Subtitles section Play video Print subtitles Hum? Where are we? Oh, we're on the terrace right now at Spotify, jamming out to some music. Correct. This is me in my natural habitat, vibing to music. It's not uncommon to see other people in this office doing this same exact thing. The days of buying CDs and creating mixes to your car have been replaced. With music subscriptions. I listen to Spotify. Spotify. I like the Spotify playlist. To me the most intriguing addition to the world of digital music is the curated playlist. Ones that professional make to appease various audiences. All major stream services have playlist editors of some sort. My colleague Reggie Ugwu wrote a sick piece about them last year. A series of songs can speak to a person's mood, culture, community, and if done right, they can attract a lot of followers. So I decided to head to the Spotify headquarters, in New York. Talk to an editor, someone who professionally makes playlist for a massive audience. Alright, now we'll check it out. Alright, so we're inside the Spotify headquarters. Nice to meet you. My name is Athena, I'm an editor here at Spotify. Let me show you around. - This is kitchen two. - How many kitchens do you have? A lot of my day revolves around listening to music. My particular focus is around emerging music, new artist, trying to help them grow and find spots for them, to expand the audience. My hope is that they don't really recognize more than two or three names at most, so the artist change every week, and a lot of them are unsigned. And I'll listen to a thousand songs every week, so we can make this playlist and has over five hundred thousands followers in it, all emerging artists. The people that you find, like is there a way that they actually make money from being put on Spotify? Many artists tell me that they quit their day job, they've got signed because A&R heard them on Spotify. I'd wanna help artists make a living out of their music and find new fans, and that's like the most fulfilling thing. So how do you get this job? I've been a musician like my whole life. I was classically trained violinist. In college, I moved into this kind of known for being a queer friendly house. That's kind of where I got my first experience really sharing music with others. And after I graduated there, I realized that I want to do that like on a bigger scale. Athena's job is like a dream, she just find the spot in the office, sits there and listens to music. So that's exactly what we did. We listened to new music, we talked about old music. Hearing the music for the first time in like a long time, is like such a cool feeling. "Damn, what's that song?" and then you're hearing it, you'll like, "Got it!" Never letting the shit go again! We talked about Timberland, naturally. Shout out Timberland. How do you personally find music? Every way possible. Going to shows, like people email me all the time, artist, management. Do people still send CDs? They love sending me vinyls so, I mean, I love vinyl. You know that cool thing that shows related artists from the artist you are currently listening to, well, that has a lot to do with human and technology working together. We have technology that helps us crawl the web and read how people are talking about certain artisan groups and that helps us figure out like what's related. I'm gonna listen to my music everybody alright. When you're creating a playlist, does it matter what order it goes in? Completely. Really? Yeah, we're obsessive about that. People are gonna listen to on shuffle, but like transitions as an editor are very important, everything has to flow and be a mood together. So Athena actually spearheaded this year's LGBTQ playlist for Pride, I mean music always play a big part in culture identity, but it's really cool to see it integrated into playlist. What I really wanna to do was empower the LGBTQ community, to tell their story in their own voices, and so this year what we did was, in addition to this Spotify curated Pride playlist, we went out to a number of artists, activists and influencers and other kinds of people, and we asked them to curate us a playlist. That was really important to me to allow as many different voices as possible. So making playlists is fun. I think we knew that. But on a mass scale I think it needs to speak to the audiences' current state of mind and sometimes how do I identify. There's a whole lot of different playlists representing different people. We're always trying to make more playlists that speaks to different audiences. I know because of my own unique experience that it's really important that we make sure that all voices are heard.