“When it comes to finding the best music or putting together the perfect playlist which flows naturally, there are some things humans do better than computers or algorithms” says Romain, our rap music editor, “My job at Deezer is to bring that human touch”.
At Deezer we take pride in our cutting-edge technology and algorithms. But this technology goes hand in hand with human knowledge and intuition which play an important part in creating the most personalized listening experience possible.
The global editorial team is made up of around 50 people, including Romain. Their role is to search for the best music around the world, handpick tracks and put flawless playlists together to offer insight into local trends and new artists. Romain walks us through a day in his life.
In the rap industry, there’s always something going on whether it’s a new release, a new music video or a feud between rappers. I make sure I’m up to speed with everything.
9:30 a.m.: I leave my apartment and head to the Paris subway. On my way to the office I usually listen to all the new mixtapes I found, saving the ones which are good and can add to my playlists.
10:05 a.m.: While drinking my coffee, I go through my emails and gather more on the latest rap news and music websites. Then I get down to business and work on my playlists.
I have around 30 active playlists, most of them rap playlists, but I have made a few pop playlists as well. A big part of my job is to analyze their performances. On the Deezer dashboard, I check which ones are working and which are not. If a playlist isn’t performing as well as expected I try the find the reasons and make a few changes (track order, cover picture, add new songs etc.).
On average, 60,000 to 70,000 people listen to my playlists every day. Thanks to the dashboard, I gather precious information on my listeners (gender, age group, number of tracks played by per user per playlist etc.) which helps me to interpret the results and come up with tailored solutions to make their music experience even better.
12:45 p.m.: I usually go out for lunch to get some fresh air or come back with a take away and eat in the office’s garden and crack a few jokes with my colleagues.
01:30 p.m.: When I get back from lunch, apart from digesting I listen to some more new tracks and check again for the latest updates in the industry.
We just launched our new “Channels” feature, so part of my job is to work on the hip hop content there as well. All the recommendations, album highlights, new releases and metrics users see, are made by my colleagues and I.
02:40 p.m.: In the afternoon, I like to take time to focus on French rap music. My main sources are Abcdr, SURL or Booska-p. Lately the French rap scene has been moving a lot. We have talented new artists like Numbers, Joordee, LUTĒCE, Kekra, Cahiips etc. I recommend everyone go check out their tracks.
I think I fell in love with rap music when I was 12 years old. What I like about this genre is that it suits any kind of situation. If you are partying and looking to have a good time, listen to rap music. If you’re sad or depressed listen to rap music.
For me, rap has lots of groove but also melancholy, and the genre is often misunderstood. Every day a new mixtape drops and every day the genre evolves, it’s exciting, it keeps me on my toes!
03:04 p.m.: I concentrate most of my meetings in the afternoon. We are 50 editors worldwide so it’s important for us stay in touch and constantly exchange with one another. I can’t hold meetings at 10am in Paris, unless our US editor fancies getting up in the middle of the night.
As I’m based at the headquarters, my job is to advise local editors on the different rap market segments, support their local efforts and understand their local specificities. On their side, they are in touch with labels, work on artist/festival campaigns etc.
04:30 p.m.: Today, I met with a French radio station to discuss playlist partnerships. On Deezer, there are thousands of awesome live radios. As music editors and experts in our field we work closely with external stakeholders on these kind of content and partnerships.
06:30 p.m.: When leaving the office, I usually head to a rap concert or go for some drinks with friends. The great thing about living in Paris is that there’s always something going on and available wine to drink.
When I get home in the evening, I tune in to my favorite rappers. My favorite part of the day is when I get to listen to riddims by Ralifé or Kéros-nand discover new artists.
Right now my favorite rapper is Ramriddlza Canadian rapper with Egyptian roots who sings like a Jamaican.
The top 6 songs you will find in my flow at the moment are: