When I first introduced Music Assistant, I was excited to see the direction it is heading in, but concluded that it might not quite be ready for primetime yet. The most recent release adds a much-needed feature in global search, and a new music provider in YouTube Music. Besides that, there are the usual bug fixes, performance improvements, and UI/UX refinements you would expect in a major release.
Play YouTube Music through Music Assistant
While YouTube Music might still have some way to go until it catches up to Spotify in terms of both functionality and user base, there were plenty of users that wanted to see it integrated with Music Assistant.
The only stumbling block to this development is the fact that YouTube Music does not have an official API. If it had, it would likely have launched alongside Spotify when Music Assistant was first released. As a consequence, setting up the integration isn’t as simple as just adding your username and password.
Instead, you are required to figure out your log-in cookie using Chrome’s network tools. There are quite a few steps you will need to follow to get the details needed to integrate YouTube Music. The creator, MarvinSchenkel on GitHub, has detailed the procedure in the project’s discussion board. Here’s hoping Google gets their act together and opens up their service.
Search beyond your Music Assistant library
While adding YouTube Music to the list of music providers is great, existing users will be more excited about the addition of global search. Previously, there was no way to play any music from Spotify you hadn’t liked in the app. You were stuck with your library and couldn’t access the greater Spotify library. That changes today. Using global search, you can search for any artist that might be available on Spotify.