How To: Embed Music with SoundCloud

We started covering various methods webbies use to embed their music. Previously we looked at Grooveshark, the popular online streaming music service. As we said there are some cons to the Grooveshark widget. Thankfully there are other options out there, and WordPress even points this out. Today we’ll look at SoundCloud, “the best music sharing site in the history of the Internet” as they put it. Before we go any further let’s throw in a sample so you can take a look at it.

What you see right up there ^ is the SoundCloud player. It’s a handy little thing and the code used for WordPress looks something like this (note, WordPress requires square brackets [ ] on either side of your code to make this work and I didn’t want to embed the player again so you would have to add them):

soundcloud url=”http://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/4546914″

SoundCloud as a service is free just like Grooveshark, but it is aimed at a different audience. Based on what their webpages say it’s designed for those producing or making the music in some way. From what I can understand SoundCloud also appears to be geared at those wanting to connect with others producing who might share a similar style. Enough of that, let’s actually look at how to do it and the value of embedding music via SoundCloud.

The Method:

SoundCloud is simple. Really. Go to their site and search for a song or artist. Once you’ve found a track you want to snag click its share icon. If it’s a track from another page that’s been embedded (such as right here) look for this icon  </ >. From here you’ll be given a list of platforms that SoundCloud is already geared for (Facebook, Twitter, Myspace, E-Mail, WordPress, StumbleUpon, Blogger, Deliscious, HTML Native Embedding via Flash). Choose yours and finish it up. You’ve seen what the WordPress code looks like. To post into Myspace or StubleUpon you simple log into your account of give it your credentials and all is set. The cool thing about embedding into WordPress is that bits of html can be added to adjust properties like width and height of the player. See how the player below is only 250px wide? Yeah? Cool.

Benefits:

  • No account necessary.
  • Supports multiple platforms.
  • Customizable player.
  • WordPress support (for us).
  • Exposes you to other’s music since it is production oriented.
  • You can upload tracks as private or public and then embed those.

Problems:

  • Still uses Flash vs. HTML5.
  • Timed Comments = annoying little pop-ups. (Note: These can and should be turned off).
  • Very limited customizability.
  • No playlist/multi-track sharing technique. This means you’ll have to embed one track at a time.
  • Frustrating when you know exactly what you’re looking for and can’t find it.

Conclusion:

SoundCloud works. Its player isn’t that pretty to look at, the comments really are annoying, and it’s difficult to find songs that haven’t been remixed or are covers. It’s still not an ideal player for someone who wants to embed a bunch of music, especially if they want to do it in one playlist. It’s crude, but it works.

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  1. #1 by thejambi on January 22, 2011 - 9:14 pm

    I think I see the point of the comments since they say it’s for those making music – could be useful there. But as just a player, yeah, seems like an annoying point.

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