Radio Tuna was created by three music fans from the UK. We thought searching radio should be easier (we like easy stuff), so we imagined how a radio search engine should work and set about creating it. The result turned out to be quite a lot less easy to build than we’d imagined, but we think the effort was worth it – we hope you agree!
Radio Tuna is the first real-time search engine for online radio, and we’re the only radio search engine that profiles stations based on the music they play, rather than what they say they play. We’ve found that it’s the only way to get consistently good results – if you search for stations playing ‘funk’, that’s what you’ll find (not stations that say they play funk but actually play soul, or those that play similar genres like funky metal). The Tuna’s nifty technology works out the musical DNA for each station, so you get to know what to expect before tuning in. Spend less time trying out stations you won’t like, more time enjoying the ones that you will.
We’ve worked hard to produce a simple yet powerful search and navigation interface, and we’ll be busily working on the site to make it even better in future. If you have any suggestions for how we could improve, we would love to hear from you.
Radio Tuna is simple to use but uses complex technology. At its core is a clever algorithm that processes the data from thousands of streams in real time, and uses the data from two databases to work out what’s being played. These databases are made available to the public by Musicbrainz, and by Discogs, and they were created in the same way as Wikipedia – by thousands of individuals, contributing for free. We are proud to be able to put this data to a new use, and are very grateful to all those wonderful people out there in the world whose efforts make our site possible.
Online radio is the ultimate ‘Long Tail’ music service. If you’re into a type of music that’s outside the mainstream, you’ve probably found that other services have a limited selection that eventually becomes repetitive. Internet radio doesn’t have this problem as there are no limits on the catalogue and there is always new stuff to find. Every style of music is covered, from pop to punk, afrobeat to zouk, and everything in between.
Although there are some large professional stations with thousands of listeners, there are many more tiny ones who only broadcast to a handful of people. These small stations usually cost more to run than they ever make and exist purely for the love of the music. Stations like these often sell merchandise or accept donations to help them survive, so please visit the station homepages and support your favourites if you like what they do.