Songza

App review by
Erin Wilkey Oh, Common Sense Media
Songza App Poster Image
Free playlists for every mood; no filter for iffy stuff.

Parents say

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Kids say

age 13+
Based on 2 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Educational Value

Kids can learn a little about music and musical genres by exploring and listening to the playlists on Songza. Songza's extensive music collection gives teens access to a diversity of musical artists and styles and introduces them to the music of various cultures and time periods. Additionally, Songza helps teens identify their own emotions and think about how music can evoke certain moods. Songza would have more learning potential with enhancements like genre descriptions or artist bios. Still, the app engages listeners in exploring new music with its unique categories and clever playlist titles.

Ease of Play

Songza is easy to use. Users sign in using Facebook or create a unique Songza username and password, and then browse by genre, activities, moods, decades, culture, or record-store clerk to find and listen to playlists. Playlist creation is available only at the Songza.com website, not on the app. 

Violence

Teens can access all types of music with Songza, including songs that mention or glorify violence. 

Sex

Teens can access songs with sexually explicit lyrics and themes. The app's playlist categories include "Getting Lucky," "Making Out," "Stripping," and "Sexual."

Language

Teens can find and listen to songs with profanity. If a user-created playlist has a swear word in its title, teens can type the word into the search tool, find the playlist, and listen to it.

Consumerism

Songza has a banner ad, but no audio or video advertising to disrupt listening. Listeners can follow a link to the iTunes store to purchase any song.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Teens can access songs with references to drinking, drugs, and smoking. The app's playlist categories include "Cocktail Party," "Drinking at a Dive Bar," and "Getting High."

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Songza is a free app for listening to music online, much like Pandora Radio and Spotify. The difference is that Songza offers a library of music playlists created and categorized by Songza staff ("music experts") as well as users of the website Songza.com. Songza doesn't filter explicit content, so teens could encounter songs and playlists with iffy language and references to violence, sex, and drugs. Users are not required to connect to Facebook, but if they do, their listening activity will be published unless they adjust the privacy settings. Additionally, Songza app users automatically receive a public profile at Songza.com, with no option to make their listening activity private.

User Reviews

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  • Kids say

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Teen, 13 years old Written byowlgirl2035 July 5, 2012

Good way to listen to listen to music without paying!

Its a Good way for Kids to experience music without paying for it like on iTunes or Google Play, I personally really like it! I would suggest it to any of my fr... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written byredtaylib July 26, 2012

New&Improved Improved Pandora!

It's really great and there are no ads (i.e. Pandora), but there are also no filters on explicit, pervasive, or inapropriate songs. For 13 year olds &a... Continue reading

What's it about?

The Songza app allows users to search for and listen to playlists created by Songza music experts and users of Songza.com website. The app has a number of ways for users to search Songza's archive of playlists. Users can search by activity, genre, decade, and mood. Listeners can also browse trending playlists or consult with the "concierge" to find a fitting soundtrack for the moment by providing the day of the week, time of day, and current activity. Users can share what they're listening to on Facebook, Twitter, or by email, and can click a link to buy the song on iTunes. Listeners can give songs the thumbs-up or thumbs-down to personalize playlist suggestions.

Is it any good?

SONGZA offers listeners free access to skillfully crafted playlists that are (for now) also free of disruptive audio ads. The search categories provide a clever and entertaining way to access Songza's extensive music collection. And even though listeners can't pick and choose songs and can only skip a few songs per hour, the lack of control is part of the charm. Songza introduces listeners to artists and songs they might otherwise never come across.

Songza could reach a larger audience with the option to filter explicit content; as it is, users can encounter mature lyrics and themes. Additionally, it's important for users to understand their Songza accounts are public at Songza.com, with no privacy controls; all listening activity on the Songza app is published on the user profile.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Explore Songza with your teens; share some of your favorite genres and playlists and invite them to do the same.

  • Extend the learning with your teen by researching unfamiliar genres or artists together as you listen.

  • Use the Songza search features to help your teen identify how he or she is feeling. Explore the music that fits their mood.

App details

Themes & Topics

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For kids who love music

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