Is your playlist up to date with the latest music by Grammy-nominated artists? The Grammys air on Feb. 8, and I'll be updating my digital playlists to stream all of the best songs up for awards. If 2014 was any indication, streaming music will likely become more popular with the public—and controversial with artists—this year. Look no further than Taylor Swift, nominated for three 2015 Grammys, for what the future may hold. One week after her latest album dropped in October and became No. 1 in America, she pulled 1989 and all her other albums from the free music streaming platform Spotify. In a Wall Street Journal op-ed (excerpted on Hollywood Life), Swift backed her decision, writing that her art is "important and rare" and "should be paid for," while thousands of her fans, including Spotify's CEO Daniel Ek, are begging for her return.
With or without Swift, online music streaming seems to be the future of the music industry. In light of this, here are three apps every person needs for listening to music for free.
iHeartRadio promises personalized music streaming at its best. As a new member, the app asks for your favorite genres of music and creates a list of stations just for you. If you can't decide on genres just yet, click the "Perfect For…" tab that provides music based on the time of day or type of mood you're in.
Pandora Internet Radio
Pandora lets you create up to 100 free stations, which can be customized to your liking. Pandora's biggest perk is compatibility with a range of devices including TVs, home appliances, Blu-Ray players, and almost every wireless audio system.
Apple's iTunes Radio offers a fresh take on music streaming. It comes with the iPhone's music app and allows you to make an "iTunes Wishlist" to store all the songs you plan to (or wish you could) buy later. The app also records your streaming history in case you accidentally skip a song that you want to listen to.