Spotify Just Took Listening to a New Level

Abigail Carsner, Staff Writer

In late February of this year, Spotify released a new feature for users. It offers users an Artificial Intelligence (AI) guide to choose their music for them. Personalized to the user’s taste, the feature also puts in other artists to introduce the user to new music. It is called “DJ.”

Available to US and Canadian premium users, “DJ” is an AI guide tailored to your music taste and chooses what to play for you. Spotify has done stuff like this before such as “Wrapped,” “Personalized Mixes,” and “Discover Weekly,” but never has the company created a personalized AI “DJ.” 

“DJ” plays music, but also has commentary between some of the tracks. It changes the genre and mood of every couple of songs, making your listening experience diverse. The music is a mix of the latest songs and some of your favorites. Sometimes “DJ” resurfaces songs that you may have not listened to for years. The AI collects your feedback and delivers songs based on that feedback. 

If you don’t like the mood, then you can click the DJ button, and “DJ” will change the mood. The more you click the button, the more feedback “DJ” gets about what you like and what you don’t like.

Spotify uses its OpenAi technology, like what it’s used for Wrapped and Mixes. With the help of Spotify’s editors, who know facts about artists, genres, and music, use OpenAI tech to create an algorithm that is just for you. Spotify “DJ” takes music from today, years ago, and music you may listen to in the future and creates an algorithm that an AI chooses from.   

Spotify uses an AI voice to create the voice of “DJ.” The company partnered with Xavier “X” Jernigan, known as one of the hosts on Spotify’s first-morning show, “The Get Up.” Spotify believes his personality and voice “resonates” with listeners. His voice is the first model of the “DJ” voice, as Spotify will continue to create and innovate more voices in the future.  

Like Pandora, Spotify’s “DJ” uses an algorithm to choose your music, but unlike Pandora and other online music stations, “DJ” introduces you to new music and reconnects you to artists you used to listen to years ago. Another difference is that every couple of songs, the commentary comes back on and indicates it is changing genres, causing you to have a little taste of old, new, and current music that you may like. 

There are some drawbacks for “DJ” though. It only has a couple of lines for its commentary, which might be boring to some listeners. When you set up “DJ,” it seems to play the music that users can’t even relate to, which is due to its algorithm trying to determine your favorite music. 

Some users on social media, like TikTok, found it cool for a bit, but then they got bored with it. Some feel that Spotify should add some variety to “DJ’s” commentary, which would entertain listeners, maybe even add some funny voice lines. This might make the voice and personality more realistic rather than feeling like a robot. 

An example of “DJ’s” commentary is, “All right, Let’s switch it up. I got Deftones and a lot of other artists like that.” 

Another one is, “Next I got some Indie music from way back in the day. A lot of 90s stuff here. First up, The Sundays.”

You can find Spotify’s new feature by going to the home screen, clicking on the music button near the top of the screen, and clicking the DJ card. 

Though it has its issues, “DJ” is only in beta mode and will continue to improve problems and add more features to it in the future.