Music streaming service Spotify today announced the launch of Playlist Takeover, a new series of original recordings in which stars recommend music. For the first installment, Spotify has brought in British supermodel Jourdan Dunn, who has selected hip-hop tracks for a playlist entitled Signed XOXO. Woven between the songs in the playlists are a handful of 10-second tracks from Dunn about individual songs.
“There’s no one I trust more to give Signed XOXO a little of that supermodel swagger like Jourdan has,” Tuma Basa, Spotify’s head of hip-hop, is quoted as saying in a blog post. “At Spotify we think music curation is an art form and we’re excited to see music mavens like Jourdan get in on the fun and share the music they love.”
This move is interesting because it’s an example of Spotify relying directly on real people — celebrities, but still individual people — to guide and spruce up the listening experience. On Apple Music, perhaps Spotify’s most direct competitor, celebrity DJs are at the helm of Beats 1 radio stations, and the results can be addictive. Often the DJs debut new music exclusively.
Spotify’s strategy in music streaming has been more about smart automated recommendation, whether through radio stations that are instantly created for individual songs or through the well-received Discover Weekly, Release Radar, and Daily Mix playlists. That said, Spotify does look to music experts to maintain some playlists, and its recently launched Fresh Finds and Party playlists also depend on some human input.
And Spotify has also looked to talent for its originally produced Clarify and mobile-only Trading Playlists series.