Songza by Songza Media, Inc. icon

Songza (Free) by Songza Media, Inc. is an awesome music streaming and discovery app. Songza brings you music based on Playlists. There are hundreds of playlists, with each one having dozens or hundreds of songs. More playlists are being added all the time. Choose what sort of music you’d like to hear, sorted by Genres, Activities, Moods, Decades, Culture, or Record-store Clerk. You can also search for a particular artist or a particular sort of playlist.

Songza by Songza Media, Inc. screenshot

Tap “Genres” to choose from a variety of genres, from Bluegrass and Disco to Emo/Pop-Punk, Showtunes, and Underground & Alternative Rap. Or, choose a playlist based on “Activites”. Find playlists to go with such activities as Barbecuing, Cardio Workout, Coming Down After A Party, Hanging Out In The Man Cave, Reading in a Coffee Shop, and tons more. Or, choose your playlist by “Mood” — feeling Angsty, Earthy, Hypnotic, Rowdy, Spacey, or Sprightly? There are a bunch of playlists for that. You could also choose your playlist by “Decades” – more specific than just years, you can pick from ‘00s Electronic, ‘00s Indie, ‘00s Rap and R&B and many more. Want to choose your playlist by “Culture”? You have such options as Award Shows, Bollywood, MTV, One-hit Wonders, Rolling Stone Magazine, and more. The coolest among us should check out “Record-store Clerk” for interesting playlist categories such as Blogged, Hyped, & Trending, Country Music That Ain’t Slick, Dance Music That’s Not Assaultive, New Music For Baby Boomers, This Will Piss Off Your Parents, Weird, Difficult, & Avant-garde, When You’re Over Being A Music Snob, and World Music You Can’t Play At A Cocktail Party. What I’ve listed here is just a small sampling of playlist categories.

Search by artist, and you’ll find a playlist that includes that artist along with others that you’ll probably like. Find a playlist you like? Save it, for easy access later.

There is also a “People” button, where you can view an “Activity Feed” of people you follow. This isn’t really my thing, so I didn’t explore it extensively, but it is a nice feature if you like to mix your music with your social networking. Share your favorites via Facebook, Twitter, or email. Follow other Songza users, and even create and contribute your own playlists.

Some of the reviewers on iTunes report crashing after a handful of songs, but I’ve been listening to Songza all morning, dozens of songs so far, and, well, I had just written here that I have not experienced any crashing, but then I had to erase it because it did crash on me as I was tapping around, after using the app for about an hour or so. Eh, it happens. I was able to open it right back up, though it didn’t go back to the song I was listening to. Considering it’s a free app and a free service, I can’t complain. Like my former go-to app, Pandora, you can “thumbs up” or “thumbs down” any particular song, so that the app learns your tastes. Unlike Pandora, there are no annoying spoken ads (just a small banner ad on a couple of screens) and if not unlimited skips, I haven’t found the limit yet. There is no listening limit. Since I have an unlimited data plan, I’m not sure what the implications are for data usage with this app, but it is something you’ll want to keep track of. And yes, you can multi-task, so go ahead and check your email, play your games, whatever, and Songza will continue playing your music in the background.

The bottom line is, just download this app on your iDevice or even your Android phone. You’ve got nothing to lose, and you may just find some fantastic new music and rediscover some old favorites.