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Type of site
Available in English
Owner Wolfgang's Vault
Launched March 2006

Daytrotter is a commercial website for the recording studio Horseshack, which hosts recording sessions with many popular and typically up-and-coming indie music acts, although it works with local bands in the Illinois area as well. This innovative music studio was founded in 2006 by Sean Moeller. The sessions can be compared to that of a radio station's lounge recordings, where musicians passing through the town can record live in the studio. Due to their tendency to offer an eclectic sampling of music, and their production style (see Studio section below) the sessions have been compared to that of the legendary Peel Sessions.[1][2] According to the Daytrotter website, they have served more than 21.5 million song downloads which are only available with a membership for a monthly fee.


  • The site typically hosts around 60 songs by 17 bands per week, almost all available as downloads.
  • The site is not free, there is a forced membership with a monthly fee to listen to the songs or download them.
  • There is an archives section of past performers, each illustrated by a staff of illustrators.
  • In addition to music, there are sections of reviews and commentaries of musicians and their releases, some done by veteran magazine writers and critics.
  • The site is a winner of the Nielsen Online and "Music Blog of the Year" (2007) award,[3] and The Morning News 2007 Editor's Award for Online Excellence.[2] The site has also received praise or coverage from Rolling Stone, Wired, The New York Times, The Boston Globe, Esquire, Harp, Pitchfork Media, and The Chicago Tribune.[4]


  • The producing commercial studio, Horseshack, is located in Rock Island, Illinois.
  • A minimalist recording process is used to record the visiting bands, the recording process is analog, with no editing, and no overdubbing.[5] The final stage in the recording process goes digital, in order to be able to host the music on the website in MP3 format. The setup is configurable to the preferences of performers.[5]


  1. ^ Van Buskirk, Eliot (2007-09-27). "DayTrotter: Somewhat Like the Peel Sessions". Wired. Retrieved 2007-12-24. 
  2. ^ a b "2007 Editor's Awards for Online Excellence". The Morning News. Retrieved 2008-01-24. 
  3. ^ "Best Music Blog Winners". Nielsen. Archived from the original on 2007-12-17. Retrieved 2007-12-25. 
  4. ^ "Daytrotter: Press". Daytrotter. Archived from the original on 2007-12-12. Retrieved 2008-01-24. 
  5. ^ a b "Daytrotter: About". Daytrotter. Archived from the original on 2009-03-06. Retrieved 2010-10-12. 

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