I know I'm a late-comer here. I've used free Pandora for years and trained a whole mess of awesome sauce genre stations that know exactly what I want to hear (queue the Styx song, "Too Much Time On My Hands
My big complaint with Pandora is that no matter how much I customize one of my stations (thumbs upping or downing track after track to teach it what I wanted to hear), those customizations only apply to me, and anyone who may tune in would still hear an Avenge Sevenfold on my Total Heaviostiy station. Not that anybody, in the 5 years I'v been using Pandora, has ever listened to one of my twenty-odd stations. Still, the possibility of a listen remains. And that irks me.
For a while I was using Grooveshark to listen to whole albums I didn't have, but my Grooveshark enthusiasm tapered off after I realized songs would disappear, after I'd been careful to put them in album order and such.
In August 2011 I tuned in to Turntable.FM, which effectively took over my life, in an enjoyable, mildly disturbing way. Then I found Spotify, which is a whole lot cooler for listening to whole albums than Grooveshark. Still, Turntable.FM eclipses my Spotify usage (and a lot of other stuff).
Last nite I finally got bored enough to try Last.FM here, and I'm still not sure if it's anything that will replace Pandora for me when I want to listen to the radio on Dr. Internet. Last.FM highlights have been:
Project Filth 2000 was already listed as something that had been "scrobbled" (insert old man confusion here), and I got to write a public bio for PF2K.
I've been listening to various stations on Last.FM today, and have been overall pleased with its selections, but weirded out that I don't have personal stations to which I can add and edit bands, and change the name of, a la Pandora. Maybe I do and just haven't found out how to do that? The sync-up with my iTunes is cool, but that's nothing that Spotify didn't already do.
Last.fm has some neat little add-ons, a "poster" of my fave band logos, a list of what I listen to most, this goofy journal, but I'm not as immediately taken with it as I was (and still am) with Turntable, or as I was with Spotify when I first started using it.
Maybe once last.fm allows me to upload Project Filth, I'll be completely converted to last.fm over Pandora. One thing I keep thinking is, "well, last.fm seems to have more of a community than Pandora." I don't understand why I want that -- I hate my IRL community, why do I want to know a bunch of strangers on the internet?" Clearly, if they have similar taste in music as my own, I want to know them more than my next door neighbor, who bumps Hot Chelle Rae at 2:30 AM every Saturday night.
Now I gotta go make sure I'm still scrobbling.Last.fm vs Pandora