Hi, my name is Paul and I am a music addict...
Ok, so seriously, even though every aspect of my professional life revolves around music...what do I do for a hobby? I collect music, and I am obsessively compulsive.
According to my iTunes, I have 1135 artists and 8325 albums...and yes most of them are legit purchased downloads and rips of my cd, album and sadly in a few places tape collection. (I will give a 10-15% variance if I am honest that I got some from friends along the way too). Here are some of my personal facts, maybe some of you can commiserate.
- When I discover a new band or artist, be it someone new or even an obscure jazz artist from the 40's I will collect everything that they ever did and then aurally digest them in order of release. I will also get every biography I can find.
- I have always been into bootleg collecting so 2627 albums in my collection are a combination of live shows, studio outtakes and alternate and unreleased albums.
- Every album in my digital collection MUST have a cover! It must be the original cover from the original year of release. If it is a bootleg and does not have a cover, I will seek out live picks from that show and make one.
- 4-5 years ago I got into the Grateful Dead for the 1st time and now have as far as I know every existing and circulating soundboard show of theirs on existence both in FLAC and converted to AAC for use in my iPod. Anyway, I spent over a year creating covers for them all complete with actual shots of the show, posters and ticket stubs and then released them to the Dead trading community.
- I also collect traditional Jazz recordings and all of the above parameters apply even to the extent that when a box set comes out like "The Complete Columbia Recordings of..." I will take said box set and break it apart and sequence all of the music back into the original album releases and running orders, again complete with the original album cover. In other words I want to hear how someone would have experienced the 5 song 10" Nat King Cole or Charlie Parker album back when it was released, and not 3 takes of the same song right in a row.
- For rock albums, I will do the same thing especially with Best ofs and Greatest hits, in Itunes I split them back into their original albums even if its just 1 or 2 songs, then if I like those songs and think think the album good enough or historic enough I will use e-music, itunes or amazon to purchase the missing songs from said album.
- 7 years ago I ripped my entire CD collection (some 2000+ CDs) into iTunes, but unfortunately did so at 128...the then Itunes standard. Then my wife and I moved and my CDs went into storage. Now we have our own place again and I am in the middle of a big re-rip of my collection at 320 AAC and Apple Lossless if it is an album like Kind Of Blue, American Beauty, Dark Side Of The Moon etc where sound quality and historic significance are paramount to me.
And yes, according to iTunes it would take me 435 days to listen to it all end to end...so like many of you, it is too much.
Why do I do it?
- One as a musician, its like an author having an over stuffed library of books that they could not possibly re-read in a life time.
- I like being able to hit random on a 1950's jazz mix or 1970's rock mix or a 1992-1998 mix of the golden era of space music.
- I like knowing if I have a client who wants to sound like artist X in year ? at studio B I can find digest and try and replicate the sounds and techniques.
How do I afford my habit?
- Well I used to work at CD and record stores for 5-6 years of my life and got a great discound...especially when I could buy used CDs and LPs fpr $1.
- Now rather than buy a $5 latte, I would rather spend $5 on a download at amazon and e-music.
- Also there are some great, creative and LEGAL ways! Like Amazon offers daily and monthly deals at $5 or less. Many albums on e-music are similarly priced (and actually 4 years ago I was able to get jazz and ambient albums on e-music for $1 - $2 each before they wised up and went to a cash system VS a monetary one), sometimes on iTunes and Amazon they will miss long one or two track albums like many of Miles Davis 70's fusion classics and you can buy the individual songs for $1 each and so on...
So there you have it! I am an addict just like all'y'all!
PS now I struggle with the legal and moral ramifications of, "If I rip my CDs can I just sell them?" Of which the Law says no... also as hard drives get even cheaper will I some day want to re-rip them again at higher rates... and so forth.