Sayonara Shuffle: The New Spotify Feature


With the release of Adele’s latest album, 30, Spotify has unraveled its newest feature to the app: the deletion of the shuffle button being the default option when listening to albums. 

    In the words of Adele herself, “Rumour Has It” that Spotify has bowed down to her one wish as an artist, in celebration of her newest album, 30. Well, the rumors are most definitely true. 

    As per Adele’s request, Spotify has nixed the idea of the shuffle button being the default option when users listen to albums on the app. Instead, they are now forced to listen to the album in the order that it was created. This major edit to the structure of the app’s design is truly a double-edged sword. However, Adele is grateful to Spotify for honoring her wish. 

    In the case of the album 30, Adele touches on sensitive topics in her life such as her recent divorce with ex husband Simon Konecki, her son Angelo Adkins, and the strength and perseverance it took to finally find herself again.

    “I’ve shed many layers but also wrapped myself in new ones…discovered genuinely useful and wholesome mentalities to lead with, and I feel like I’ve finally found my feeling again,” said Adele in a recent interview with The New York Times.

    In light of how deeply emotional this new album is, Adele formally requested Spotify to not have the shuffle button be the default option when listening to any artist’s album, not solely her own.

    “This was the only request I had in our ever changing industry,” said Adele in one of her most recent tweets on Twitter. “We don’t create albums with so much care and thought into our tracklist for no reason. Our art tells a story and our stories should be listened to as we intended.”

    Spotify complied, and even responded to her tweet with one of their own stating “Anything for you.”

    For those who are not avid Spotify users, what this essentially means is that when you hit “Play” in the Album View in Spotify, the tracks will now only play in order, not in any randomized fashion. Users still have the ability to shuffle the tracks, but this is only possible by clicking the “shuffle” icon when visiting individual songs. 

    It is very rare to see an artist have such a hold not only on her audience, but on the platforms that choose to stream her work. Up until now, it was quite unheard of for an artist to change the listening features of a streaming service, and some Spotify users have mixed feelings on this change.

    For junior John Barton, he feels this change came with nothing but good reasoning. 

    “I feel like it’s not that big of an issue because you still have the option to switch it back to shuffle if you want. I am also a firm believer that the first time you listen to an album it should be in the order it came in, so this change is something I can appreciate,” said Barton. 

    Barton also went on to speak about how this was a decision Spotify probably had in the works for a while. 

   “I think many other artists probably share the same sentiment in wanting their listeners to hear the album in the way the artists constructed it,” said Barton. “Having shuffle no longer be the feature that’s originally provided is probably something Spotify has considered changing for a long time, and Adele only provided the exigence for making that happen. The shuffle feature can still be used so I also don’t see how people would get upset by Adele calling for this.”

    Others agree with Barton’s perspective, as senior Mauricio Milian stated that “that’s the way it should [be]. I think albums are supposed to be listened to in chronological order.”

    Some users with Premium subscriptions to Spotify, which allow users to have unlimited streaming, the ability to download music, and unlimited skips, seem to be not as affected by the change. 

    “I have premium so I can click on any song I want in any order I please, [so Spotify’s new feature does not affect me much,] said senior Anya Datta. 

    Whether or not you’re a fan of saying sayonara to the shuffle button in Spotify, it seems this is a decision that won’t be changing for a long time. Who knew Adele could have such power over the industry, I mean “Oh My God?”