Do you work in, or closely with, music? Do you regularly find yourself trying to send music files to people, and having difficulty due to the multi-MB nature of most music files? Yeah, I know, email sucks – but so does linking someone to a MySpace, especially if it’s a file that you don’t necessarily want on public release.
Or perhaps you’re a DJ, and you want to share mixes with people you know. Not publicly, just to close friends, or people on a mailing list. In either case, what you need is a recently-launched site called Soundcloud.
Soundcloud lets you exchange music that you’re working with in a private setting. Tracks can either be distributed to specific people, shared publicly or embedded into any web page, blog or social network. You also get own online music inbox where you, without downloading, can listen to incoming tracks and instantly leave feedback.
But one of my favourite features is something that’s painfully missing from other music services – the ability to leave comments. You can leave little notes on different parts of the track – eg “I think this middle 8 has too many D&D references in the lyrics”, or “is there any point to this guitar solo?”
The site has been running for over a year in invite-only stealth mode, but launched to the wider music industry in October at Popkomm in Berlin. It’s already proving popular, so if you’ve not given it a try, then you really ought to. It’s one of a wave of interesting new music startups that we’ve seen lately, and probably deserve a feature one of these days.
A free account gives you the ability to send five tracks per month, which should suit any small band. If you work for a music company, then you might be interested in the Pro accounts – there are different levels of paid-for accounts ranging from £8 to £53, which give you different levels of features. The highest-level ones give you tonnes of stats to sift through.
Soundcloud is a very promising service, which could be immensely useful for bands , music companies, and anyone else that delivers audio on a regular basis. Give it a try, and then let us know what you think in the comments below.