How to play music with Alexa?

Xenia
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Answer:
 

By default, Alexa speakers such as the Amazon Echo will turn to its own music service first, so you’ll need to connect Spotify to Alexa and make sure to select it as your default music player instead.

 

Linking Alexa to Spotify offers full control of playback and the very best of your library, with lots of commands for seamless control of your music, plus the Alexa Equalizer that allows you to fine-tune the audio.

 

This FAQ takes you through the process step by step, as well as some useful tips to take full advantage of the integration.

 

 

Link Spotify to Alexa

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Here’s how you link your accounts and set Spotify as the default music player for Alexa:

  1. Launch the Amazon Alexa app and select “More” in the bottom bar.
  2. Go to “Settings” and choose “Music & Podcasts” under ALEXA PREFERENCES.
  3. On top of the SERVICES list, there is a “Link New Service ” option. Tap it and choose the Spotify thumbnail in the following window.
  4. Then, log in to your Spotify account to proceed.
  5. When you log in, a permission screen appears asking you to allow Alexa access to Spotify. Hit AGREE, and a window pops up informing you that you’ve successfully linked the accounts.
  6. Now, tap CLOSE to exit this screen.
  7. A new window will open, asking if you want to choose a default Music Service. Tap VISIT MUSIC SETTINGS and select Spotify as default service for music and podcasts—et voilà.

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How to play music

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With Spotify set as your default music service you’ll have full access to your personalized content and requests for songs, artists, albums and playlists will source from Spotify. To get Alexa to play your Spotify playlist, try saying:

 

“Alexa, play [playlist name] playlist.”

 

Check out the list below for some essential controls that can be used with Alexa.


Of course, you can also use the Spotify apps on mobile and desktop devices as well as the web player through Spotify Connect to browse through Your Library and handpick your favorite tunes – you will see your speakers listed among the available devices.
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List of voice commands

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Choosing music / podcasts

  • “Alexa, play [title / artist / album].”
  • “Alexa, play [song] by [artist] on [device / speaker group].”
  • “Alexa, play [playlist].”
  • “Alexa, shuffle [playlist].”
  • “Alexa, play [genre].”
  • "Alexa, play [podcast name]."

Playing music

  • “Alexa, play.”
  • “Alexa, stop.”
  • “Alexa, pause.”
  • “Alexa, resume the song.”
  • “Alexa, stop shuffle.”
  • "Alexa, louder / quieter."
  • “Alexa, volume up / down.”
  • “Alexa, set volume to level [number].”
  • “Alexa, who is this?”
  • “Alexa, what song is this?”
  • "Alexa, turn this off in [minutes]."
  • “Alexa, Spotify Connect.”

Alexa EQ controls

  • "Alexa, set the treble to [number]."
  • “Alexa, increase bass.”
  • "Alexa, decrease treble.”
  • “Alexa, increase bass in [speaker group].”
  • "Alexa, set bass to [number] on [device].”

Alexa won’t play my playlist

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If you’re finding Alexa isn’t cooperating with your music requests and it’s always a random public playlist of the same name playing instead of your own, make sure you’re using the correct command.


You can check the “Voice History” under “Activity” in the Amazon Alexa app to check if she heard you correctly and leave feedback whether she did what you wanted to improve your Alexa experience.

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Another important thing to note is that you must use the exact name of the playlist you want. Things that are likely to cause issues are usually playlists that contain punctuation, emojis, acronyms and initialisms (e.g. NASA and BBC) or other words that are just difficult to pronounce. The easiest way to deal with those is to rename the playlist from within Spotify.

Note that Alexa might not be able to open newly/recently created playlists, because it can take time for Alexa to refresh your library of playlists. If you want to force it to find your new playlist immediately, try unlinking your Spotify in the Alexa app and then re-linking it (as described above). This should refresh the list of available playlists.

How to deal with tricky playlist names

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Naturally, you can only rename the playlists you created yourself - So, what about those playlists that you’re following, whose names you cannot edit?


One way to deal with this is to make a copy of the playlist and give it an easy to pronounce name that Alexa can understand. Keep in mind that your copied playlist won’t get any new songs added to the original, followed playlist, so we know this isn’t ideal.


You can also try to create an Alexa Routine that triggers playback of the desired playlist.

Once you have your routine set up, you can simply say: “Alexa, playlist.” and the favorite one will start automatically. Of course, you can always go back to the routines section and edit your preferences or have multiple routines for different playlists.

Can I use Alexa with a free account?

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Yes! Use Spotify Free and ask Alexa on your smart speaker for:
  • Any artist, album or track to hear a music mix inspired by your choice
  • Your personal playlists to hear a playlist radio based on your mix
  • Or listening to our specially curated playlists for every genre, mood or activity!

Tune in to hundreds of personalized radio stations with favorite and up-and-coming artists 🎶

Can I use multiple Spotify accounts with Alexa?

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It’s currently not possible to link more than one Spotify account per Alexa account, but there’s a workaround that allows you to set up multiple Spotify accounts to work on your Alexa.


You can add multiple accounts by setting up an Amazon Household. This way you can switch from one account to another just by talking to Alexa. For more details check out the related Amazon Help Topic here.


Note that everyone who intends to use it will need to set up their own account with Amazon which in turn has to be linked to their own Spotify account using their own version of the app. 


Alternatively, you can use Spotify Connect without having to link your accounts, but if you don’t, you won’t have the full functionality of Alexa’s commands either and you'll have to use the Spotify app to choose your music.


To do this, say "Alexa, Spotify Connect" to the specific speaker you want to listen to music on and follow the instructions that Alexa gives you (Open Spotify on your phone and select the playback device from the list). This allows you to play music from separate Spotify accounts on different speakers at the same time.


Tip: It’s best to keep Spotify closed when you use the "Spotify Connect" command, then open Spotify when she tells you to. If you don't, the connection between Spotify app and your speaker isn't always made.

Can I play Spotify across grouped speakers?

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You can indeed. Alexa supports Spotify for Multi-room Music, which allows you to sync your smart speakers.

Still need help?

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For additional help setting up and troubleshooting your Alexa speaker, go to the Amazon help site.

 

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