Frequently Asked Questions

Listening to Music on Last.fm

What ways are there to listen to music on Last.fm?
There are several ways to listen to music on Last.fm: with the Last.fm Music Player, on demand via Spotify, as previews, and directly from our artists and labels.

Last.fm Music Player
The Last.fm Music Player is available to all users worldwide on our Listen page. With this player, you can listen to Last.fm stations such as similar artists, tags, your library or recommendations - an endless variety of music streams, whatever you’re interested in. A simple overview of the different types of stations can be found here.

There are for example artist stations such as “Radiohead and similar” or global tag stations such as “Rock tag” which will play you music related to whatever artist or tag (e.g. a genre) you choose. You can simply tune into a station on the Listen page or click the station buttons wherever you see them on the site, and just start listening to some stations that sound interesting to you.

If you have your own user profile, you have your Library which is basically all the music you’ve listened to and added to your profile, and you can listen to all this music with your personal Library station.

Spotify in-page playback
If you are in a territory where Spotify is available, you’ll see Spotify play buttons on Last.fm which allow you to listen to music on demand with Spotify while browsing the Last.fm website. You need to be a registered Spotify user to use this feature.

Previews
Tracks that have a play button next to their name can be listened to as 30 second previews. There are also tracks without any play button, these were scrobbled by other users and are not available to play.

Directly from artists and labels
Many of the artists and labels using Last.fm make their music available to play as full-length promos, or even as free downloads.

When a track is available in full length, you can play it using the player on its track page.

When a track is available as a free download, it is marked as such, and can be downloaded via the "free download" link next to its name in track listings or from its track page. You can browse these tracks by genre on our free music downloads page.
What are the different types of stations?
1) Library: Your Library station plays you all tracks you’ve ever scrobbled to your profile, or tracks by artists you’ve added to your Library otherwise. You can listen to your own Library or to other users’ stations.

2) Recommendations: Recommendations is a personal station for you, which lets you listen to the artists that have been recommended to you by Last.fm. You can view and manage your recommendations here.

3) Global Tags: Global Tag stations play all items all users have tagged with a specific tag.

4) Similar Artists: A Similar Artist station plays music which is similar to a given artist. Similar artists are automatically created based on our users’ listening habits; also see: How are similar artists calculated? These stations are not endorsed by any artist.

5) Neighbourhood: Neighbourhood stations play music from your or other users' neighbours' libraries.

6) Groups: A group’s Member station plays music from the group members’ libraries.

7) Mix: The tracks you’ll hear on your Mix station have been selected in three different ways: some are brand new recommended tracks; others are tracks that you haven’t scrobbled before, but by artists that you know already; and the rest are simply tracks that you know already. More info here.

8) Friends: A station of music made up of tracks from your Last.fm friends’ libraries.
Why do I get a “no content”/”not enough content” error when listening to stations on Last.fm?
There are different reasons why you might get a this error when trying to listen to a station on Last.fm:

A station always actually needs to have content that can be played; for example, an artist needs to have similar artists, or a user library needs to contain at least 15 different artists for its station to become playable. And then the these artists’ tracks need to have actual content that we can play to you:

If you listen with the Last.fm Music Player, this will play tracks that have YouTube videos linked to them. If there are not enough videos linked to say the tracks of the similar artists of an artist, that similar artists station cannot be played.
(You can add YouTube videos to tracks that don't have a video yet, and thus help improve the Last.fm listening experience for everyone!)

If you're a subscriber who listens to Last.fm Radio, some other restrictions apply, too:
  • Due to radio licensing laws, we can’t allow for our radio streams to play tracks from one artist or album more than a certain number of times per a set time frame. For example, it’s not possible to listen to five tracks by the same artist within one hour.
  • Although we have a lot of artists, albums and tracks in our catalogue, not all of them have streamable content uploaded to Last.fm.

  • Therefore, please check that the station you’re listening to has enough playable content – that's at least 45 tracks by 15 different artists.

    If it’s your own station that gives you this error (such as your Library or Mix), you’ll need to add more tracks to it so that it won’t run out of content too quickly.
    How come I can only listen to 30 second previews of tracks?
    Last.fm don't offer on-demand track listening for most of our catalogue. By default we only allow 30 second previews of tracks. Some artists may have chosen to make their tracks full track previews, and you'll be able to see these at the top of artist and track pages. However, our track pages will display playlinks to 3rd party services available in your region that provide on demand listening and scrobbling support for that track. Below are listed some of the services and their availability by region:

    Spotify: Andorra, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Faroe Islands, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Monaco, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the United States.
    MOG: USA, Australia
    Rdio: United States, Canada, Brazil, Australia, New Zealand, Germany, Spain, Portugal, United Kingdom, Finland, Sweden
    Deezer: France, Ireland, The Netherlands, Belgium, UK, Spain, Italy, Germany, Russia, Canada, Australasia
    Hype Machine: Worldwide
    Simfy: Germany, Austria and Switzerland
    Yandex: Russian Federation
    Vevo (video links): USA and Canada
    YouTube (video links): Worldwide, although some content will be restricted due to licensing restrictions
    Tape.tv: Germany, Austria, Switzerland
    We hope to add more services as and when they become available in your territory, so keep checking back!
    Why do some songs have listeners, but I can’t play them on Last.fm?
    If you come across tracks, or even artists on Last.fm that you can’t listen to as they’re not available to play – this is when they’re not marked with a play icon – but that have other listeners, this is because these users have scrobbled their own music files when listening to them with their own media player on their computer.

    By scrobbling your music, information about the artist, album and track names is sent to Last.fm, and based on this information many statistics, like an artist’s tracks charts or the top listeners are generated. You can read more about this here in the “What is scrobbling?” FAQ.
    I accidentally banned a track from playing on my stations – can I un-ban it?
    Yes, go to your Banned Tracks page and look up the track you would like to un-ban. Click the gear Multi-button button for the track and select “Unban track” from the dropdown.
    Do I need to pay to listen to the radio?
    All users, in all countries, can listen to Last.fm stations on our website with the new Music Player - this is a free feature.

    The traditional Last.fm radio is a paid feature, currently available to subscribers in the US, UK, Germany, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, Brazil. Subscribers in these countries can listen to the radio on our website and on their desktop. In the US, UK and Germany, subscription radio is also available via our mobile apps and some hardware devices. To see what subscription features exactly are available in your country, please see our Subscribe page.
    What can I do if the music player on the site doesn’t work at all for me?
    • The player on the site isn’t displayed at all.
    • The radio page doesn’t tune into any radio stations. It says “Please wait while your radio loads...” but nothing happens.
    • The radio plays, but there are no images or other information; the page seems to hang.
    • The player is buffering, but then there’s a constant “Oops! Error connecting” or “Oops, there was a problem starting this station. Please try again.” error.

    If you have any of the problems described above, please try the following troubleshooting tips:

    • Make sure you have the latest version of flash installed. See this FAQ for more help.
    • You need to have JavaScript enabled for the radio page to work properly. See this FAQ for more help.
    • You need to accept third-party cookies to enable the delivery of ads on the radio page which if not delivered may block your radio player.
    • If you have any ad- or flash-blocking extensions, such as Adblock Plus or NoScript, please try disabling them. Do also check if you have any computer security or firewall that may blocking scripts.
    • If you have checked the above and still have problems using the radio on the site, clear your browser cache and cookies, then log in again and try to play another radio station.
    • If you’re having consistent connection problems, check your computer security, firewall or router settings, anything that could affect the radio connection, and make sure your soundcard is configured correctly and not busy otherwise.
    Can I create a station based on multiple artists or tags?
    Yes, on the Listen page you can create either a combo station with multiple artists, or one with multiple tags. You can add up to three artists or three tags for a station, choosing from artists and tags selected for you based on your music taste.

    Multi-Artist is a “Similar Artists” combo station, which will play you music similar to ANY of the artists that you choose. This lets you build up broader radio stations with more varied content.

    Multi-Tag is a “Global Tag” combo station, which will only play you music that matches ALL of the tags that you choose. So choosing ‘60s’ and ‘rock’ will only play you rock from the 60s.
    Why can’t I skip more than six times in an hour?
    When you listen to Last.fm radio, there is a limit on the number of times you can skip tracks on each station. It’s a requirement of our licensing agreements that allow us to stream music legally.

    If you ban a track, this also counts as a skip, because the banned track is skipped. If you ban a track when you have already reached your skip limit, the track will be banned as normal, but it will continue playing to the end.

    If you find that you’re skipping a lot of tracks, you might want to try re-tuning to a different station, or try a multi artist or multi tag station.
    Where is Last.fm radio available?
    As of 29 January 2014, Last.fm radio is only available to subscribers in the US, UK, Germany, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland and Brazil. In these countries, subscribers can listen to Last.fm radio stations on the website and via our desktop app, the Scrobbler. For more details, please check on our Subscription page what radio benefits are available in your country.

    If you're not a subscriber, or if you're in a country other than the ones mentioned above, you cannot use Last.fm radio, but you can listen to Last.fm stations - for free! - with the new Last.fm Music Player.