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Five Star Curators – Jimmy Bruening

Jimmy has helped 73 of our artists reach over 400,000 new listeners!

Hometown: Hamburg, Germany
Top Genres: Neo-classical & Compositional Ambient
Favorite Artist: Nathan Goshen
Favorite Hobby: Reading

How did you get into curating playlists?

I think it all started when I was a baby and my mother played classical music to get me to sleep. Later I took piano lessons and was a member of the children’s choir of the Hamburg State Opera. Music, especially classical music, has always been my companion and now creating and curating playlists is the perfect way for me to recreate and escape everyday life.

What’s the story behind your greatest playlist?

A few years ago I developed an incredible obsession with ballet and contemporary dance. All I could think about was dancing to every song I listened to. I started choreographing in my mind. I needed a place for all the songs that inspired me the most, so I created “Ballet/Contemporary Dance/Modern Dance”.

Back then I really wanted to go to ballet classes, but unfortunately … life happened. Nevertheless, I still dream of pirouettes and grand jetés and one day I will dance to all of these songs myself.

Primary method for discovering new music?

TV shows, movies, documentaries and other videos about dance are always a great way to find new songs for my playlists, and then, when I discovered some songs I really like, I always use Spotify’s radio feature – I’m kind of addicted to it. There are so many songs and artists I probably wouldn’t have found without it.

What makes an artist or song standout?

It’s always about what a song makes me feel. Some artists really know how to tell a story through their music, revealing a lot about their personalities and experiences. Sometimes I listen to songs and feel understood, as if there was a connection between them and me. There were songs that immediately brought tears to my eyes and these are the songs that stand out the most to me.

How do you decide playlist order and length?

Depends on the playlist. Some of my playlists are made to be played in the background.

I just kept adding more and more tracks to these playlists and never thought about a specific order. When it comes to my other playlists, I don’t have a set method of organizing them, either. I think a length of 60 tracks would be perfect, but it’s kind of impossible for me to stick to that “rule”. My ballet playlist is always at a length from 80 to 90 songs, which is mainly because deleting songs from my playlists feels like a break-up to me. Deciding the order is somehow easier: The first three songs are my absolute favorite songs of that playlist, then it goes from newest to oldest… Sometimes I feel like randomly changing the order of my playlists and then really have to pull myself together so I don’t do nonsense.

What tips do you have for growing playlists?

I’d say the most important thing is to keep your playlist fresh. As far as I know other curators use social media to promote their playlists and it’s working well for them. I’ve always been to shy to do that and don’t want to bother anyone, but if I didn’t feel that way, I would definitely give it a try.

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Curators: do you manage a great playlist? Apply to become a curator here.