Let’s remember just how radical the Music Genome Project was back in 2000

With CD’s gone and ubiquitous free on-demand streaming, Pandora’s core IP and value prop feel dated. And sure, the promise of serving up curated new music based on our unarticulated musical aesthetics never fully lived up to the mission statement. But damn if Pandora didn’t turn us all on to a few new great gems. I never would have found Sean Hayes, Josh Garrels, or Chet Faker if it weren’t for my Mason Jennings channel. Sometimes they just nailed it and gave me exactly what I didn’t even know I needed.

Pandora at its heart – in the old days – was a music snob’s mobius strip. An unlimited juke box of Deep Links based on taste; based on 450 musical attributes; timing, tempo, meter, key, dissonance, distortion, harmonics, melodic articulation…

The Music Genome Project employed a team of musicologists. Who else has ever employed a single musicologist, let alone a full team? It was ambitious. Bold. A service built for music lovers, by true music lovers. Alan Lomax would have been proud. And rich.

So with all the recent changes, let’s take a moment to remember what Tim and team pioneered. What they accomplished. And what they all gave us for all these years. (Mostly for free.)

Thank you Tim.

Thank you Nolan Gasser

And most importantly, thank you to everyone who bought the stock and who funded the project! I’m not sure if it was ever a business but think about this. If Pandora was billed as the academic endeavor that it was, you think it would have ever happened?


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About the author

Mike Dias is a Sales Director for Logitech. He specializes in consumer electronics & pro audio with an expertise in headphones & portable audio. He has over 15 years of experience selling custom handcrafted in-ear monitors.

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