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YouTube Launches Music Discovery Project "Disco"

January 21, 2010 12:00 AM ET

YouTube is taking advantage of their new venture Vevo by introducing a "Music Discovery Project" dubbed "Disco" for short, where searching for an artist generates a playlist of recommended videos. It's like YouTube's response to Pandora and Last.fm and is similar to the Genius option on iTunes. Working off the slogan "Find > Mix > Watch," the site produces a playlist based on the artist search, then users can add and delete videos to create a playlist that is stored in their profile, Tech Crunch reports.

For instance, a search for Pearl Jam results in a playlist stocked with Eddie Vedder & Co., plus videos by fellow Seattle grunge all-stars like Nirvana and Soundgarden and '90s rockers like Smashing Pumpkins and Black Crowes. Not much for "discovery" as the vast majority of Pearl Jam fans are already well aware of these other bands, but the Pearl Jam list might introduce fans to the handful of obscure Screaming Trees music videos that YouTube suggests. Similarly, a "mix tape" of Madonna comes filled with Kylie Minogue, George Michael, and Michael and Janet Jackson.

Here's a surefire sign Disco is still under construction: Search "Radiohead" and the other suggested artists are simply "head" bands like Diamond Head, Big Head Todd & the Monsters and Murray Head. Is Disco revolutionary? Probably not, but it'll likely steal a few clicks from other music recommendation sites. Considering YouTube's big push behind Vevo, it's a little strange that this new music feature is launching via regular YouTube and not its new music site, which the record labels prefer you visit.

Related Stories:
Vevo Arrives: Test Driving the Labels' New Video Streaming Site
Video Sites Announce New Music Features: Hulu Adds Artist Pages, Vevo Sets Launch
Warner Music, YouTube Reportedly Strike Deal to Restore Videos

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Song Stories

“Hungry Like the Wolf”

Duran Duran | 1982

This indulgent New Romantic group generated their first U.S. hit with the help of what was at the time new technology. "Simon [Le Bon] and I, I think, had been out the night before and had this terrible hangover," said keyboardist Nick Rhodes. "For some reason we were feeling guilty about it and decided to go and do some work." Rhodes started playing with his Jupiter-8 synth, and then "Simon had an idea for a lyric, and by lunchtime when everyone else turned up, we pretty much had the song." The Simmons drumbeat was equally important to the sound of "Hungry Like the Wolf," as Duran Duran drummer Roger Taylor stated it "kind of defined the drum sound for the Eighties."

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