The idea of divorcing myself entirely from Google’s ecosystem isn’t a realistic one for me, though I do it where I can (though having moved to iOS, the cure sometimes seems worse than the disease). One of the tattered bindings holding me to Google was the music thing. And while I do plan to take up a hundred gigabytes on one of their databases somewhere for as long as I possibly can, I’m glad the company admitted that what they were giving me didn’t make sense for them any more. It means one less reason that what Google has to give makes sense for me.
Every service from Google now, especially with those new, bad logos, feels less like it’s offering a solution to a problem and more like it’s just another form of leverage for the company. We were spoiled by the old, weird Google that did things like Books because they could, throwing it in the teeth of the publishers, or Wave, an experiment in interactivity that in many ways is still ahead of its time. They did things because they hadn’t been done, and now they do things because they can’t let you leave.
So, RIP Google Music. You were good while you lasted, but ultimately what you did best was show me that we deserved better, and we weren’t going to get it by waiting around for Google to return to its roots.
The best way to manage a music collection is with a tool like Nextcloud, which allows documents, music and other data to be remotely synchronized between devices with no dependency on Big Tech.