Pulselocker is a landmark new attempt to change the way digital DJs play, listen to and buy music. It's a streaming and subscription service for DJs, that promises time-saving music discovery features, the ability to "borrow" tunes (that you can actually DJ with in front of your crowds!), and finally of course the chance to buy the tunes you really love.
It's just been announced, and already has over a million tunes in its catalogue, with five million promised by the end of the year. And best of all, we've managed to snag a free beta invite for every single Digital DJ Tips customer and subscriber. Read on for more about the service and how to secure your free invite to try it...
What is Pulselocker?
Pulselocker is an app you download onto your computer which lets you browse and listen to the company's already huge catalogue of digital music for DJs. The tunes are all full-length and high quality - so no two-minute excerpts or narrow bandwidth music files here.
The app has innovative features designed to let you plough through the week's new music fast. These include "needle drop", which lets you skim through a tune just like you would at a listening post in a record shop.
The service is very social, a little like SoundCloud, so you can follow labels, artists and so on to keep up with their output. The recommendation engine uses this input from all the service's members to let the most popular music bubble to the top - something anyone who'se used last.fm, for instance, will be familiar with, and again which is designed to help you get to the good stuff fast.
And here's the really clever bit - you can add tunes you're interested in to your own personal "locker". But unlike a wish list that just exists on a store's web server, your locker actually exists on your computer. The folder containing these tunes is then visible right there in your DJ software (Traktor, Serato ITCH, Serato Scratch Live, MixVibes Cross DJ - support for other programs coming soon). That means you can actually DJ with tunes you've not bought yet!
They're high-quality 320kbps MP3/AAC files, so are indistinguishable from bought files (WAV format coming soon, by the way). You don't need an internet connection to DJ with music in your "locker", and music stays right there on your computer as long as you leave it there. The thinking is that once you've DJed a time or two with a tune and you're sure you love it, you can buy it just as you would in any online store, thus freeing a space in your locker to try something else. (You get 100 locker spaces in this beta invite.)
This means you don't have to spend money on tunes you may only play once or twice. You could even fill your locker with tunes you'd never normally buy, for a one-off gig (a wedding, for instance) and then empty it afterwards, saving you a ton of money!
So you're probably wondering how good their catalogue is. Over to them on that one:
"Pulselocker offers a rich, eclectic and well-balanced catalogue of music that resonates with all DJs, regardless of the genre they play. DJs can enjoy a constantly widening spectrum of music ranging from House, Techno, Breakbeat, Dubstep, Drum and Bass, Hip-Hop, Reggae, Funk, Rare Grooves and Jazz. With the daily addition of new partners, labels and artists, Pulselocker promises to offer nearly six million tracks by the end of the year."
Sounds worth a look? We think so. But while Pulselocker is now in public beta, the company has only limited spaces on its program and there's a queue. We can leapfrog you to the front of that queue so you can give it a go for yourself without waiting.
How to try Pulselocker for free
We've bagged a free beta invite for every qualifying Digital DJ Tips customer and subscriber. The service is fully working, so that means you can "borrow" and play up to 100 tunes right now in your DJ sets.
To get your free beta programme sign-up, if you're already a Digital DJ tips customer or subscriber, you need to simply watch your email inbox for a special email from us tomorrow (Wednesday) with a link to the sign-up form.
We'll ask you to confirm your name, email address and that you're in the USA, Canada or Europe. Then, Pulselocker's team will jump you to the top of the beta invite queue and you'll get a special link to download their software and start your free beta subscription. (Please give them a few days as we're expecting them to be overwhelmed with your invites, but they've promised it'll get processed as fast as possible.)
As it’s a beta (full launch isn’t until 2013), there are just a few limitations to be aware of. The biggest one is that it’s Mac-only at the moment. Plus, it’s only available to DJs in the USA, Canada and Europe. But as long as you fulfill these requirements, you’re ready to go!
There's still time to become a subscriber!
Not a Digital DJ Tips subscriber? Don't worry! To join our 30,000 existing subscribers who already enjoy our weekly news and Learn To DJ Free training emails, click here to sign up now. If you sign up immediately, you'll still be in time to receive the special email, which will we are sending out tomorrow (Wednesday Nov 14 2012).
• Remember, Pulselocker is Mac-only at the moment. Plus, it’s only available to DJs in the USA, Canada and Europe.
Do you like the look of Pulselocker? Do you think being able to "borrow" music is a good idea? Please share your thoughts on this service in the comments - especially after you've had a chance to play with it for a little while!