I was reading this long plaint on NPR about how the stream-o-sphere doesn’t get classical music right — and agreeing with much of it — as far as it goes.
But after the author recounted her frustrations at trying to look for different versions of the opera, The Marriage of Figaro, trying various permutations and getting back bits and pieces, I went to my own favored stream subscription service, Google Play Music All Access, using the Chrome desktop browser version, typed marriage of figaro into the single search bar at the top of all the player window, and got back a long page with 100 different versions of the opera (and maybe some ringers).*
Here’s a PDF of the search returns (stripped of player graphics, etc). The text is cut off because of the nature of the screen capture but you’ll get the idea…
Search Results – Marriage of Figaro – Google Play Music [pdf]
But there is one problem sure to drive classical fans nuts — a recent makeover of the desktop browser player changed out the old full page queue window for a sleek pop-up — that unfortunately truncates artist and track titles at not much more than 20 or so characters. This strikes me as bizarre enough for regular pop music — but it’s a disaster with long classical work track titles.
To that end, I redesigned my Stylebot skin for Google Play Music, Gray Flannel Cool to include a super-wide play queue. Read more: Gray Flannel Cool 3.2 – Make Google Music look as cool as it works
* This highlights one significant problem with GPMAA — the search results are always truncated at 100 returns — but there are often more than 100 versions of a given song, or songs by a given artist, etc. Google, they sometimes get so much right, but their lapses can be pretty frustrating at times.