Chairlift concert comment to Spotify

spotify fails when it comes to discovering live music

Spotify’s Live Music Failure

Don’t get me wrong, I love Spotify, it’s part of my everyday life. But as of now, Spotify sucks when it comes to discovering local live music performances.

Currently Spotify shows if a band is on tour, and when they will be performing locally, but only when you are looking at the artist page. Let’s look at an example. You search for Twenty One Pilots on Spotify and you’re looking at the artist’s discography page. Right before the list of albums there is an “ON TOUR” section. As my location is Salt Lake City, it displays when and where Twenty One Pilots will be performing here.

Spotify Artist Page of Twenty One Pilots On Tour

Now this is great and all if you already listen to a band, and if you happen to look if they’re on tour, yet if you haven’t discovered a certain band, or you skim over this itsy-bitsy section, you’re out of luck.


How I Discover Bands Now

The best way I’ve found to track bands playing locally is with an app called Bandsintown (this is my preferred app, but other such similar apps do exist).

Bandsintown Logo

Bandsintown connects with your Spotify, Pandora, Soundcloud,, and Google Music accounts to track the kinds of music you listen to. Based on your listening habits, it’ll recommend bands you might enjoy, as well as showing you all the bands playing within the radius you define. Possibly my favorite part of Bandsintown is the notification it sends me whenever a band announces a performance near me.

So to discover new bands playing locally, all you have to do is open the app and scroll through the list of concerts. Hey look, Twenty One Pilots is playing on July 16th.

Bandsintown shows Twenty One Pilots playing near me

And what about bands you haven’t discovered yet? A quick look down my list shows there is a band playing called Yuck who is similar to Bombay Bicycle Club.

Bandsintown playing Yuck

Now, I’ve never heard of Yuck, but Bombay Bicycle Club is pretty cool so there’s a chance Yuck is cool too. But you will want to listen to some of their music before buying a ticket. Now you have to go back to Spotify and look up Yuck to see if you like their music.

The back-and-forth is crazy. And if I’m already in Spotify, why do I need a second app to discover new bands?


Suggestion: Spotify Does the Hard Work

Spotify is already amazing when it comes to the Discover Weekly playlist which is algorithmically personalized for all users each Monday. Now what if Spotify made a location specific playlist you could follow that pulls in artists who are going to perform locally each week.

Instead of searching the bands one-by-one, just listen to a playlist sampling the popular songs from each band scheduled to play locally. When a song jumps out at you, right click to see more of that artist’s music, and when they are playing. Let Spotify do the heavy lifting.

Here is what Salt Lake City’s live music playlist would look like:


What Do You Think?

Would something like this help you simplify your life, and discover great live music playing near you? Leave your comments below.

2 thoughts on “spotify fails when it comes to discovering live music

    1. Charlie, great point. I love the personalized concert listing. The two shortcomings of this feature are that it still takes you out of Spotify to a third party site, and you can’t listen to artists you haven’t heard of directly from this list, so you still have to search each artist one by one.

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