Find a band’s musical influences using Python – Pearl Jam and Dr. Dre

I created a fun little program that will go and find the musical influences of any artist. It uses the Spotify APIs and a bit of logic.

The logic works like this:

  1. Find the artist on Spotify
  2. Go and find the earliest album that artist made.
  3. Get the related artists and their first album date
  4. Pick the related artist that has the closest album to 2 years before the original artist
  5. Start back up with #3
  6. Repeat until there are no artists left. Or until the program goes way off the rails.

Note: If there are no related artists with albums older than the oldest it will go back up the chain and try and find another route.

Source Code is on Github here.

Example #1 – Pearl Jam

Peal Jam Demo Mookie
This has some pretty great results. Starting with Pearl Jam’s first album Ten (1991), It goes all the way back to 1953 with decent results like Wire – Pink Flag, The Yardbirds – London 1963.

You will notice that it skips over bands like Nirvana because Nevermind was released in 1991 and that was the earliest album Spotify had. But, you get Soundgarden and Jane’s Addiction instead, which when you listen to the albums they are great precursors.

Special Finds: 1977 Wire – Pink Flag

1991-01-01 – Pearl Jam – Ten Redux

1989-01-01 – Soundgarden – Louder Than Love

1987-01-01 – Jane’s Addiction – Jane’s Addiction (Live)

1985-01-01 – Faith No More – We Care a Lot (Deluxe Band Edition) [Remastered]

1982-01-01 – Meat Puppets – Meat Puppets

1980-01-01 – Minutemen – Paranoid Time

1977-01-01 – Wire – Pink Flag

1973-01-01 – The Modern Lovers – Live at the longbranch and more

1971-01-01 – Flamin’ Groovies – Live In San Francisco 1971

1969-01-01 – MC5 – Kick Out The Jams (Live)

1966-01-01 – The Monks – Black Monk Time

1965-01-01 – The Sonics – Here Are the Sonics

1965-01-01 – The Pretty Things – The Pretty Things

1965-01-01 – Them – The “Angry” Young Them!

1963-01-01 – The Yardbirds – London 1963 – The First Recordings

1962-01-01 – Helen Shapiro – Tops With Me

1960-01-01 – Adam Faith – Adam

1960-01-01 – Cliff Richard & The Shadows – Me And My Shadows/Listen To Cliff

1959-01-01 – Cliff Richard – Cliff/Cliff Sings

1956-01-01 – Pat Boone – Howdy!

1952-01-01 – Eddie Fisher – Christmas with Eddie Fisher

1951-01-01 – Frankie Laine – One For My Baby

#2 – #2 Dr. Dre

Dr Dre Electro

Dr Dre had great results. Even though it started with 2001 instead of earlier stuff, it quickly jumped back to Warren G and then all the way back to Kurtis Blow.

After that, we hit on some awesome disco stuff like Inner Life – I’m Caught Up and and then to some baby making music Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes and Jerry Butler. Love this one!

Finally finishes up with some Sam Cooke and everyone knows that Dr Dre was influenced by Pat Boone!

Special Find: Electro and a bit of spoken word: Warp 9 – It’s a Beat Wave

1999 Dr Dre – 2001

1998 – Nate Dogg – G Funk Classics, Vols. 1 & 2

1996 – Xzibit – At The Speed Of Life

1994 – Warren G – Regulate…G Funk Era (20th Anniversary)

1991 – DJ Quik – Quik Is The Name

1989 – The D.O.C. – No One Can Do It Better

1987 – Ice-T – Rhyme Pays (Explicit Version)

1984 – Run–D.M.C. – Discover Beyond

1982 – Whodini – Funky Beat: The Best Of Whodini

1980 – Kurtis Blow – Kurtis Blow

1980 – The Sugarhill Gang – The Sugarhill Gang

1984 – Fat Boys – Fat Boys

1984 – Newcleus – Jam On Revenge

1982 – Man Parrish – Hip Hop Bee Bop

1982 – Warp 9 – It’s a Beat Wave

1981 – Sharon Redd – Sharon Redd

1979 – Inner Life – I’m Caught Up (In a One Night Love Affair)

1977 – First Choice – Delusions (Bonus Version)

1975 – The Salsoul Orchestra – Anthology Vol. 1

1973 – MFSB – Deep Grooves

1972 – Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes – Blue Notes And Ballads

1970 – The Main Ingredient – L.T.D.

1968 – The Intruders – Cowboys to Girls

1965 – Barbara Mason – Yes I’m Ready

1961 – Jerry Butler – Aware Of Love

1962 – Gene Chandler – The Duke Of Earl

1961 – Mary Wells – Bye Bye Baby

1958 – Jackie Wilson – He’s So Fine

1957 – Solomon Burke – The Apollo Masters

1959 – Sam Cooke – Tribute To The Lady

1958 – The Drifters – Rockin’ and Driftin’

1956 – The Platters – The Platters

1956 – Pat Boone – Howdy!

1952 – Eddie Fisher – Christmas with Eddie Fisher

1951 – Frankie Laine – One For My Baby