Lastfm and project playlist for wordpress.com

lastfmplaylist

Sonific Goes Offline on May 1, 2008

As a consequence of a the unworkable music licensing situation and the resulting lack of solid revenue modeling Sonific’s founders and investors have decided to temporarily take Sonific.com and Sonific.net offline. While we are looking for other ways to realize our vision we are also open to talking to any interested party that may have use for Sonific’s user base, content relationships, technologies or distribution network (please contact us anytime to find out more). Together with some other partners, we may also investigate the concept of making Sonific a paid-for service that is provided to artists, record labels and other content providers on a white-label basis.

The April 21, 2008 message by Gerd Leonhard, Co-Founder & CEO of Sonific was quite a disappointment for wordpress.com bloggers who were using the widget. Roads has come up with a work around for those who are interested How to add music playlists in wordpress.com using lastfm and project playlist http://thepriceoflove.net/2008/05/11/how-to-add-music-playlists-in-wordpresscom-using-lastfm-and-playlistcom/

How to add music playlists in WordPress.com using last.fm and playlist.com

11 May, 2008

There are several good options for adding music to a WordPress.com site. Copyright law prevents you from loading many mp3 files directly onto your site, but you can avoid those problems by using last.fm and playlist.com.

This post provides step-by-step user instructions to help you add music to your WordPress.com site using these two alternatives. I’m not a fan of sites with auto-start music, and so I’ve configured these instructions to avoid it.

You have to click on the links here to make them play.

last.fm

last.fm is a personal internet radio and music social network site based in London, with worldwide reach.

last.fm offers a range of flash-based widgets which can’t yet be used on WordPress.com. But you can still use basic last.fm charts in WordPress.com – and there’s an example on the sidebar of this site.

Here’s how you can add a chart to your site:

1* Go to ‘Image charts for forums and blogs’ at http://www.last.fm/tools/charts/?subpage=gallery#LastBody

2* Under ‘Chart Style,’ select number of rows, and configure the music selection you want to feature – e.g. you might want to display recent tracks, favourite albums / artists etc.

3* Under ‘Find a Style to Suit Your Site,’ configure the design of the chart you want to display – including preference for page or sidebar versions

4* Under ‘Code for your site,’ select ‘My Space / HTML’

5* Cut and paste the code provided into a text widget – here’s mine, and here’s how it looks: <p> <a title=’thepriceoflove’s playlist on last.fm’ href=’http://www.last.fm/user/thepriceoflove/?chartstyle=SidebarPlain’><img src=’http://imagegen.last.fm/SidebarPlain/recenttracks/8/thepriceoflove.gif’ border=’0′ alt=’thepriceoflove’s playlist on last.fm’ /></a> </p>

6* Click on the chart to access the last.fm playlist and play the music from there.

Advantages:

* last.fm is probably the world’s leading music social network site, meaning that you can find friends with similar music taste from all around the globe.

* The last.fm software is compatible with iTunes, meaning that the site will keep track of all the music you play on your computer or on your iPod.

* As your play history grows, so last.fm learns your musical tastes and provides increasingly well-targeted recommendations for great new bands to try.

You can get to know a lot of excellent new music this way.

Disadvantages:

* The chart works on playlists which have to be at least 15 tracks in length. You can’t easily control the play order, or load individual tracks on to your site.

* Although the last.fm site works brilliantly, the link from the chart on your site to the last.fm servers seems to update only intermittently. Sometimes you can force the chart to update by playing a single track in iTunes on your computer.

playlist.com

This site is newer, and it works in a different way entirely.

playlist.com finds music which is already uploaded onto the internet, and it constructs a web-playlist by accessing music from those sites.

Again, flash-based widgets exist, but no ready-made charts are available for use in WordPress.com, so you need to find a different method.

Here are a couple of ways of making it work.

1* set up your playlist on playlist.com and save it.

2* look at the playlist url and take a note of the playlist number contained within it – in my case it’s ‘16380909’.

3* make a note of the playlist title – in my case it’s ‘thepriceofloves playlist’

4* for the more advanced method, take a screen grab image of your playlist page, and then crop and resize to fit. You can use any image package – but I use IrfanView.com, where the screen capture function is at Options – capture/screen shot – click window – hit F11.

5* save the new image in your wp.com image files using ‘add media’ to access the image uploader, and note the url of the image once uploaded.

6* insert the image at the page and location where you want to display it.

7* on the gallery or media library page for the image, write a caption and a description for the image. In this case it’s ‘play-thepriceofloves-playlist’.

8* Now in the HTML editor, insert the following code: <a title=”play-thepriceofloves-playlist” href=”http://www.musicplaylist.net/standalone/16380909/mc/config/ config_black_noautostart.xml” target=”_blank”><img src=” http://energetic.files.wordpress.com/2007/10/projectplaylist16380909.jpg” alt=”play-thepriceofloves-playlist” hspace=”6″ vspace=”6″ width=”448″ height=”659″ /></a>

This gives you a clickable playlist image like this:

9* for a simpler method, avoiding the need for screen grabs, you can just add a ‘play button’ using your equivalent of my code: <a title=”play-thepriceofloves-playlist” href=”http://www.musicplaylist.net/standalone/16380909/mc/config/ config_black_noautostart.xml” target=”_blank”><img src=”http://roadsofstone.files.wordpress.com/2007/11/ play-ville-de-lumiere-by-gold.jpg” alt=”play-thepriceofloves-playlist” hspace=”6″ vspace=”6″ width=”43″ height=”56″ align=”left” /></a>

This just gives you a clickable play arrow like the one shown.

Advantages:

* Playlists can be as long, or as short as you want. This means you can load individual songs, or hundreds, all in one shot.

* Playlists play in a pre-determined order, which you can control.

Disadvantages:

* The nature of music on the web is transient. Songs are uploaded and taken down constantly, which means that the links break and you will need to maintain your playlist in good working order regularly.

* If a link is broken, you’ll have to find the song somewhere else on the internet, and then re-upload it.

* The configuration I’ve used here opens a new tab for the playlist, but it changes the size of the window. It might be possible to configure the commands to open a new window, but this will be blocked by many new browsers as a pop-up, and so I’ve avoided it here.

* * * * *

These methods each have their own uses and adaptations. I use last.fm in the sidebar to show a dynamic list of the music I’m playing at the moment, and playlist.com to feature static playlists or individual tracks.

I’m sure there are lots of other uses and adaptations which you’ll be able to find.

Good luck, and enjoy your music!

8 thoughts on “Lastfm and project playlist for wordpress.com

  1. Hi,
    Can you help me embed widget Last.fm on my blog wordpress ? I want to play last.fm music online on my blog, but i don’t know how to do it. Please…

  2. I was able to add a code (yours, to test) and see it… but it isn´t working. Thanks anyway.
    I have a blog in Portuguese to help those who have been migrating from Live Spaces to WP and many ppl want to know if it´s possible to add playlist or just a song to their blogs.

  3. I wish I could just add a single track to a post, not a whole playlist to the blog. But thanks for sharing this. I’m beginning to think that when I have a WordPress dot com question, I should just check here first.

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