KCRW’s Music Mine for the iPhone

As part of the ongoing effort to remain relevant and interesting on a tech level, I led the project that took KCRW’s Music Mine application to the iPhone that launched Jun 12, 2013.
Obviously PRX does all of the heavy lifting here with design and development, but KCRW guides the project along to ensure top quality and the KCRW sensibility that we love to build upon! My involvement in the KCRW Music Mine began in the very early stages of development for the iPad app. I also initiated our foray into programing an app version for Spotify. I’m thrilled to have had the opportunity and experience to have made yet another iteration specific this time to mobile music discovery!

Here are the details of the app including a great video idea that my buddy Rob Lafond brought to life with the boys of Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr.


The KCRW Music Mine for iPhone

From quick discovery to deep exploration, the app takes listeners on an audio adventure of artists handpicked by tastemakers at the LA public radio station.
The app was developed by Public Radio Exchange (PRX), designed by Roundarch using The Echo Nest’s powerful music intelligence platform.

KCRW has long been known as a station that breaks new artists and the app brings the same spirit to users. Songs are updated daily in tandem with KCRW’s on-air playlists, which are hand picked by the station’s world-famous DJs. Music Mine was developed in partnership with the Public Radio Exchange (PRX).

“We have always imagined Music Mine would be launched on the iPhone, especially given its success on iPad and Spotify. Our goal is to make KCRW’s brand of music discovery as portable and accessible as possible, with a human touch,” says KCRW Director of Web & Mobile Development Nathan Lubeck“It’s like having your personal KCRW DJ in your pocket.”

The app also includes full shows by DJs, video from in-studio performances from KCRW’s flagship music program Morning Becomes Eclectic and access to Eclectic24, KCRW’s acclaimed all music stream.

“KCRW and PRX share a vision for connecting talented artists with audiences beyond broadcast,” says Jake Shapiro, CEO of PRX“Music Mine is a shining example of what stations with a passionate purpose and curatorial prowess can achieve in the competitive mobile market.”

The special format of Music Mine allows users who don’t have a lot of time to put together their own listening experience without being overwhelmed by options. Listeners who want to delve into the world of KCRW playlists, Eclectic24 and MBE in-studio live performance videos can do so, through an paired down Music Mine interface designed specifically for the iPhone.

“It’s time to dispel the traditional notions of what radio is, and start imagining what radio can be. It’s not just about tuning in anymore,”says KCRW Director of Digital Content Strategy Betsy MoyerKCRW is putting the power in the hands of the listener.”

Music Mine for iPhone is the most recent example of KCRW’s continued investment in digital programming and multi-platform distribution. Mobile app development and distribution partnerships are key aspects of KCRW’s goal to be wherever the audience is. In the last year, the station has launched digital-only programs like, “This…Is Interesting” hosted by Left, Right and Center’s Matt Miller and “The Organist,” a collaboration with San Francisco publishing house McSweeney’s. Partnerships with streaming services like iHeartRadio, Spotify and TuneIn has put KCRW in a unique position among public radio stations.


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