Earlier this week, it was announced that Beats 1 host Ebro Darden had been promoted to global editorial head of hip-hop and R&B. Now, Darden has sat down with Complex to go more in-depth about his new role, what the future holds for Apple Music, and more.

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Regarding his new title at Apple Music, Darden explains that he will be tasked with “overseeing the strategy and direction of all of the hip-hop and R&B for the globe.” He says that his goal is to make sure Apple Music “is focused, directed, and organized on the right sounds” when it comes to discovering hip-hop and R&B music.

Perhaps most interestingly, Darden touches on the difference between human and algorithmic curation at Apple Music. The Beats 1 host explained that he doesn’t think many people understand the true capabilities of what Apple Music has to offer, including human curated content like Beats 1 and algorithmically generated playlists:

What we’ve tried to do with Apple Music and Beats 1 is merge those concepts. Inside Apple Music, you can get an algorithmic radio station for sure. You can get playlists that are tailored to certain moods and sounds and vibes. But you can also get Beats 1, which is a live radio station inside Apple Music. You can get mixes from DJs inside Apple Music and music videos inside Apple Music. I don’t think even people understand the capabilities that are available, the things that they can do.

Darden also notes that going forward, Apple Music is putting a focus on making things like Beats 1 content and live shows easier to find:

There are on-demand interviews via video and on-demand radio shows. I mean, if you want to listen to OVO Sound, if you want to listen to Pharrell, if you want to listen to Travis Scott shows, Frank Ocean shows, if you want to listen to live things, they happen live. You can also get the playlists of those shows. One of the things we’re going to be doing in the years to come is make that stuff easier to find and easier to use.

The full interview, which dives deeper into Darden’s various roles at Hot 97 and more, can be read on the Complex website.


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