up with thousands upon thousands of other submissions to see if it is even worthy for inclusion in the library. If they deem it so, Pandora contacts you directly with instructions on sending your physical CD. These instructions must be followed to the letter and involve printing, cutting and sticking things to other things. If you screw up any of these steps, it seems, the whole process collapses and it’s game over, man. (I myself was paralyzed for several days before sealing and sending the package because I wasn’t sure if the padded envelope I was using qualified as a “CD Mailer,” a term used several times in the instructions. Eventually, my lovely wife got tired of the package sitting there, so she swiped it, sealed it and dropped it in a mailbox. “Oh no!” I thought, “It wasn’t in a ‘CD Mailer’!” But it was too late.)

Then, you wait.

You have to wait because now your whole album has to be listened to by a highly trained actual musician in a process that takes 20-30 minutes per song. But eventually, your music shows up on Pandora Radio, each song having been assigned 150-or-so “genes” describing its musical character. Using this information, a little dark magic and some nerdy thing called a “distance function,” Pandora constructs an awesome radio station of stuff you like based on the name of one song or one performer.

So yeah! Get over there and make your HAD station. I did. Who’s showing up on the playlist so far? Cake. Grandaddy. Maximo Park. Matthew Sweet. Plus a bunch of cool stuff that I’ve never heard before.

‘Cause that’s the whole point, ain’t it?

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