Thursday, 13 February 2014

Day Zero Project: Reorganise the music on my mp3 player

I like music. I have quite a big music collection. So big in fact that I have to be quite choosey about what I have on my mp3 player at any one time. Christmas music, for example, is put on at the end of November, but then if I want to listen to other stuff the rest of the year I have to take it off otherwise I’m at risk of running out of space on it.

My mp3 player is a (slightly ancient) 30Gb Creative Zen Vision:M. I don’t even think that Creative make those sorts of mp3 players any more which is a shame because I’ve only ever had two mp3 players, both Creative Zens and I’ve loved them both (not least because it saves me the hassle of having to use iTunes to organise my music). It’s kind of slowly dying and I’m hanging onto it for as long as I can, even if it does occasionally randomly delete my music or refuse to turn off.

Part of my problem is that whenever I get a CD, or more recently buy an mp3, I stick it on my Zen. New film soundtrack? On it goes. Free download from Amazon? On it goes. Those free CDs you get with the paper? On it goes. It’s resulted in quite a bit of junk on my Zen that I don’t actually listen to, it’s just there because, hey, you never know when you’re going to feel in the mood for Top Kids Party Songs 3!

My music collection is becoming even more complicated with the arrival of my iPhone and Kindle. Because my music collection is in desperate need of reorganising on my Zen I’ve got into the habit of not adding to the problem, but obviously, I want to be able to listen to my music on the go. So onto my iPhone it goes. My iPhone which has even less free space on it than my Zen. This means I have to do the music rotation thing on it; do I want a country music CD on there or The Hobbit soundtrack? I like to rock to Taylor Swift in the shower, do I leave that on or try something else?

And now I’ve got my Kindle I’ve got yet another device storing my music. And it’s so easy to put stuff on there that it just makes things even worse! Like last week, I ordered myself the soundtrack for The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, as soon as I paid for it there was a little link to download the mp3 version, so I had it on my Kindle two days before the actual hard copy arrived.

That coupled with some things being backed up to my external hard drive, some back up to the cloud, some backed up onto DVDs and some stored on my computer (which are probably backed up in one of those other places, but which I can’t be bothered to check at any one time, so get rebacked up somewhere else) means that my music collection is in a bit of a mess.

What I really want to do is make some nice playlists for my mp3 player, Kindle and phone so that I have things that match my mood. A few years ago I made an awesome (but sadly now lost) Summer playlist. It was the perfect music for relaxing in the garden on a hot summer day, or driving through the countryside during warm sunny weather. I started making a Winter one as well which I never finished. I like having music that suits my mood, music which tells a story, music that reminds me of particular things, places or people. I really need to get my act together and do that.

The problem is, unless I ban myself from buying any more music (and we all know that’s never going to happen) I’m just going to have to suck it up and try to organise things. Part of me thinks it might be easier to just wipe everything, dig out the CDs and rerip everything. Although considering I’ve had an mp3 player since I was 19, that could take even longer to do than just going through things a bit at a time and tidying them up.

How do you guys keep track of what you’ve got and where?

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