Ever since iTunes increased its per song charge by thirty cents to a dollar twenty nine, purchasing music online has seemed to get a little pricier. Instead of charging $9.99 per album now, you need to shell out close to $13. Some “special” releases now cost well over twenty dollars. Um, hello music industry, we are in the middle of a recession! Hard working Americans shouldn’t have to choose between downloading music and paying their car bill. Thank goodness for sites that offer music streaming, a fun, fast, and low cost alternative to downloading your music from the higher priced online stores.
Music streaming happens when you sign into a website and play the music right off the website instead of downloading it. These sites are becoming increasingly popular as people get more and more fed up with the extreme prices download sites are charging. Instead of paying per song or per album, you pay a low monthly fee (usually under thirty dollars a month) and get unlimited access to all the music in their database to stream at your heart’s content. Want to download a song you hear on the site? No problem, for a very minimal additional fee you can instantly add the track to your personal collection.
These services are way better than your traditional download site. Here are three important secrets to remember as you try to choose which one to join:
Remember that the best site to join won’t necessarily be the most expensive per month; in fact, quite the opposite. The most users a site has, the less they need to charge per person per month. Also, consider this: if a site doesn’t have how many tracks it has available in its database listed for you to see, the number is probably very low. If you can’t find that simple information displayed anywhere, steer clear and find another music streaming site.
Make a special file on your hard drive for any music you download from your streaming site and from the very beginning go into your options on your user dashboard and select automatic download to that folder. There is nothing worse than buying a song you love and then not being able to find it easily in your files.
Feeling bad about making the investment in the per month fee? Do a little math to turn that frown upside down: calculate how much you spend on downloadable tunes each month and then divide it by the music you are actually getting. Is it more or less than the membership fee? If it is more, you know that you are now going to get unlimited access to music anytime (even on your mobile device) for pennies on the dollar of what you were spending with those other guys. Feel better?
Madonna said it best, or should it be “sang it best,” when she crooned “music makes the people come together.” Music is such an important, vital part of the human experience and our culture at large, that to be denied access to it because of its cost is almost criminal. Bring the music you love back into your life by switching to an online music streaming site, and enjoy unlimited access to all the songs, artists, and albums that make your heart sing and your brain pound. After all, a day without music is a very sad one!