Adding radio streams to iTunes

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Reader Matt Ernst would like to further populate iTunes’ Radio selections. He writes:

I’d like to add some streams to the “Radio” section of iTunes. I have some favorite stations that I’d like to tune into, and would like to access them through iTunes. Can you give me the steps for adding streams?

Step 1: Let go of the idea that you can add streams to the list that appears when you select Radio in iTunes’ Source list. This section of iTunes is controlled by Apple and you can neither add nor subtract streams from it.

Step 2: Understand that you can add your own streams to the iTunes Library and then create playlists to hold those streams. To do so…

Step 3: Travel to Shoutcast and find stations you wish to stream to your computer.

Step 4: After locating a desirable stream, click the Tune In! button. You’ll be presented with the option to download a .pls (playlist) file. Do so.

Step 5: Your browser may automatically add the playlist to iTunes and start streaming the station. If it doesn’t, double-click the file and it will be added to iTunes and the station will begin playing.

Step 6: You needn’t rely on outfits like Shoutcast and Live365 for your iTunes streams. Some terrestrial and Internet radio stations offer .pls links from their homepages. You can also add stations if you have their streaming address—an address in the form of

With such an address in hand, choose Advanced > Open stream and add the address to the URL field.

Step 7: Once your stations are in the iTunes library you may wish to create new playlists that contain them—organized by all the stations you possess (create a Smart Playlist and use Kind Contains Audio Stream to grab them all) or by genre.

Step 8: Although you can’t bring items into Apple’s Radio list, you can copy stations from that list to the playlists you create. Just drag them from the Radio list to do so.

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