I've been playing with pandora, last.fm and the pandorafm mash-up this weekend. Pandora suffers from a lack of classical music and on last.fm, I just can't find good streams I like, except for the stream comprised of music I've already indicated I like. This just in: the Terry Riley station I just created in pandora is promising. The report upon playing his Poppy Nogood:
Based on what you've told us so far, we're playing this track because it features new age influences, classical influences, new orleans jazz influences, odd meter grooves, and off beat style.
I won't disavow liking any of those musical traits, although the "new orleans" part surprised me since that isn't how I would describe Riley's improvisation. I should also say that after three or four tracks on the station, the new age, seventies synthesized sounds begin to annoy.
If you go to the last.fm page for Terry Riley, it lists related artists unknown to me -- Jef Gilson and Malagasy, Ellende, Hal Blaine, Mellow Candle -- and those to be expected -- La Monte Young, Steve Reich, Iannis Xenakis, and John Cage.
Generally, Pandora uses the classification of the Music Genome Project to recommend music and now Wikipedia reveals all the individual genome attributes in use. Let's see: there's angry lyrics, avant-garde leanings, chill rhymin', clear pronunciation, flat out funky grooves, good dose of acoustic guitar pickin', mumbling vocals, subtle use of turntables, and wet recording sound (as well as more traditional music terms). If only Pandora allowed one to explicitly choose the desired attributes; I'd like to hear something that combines avant-garde leanings with a good dose of acoustic guitar pickin' and a bit of mumbling vocals. Bob Dylan and The Band play the music of Robert Ashley maybe...
I also tried to create a channel seeded by Miles Davis' Pharoah's Dance, but it plays innumerable jazz trumpet tracks, all acoustic rather than electric.
Finally, a description of Poppy Nogood from the Looper's Delight web page:
The first five minutes of the recording is dominated by a horde of saxophone parts reverbed into a chaotic wash of sound, underpinned by a low D drone from the organ.
playing on the terry riley station: jazz violinist jean-luc ponty, some brian eno track with viola, and pendulum music by steve reich