I freely admit that I am a total junkie when it comes to technology — particularly technology that I can use to make my work easier. I have highlighted a few of these in the recent past (Music Teacher’s Helper, Dropbox, Gigbook) and now I’m adding another to that ever-growing list: Spotify.

When I first heard about this new application, I thought it sounded cool but didn’t take the time to really look into it. I knew you had to have an invitation to get the free version, so I figured I’d just wait until it was more freely available.

But then I kept seeing posts and links to Spotify on Facebook, so finally last night I decided to see what all the excitement was about. Ten minutes later, I found myself springing for the $10/month Premium version.

The free version of Spotify lets you search for, play, and share with your friends millions of tracks — pretty much any song you can think of — via the Spotify app on your desktop. Pretty cool. The unlimited version ($5/month) lets you do this without advertisements and for as long as you like. The premium version lets you do this not only from your desktop, but also on a mobile device WITHOUT even being connected to the internet.

For example, last night I created a playlist of both songs I own (Spotify imports your iTunes library and even retains your playlists) and songs I searched for in Spotify. Then I connected my iPhone and iPad to WiFi and without even connecting them to my computer, the playlist synced to both devices. Today I listened to that playlist in my car using my iPhone.

But the coolest application of Spotify for me is how I can utilize it in my studio. I can create unique playlists for my students and play them either on my computer or on my iPad. Instead of listening to just a sample of a song or having to purchase it, we can stream the entire thing so that my student can decide whether or not to add it to his/her repertoire.

I have only just begun to explore the possibilities, but I’m already hooked. Warning: searching for songs and browsing your Facebook friends’ playlists can be quite addictive! Have you jumped on the Spotify bandwagon? If so, I’d love to hear how you are using it.

As I mentioned earlier, the free version of Spotify requires an invitation. I have 8 left to give out, so the first 8 people to comment on this post will receive an invitation in their email inbox!