MusicBox addresses an old problem, how to catch people's attention and get them to listen to new music.
Co-founder Dave Marcello wrote about their goals stating:
We believe the current system of searching for music, even though it’s all out there and readily available, is flawed. You’re less likely to discover truly new and exciting tunes if you are left to your own searching process. Even sites like Pandora and Last.fm typically direct you to artists that are almost too close to the ones you plug in, almost too safe."
We’re aiming to expand listeners’ horizons by hand-picking and hand-delivering awesome independent music that’s juuuuust on the periphery of your comfort zone."
The flip side of the service is that up-and-coming independent artists get a brand new distribution channel that places their music directly into the inboxes of listeners who may not otherwise have found them. Theirs to download and own."
I signed up a while back and got 2 emails last month and 1 this month.
Each email is very simple with a quick intro followed by a selection of tracks with a free download link, a tweet something" link and a link or two to official sites/Facebook pages. Over the course of the month I saw a bit of iteration with the addition of a preview option based on feedback.
The music is freely offered by the bands seeking new listeners. Though the genre-picking is a bit limited, MusicBox says:
Our ultimate goal is to customize the artists and music you receive through MusicBox. We are currently working with our mad scientists on the perfect way to easily match your music tastes to our artist roster, so we can send you new beats that are just outside your comfort zone, but totally something you'll dig."
They also mention a bit of future development for musicians:
We also want to give artists the opportunity to share exclusive content with you guys outside of our regular Boxes."
If you'd like to see your music marketed for free via MusicBox email Mike.