Spotify on Linux
I’ve been trying to use command-line tools more often recently, and that includes my music software. For a long time, I was using the official Spotify client for linux, with an AUR package here. This was fine for a while, but I really wanted to be able to use it on the commandline. This post is documentation on where I went with this.
I started by doing a search for “spotify tui”. This led me to a number of
options, but the only standalone one I could find was
ncspot, a TUI
written in Rust. I used
cargo install to build and compile ncspot, and was
presented with a screen allowing me to enter my username and password.
Following that, I was shown to the main screen, which looks like this:
I could use the arrow keys or
hjkl to navigate the tabs and songs, and
F3 to navigate the different contexts1. The keybindings were
a bit confusing (
Shift-p to toggle playback, and
< to skip songs).
This is what the album view looked like:
This worked well for me, for a little while. Eventually I got tired of not being able to control it from my phone or control other devices from my laptop.
For those who don’t know, Spotifyd is an open source spotify client that runs as
a system service. Its major benefit to me is the ability to use Spotify Connect
to control or be controlled by other devices like my phone. Spotifyd is part of
the AUR for different audio backends, so the install was a simple
yay -S spotifyd-pulseaudio.
Following the documentation at the project’s github, I filled
out a configuration file, which is tracked in my dotfiles
repository. My password is tracked by
pass, so I can put that command
in the configuration file without worrying about my password getting leaked into
git. There’s also a systemd service, that I placed in my
folder to run as a user service.
spotifyd enabled and running, I found a frontend in
spotify-tui, another TUI written in Rust. I followed the README
directions and created my OAuth application. With my Client ID/Secret in hand,
I managed to authenticate with the Spotify API and could select devices.
One of the advantages of spotifytui over ncspot at least is that it supports
Spotify Connect, so that I can control both the
spotifyd service running on my
laptop and any other clients running on my network, including my phone.
The main layout of
spotify-tui looks like this:
Overall I like
spotify-tui a lot more than
ncspot, but I’m keeping it on my
system in case I need to run multiple clients at once.
spotify-tui is available in the AUR as
yay -S spotify-tui.
Queue, Search, and Library, respectively ↩︎