Calling all college students seeking a new platform for all of their music-loving needs.

Are you looking for something that plays music that cater to your needs? If Spotify or Pandora aren’t doing it for you, here are some lesser-known music streaming services to help you take your love of music to the next level.

Related: Hack Your Studying with Music

Slacker Radio

Slackers music service is more like Pandora than Spotify. Free users have the option to listen to and create customized stations, but are limited to only a few skips per station. Those looking for more can go commercial-free and unlock unlimited skips for $4/month, while the ability to play songs on-demand, create single-artist stations, make personal playlists, and listen offline on a mobile device will set you back $9/month.

The service offers apps on all major mobile platforms, including iPhone, Android, and Windows Phone.


For $5 a month, you can listen to millions of songs in your browser or on your desktop courtesy of Rdio. What is five dollars to you? A sandwich — maybe a Starbucks drink?

Spend $5 and have access to all kinds of music, for all of your listening needs, on a college student’s budget. It’s that easy. You can find playlists that you get addicted to, and they’ll leave you wanting more. You can sync your music to your phone or your tablet in a few easy steps. You get to choose what you listen to: oldies, today’s hit, chill music for when you’re doing your homework, and even music that will get you pumped up to workout.


Grooveshark is easily the most controversial music app since Napster. Its catalog was built on users (and supposedly employees) uploading music to the service. But despite its pirate roots, the service provides a great interface and free access to everyone — even unregistered users. Creating an account, however, gives you unlimited access to playlists without skips.

But if you want an ad-free or mobile experience, you’ll need to upgrade to the $9/month “Anywhere” service.


When you go to the 8tracks website, they ask you to type in (or select) a genre, mood, or activity. Once you do that, they ask you to select from another list that includes things like “morning”, “party”, or “hip hop.” And then a variety of playlists appear for you to choose from. Once you choose one, you’re done. Put that window in the background of your computer; minimize it and move on with doing what you’re doing.

For example, I wanted to listen to some smooth music while I do homework. I selected “good vibes” from the first category and “chill” from the second. I then selected a playlist titled “The Vibes You Need.” From there, I proceeded to get my homework done.

Related: How to Make the Perfect Party Playlist


Image: Nick Southall