One of the first times I hung out with my friend Kelley was at a They Might Be Giants concert at Mister Small’s Theater. It’s one of those converted church venues with a stage at the alter and a bar stuffed uncomfortably in a hard to reach corner.
No matter where you go, there’s music playing over the speakers before a show. It’s always such a random selection of songs, unconnected to the show you’re about to hear, that I’m wondering who picks that music? Is it just a generic loop from the venue, or do bands travel with playlists of their preferred pre-show music? Usually I ignore it, but just before the opening act came on, something really cool played over the speakers. Something I’d never heard.
Erin, Kelley and I did what normal people who forget the technology sitting in their pockets do: wonder who the heck this is and if they’ll ever be able to find this little nugget of awesome again. Then Erin (ever rational, ever on-the-ball Erin) said, “Why don’t you just use Shazam?”
If you haven’t used Shazam and you have a smartphone capable of running it, go get it right now. Well, ok, not right this second, but right after you finish reading this, because if you go running off you’ll give me a complex and I’ve got enough of those. Shazam is this simple app; you open up, press a button, and hold the phone near a speaker playing music (or, in the case of being at a concert, straight up in the air so you look like a serious nerd) for about 30 seconds. The app listens to the song, runs it against some kind of music database using TechnoMagic, and tells you exactly what song is playing. Seriously, it just figures it out, and it’s almost always able to do it, even in a noisy room.
What Shazam told me was that we were listening to “Sleepyhead” by Passion Pit. Thanks to that TechnoMagic, you get to hear that song, too. Enjoy.