Friday, December 15, 2006

Two Tools for Managing Your Music

Hey Stream Crossers,

Like many music aficionados, collection is quite large. Also, since it is an amalgamation between several collections in my house, there is a significant degree of duplication. Add to that a great deal of missing tags, and poorly structured naming convensions, you have a recipe for a mess.

By this point, manual organization is out of the question. Software, and plenty of it, must be employed to manage this beast.

ID3-TagIT is a great free package for managing tags and file names. It has internet naming look up, but it is still quite rough. It manages bot v1 and v2 tags and lets you scrounge every last bit of information form the music files before having to look it up on the internet.

Media Monkey is a fantastic piece of software that really lets you get up to your elbows in managing you music. It also has an internet look up function. It uses as its source, which is great since you can also get the album art. unfortunately Amazon only has the actual disk's publication date, so you wind up with results stating that the Beatles' White Album was released in 2001. What the *&%^%$% ?

Another cool feature is that Media Monkey will suggest files that appear to be duplicates. It won't actually delete anything automatically, you have to hit the delete button for that to happen. The fact that MM "sees through" the file structure is a very powerful feature.

All in all, both these tools are good to have on your computer, but if you could have only one, Media Monkey is the choice since the last release of ID3-TagIT was in July 2005, rather old in software circles (its not like the software is so perfect that it can halt future releases).

With conventional recordings, where the entire album is released by one band or artist, I will create a directory for the band/artist and a sub folder for the album itself. If the CD is a compilation with various artists, I'll just create a folder for the album itself, unless I want to group the albums together such as with Christmas albums.

As for file naming conventions, my rule is pretty strict: - - . Again, if the CD is multi-artist, I'll go with - - . The track number is mandatory and always double digits (otherwise tracks 10, 11, and 12 show up before 1, 2, and 3). This way tracks order in the way they should appear on the CD, since someoverlap occurs on some tracks.

With these simple rules, you too can have a neatly organized music library.

Until next time, keep having fun!

"bah weep graaagnah wheep ni ni bong"


Sal said...

Is "bah weep graaagnah wheep ni ni bong" from IGGY in Buck Rogers?