4 Million Forgotten Songs Might Finally Find Ears

Feb 7, 2014
Originally published on February 7, 2014 6:04 pm
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AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And I'm Melissa Block. According to data released by the music streaming service Spotify, 20 percent of the songs in its catalog have never been listened to. That's about 4 million tracks that have gone unheard on Spotify.

CORNISH: Undiscovered.

BLOCK: And some have simply been forgotten.

CORNISH: That is, until now. Enter Forgotify.com.

NATE GAGNON: Forgotify takes the basically 4 million songs that are on Spotify that have never been played once, and plays them.

CORNISH: That's Nate Gagnon, one of the website's co-founders.

GAGNON: It's kind of like a - what it seems to be is a musical tour through foreign countries and previous decades, mostly. But there's some really interesting, cool stuff on there.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG MONTAGE)

RELAYER: (Singing) Why don't you see things my way...

DIMITER GEORGIEV: (Playing flute)

JOSELITO: (Singing in foreign language)

DUKE ELLINGTON: (Leading jazz orchestra)

HANK SNOW: (Singing) I'm always blue, feeling so blue...

BLOCK: Well, perhaps not so blue now. Those songs, "Tuck Away My Lonesome Blues," by country singer Hank Snow...

CORNISH: "Three Dances," by Duke Ellington....

BLOCK: "Viento, Viento," by Spanish singer Joselito...

CORNISH: Mozart's "Quartet in D Major," by Bulgarian musician Dimiter Georgiev...

BLOCK: And "Three Years Long," by the band Relayer.

CORNISH: Here's the thing about Forgotify. Once you listen to a song, forget it. Again, co-founder Nate Gagnon.

GAGNON: On the site, what we do is if it's played, then it gets flagged, and we basically refresh it every day. And refreshing it then gets rid of that one song in there.

BLOCK: One - or rather, one play - may be the loneliest number, but it sure beats zero. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.