A while ago when subscription music services first started I had tried out Napster, but for some reason or another I decided to stop using it. Perhaps it was that I found that downloading albums took up too much space, and perhaps I wasn’t using it so much at the time.
Today, however, after discussing Hillary Hahn’s CD’s with Will, I decided I wanted to try out one of these services again. At first I thought I’d try Napster again, as I remembered the service to being alright, but decided instead to try out Real Rhapsody. So far, I’m enjoying quite a bit. I like that it’s focused on streaming on-demand music and not downloaded files. I find that having access to any music on a whim to be a very liberating experience. I like very much that the playlists I create are saved on a server as that allows me to move from computer to computer and have access to the playlists.
So far, the music selection has been very good. It’s nice that they have Naxos’s collection as it contains a great deal of Lutoslawski and other 20th century composers I’m very much interested in. I was able to find Bruckner’s and Brahm’s symphonies, and am looking very forward to delving very deeply into all of the symphonic music that I can.
I think this type of service very well addresses my needs in that I’m not very much interested in managing music files or allocating space for them. I don’t want to own this music as much as I’d like to have access to it. It feels to me very much like a public library, in that I am able to have access but not own these items, and that suits me very well.
The only down side to all of this is that it only runs on Windows, as my preferred OS to use at home is Linux. At work it’s absolutely fine as that is what I use there, and at home it’s not a problem for me to log into Windows as I the tools I use for my musical work and other work are available on any platform I use. So, all in all, I’m pretty satisfied.
Real Rhapsody has a 14-day free trial and so I am taking advantage of that now. As these are all my first impressions, perhaps I’ll stop using this as I did Napster, I don’t know. I guess I’ll see how I feel in a couple weeks when the trial is over. ^_^