We Had a Teen Explore Apple Music Because Teens Understand Technology the Best
The three-month "free trial" isn’t "free," but at least "dads" have "money."
Image by Eli Zeger via Faceinhole.com
Welcome to Teen Time!, the Noisey column where we have teens unpack music's great mysteries. Previously, we've had a teen ask his teachers about music, go to the mall to review music, and interview Mike Kinsella. For more teen-related content, check out all of Teen Time! here.
Teens love iPhones. Teens love Spotify. But can teens handle Apple’s pastiche of Spotify? I took it upon myself to find out. Yesterday, I installed the iOS 8.4 update on my iPhone and was rewarded with Apple Music. While perusing the brand new streaming service, I learned and noticed the following things:
All screenshots of Apple Music by the author
1. The three-month “free trial” isn’t “free”: Turns out you need to pay $9.99 so iTunes can start billing you after the trial ends. “L” to the “ame.”
2. My dad rocks: I didn’t have $9.99 in my account, so my dad gave me some money.
Having a fully loaded iTunes account is dope!
3. Taylor Swift: She promised to remove her 1989 LP from Apple Music, which was a statement against the service’s refusal to pay artists being streamed during the inaugural three-month trial. By doing so, she got Apple to improve the service’s royalty payment terms. Swift’s a true punk, and now Apple Music has some “good blood.”
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4. 1989 is on Apple Music: I guess as a reward? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
5. Bon Iver’s “Skinny Love” is a great “rainy day” song: S/O to all the Spotify and 8tracks “rainy day” playlists that’ve used “Skinny Love” already. That’s every Spotify and 8tracks “rainy day” playlist ever.
6. Playlist themes are creative: They recommended a collection of songs for which Spike Jonze directed the music videos. Hey Apple Music, think fast!
7. “All City” is a cooler way of saying “urban”: “All City” is iTunes Radio’s hip-hop and R&B music station, or what tradtional radio would call “urban.” Nice. Cities are urban places. I heard Bryson Tiller’s brooding and nebulous-sounding “Don’t.” Jamie xx’s “I Know There’s Gonna Be (Good Times)” followed, with a similar vibe to “Don’t.”
8. And I loved "I Know There's Gonna Be (Good Times)" so much, I listened to it again: It's the only time I turned "Cellular Data" on to stream a song.
9. The iTunes “Connect” list is slightly contentious: The Flaming Lips and Erykah Badu are on this list together. #drama
Dang, our teen is hip!
10. They recommend albums I already have on my phone: Woah, thanks Apple Music!
Conclusion: Spotify and iTunes are two inexorable forces in the world of digital music. Apple’s attempt at a Spotify-esque service has its ups and downs, but at least it can function. Although I’m not as avid a streamer as my other pals, I’ll stick with Apple Music for the next three months and listen to some more Jamie xx.
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