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Show HN: A site that makes Spotify playlists of bands coming to town (nextweeksplaylist.com)
346 points by slashblake 8 months ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 109 comments

Hey, I love this idea and am working on something similar (an alternative events discovery and promotion tool for cities). I see that a lot of you folks here are also working on similar stuff.

How about we chat more about these topics? Integration with APIs like BandsInTown, Facebook, apps like Spotify, SoundCloud, YouTube, music metadata collection from MusicBrainz, Discogs… If these topics sound interesting, join the public group on Facebook I created just now:


or this new subreddit:


Cool, thanks. Yeah, I work on https://twitter.com/posterbat (real site down momentarily – Facebook broke my scraper :/ )

We maaaay have started talking about building an open events API on Reddit… :)


I'm a big fan of live music, and even flew to Japan to go to the PunkSpring festival. If you'd like data for Taiwan, please get in touch!

There's also a large, free dataset from Apple with the whole iTunes Store database. Search "iTunes EPF" for more info. It's 55 GB uncompressed. Perhaps you could use this to generate affiliate links and earn money if people buy the songs in your playlist.


I made a similar site last August. http://www.hearnow.io/

You can pick a location on a map and it will generate a playlist for pretty much any city. I haven't done much work on it since then, but had a decent response when I posted it to Reddit. I've been considering open sourcing it, but not sure if there is interest.

My approach:

- Use SeatGeek's API to find venues/artists near the user

- Query Spotify's search API for artists with these names to get artist IDs (which you need to do other interesting things with Spotify's API)

- Filter results from Spotify search queries with fuzzy matching between artist names and results

- Use Spotify's API to get the top 5-10 most popular tracks for each artist, and randomly select ~30 to add to a playlist

Spotify's search API cannot be queried in batch which is a pretty frustrating bottleneck. I mainly solved this by caching artist name / ID pairs, but this would only really be effective if I got a lot of traffic (I don't).

Also, SeatGeek's API was a lot more friendly than Songkick, which I considered using. But SeatGeek didn't seem to have data for many venues overseas, so I had some users outside the U.S. that were disappointed that their queries would usually fail because the app couldn't find enough tracks.

I got a guy up in portchester who recommends me sweet nugs of music, wonder if he's ever used your service...

Very cool. Haven't been back to NYC in awhile but good to see the Rockwood Music Hall is still a hot venue. My main suggestion would be to populate the page with the Spotify data before having the user commit to signing into Spotify. Yes, have the call to action be at the top, but have the below-the-fold content be a list view of venues and artists. The map is nice but I don't think that's the most relevant view for NYC, since it's so easy to get around town between any popular venue.

My perspective is based on my assumption of, at the start of the week, what most people want to know but don't yet know. They know the venues, they just don't know (without tedious inspection) who is playing where. Maybe it'd make sense to have the genre of the acts more prominently shown. I'd be more immediately interested in looking at the list of alt rock bands who are in town that week, and then looking up the venues they'll be at. As opposed to having a list of venues and acts, and having to scan it to see if any of those acts are in the genres I prefer.

Devil is in the details. There's just no place to reliably source all of the events that are happening. Sure you can get the ones that sell tickets through ticketmaster, or whatever, but nobody reliably aggregates all the smaller concerts. So this will always be badly incomplete. Discovering all those shows is on of my main use-cases for facebook right now - it's the one place (almost) all of them show up.

A few years back I made a hobby project like this -- it scraped the website of the local free weekly paper (since they have pretty much every concert listing, large and small) and then did a youtube search on band names so you'd see an embedded video or two for each show.

I think most larger cities (and smaller cities if they have a large university) have such a newspaper (e.g. Village Voice in NYC, Willamette Week in PDX, The Mercury in Seattle, etc)

Maybe it's better in the states, but where I live the papers don't come close to being a complete listing. They will have the major stuff, and some of the smaller shows too - but a large part is still missing. And it's not a small city - 2 mln people, capital, and quite an active music and culture scene.

Indeed, this sadly will not be scalable to certain cities where the data source is incomplete. The author had posted this on the Austin subreddit a few weeks ago and I asked him if the source of the data was Showlist Austin (http://showlistaustin.com/) and he/she confirmed that it was in fact at least one of the sources for the Austin data. It's great that we have that site for Austin but it's probably the only place I've ever been that has that complete of a list of good local shows.

Yes, the first website I ever made was in this space for Philadelphia. I wanted to make show listings with playable songs for every night of the week. I just manually found listings and found youtube links and built it. Every site I found always had a bunch of cruft. This was in 2011, figured it had improved by now. :)

How about crowdsourcing the info somehow, maybe letting people enter it for their city from some source and making that public for everyone?

I started such a crowdsourcing effort some time ago :)


that is an intense google sheet. :)

Thanks, yeah I posted it to different music subreddits, so I thought I should try and make it eye-catching :)

Awesome! Now worldwide ;)

Ideas: -Open up to the main local bookers (in my country that would be one firm, Mojo), monetization via referrals?

-other awesomeness would include: local clubs and pubs access via API, same monetization.

-Main few hits per band and then select bands that "sound like" selected view of the most listened to bands.

-Anything that makes me discover worthwhile bands in my area that give me an unexpected nice night out without having to notice the social media multiverse (my favorite teen bands from 20 yrs ago got together last summer and I noticed last week.. guess I haven't got any of my teen surf punk friends anymore)

This is such a great, simple, almost obvious idea. This type of ideas is getting more and more rare, so it is great to see one popping here and there.

Oh this is a great idea! Any chance to get a plain list of musicbrainz IDs for the nerds with their own music collection instead of the ever so ephemeral and privacy-infringing Cloud?

Hi anc84, I made http://www.muusical.com and was imagining it being something like musicbrainz but with actual, playable music that is streamed in from youtube or soundcloud. I haven't been actively working on it in a little while but would love to find other kindred spirits who share the vision. After taking a step back, possibly the best approach is to just use the data from music brainz and use my site to attach the playable music. My meta data editing interface is very rudimentary compared with musicbrainz.

Let me know if you're interested or know anyone who is. You can get me on twitter @patrickjbradley. Thanks.

I don't see how this is relevant. I asked about upcoming events, dissing online music streaming as something I do not do.

Nice execution! I made something similar a few years ago, except it generated a playlist of previews from iTunes with an option to connect Spotify. It worked by finding all venues within a certain radius from you using the Foursquare API, and correlating that with the JamBase and Songkick APIs. It was a bit ahead of its time because not enough people had Spotify, and their catalog wasn’t big enough to cover artists coming to some of the smaller venues. I might still own the domain rockout.fm if you want something a bit more catchy.

Kind of OT but has anyone succeeded in creating playlists through YouTube's API? I had a kind of similar idea to this and wanted to create automatic playlists but failed on the integration part.

EDIT: Ok, looks like this is very easy with the v3 API. This was quite a long time ago.

I haven't done that but I've worked with the youtube api in the past. In general I am really really interested in making sites connected with music. My site muusical.com was my last legit attempt. If you have any interest in connecting, please message me on twitter @patrickjbradley. I'm dying to find partners who share a common passion and hopefully similar vision.

I've been working on this: https://www.laidbackvj.com/ code here: https://github.com/khaliqgant/laid-back-vj. Happy to work with others!

I don't know if my music profile is somehow... weird, but i get a lot of random movies and audio books, mostly long (1-3 hours) and old (~1900-1940s). Not what i expected, but i actually found some interesting stuff. Thanks!

I love this. Seems great at a party with a projector and sheet!

That's super cool man.

Great idea! Another idea I've wanted for awhile, setlist.fm based Spotify playlists for concerts I liked.

I did this for google play music. I have a crude working version of scraping out the setlists from setlist.fm here, https://github.com/fergyfresh/setlist-on-a-playlist/blob/mas...

I'll work on this tonight to make it better at handling errors where it will force to find the most recent one that isn't blank, because if there are no songs in the most recent entry it will return a blank list.

I had a friend mention this to me too recently. I just grab the artist's top 3 tracks and add them to your playlist. Perhaps I could use setlist.fm to put songs more likely to be heard at the upcoming shows. Thanks!

I'd be willing to work with you as I have built a googleplay music version of this a while ago. https://github.com/fergyfresh/setlist-on-a-playlist

I took it a step further to make a playlist out of the bands most recent setlist, so its similar, but not the same. It's currently just a cli that allows you to make a playlist on your google play music based on a band's most recent setlist, provided it was posted on setlist.fm. Most of the bands that I listen to have the setlist.fm posted basically the same night of the show.

Would love to help, leverage, or even refactor some of your stuff so that we could use virtually any music playing platform to do this.

I made something similar for the festivals my friends and I go to: http://www.setyeah.com/

Saves me a lot of time every summer.

This is a great idea. My partner made a playlist of Boston Calling bands. It was helpful for a festival when you don't know all of the bands (the festival bands play concurrently too so you couldn't see all the music..)

Yeah I think festival support should be added to my backlog. I love listening to festival lineups even when I’m not going.

Brilliant! It's always surprised me that Spotify didn't add this feature since they already have the data.

Let me sign up for a mailing list for when you add in my city :)

Same here, would love this when you have Bay Area. But not until then...

Check mine out, moreencores.com

Specify your nearest major city for best results

This is cool! One suggestion: 7 days ahead is pretty grim, at in London tickets sell out fast.

I presume it's to keep the queries low? Maybe it could be a date range with a max of 7 days instead? Defaulting to a month from now + 7 days?

I think this is a really interesting idea. Spotify has a feature where you can see if an artist is going to be playing near your location by going to the artist's page and going to the 'concert' tab. However, I don't think they have one to go the other way i.e "find all artists performing in one location"

Someone at the SXSW Hackathon two weeks ago worked on a similar thing [1]. The difference in their project was that it looked at the artists you listened to and then created a list of artists that you would know who would be coming to the venue.

I like your idea in that you're creating a channel for people to discover new bands.

[1] https://devpost.com/software/sx-setfinder

Spotify does give you gigs in your area. You go to browse, and then the "concerts" tab.

You can't change the location though, it's based off device location.

You can search by city in both the mobile app and desktop app to take a look at concerts outside of your area. Really handy. They mostly show only artists who you listen to frequently/genres you like

You're right. There's a great big button you can click to change your location. I guess I've just never clicked it so I forgot about it.

Hey thanks for the info. And yeah, I just wanted to provide a different way to discover new music instead of some algorithm. I think a venue’s calendar is just another nice way to do this. Enjoy.

Very cool. I have had a suspicion that Google/Spotify has been sort of tracking these things for a while. The features that Google music and Spotify have for discovery seem to correlate with artists touring with other artists I like pretty consistently.

This is great, I waste a LOT of time doing playlists to figure out my festival schedule. So time consuming. Can you do google play please? I had to junk Spotify years ago because streams would constantly interrupt and jitter.

Great idea. Congrats.

I’m assuming aggregating the booking calendars is a fair amount of manual work but the value of this to audiences interested in lesser-known artists should be significant. I would love to see smaller, mix-use and under-age venues included.

I like the idea. Maybe you could leverage Songkick API to support more cities ? (I moved to Tel Aviv recently and it's really hard to spend the time to find out which concerts are worth going to)

Ben from Songkick here and we'd love to work with you on this. If you reach out to me I'd be happy to sort you out with API access. ben[at]songkick[dot]com

It's a shame you decline any apps with monetisation ideas. I think it would be better to offer a paid API service a la Google APIs than to have so many engineers reinvent the wheel. Oh well, I guess the music industry and logical business models never did go hand in hand :/

Looked into this. SongKicks licensing is really restrictive once I start using their API. Do you have a site you use for upcoming shows in Tel Aviv?

Yeah, just wanted to ask if you use an API to get events?

I've been working on something in a similar direction for Vienna. Tried to get SongKick API access, but they declined me. I also used BandsInTown on a project, but it's a bit limited. These days I'm just using Facebook Events, which is ok, but not perfect – can't get all the events in a particular city automatically. Managed to manually overcome this though.

But great work! Tried the app out and I really like it. Followed you on Twitter if you want to keep in touch. Would be nice to have some MusicEventsHackers group to discuss these topics :)

OK, I just create that group :)

- on Facebook


- and on Reddit


I don't really know where to look except songkick, which is why I don't go to many shows here yet

You may have better luck with Bandsintown. They've got an API, and seem to have all the same concert data.

Jukely (https://www.jukely.com/) does another good version of this. Here's their playlist for NYC https://open.spotify.com/user/jukely/playlist/6d8T2n9ISP4ZgH... (other cities are avail too).

I've made a similar app at a local hackathon sponsored by Sabre: it would search your playlists on Spotify in order to identify your favorite artists. Then it would match the artist presentation schedule and find the best place in the world to watch the artist's concert based on ticket price + travel expenses. Something like: "the best city to watch U2 is Buenos Aires in August - while there you can also visit the Recoleta neighborhood and ..."

Great idea!

Some feedback though: I found the tagline "It's a pain to look up every band coming to your city. Now just follow your favorite venues and genres and get a weekly Spotify playlist of upcoming music." intuitive but the heading "Stop Typing Every Band in Town" didn't make sense to me.

I'd go with something more straightforward like the title used for this Hacker News post. I immediately understood what that meant.

That's a really good idea. Nice execution on it, too...

Thanks, it's been a lot of iterations. I'm thinking of doing a blog post showing the UI/UX iterations I've gone through.

I created something similar, though it just creates a youtube playlist that you can listen in your browser: http://touristplaylist.com/, you can pick a date range and the location, it uses songkick api

Please add London! I'd pay for this easily

I actually have been working on adding the UK. Shoot me a message on twitter and I'll keep you posted for when it is released!

www.PlaylistHQ.com does this better!

Please add a list view of all venues by city! I don't want to have to search for all the venues.

In the backlog...stay tuned.

Awesome idea, but this seems like something that could be just switched on quickly at Spotify.

This is great! Right now I use last.fm, bandsintown, and Spotify to search for live shows. However none of them actually generate a playlist. I will definitely be using this to discover new music. When will I be able to add my own city?

You should add a way to submit venues for other cities in single and batch methods.

Please please please add Toronto! This is a killer idea, i'd love to use it!

Great job! I will use this. It might be a nice discovery pipeline if nothing else.

A "select all venues" feature seems important, and the playlist probably only needs one song per artist, I see that quite a few have 2-3.

Is there some kind of filter for types of music?

When I look at the "bands" in my town (not through your app), there's everything from metal to folk to techno.

Absolutely, you can pick genres instead of just your favorite venues.

May have been suggested but would love to be able to toggle all venues in a certain city so I don't have to go searching for venues that I may be interested in.

I did this too: moreencores.com

And you can do it for any city

Please beta test it :)

Great idea but why no contact details for suggestions and no way to sign up/vote for other cities?

Possible to support any city by checking Stubhub/Ticketmaster API for events in user-entered city?

Cool, but one question: did you send a feature-request to Spotify before you decided to make this?

Do you have an example of Spotify implementing any of the feature requests in a sub 2-year time-frame? I don't.

That sounds time-consuming

Yeah, but if you make this and Spotify decides to do the same, then it's time-wasting.

Depends on the motivation mix: a Spotify implementation would not undo any learning that happened along the way, and a showcase/attention goal might even benefit from being the independent original to a corporate clone.

Can this be used to create playlists in formats with more interoperating potential, such as JSON?

Great idea. Congrats!

Would it be possible to aggregate shows from a ticket website like seatgeek or ticketmaster?

Really liked the work you put in!

And I love that everybody is so supportive of it, cheers to all you guys!

This is a very cool idea—are you familiar with the BandsInTown app as well?

Yeah I've used it. It looks like they are trying to do something like this, just buggy/not well executed, so I took a stab at it.

Only selected cities :(

Cool too, good work. Needs more cities! Seattle especially :)

Very cool! I am eager to see my town in your app

I'd love you forever if you added San Diego.

Does no one here know about the BandsInTown app?

Seems like a different thing: https://news.bandsintown.com/home BIT is cool if you want to know who's in town and you know who they are, this for people who'd rather just hear tracks and if they like them go 'cool, I like whoever this is, I'll get tickets'

Oh I see. Thanks for the clarification.

Fantastic idea.

Does this work the other way around?

i'm listening to a playlist for nyc and I love it. would love a playlist for SF.

Great, an empty play list. :P

Please add New Orleans.

I can look into it. Do you have a site you browse to find upcoming shows in NO?

very cool. would love this for nashville, willing to help =)

Boston Boston Boston!

Wow. A whole 4 cities in one country. Totally useful :\

Certainly more useful than your comment.

Next time try something like:

"I was disappointed to only see 4 cities, I'd love if you could support X,Y,Z cities next."

I think he is really smart.

He got feedback and now knows his idea is interesting for a bunch of people.

It's 5 cities.

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