The music player for music lovers
Forget everything you know about music players. Music is an experience, and Roon reconnects you with it.
In the transition from physical to digital media, something has been lost. We have more convenience than ever, but no feeling of excitement or engagement.
Roon looks at your music and finds photos, bios, reviews, lyrics, and concert dates, and makes connections between artists, composers, performers, conductors, and producers.
What you get is a searchable, surfable magazine about your music.
Roon understands your content
Music lovers have content from many sources, often acquired over years of collecting. Roon identifies your music, then enhances it with the latest metadata.
Before I say anything else, let me begin with an emphatic admission that I love what Roon has done so far, there is nothing else out there like it, Roon folk are immensely talented and a pleasure to deal with and I’m a very happy user. It’s also great to see the strides Roon has made building a state of the art player and establishing an ever increasing Roon Ready partner network comprised of notable industry participants. Its significance to Roon is obvious.
But, I could be happier…music is indeed an experience…
If Roon seeks to reconnect me with that experience and create excitement and engagement through a searchable, surfable magazine about my music, it’s time for the music and those that create it to enjoy some attention. As a music lover, I have an insatiable appetite for information about the artists and albums I enjoy. I want to know what went into making an album, where it was made, who influenced it, I want to know the significance of a song to the artist, I want to know … but I can’t, not via Roon, unless it’s in my liner notes.
Some features that will (for me) start to deliver on the purpose:
- add additional metadata sources for information about artists, albums and songs. Leverage available online data sources where not already done and automate the process where possible. Songfacts, Wikipedia etc. come to mind
- allow me to add lyrics, biographies, album reviews, song reviews/ notes … please find a way, even if it means importing data from user generated text files or clipboard … and please give it some priority
- make all of the above searchable
- respect the discsubtitle tag so box sets comprised of multiple albums don’t become an amorphous mass
- Improve radio capability and give me some control over how it selects tracks. Why should it be a black box and why should I listen to the same artist(s) over and over
- when browsing or playing an album show me a list of similar albums in my collection
- When playing a song give me some pertinent information about it when available e.g. if playing Derek and the Dominos’ version of Little Wing, give me the option of seeing the Lyrics and info about the song e.g.:
Eric Clapton adaptation
English guitarist and singer Eric Clapton has performed “Little Wing” throughout his career, beginning in 1970 with Derek and the Dominos. He explained in an interview:
I found that his lyricism when he was writing ballads, like “Wind Cries Mary” or “Little Wing,” was so different, in a way, that it was powerfully attractive to me. [It was] much more structured than some of his other things, and more melodic, too. [“Little Wing”] stands up so well that anyone could do it.
Derek and the Dominos performed the song in London at the Marquee Club ten days after their live debut at the Lyceum on June 14, 1970. With Duane Allman on second guitar, the group recorded “Little Wing” at Criteria Studios in Miami, during the sessions for Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs shortly before Hendrix’s death on September 18, 1970.  Clapton biographer Michael Schumacher notes, “Clapton had intended it as a tribute to a living legend, but now that Hendrix was gone, the song hit on a different emotional level.”
Atco Records issued the song on a single as the B-side to “Bell Bottom Blues” and included it on Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs. Critics’ comments on Derek and the Dominos’ rendition range from “exquisitely arranged” (Rolling Stone) to “bombastic”(Legends of Rock Guitar). The group performed the song during their tour and a recording from the Fillmore East in New York City on October 23, 1970, was released on the Live at the Fillmore album in 1994.
After the break up of Derek and the Dominos, Clapton continued to perform “Little Wing”. Live recordings appear on Eric Clapton’s Rainbow Concert (1973), Crossroads 2: Live in the Seventies (1974, released 1996), Eric Clapton & Friends in Concert (DVD with Sheryl Crow 1999), Live in San Diego (2007, released 2016), Live from Madison Square Garden (with Steve Winwood 2008, released 2009).
Adding features such as those listed above would in my view make a huge contribution to reconnecting me to the music and creating an engrossing and immersive experience. What say others?