Free travel? How ’bout free music?
To mark its 40th anniversary, Southwest is giving away 40 free iTunes songs.
To be clear, these are 40 tunes of Southwest’s own choosing, not 40 tunes that you would choose yourself. So while the nominal value of the music is around $40 (most iTunes songs cost $0.99 each), the real value to you will depend on how your taste and Southwest’s line up. Which raises the question: How did Southwest pick those 40 songs?
According to an article in Southwest’s inflight magazine, the principle guiding the music choices was as follows:
The birth of an airline and the launch of a music career involve dreams of taking off (and, yeah, some baggage). The 40 new artists featured here are not only ready to fly, they’re doing what artists do: giving us the music to carry on.
In other words, they’re tunes from musicians you’ve mostly never heard of. And they run the gamut, genre-wise, from country to hip-hop to jazz to classical. So should you even take the time to download them to your music player? It’s a bit of a crap shoot.
I did, and I’m listening to them as I write this. While I’m not sure which of the tunes I’ll ultimately keep and which I’ll jettison, the collection overall is as enjoyable as any mix tape I’ve ever received.
Incidentally, the related inflight magazine article also includes a list of “High Flyers”—the top single and album on June 18 (Southwest’s launch date) for each of the past 40 years. Talk about blasts from the past!
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This article originally appeared on FrequentFlier.com.