I signed up for lala back in '96 or so, logged in once, shrugged and never looked back. I've discovered, however, that they've reinvented their service. Previously a CD swapping website (Pay a small fee to the website to trade CD for CD with other people), lala has become its own digital music market place.
There are a few things I really love about lala. First of all, with their Music Mover, you can scan and upload your mp3 collection to the lala servers. Anything you own on your computer will be available to you for streaming on their service from anywhere -- making your music collection as easy to take from computer to computer as a password.
At no point while listening to your library of music through their website will you be accosted with ads. The website is 100% ad free, supported by what I feel to be an extremely fair price model -- I think everybody wins.
With music you don't own, you're allowed to listen to anything once -- so no making your purchase decision based on a 30 second clip. After you've heard the song once, you revert to the clip though. If you only want to listen to the song via their streaming service, you can purchase them for .10 a track. (Though when you sign up, the first 50 are free).
If you want drm-free mp3's, you can purchase tracks for .89 each. If you've already purchased the web album, that's figured into the price--you'll pay .79 on top of the .10 already paid. If you're using the Music Mover, they'll automatically be downloaded to your computer. Alternatively, of course, you can download them manually.
There are some social features built in as well -- relatively minimalistic and tasteful. You can follow people to see what they're listening to, send recommendations to your friends, and correspond via public blurbs.
Generally speaking, I am extremely satisfied (excited, even) with lala. Having finished uploading my library, I've been using it as my primary player.
Some caveats, of course--It's probably limited to US Residents, legally speaking. Licensing issues. You can only download a purchased mp3 once -- so don't lose it. Lastly, it's probably not a great service for people whose library is in another format as mp3 is all lala works with.
You've got nothing to lose, and 50 free web songs to gain so may as well try it out if you're even the least bit curious. If you want to net me 10 free web songs, you can use my referrel code
. Or, if referrel codes seem tacky and annoy you, you can always just go to lala.com
. Feel free to say hey to "Allen" there, so I can peak at what you're listening to.