Track your favorite artists with Songkick Concerts

IMG_2398Songkick Concerts is an iOS app from the company of the same name. It’s available now as a free download from the App Store, with no additional in-app purchases. The app has been available since June of 2011, but the recently-released version 2.0 is a significant update based on user feedback, and is currently featured in the New & Noteworthy section of the App Store front page. An Android version is also available, but this has not yet been updated to the new version.

Songkick is an app and Web service that allows its users to find when their favorite artists are next performing nearby. The app does this via a two-step process: firstly, it scans the device’s music library (including the user’s entire iTunes library if they are an iTunes Match subscriber) and automatically “tracks” all of the artists present under the (possibly fallacious) assumption that if the user owns music by someone, they must like them. Secondly, the user’s current location is used to determine their nearest venues. Unfortunately, during testing, the automatic location finder failed to find any local venues in my specific district, but manually widening the search to the whole city’s name did work. Using the manual search function, it’s possible to add multiple locations to be tracked.

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Once artists and locations have been set up, the user may browse through the information available in several formats. The “Concerts” tab cross-references the user’s locations and their tracked artists, and automatically displays upcoming concerts from their “favorite” artists in the local area. This tab also displays concerts that users have indicated that they definitely are or might be going to — making use of this functionality requires signing in to Songkick either with a proprietary account or Facebook, however.

The “Locations” tab, meanwhile, allows the user to see all the upcoming shows in their selected areas. Pleasingly, Songkick includes small, local venues as well as more large-scale concert halls and the like, meaning the service provides a good opportunity to discover small-scale local talent as well as find out the next time a more famous artist is coming to their area.

The “Artists” tab allows the user to browse through the artists Songkick has tracked for them, remove them if they were added in error, and see the artists’ upcoming tour dates where applicable. Artists who are currently on tour are marked with an “On Tour” ribbon on their avatar, and tapping on an individual concert’s listing allows the user to find further details, purchase tickets, indicate whether or not they are going and share the details of the concert on Facebook and Twitter or via email.

Songkick is a simple idea implemented extremely well, and will be a valuable tool for those interested in live music both on small and large scales. The inclusion of small local venues is excellent to see, and will doubtless encourage a variety of small-scale independent artists to sign up for Songkick’s “Tourbox” service, which will automatically publicize tour dates not only on Songkick itself, but also on Facebook, Soundcloud, Bandcamp, WordPress, Tumblr, Spotify, Foursquare and The Hype Machine. For fans, it’s a great way to stay up to date with one’s favorite acts — and also to potentially discover some new favorite venues in the local area.

You can follow Songkick’s progress with AppData, our tracking service for mobile and social apps and developers.