Using YouTube as a music service

YouTube will reportedly soon launch a music streaming service; some of us are already using it that way


YouTube is great for live performances, like Psy doing Gangnam Style at the recent South Korean presidential inauguration

Image credit: REUTERS/Kim Hong-Ji

Word on the street is that YouTube will soon launch a streaming music service. Many people, apparently, already use YouTube to listen to music, particularly teenagers, as that Fortune piece points out. My ITworld colleague Pete Smith rightfully scratched his head and wondered why anybody would currently be using YouTube as a music service, given its unreliable performance and the existence of so many good streaming music services such as Pandora and Spotify. 

Well, it turns out that at least one person who’s pretty far removed from his teenaged years (about 23 years removed, give or take) also uses YouTube pretty heavily as a music streaming service: me. YouTube, truth be told, has become my primary source of music listening whenever I’m sitting at my laptop, which is just about all day long during the week. The basic reasons are because it offers an amazing amount of hard-to-find performances and recordings, all on demand, and some nice (and unique) features for managing playlists. 

I’m your basic classic rock fan. While my own digital library of music already contains the vast majority of studio albums put out by the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, Pink Floyd, Bob Dylan, et. al., YouTube gives me a seemingless supply of live concerts, TV performances and alternative or in-progress versions of songs, all of which I love. If I want to listen to the studio version of Tommy, I’ll pull it up on iTunes. But if I want to hear the Who performing it live in 1970, YouTube it is.

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