01 January 2010

An Ode to iTunes

Today is January 1, 2010. I still do not have the internet at my home and the only thing I truly feel I am missing out on is iTunes. Back in the day when I still believed in paying for the internet, I would peruse their "racks" for hours at a time, clicking on all my musical suggestions based on my purchases and buying songs I otherwise never would have. It was the highlight of many days and without it, I feel incomplete. I love iTunes.

When I first got a computer, I thought Limewire was the way to go. Although I had heard some sour things, it always treated me right and surprisingly, was pretty good at finding the songs I craved at exactly the right moment. The downloads were always fast and of course, always free. I cringed at even spending 0.99 in those times but eventually I realized that Limewire was not all I cracked it up to be. The connection always seemed to be lost and take hours to come back, there was never a good amount of independent artists to be found, and the quality left much to be desired - typically. I highly suggest Limewire to a person starting out their digital music collection because they do have all the basics for little to no money and usually live up to what they say. I have about 2100 songs in my collection and although I don't know the exact statistics (although I wish I did), I would bet that at least 37% are from Limewire and even if it was only 2% I'd be immensely grateful. I guess it's illegal but it feels so right.

iTunes, on the other hand, doesn't have that danger aspect but it does have everything else. I wish I could say they always have everything I'm looking for and mean it but generally I'd say about 90% can be found there. That number changes my life. I don't know who I'd be without the songs I've purchased through them. Receiving my iTunes invoice always seems like the right thing - I never regret a purchase and it's the only time that I feel I've had money well spent. The recent addition of the Genius bar, which is a great gimmicky advertisment to buy more songs, really helps me. If I'm playing The National and I see on the right side of my screen that I should also download Stars or Mountain Goats, it's always a pleasure (of course I never downloaded either of those bands but you get the idea..). Their suggestions are typically right on par and I have to give them much credit for my Raphael Saadiq, Jessie Baylin, and Mayer Hawthorne addictions.

I love getting all the details about artists I look up as well. Knowing which John Mayer song is the most popular download really interests me - and that goes for any other artist I search for on iTunes too. I just like having all the information accessible. I want to know the highest selling songs of the week overall and by genre, I want to know what celebrities have on their playlists, and I especially want to know every album that's coming out on the upcoming Tuesday. I love the option of just buying one or two songs and yet still being able to buy the whole shebang and getting it in the order the artist intended. Everything about the process equates to an image of a big, red bow wrapped around a huge collection of albums in my mind. Without having to buy every record in the world, I feel like they're still all at my fingertips... now how much more of a commercial could I possibly sound like?

The great thing is I'm serious. iTunes as a company is one I'm not resentful of. I think they deliver on everything they promise. The only downside is perhaps a lack of stock catering to more obscure fare. Luckily, I'm a sucker for recommendations so I'm happy nonetheless. The only thing I'm unhappy about right now is the lack of accessibility to my best friend, iTunes. I miss him. I NEED NEW MUSIC.

And on a 2010 note, I went from 26 posts in 2008 to 152 in 2009. I'm really happy about that. This and my job are the only two things I'm capable of keeping up with - in my entire life. That says A LOT. My love for music is one that continues to grow everyday and with every new song I fall in love with. It's such a journey and such a huge part of my soul. It actually took a long time for me to realize the important role it plays in my life but now that my eyes are open more than ever, I intend on going into this new year with even more musical eagerness and respect for the greatest, most powerful art on earth.

To anyone reading, thank you so much. I make no financial profit from this site but I profit in so many other ways that are much more important to me. I want everyone to hear the music I'm madly in love with - that's what matters.

1 comment:

Second Skin said...

Everyone should have a friend like you. It is obvious that you know and are so passionate about music and you probably know enough to tailor a mixed tape (whoa showing my age) or um playlist for someone who doesn't know much but wants to learn! I have a friend who is passionate about music as well and spends hours on some program searching and experimenting and she occasionally with make these mega data cds for me that have like one song from 50 artists I have never heard of and the introduction sort of leads me to their albums and more artists like them, but I honestly would never have known where to even start without her. You seem like that kind of friend. You know what people need and could help them find it! I am so happy to find your site! I really love many of the artists you have listed and look forward to learning more!