Apps, Mobile & SMS

Ian Rogers Hacks APIs To Produce Beastie Boys vs. Trent Reznor Music Hotline

Twilio-logoNestled among a number of interesting hacks from this weekend's SF Music Hack Day 2013 was a combo of APIs from Twilio's cloud-based voice and messaging service and Topspin Media created by Project Daisy CEO Ian Rogers. The resulting "phone tree" lets you dial in for a musical recommendation or the option of messaging and hearing a track from either the Beastie Boys or Trent Reznor. But the biggest message I got, beyond certain marketing implications for Project Daisy, is that Twilio is a deeply underappreciated resource readily available to a still sluggish music industry.

Ian Rogers, the CEO of Beats' upcoming music service (aka Project Daisy), has mostly stayed out of the limelight while Jimmy Iovine has taken the mic to spread the word about the new service.

Yet for many in music industry circles the positive assumptions about this yet-to-launch service have been based on Ian Rogers credibility. While many of us expect big things from Rogers, myself included, I have to admit I was surprised to find out he spent the weekend flexing his hacker chops at Music Hack Day SF 2013 (projects list).


Screengrab: The NIN Hotline Twitter Feed Referencing Twilio Blog Post

Rogers noted that he initially intended to "just pitch in a little on one of my fellow hackers' projects, but seeing the API demo from Twilio I was inspired to build something small on my own."

Combining Twilio's API and Topspin's API Rogers "scripted a small phone tree" that, after calling (310) 299-8756, currently gives you three options:

1. Speak to an "operator" for a music suggestion.

2. Leave a message for either The Beastie Boys or Trent Reznor and listen to a "rare/unreleased" track, a Beastie Boys instrumental or an unreleased track from How To Destroy Angels.

3. Doesn't give you an option but states: "If you're having girl problems I feel bad for you son." Or something along those lines.

I called twice and found both tracks well worth a listen. You may be able to get downloads via text but I'm not set up for that on Skype.

While this isn't a Project Daisy marketing effort per se, the reality is that all Rogers' actions between now and its launch will be considered in that light. Reminding us of his hacker cred is a smart move in that regard but I'm guessing he just wanted to have some geeky fun.

If you're interested in connecting with Twilio, an innovative company offering cloud-based voice, VOIP and text messaging solutions, they have an ongoing schedule of events. If you do anything music-related with Twilio's services, please let me know at the email address below.


Hypebot Senior Contributor Clyde Smith (Twitter/ also blogs at All World Dance: Videos and maintains Music Biz Blogs. To suggest topics for Hypebot, contact: clyde(at)fluxresearch(dot)com.

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