Thursday, February 28, 2008

Music makes the people come together

My iPod was totally feeling me this morning. After listening to a podcast or two, I shifted over to shuffling songs, and this is what it produced:

S.O.S – The Breeders
Paranoid Android - Radiohead
Rudi, a Message to You – The Specials
Steady as She Goes – The Raconteurs
Violently Happy - Bjork
Phantom Bride - Erasure
Shame on You – The Indigo Girls
Nth Degree - Morningwood

Not a skipper in the bunch, and som that I hadn't heard in a while. I even let the last song play out as I sat in the parking lot of my office building, savoring the last few moments of “me” time before heading inside for the bulk of the day.

I have been using the shuffle option more recently, partially in response to a recent loss of all of my playlists and rankings. We switched over to being a Mac household (hello, mini!) and I had to convert the iPod over to a Mac-format. The net result of this was losing all the work I’d put in to organizing my music.

As a side note, while the loss of playlists/rankings was initially maddening, I’ve come to look at is as a way to listen to my music collection with a new ear. Re-rank, etc. I’ve even gotten P into the game, sharing with her my selective approach to assigning the number of stars (between 1 and 5, with 1 meaning they are removed at next sync, 2 meaning they can stay on the iPod, 3 meaning I like them, 4 meaning I like them more and wouldn’t mind if they were on the “I don’t know what to play but people are coming over” playlist, and 5 meaning they are truly, truly great. I rarely grant a 5).

I don’t know how others approach or arrange their music, but I am particular in this regard. When I relied on my CD collection, it was organized alphabetically by artist, minus soundtracks/collections which were placed in a separate section (generally the lower right hand corner of the rack). If a new CD was acquired, everything was shifted to accommodate. If a CD was selected to play, its jewel case would be placed, cocked open and standing, on top of the player so I know what’s in there. Everything was always put away.

It was the same when I relied on cassettes, although that was harder given mixes and the less-than-optimal storage options. This was usually a series of 60 cassette “briefcases,” each laden with stickers from all the bands/activities I thought were cool. I still have one of these cases out of nostalgia, and a couple of cassettes (the soundtracks to Pretty in Pink and Footloose) live on our desk in the home office as happy little memories. Has my youth has become kitsch?

What can I say? Everyone has their “thing,” and mine is that I am particular about how music is treated. It treats me well, and I return the favor.

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