On Sharing Music With You.

steve cuocci
4 min readJan 20


What do you feel when I share music with you? Is it a neurological response to immediately feel nervous about how I’m going to follow up with you and see if you checked it out? Do you feel something about yourself, that somehow the song I’ve sent you somehow represents how I feel about you, how I catalog you in my mind? How I have tabbed you with a genre or style or type and I’m sharing that representation with you in some detached way?

Yeah, same.

I think a lot about what happens after I send something out, too. I have a range of emotions when I send out an album or a song. I have a big wave of suspense when I send out a playlist. I’m trembling when I send out my top 50. I, too, think about what happens when I match a song to a face and I know that the person who owns that face needs to hear it.

This interaction that we share, whether you engage in it or not, is special to me. Sorry ‘bout it. You mean something to me.

I flip it on its head, as well.

When someone sends a song to me, recommends an album to me, asks if I’ve heard an artist…


it’s like someone just handed me over a book that they told me I have to read. It becomes required action on my part, something that I’m going to set time aside for. I’m going to consider it, I’m going to dive into it. This could be a new song I’ve never heard, this could be a new artist I’ve not been introduced to yet. This feels like discovery. Like archaeology. Like frontiering. Pioneering. New things upon new things, ranges I never would have explored. When it comes to music, it is impossible for me to “FIND” everything. To gaze at the entire library and consume it all. It’s just simply not attainable to know which listens are going to be “worth it” and which ones will steal my time. So while I’m not very exclusive in what I check out, I am very occupied.

Also. Something that someone sends me could be a favorite song from a favorite album. I am going to put my time into it and I am going to listen to it in a new light. This is now going to be marked with intent. With new context. With observation and consideration. This is going to be something that, especially if it was sent without context or description, is going to feel ultimately different now that I know it exists within the confines of our communique. You’ve signed the book. Sorry ‘bout it. It means something to me.

Over the past month, since that Top 50 list came out, I’ve done a lot of sharing and discussing new music that’s dropped. There have been a great deal of exchanges within the currency of “New Music”. And all of that being said, somehow, it feels like this recent list didn’t “perform” as well as the last few lists. I’ve gotten a lot less engagement from them. A lot less interaction. And while it wasn’t headline news, it feels as if maybe I’ve capped out at the number of people I “should” be sending this out to. Reread the first paragraph. I wonder how I’ve showed up for you. I wonder if somehow I have laid too much on your plate, like asking for a book report in a class you never signed up for. I wonder if I’m overencumbering you with choice. I wonder if I’m suggesting media you simply have no interest in consuming. I wonder a lot.

I absolutely love sharing music with friends and even with total strangers that I’m seeing online. People I see that I’ve followed on socials and think deserve or need to hear different things based on presented context. On previous shares. I love receiving music in the same right. I love knowing that there is more out there. I love being considered. I love to consider you. So to anyone who has received songs, playlists, albums, questions from me, I want you to know you don‘t have to feel anything. You don’t even have to listen to it. You don’t have to panic. You don’t have to prepare your notepad to have something to send to me. It’s just my way of saying “I see you.” It’s just my way of saying “I’m out here, man.”

You mean something to me.