Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Music... my new passion.

I took piano lessons as a kid, and never gave it the respect it deserved. I like music, I'd love to be able to make music... but until I can get better at guitar, I'll have to settle for being able to listen to all the music I want.

In that regard... I've been trying to get my music library running through GBPVR to my stereo. This has proved trickier than I thought.

Here's why... I've amassed my collection of digital music over the years through various means. I've imported from CDs via iTunes and Media Player. Both applications import through their own means, and save the files in their own ways.

GBPVR has a very slick music plugin for it called Music Library 2. The biggest selling point for my, besides the slick interface, was that it Scrobbled to Last.FM. (Basically, it keeps track of what you've listened to, and customizes an online radio station for you.)

One problem, to keep design time down, this was designed to ONLY use .mp3 files. What to do about my .wma files that Media Player has been creating for me?

I thought I had a quick fix, with iTunes, because it would not only play .wma files, but it had the option to 'Convert to mp3'. Sweet! Except...

I have my music in an Artist/Album/Track setup. But I also have many compilation albums. These are under Various Artists, and Original Soundtracks.

iTunes, in it's conversion process, moved my tracks to an Artist/Album/Track folder setup. Which meant my compilation albums, with maybe 15-20 different artists, EXPLODED all over my D:\mp3\ folder...

So, I deleted all of those, which left me back at having .wma files.

The solution I then went to involved Jodix Free WMA to MP3 converter, which left my files in their original folders. One problem, it dropped the ID3 tags... which Music Library uses to organize in the UI.

Then came my final savior for this problem, ID3-TagIt

This sweet program lets you go in and swiftly update and correct your ID3 tags. It will even take a collection of files, that use the track names for filenames, and look up the album info on (If you are missing a file/track, it doesn't work so well.)

This worked out better than expected, as I had completely disorganized tags throughout my collection. It took a week and a half, but now I have an ALL mp3 collection with tags right down to the genre. Whew... crazy.

And don't worry, it took so long because I only did it on the side... with ID3-TagIt it really only took a few hours total. I DO have a life.


psycik said...

Hey, glad to see you have the benefit of cleaning your library...not the intent of my program though.

BTW - ML2 is able to read WMA files (since it uses Media Player for its tag reading - as of version 6.2)


Jordan K said...

nice. so where can i see this collection online? Winamp now has a plugin that lets you remote access your winamp music collection and play them. Could it be possible that a simple internet connection and I could dj a party? amazing