Hometown: Evanston, Wyoming Top Genres: Contemporary Country & Modern Country Rock Favorite Artist: Eric Church Favorite Hobby: Fishing & Long-boarding
How did you get into curating playlists?
I got into curating playlists in 2016 when I wanted to listen to music that I loved. Over time, the playlist that I created surprisingly gained traction with other Spotify users. The growth of my playlist allowed me to devote more time to my new hobby, curating playlists within the country genre. When I joined Playlist Push, I made it my mission to help new artists with exposure on my playlist with over 65,000 followers. I hope to help those artists make their dreams a reality.
What’s the story behind your greatest playlist?
I created Today’s Country 2019 shortly after I first joined Spotify in the summer of 2016. I was between my sophomore and junior year at college and had recently moved back home for my summer job. Returning home, I found the place to be dull and I was counting down the days until I could return back to school. To help pass the time, I created a playlist that was originally full of the latest upbeat country songs that were on the radio. I curated the playlist so certain tempos and messages from songs would be in lined up together. Over the course of three years, the playlist became popular among tens of thousands of people. Since then, I have stayed active with the playlist hoping that it brings joy to the Spotify community.
Primary method for discovering new music?
My primary method for discovering new music involves a mixture of things. The first thing that I do to discover new music is to check and see what came out on Friday. I will listen to the newest albums/singles and take notes on what I think would be a great addition to the playlist. The second method that I use to discover new music is talking to friends and listening to their recommendations. Finally, I search the internet to see what music is currently trending. This involves checking country music charts and going to media sources such as The Boot and Taste of Country.
What makes an artist or song standout?
In my opinion, an artist with high quality vocals and a strong personality stands out from the rest of the pack. There are a number of factors that make a country song unique. For example, I enjoy songs that have interesting narratives/messages, that are creatively written in ways that connect with a variety of audiences.
How do you decide playlist order and length?
Playlist order is determined by a random pre-shuffle that I believe sounds good. The number of songs on the playlist is determined by what I think is a good variety. I try to curate the playlist so the audience will not hear the same song twice within a certain time period. In my opinion, I believe that 200 to 275 songs are a good window.
What tips do you have for growing playlists?
Three tips that I have for helping a new curator grow their playlist on Spotify is through goal setting, diligence, and time management.
1.) Goal Setting: When curating playlists, it is important to set achievable goals. This does not mean grow followers, but rather focus on what you want listeners to get out of your playlist? For example, do you want your playlist to be for parties or relaxation? Do you want your playlist to be focused on a certain theme, genre, and/or time period? Clearly, setting these small achievable goals will help keep the curator stay on path, organized, and make decisions regarding what songs to add/remove to the playlist. In return, this will help a playlist grow and keep listeners active since they know what they will be getting out of the playlist.
2.) Diligence: The success of a having a playlist with over 65,000 followers did not happen overnight. It took me three years of dedication and engagement within the country genre. For example, I researched popular songs/artists, analyze music trends within the country genre. I was constantly adding, removing, and shuffling songs on the playlist. This keeps listeners interested in the playlist because it is up-to-date and never goes stale.
3.) Time Management: It is important for a curator to budget time out of their busy schedule to work on their playlist. As noted above, a good playlist has a diligent curator behind it, that allocates time to do small things behind the scenes. Making a monthly schedule with a set time to update the playlist is key to success in retaining and gaining new followers.
How has Playlist Push made a difference in your life?
Playlist Push has given me a mission to discover the next big names in country music. Playlist Push has allowed me to share my passion for music with others across the Spotify community in and outside of Wyoming.
Artists: want to send your music to hundreds of curators like Troy? Apply for a campaign here.
Curators: do you manage a great playlist? Apply to become a curator here.