Youtube has the unique power to make you laugh hysterically or shed a sentimental tear within minutes of logging on. It brings hours of entertainment to you at a moment’s notice, and it does it for free.
One thing I never imagined Youtube would do though is change the way I listen to, discover and even share new music.
Life Before Youtube and iTunes
Before we get to all of that, let’s remember how the music industry used to work. Artists would record their music on “CDs” which had to be purchased in a “music store”. That “CD” came in a “jewel case” to protect it and even had a fun little book with the lyrics printed inside.
I personally still have somewhere around 150 jewel cases of music I bought when I was much younger, and much more naïve. Truth be told, even in this digital age I still prefer buying physical copies of the music I connect with.
I found that actually holding the case in my hands and reading the lyrics as I listened to the song was something similar to making a new friend. It was, and still is, a much more personal experience to me than clicking ‘buy now’ on itunes and launching the digital files into your digital library.
This era of audio consumerism unfortunately led to me a lot of buyers remorse. Without any real way to research the full CD before buying it, I was often stuck with maybe two songs that I loved and 8 or so that I didn’t ever care to listen to ever again.
Not a very effective way to develop a meaningful music library to say the least. Luckily we no longer live in those dark ages.
Youtube To The Rescue
Time to play a little game called “Think of ANY song you have EVER heard of…EVER”. Now go and type that song into the youtube search bar. Did you find what you were looking for? Spoiler Alert: the answer is probably yes.
Not only is youtube the largest collection of original content videos on the internet, it also might just be the world’s largest music library. And now thanks to smart phones ability to record high quality video, chances are you can find a live performance of your favorite song too.
I can now listen to every track of a potential music purchase long before I ever have to commit my hard earned money to buying it. While this might be an obvious solution for some, for me it was like a beam of light sent straight down from the heavens.
How much music do you listen to on Youtube? What other ways have online media sites like youtube changed your daily habits? Share your thoughts in the comments below.