Sure, we always thought Spotify was a cool thing to access and play around with. As the coronavirus pandemic plays out, the streaming service has turned out to be as essential as canned soup and toilet tissue. The millions of songs Spotify carries has brought us the warm fuzzies of nostalgia, as well as the next new hotness. The technology makes us look forward and backward (sometimes simultaneously) giving us things to discover when we don’t have to be anywhere.

Which makes us wonder: What did we do before Spotify? How did we seek out the art that would come to imprint itself in our hearts and minds and ear canals? Well, we came up with a few things.

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Now admittedly, many of these methods were geared toward a particular realm, and it wasn’t that moldy classic-rock stuff. When it came to discovering new music (punk, pop-punk, hardcore, metalcore and every other genre that used the Vans Warped Tour as a travelling clubhouse), this is how you set your sights. As digital technology got more sophisticated (faster load times and smarter phones), a lot of these things seemingly became obsolete in a short window. It’s a problem we don’t think Spotify is going to encounter anytime soon.

So thanks to you, Spotify. You keep us entertained in what sometimes feels like our darkest hour. We have no real need for aluminum discs strewn all over our homes. No need to play Russian roulette with our hard drives on sketchy file-sharing sites! With Warped Tour gone, what would we do without you? Sure, some of us miss specially made vessels of music with our names on them. But in a world where quantity (then quality) is king, we’ll gladly pass on a mixtape festooned with heart and unicorn stickers.