How Do Apple Music’s Curated Playlists Work? (Explained)

A great music playlist is a perfect way to keep focused or wind down after a long day.

Apple Music allows you to listen to the music of your choice, but you can also listen to many different curated playlists. These playlists are a great way to discover your new favorite track.

Who makes these playlists, and how are they created? Here is everything we learned about how Apple Music’s curated playlists work.

Here’s How Apple Music’s Curated Playlists Work:

Apple Music editors and featured artists compile the curated playlists. The playlists often follow a theme based on what style of music was popular at the time. Top hits, new releases, and seasonal tracks are popular playlists. There are also playlists to suit your mood or activities.

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Who Is Curating The Songs For Apple Music Playlists?

You can imagine that a giant company like Apple would have thousands of employees working for each department, and you would be right.

When it comes to Apple Music, however, Apple employs a special team of music curators who are responsible for putting together all of Apple’s special playlists. This team is Apple Music’s Editorial Team and is made up of over a dozen editors and curators.

This team works tirelessly to discover new and upcoming artists and stay on top of trends regarding what people are listening to at the time.

This team recently worked to create over 200 new Apple Music playlists, and all focused on what mood the listener is in. You can find anything from joyful playlists to ones perfect for a moody rainy day.

Interestingly, the employees that make up the Apple Music Editorial Team are not just music enthusiasts. Most, if not all, of them are well-educated in music composition and engineering.

This way, you can be sure that the playlists are meticulously thought-out and put together. The most important element of a great playlist is how the music flows to create much more of an experience.

Does Apple Music Have Playlists Curated By Artists?

For a new artist, landing on a popular playlist is the best way to get noticed by new fans and record executives. These days, this is the number one way to grow a loyal fanbase.

Apple does not accept playlist submissions or requests to be featured on a curated playlist directly from artists.

However, this doesn’t mean Apple won’t work directly with artists. Once officially verified by Apple, artists can request their music to be added to a certain playlist. But, it is still up to the Apple Music Editorial Team to decide whether the music gets included.

Check out our article explaining how Apple Music shuffle’s its music!

Are The Curated Playlists On Apple Music Better Than Spotify’s?

Whenever competing apps offer similar experiences, there is always a question of which one is better. However, to know what is truly better, you must compare what is offered and what isn’t.

Apple Music is considered to be the best choice when it comes to a premium subscription. This is mainly because of the high-resolution experience that Apple Music offers.

But, while Apple Music has a leg up regarding the benefits of a subscription, Spotify far surpasses them when it comes to curated playlists.

Most notably, Spotify has an incredible library of collaborative playlists, which Apple Music does not offer. People note that they mainly went with a Spotify subscription over an Apple Music one because of their amazing playlists.

The biggest difference is that Apple uses an editorial team. At the same time, Spotify mainly relies on an artist and their fanbase to specially curate popular playlists, which helps people feel more connected to them.

Where Do You Find Curated Playlists On Apple Music?

Finding the curated playlists on Apple Music is easy and can be done from the Apple Music app.

  1. Open the Apple Music app on your phone.
    • If you don’t have an account, you will need to sign up for one to access the curated playlists. From there, you will have to register for either a monthly or yearly subscription depending on how much you want to spend.
  2. Click on the “browse” tab in the application to access all of Apple Music’s curated playlists.
  3. Search for your favorite artists, soundtracks, and playlists, or scroll through hundreds of curated Apple Music Playlists.
  4. All you need to do is select the playlist you want to listen to and enjoy.

How Often Are These Playlists Updated?

Having music playlists that are constantly evolving is an important part of choosing an Apple Music subscription.

The editorial team updates the playlists regularly. Seasonal playlists get updated for each season depending on the holiday, while mood playlists are updated each month.

Ideally, you want playlists like these to update often and automatically regarding popular and new music playlists. This is so that you can constantly stay on top of trending music while also discovering what other people are listening to.

The new and popular music playlists are updated every week on Friday night by the Apple Music Editorial Team. This way, you can be sure that each weekend you will have a fresh batch of new artists to discover and trending tracks to enjoy!

Can You Find Playlists You Listened To Previously?

Have you ever tucked into a great playlist that perfectly encapsulates your mood and energy, only to learn that you can no longer find it? Apple Music has got you covered.

The Apple Music application easily finds previously saved songs, playlists, and playlists that you have yet to save but are still enjoying.

  1. Go to your account’s music history.
  2. You will see a pulldown settings menu in the top right corner of the Apple Music app with a “history” feature.
  3. Now you can view all of the music you recently listened to and playlists.

But what about music you listened to several months ago and want to re-discover? Apple Music Replay is a great way to reflect on your music discovery journey.

Apple Music Replay is a playlist curated by Apple that is the ultimate tracklist of all the music you’ve listened to and enjoyed in the past year. It is a great way to look back on all of your favorite new artists to see how your music taste has evolved over the year.

Best of all, you can share your Apple Music Replay list with your family and friends, which is a great way to connect through your favorite music.

Can You Request To Have Certain Songs Added?

Apple Music wants you to be able to completely customize your music listening experience. However, some things are just out of their control.

Music Publishers are responsible for allowing the special listening that comes along with adding new songs to a streaming service like Apple Music. It may surprise you to know that some artists don’t want their music to be published on a streaming service.

While you can always request that certain music gets added, there is no guarantee. It all depends on the Publishers as well as the artists themselves.

And remember, a dedicated team manages what songs are added when it comes to the curated playlists.

Check out our solutions to why Apple Music might stop when other apps open!

Can You Become An Apple Music Curator?

Like any company, professional qualifications are needed for specific roles to work for Apple Music.

Also, the company has to be actively searching to fill that position. While you can always submit your resume for them to keep on file, contacting them while they are searching is best.

Apple wants people on the Editorial Team to be well-advised in music discovery and the music business in general.

Generally, you will need a BA (Bachelor of Arts) or higher degree in music and experience with curating music. Also, it doesn’t hurt to have experience building playlists, no matter your platform.

If you have found success in curating user playlists on Spotify that have accumulated thousands of listeners, that is something that Apple Music will take notice of.

So, if you want to get a position on the Apple Music Editorial Team, stay up to date on when they are hiring and in the meantime, keep working on building those popular playlists.

Final Thoughts

It may surprise you to learn that a lot of work goes into creating Apple Music playlists. From having a team of people work who work on finding new artists and discovering new tracks, there are also lawyers, music executives, and publishers in the mix, all working together to create an amazing playlist.

So, next time you listen to a great playlist, picture all the work that went into it and enjoy your experience!


How To View Your Apple Music History 

Apple Music vs. Spotify – Which Is Better?

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