Improving Playlists

Apple Music has an excellent collection of curated playlists. It’s a shame they are so hard to find. There is no single place to browse/search/sort all of them.  Of course you can use search, but then you at least have to know what you should be looking for.

For example, let’s look for music from the 90s. Using search, I found 15 playlists from Apple Music. They are all titled “90s [x] Essentials”:
1. Hits,
2. Rock,
3. Dance Party,
4. Love Songs,
5. Alternative Essentials,
6. Workout, Country,
7. Club,
8. Hard Rock,
9. Pagode, (ugh)
10. Hip Hop,
11. Movie,
12. Video Hits,
13. Metal,
14. Christian,
15. Singer-Songwriter
Now lets look for 1995 playlists from Apple. I found 8:
1. Pop Hits,
2. Rock Hits,
3. Alternative Hits,
4. Hip-Hop/R&B Hits,
5. Country Hits,
6. R&B Gems,
7. French Hits,
8. K-Pop Hits.

23 playlists in a quick search. How many of those playlists are there in total? It is even hard to find how far they go back in time. Searching, the earliest Rock Hits I found was from 1965…

And then there are the Artists based playlists, genre based, mood based and so forth. But we are only shown glimpses of the choices in the Browse and For You tabs.

Another thing that would be neat: “bookmarking”. Suppose I want to list the entire list of Hard Rock Essentials, with 100 songs. That’s 4h 33 minutes of music. It will take a few sessions to work through it in its entirety, and during this period I will probably switch between devices (iPhone, old iPhone in the car, home Mac, work mac etc.) There should be a way to return to the specific point in a playlist where I previously stopped listening. Otherwise I will *never* be able to realistically hear the 100 songs.

Then there are several excellent “creative” playlists, such as “Midnight City”, ALT CTRL”, “Beneath the Stars” and so forth. They usually have excellent choices and are regularly “refreshed” by Editors. They even have a warning! “So, if you like something, add it to your library”! OMG! Why not keep an archive of previously featured music in the playlist? I would love to browse it.

I guess there must be good reasons for some of the limitations, but overall these kind of improvements seem so basic that I wonder they haven’t been updated a long time ago.

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