Recommendations for music players with "smart" playlists (Linux, desktop)

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One of the things that brought me to Kodi was (in addition to MusicBrainz integration) that it has “smart playlists”—where you give it some criteria (e.g., “genre should be ‘folk’ AND from between 1990 and 2002 AND have ‘June’ in the title”) and then it’ll make a “playlist” based on that. (So essentially saving a query against your music library.)

beets provides this to some extent, but it’d be nice to also have a less resource hungry alternative to Kodi to play music with that also didn’t rely on beets’ pre‐generated playlists.

I looked at Banshee a bit (I think I used that ages ago for a bit too), but it looks like that project is essentially dead (no new release in 5 years).

What other options are there?

PS. Obviously, being able to submit listens to ListenBrainz is also a requirement. :slight_smile:


While most of the time I use a linux laptop at home I don’t tend to use it to play music.
I tend to use kodi now someone added support thanks @Freso.

Rhytembox is a bit old but is usually enough for my needs when I have a basic playlist.
Or I may just drag and drop into vlc and play songs manually.

For more full featured there is clementine / strawberry but I have not used them.

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Wait… ListenBrainz is supported by more player than just Spotify ?

Quod Libet comes to mind. I haven’t really used it for quite a while, but I always liked how you can build playlists based on queries, it should be able to do what you described.

Yes, it is


Can you export that Smart Playlist from KODI as an M3U playlist and then use that on any player. KODI becomes the recommendation engine.

I can see that may be a few too many manual steps left when copying to the device in this modern world of automation\auto-selection :smiley:

I’m a KODI addict, but still hand select my music for my portable media player.

That’s essentially what the beets approach that I’m describing is doing. I’m looking for a player (other than Kodi) that does this on its own.

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I know some folks have been successful using MusicBee under Wine. I don’t know if that’s an option for you. Steven hasn’t added Listenbrainz support yet, but with recent shenanigans I think he’s leaning that way. I’ll probably make a general post here when he does.

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