See below

Rhapsody allows you to blog playlists. At first glance, this strikes me as awesome. Subsequent glances, though, give me a strangely dissatisfied feeling in that part of my brain that knows what ‘cool’ means, and what it feels like to use cool as a weapon. The easiest way to do this is to like punk music. If you are one of the twisted individuals who think punk bands, the basis of whose genre is not knowing how to play one’s instrument, are capable of making quality music, you no doubt have allowed yourself the satisfying evil of naming punk bands when backed into a corner by someone else’s coolness. “I was listening to The Posers the other day…”. Knowing music that someone else doesn’t returns instant cred.

The blogged playlist is the shock-and-awe weapon in this kind of warfare. The reason to blog a Rhapsody playlist is to give people quantifiable evidence of one’s own coolness.

Okay, that might be a tad much. I’m sure there are benevolent Rhapsody users out there who share their picks out of some kind of altruistic charity. They think you might like it. I argue that even these Mothers Teresa of the Rhapsody community would find it hard to deny that some part of them thinks they are the cool ones, and want to drive it home to you, you sorry sucker.


4 replies on “See below”

hey there —

interesting comments re: blogging with rhapsody. i’m not sure i agree. i have an entire site, rhapsody rock school, devoted to blogging playlists, and i do it more to share my musical discoveries with other like-minded music fans than to show how cool i am. you can check the site out at if you’re interested.


Got your comment on my blog — yes, the Rhapsody Rock School blog includes contributions from a lot of people who developed Rhapsody, both programmers (like C0diq, who developed the client software) and product people (including me — I handle PR for Rhapsody). It’s my personal blog but I thought it would be cool to take advantage of the blogging feature in a more meaningful way than we currently do in Rhapsody (though the next version will include some awesome enhanced blogging features). Hope you liked it!

I miss my rhapsodays. We’re using amanda’s laptop because it’s faster than our old dog, but the speakers are nothing to write home about, rhapsosadly. I can’t look at your playlist until we sign up again. I hope you are enjoying fabulous new artists and wonderous old artifacts.

Excellent post… Made me think a lot. I am inclined to agree with you, and at the same time selfconsciously deny that I am prone to doing the exact thing you speak of…
I think of the playlist posts, and really any posting of music commentary as just a way of sharing the joy derived from finding things that you yourself deem to be cool, sometimes we do it by blathering on about the groups / artists that we are currently obsessed with, but that should not be seen as trying to show that your cool stick is necessarily bigger than anyone elses. Perhaps you just want to show that you have a “cool stick” and are looking for others to validate it, not to beat anyone with it (ok, I admit I am now overly proud of the “cool stick” metaphor, so I will abandon it). I tend to go on about the groups and songs that I listen to all the time. for every new (to me) album I listen to, I probably listen to the white stripes and the be good tanyas twice. Also, as the Rockschool blog shows, sometimes lists can be used as interesting little exercises (the cowbell list) or to inform and educate on topics that the poster has a particular knowledge of…
Not-so-reluctant confession time… I certainly used to keep a couple of punk band names in my pocket, to pull out in case I felt threatened by someone else’s overt coolness attack, but no longer feel inclined to do so, and welcome hearing what others think is cool (now I usually try to write down what they suggest, and talk about the variety of music that I am deeply affected by instead of just what I think has the highest cool factor).
For the record, they were “7 seconds” and “doggystyle” (17 years ago).

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