Everybody likes music (except for maybe terrorists), and I think if you asked, most people would also say that they enjoy listening to music while they work. Many offices have speakers setup so that everyone can collectively rock out at the same time, but this presents some problems... 

The Problems

Let's say you're in the mood for some smooth, subtle sounds, so you start blasting Yani over the community speakers. Unfortunately for you, your co-workers don't have a musical palette that's as refined as you and they're having none of it. You're quickly overruled and the speakers are switched to playing Limp Bizkit's greatest hits. Wouldn't it be awesome if there was a way that you could easily put in a request for the song that you wanted to hear, patiently wait your turn, and then jam out when your song comes up? Wouldn't it be even awesome-er, if you could do it from Slack without ever having to leave your seat or talk to another human????

The Solution

jamesbrown.js is a slackbot I developed with the hope of relieving tensions around the office between factions with totally different tastes in music.  It's used in offices that play music from a Spotify playlist over a central speaker.

The way it works is like this...

  1. Follow the steps to install him and invite him to your team, which can be found here (warning: if you try setting it up and you're not very good with code, you're probably gonna have a bad time. Working on simplifying this process, stay tuned for more details).
  2. Start playing music from a Spotify playlist you control on a computer in your office... 
  3. Find a song you want to add as the next song to the global office playlist, and copy the Spotify URI by right clicking on the song title and selecting, “Copy Spotify URI”...
  4. Go back to Slack and message jamesbrown “add [track_id]” where [track_id] is the link you copied from Spotify (e.g. add spotify:track:3cfOd4CMv2snFaKAnMdnvK), and follow the prompts...
  5. Watch in amazement as the song you just selected is added as the next song in the playlist...
  6. If you don’t want to have to switch to Spotify and are willing to take you chances with a search, you could also message jamesbrown “search [search_query]” where search query is a term you want to search for a track by (e.g. search tubthumper), and again follow the prompts...
  7. Watch again in utter disbelief as the song is added to your playlist…


And there you have it. Everyone gets to listen to whatever they want without having to argue or even talk with one another, all with a little help from our friends at Spotify and Slack.

Let us know how you like your new Slackbot friend, jamesbrown. And furthermore let us know how we can help you with your development needs.