Exploring Music's Complexities

Music Playlists


What is a Playlist?

Today playlists are a common commodity.  What is a playlist?  Simply put, a playlist is a list of songs that can be played back on a media player.  However, the term also has several specialized meanings. These meanings dwell in the areas of television broadcasting, radio broadcasting, and personal computers.


Early days of top 40 radio formats served to begin the use of the term Playlist.  Individuals associated with the music world would choose the term “Top 40 countdown to label mainstream pop music played on the radio.  The term first appeared in the early 1950s and contained a list of frequently aired songs. Todd Storz, a radio broadcaster, designed the format at his radio station in Omaha, Nebraska. 


Since news channels are a combination of live and pre-recorded, playlists are a handy means to play news stories initially shown live.  Pre-run news can then run from a list.

Digitized Media

As the use of a personal computer to store and playback music increased so did the use of the term playlist.  Software developed to store and run either in sequence or in a random playlist adopted the term. Software also became available to create and maintain a variety of different styles of music. This can be done with the design of formats using software such as PLS.  Partial least squares (PLS) path modeling is a variance-based structural equation modeling (SEM) technique that is widely applied in business and social sciences. It can deliver many playlists or URLs to a radio station’s live streaming audio players, eliminating the need for a web browser.


Internet Streaming Service

Internet streaming services such as Spotify and Amazon Music permit users to categorize, edit, and listen on line.  Some focus on creating lists with listener recommendations, ratings, and reviews. Notable file formats used for playlists include:.asx, an XML style playlist containing more information about the items on the playlist..fpl, is a format used by foobar2000..kpl, Kalliope PlayList, is a kind of XML playlist storing developed to speed up loading and managing playlists.


According to internet data these sites are the best for streaming:

Amazon Music Prime. …

Spotify Free. …

YouTube Music. …

Pandora. …

Slacker Radio / LiveXLive. …

Deezer. …

Sonos Radio. …

iHeartRadio. …


Further information can be found at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Playlist.



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