There was once a time when whatever I listened to was music I bought and paid for. That explains the Mincey collection of 33 1/3’s, 45’s, cassette tapes, and CDs. Then along came the iTunes Music Store and I bought much of the same music again. Something had to give. This is where it started.
Open Source & Free
There’s nothing wrong with buying digital music. Frankly, music from Apple’s iTunes Music Store sounds better than much of my vinyl and cassette collection.
The problem was twofold and Apple didn’t solve either one. I tired of buying music. Again. And, I couldn’t keep my whole collection with me wherever I went.
Mac, iPhone, iPad– none of them have enough storage to take the whole collections, so along comes Pandora and my music listening habits changed.
Instead of worrying about what playlists to take along on my work or play journeys, I took Pandora instead. One way a Mac user can get to Pandora is through Hermes. That may sound like a Greek STD, but it’s really a Mac app which plays Pandora, which is a different type of internet radio.
Hermes streams your Pandora radio account without having to open a browser window, and without having to use Adobe Air or Flash (Hermes uses far less of your Mac’s CPU resources). And it’s free.
There’s not much to figuring out Hermes, either. Enter your Pandora account information and you’re, well, done. Hermes will pause when the Mac goes to sleep and picks up where you left off when your Mac goes live again.
You can still like and dislike specific songs on Pandora, delete and edit Pandora stations, and get song notifications. There’s even Last.fm built-in. The like and dislike buttons, and the transport controls are simple to understand. You can even find lyrics.
The only issue I had with Hermes was at home with an older Mac running a five-year-old version of OS X. It wouldn’t always work, but on my newer Macs with Yosemite there’s not been a problem. Not bad for free.