Songza Died Sunday Night. It Was a Slice.

For a couple of years, Songza was the most popular of all the streaming music services available in Canada. Some 3 million Canadians turned to the service each month. In a country late to the streaming game, these were amazing numbers. In fact, the Canadian user base was about the same size as the American one–and there are ten times fewer people here.

Back in 2014, I was their Chief Curator for Canada, managing a staff of people obsessed with creating just the right music mixes for just the right moments. We had a blast.

But then in July 2014, we were sold that Songza had been purchased by Google. Eventually, everyone in the Canadian office was thanked for their service and shown the door. Hey, such is the nature of business. Stuff happens.

Google maintained Songza as a distinct and separate service on the public-facing side, although its best bits were being digested into a revamped Google Play Music. Late last year, the new GPM was unveiled. At the same time, we were told that Songza was going to be unplugged. That day has finally come. Songza died Sunday night. The website is dark and the app has stopped working.

This email arrived to users this past weekend:

In a nutshell, we built Songza to make life better by playing you music tailored to every moment of every day.

In July 2014, Songza was acquired by Google (#ConsciousCoupling), and in them we found a company who shares our excitement for IRL soundtracking. Over the past year and a half, we’ve worked hard to bring all of the features that you love from Songza to Google Play Music, including the Concierge and our massive library of hand-curated playlists — from Walking On Sunshine to Hillbilly Bodybuilding, no moment shall go un-soundtracked.

Thanks to Google Play Music (and our kick-ass team, which continues to grow faster than a Twista verse), we’ve been able to bring Songza’s Concierge experience to a new audience of music fans in the United States, Great Britain, Canada, Ireland, Brazil, Japan, Germany, France, Norway, Sweden, Australia, New Zealand, Austria, Mexico, and Russia (*wipes brow*) — with even more countries coming soon.

It’s now time for us to focus on building a single, cohesive product. So as of January 31, 2016, Songza will become Google Play Music, and you will no longer be able to access Songza.com or the Songza mobile apps. HEY! There’s no crying! Are you crying? There’s no crying in music streaming! Moving to Google Play Music is free, and your favorite playlists can come with you! Pinky swear. Soon, when you visit Songza, you’ll be greeted with a prompt that will let you bring all of your Songza listening history and favorite playlists over to Google Play Music — so please make sure to do that! Using all of Songza’s features in Google Play Music is 100% free and doesn’t require a credit card, you just need to accept our new Terms of Service and Google’s Privacy Policy (if you haven’t already).

Thank you SO much for being a part of the Songza community over all of these years. We’re really proud of the work that we’ve done on Google Play Music and we truly hope you’ll join us there. Hugs and headphones,

-Elias, Elliott, Eric, Peter and the whole Songza team

P.S. We made you a kinda awkward video.

I’ve been playing with Google Play Music and every day I notice a lot of the old Songza playlists being added back in. The familiar Concierge functionality is there, too. It’s very much like Songza except…Google-y. I wonder how many Songza users will make the transition? If they get close to 50%, Google would be thrilled.

Poory Sharky. I hope he goes to a good home.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

14 thoughts on “Songza Died Sunday Night. It Was a Slice.

  • February 1, 2016 at 10:15 am
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    I switched from Songza (which was my favourite streaming service) to Google Play a few weeks ago when they announced the change was inevitable and resistance was futile.

    My saved playlists did get transitioned to me, but overall the Play app is not as intuitive to use…. I hope they fix that. While there is some additional functions, I prefer ease of use over fancyness.

    And I expect to start seeing ads on my websites related to my saved playlists any day now.

    Reply
  • February 1, 2016 at 12:11 pm
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    Songza is still working for me too! Long live Zombie Songza!

    Reply
  • February 2, 2016 at 10:20 am
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    I don’t want to sign up for a Google account as I don’t trust them and I also don’t want to see all the ads that are sure to follow me. I’ll be looking for an alternative to Songza…

    Reply
  • February 2, 2016 at 8:12 pm
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    Honestly disappointed with songza’s transition to google play. I have much preferred it over Pandora or Spotify just because of how it conveniently offered music to you. RIP Songza :,-(

    Reply
  • February 2, 2016 at 10:26 pm
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    Its still working for me. Oddly

    Reply
    • February 3, 2016 at 7:31 am
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      Must be some kind of zombie transition phase. It’s just a matter of time.

      Reply
  • February 3, 2016 at 10:59 am
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    Not working via Sonos. I use this regularly or at least I use to, guess it’s time to find an alternative. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

    Reply
    • February 5, 2016 at 10:49 pm
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      A follow-up to my previous comment. It was confirmed by Sonos support… no playlist using Sonos for the time being unless you’re a paid subscriber to the Google Play Music service. They say this is something being worked on and should be available in the Free version sometime in the near future.

      There is a workaround if you’re an Android user. You can Cast to your Sonos system using the Play Music App but again this will only work under Android and not IOS.

      Reply
  • February 3, 2016 at 11:56 am
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    LOVE Songza. By far my favorite streaming service. Just transitioned because I had to. And I must say, the experience is just not the same. Really loved the look and feel of Songza. It was, in my opinion, stylistically better, easier to navigate… it was just far superior. I much prefer Songza’s/GPM’s playlists to anything else I’ve found. But this is making me reach for Pandora again, sigh. R.I.P. 🙁

    Reply
  • February 4, 2016 at 12:44 pm
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    We are so angry about this. Yesterday we couldn’t reach our favorite playlist we use to listen on Songza. GPM is not FREE. On the main page it’s write $7,99 fees. We don’t have the option to put a timer anymore. It sucks!

    Reply
  • February 5, 2016 at 4:21 pm
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    A lot of my favorite playlists weren’t transitioned, the windows app is gone, and gpm didn’t seem to work at all until I installed chrome. Id gladly pay $50/mo for old songza…

    Reply
  • February 8, 2016 at 6:12 am
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    Well i won’t be one of the wished for50% to switch over to GPM. Their version of music is like clear channel on the radio. No room for anything not highly commercialized coupled with the fact that many playlists are no where tip be found and I’m not paying for something that was free just to put more money into the pockets of a bunch of misogynistic brogrammers

    Reply

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