Thursday, August 12, 2010

The Back-up Plan

(picture a giant stack of CDs here)
Today marks day one of the most arduous and difficult task of my adult life -- beginning the process of backing up my entire CD collection (and Wendy's) on my external hard drive.

There's a couple of reasons I've been putting it off. Most of the music I care about is on the hard drive already. Plus I suspect that the only reason Wendy has been getting on me to do this for so long is because she secretly wants to throw all of our CDs in the trash. I'm a little more sentimental than that.

But mostly I guess I was reluctant to start doing this because it's going to force me to take stock. To take a long, hard look at every CD I've managed to hold onto over the years, whether bought, gifted, borrowed, or acquired through any other free-and-totally-not-illegal means. Some of this stuff I haven't listened to in years. I don't even know if it's worth backing up.

Of course, there are plenty of good reasons to do this. Wendy and I came up with these:

1. Makes it easier to share music. Someone wants something or we have a recommendation, just plug it in and drag the files over.
2. Makes it much easier to create mix CDs for the car. Wendy and I are both pretty OCD about these (a mix has to be just right or the whole thing will suck), so it makes sense to at least have a comprehensive foundation to work with.
3. One day maybe all CD players will vanish off the face of the earth.
4. Adding/deleting music from mp3 players becomes much easier.

It's that last reason that gave me the motivation to start doing this, and strangely, it was brought on by the fact that I've been listening to music on my Juke more often. I don't use the Juke as my phone anymore, but now I get more fun out of using it more as a music player than I ever did using it as a phone.

See, my iPod is 30 gigs(in reality, more like 24.70 worth of music files). It has most of the music I love. But because of that, there's no room to add anything else. It's got to the point where adding/deleting stuff becomes like cutting off one of my fingers to graft on a talon. Sure, the talon might be fearsome, but I might get sick of it and want the finger back eventually.

But having a 30 gig iPod, along with a 2 gig Juke is the ideal situation. I never have to change anything on my iPod again, and I can use the Juke to rotate music that I'm currently into as well as new music that I might even grow to love one day. Everybody wins.

Doesn't make this task any easier. While I'm doing this, I plan on logging some of my impression and experiences about the music I'm archiving, so you can all get a feel for why I never wanted to do this in the first place. For example, here's what I backed up this morning:

AC/DC - Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap
AC/DC - Highway to Hell (if you have two AC/DC albums, you have two too many. They have some great radio hits and funny songs like "Big Balls", but to call their music one-dimensional is an insult to bands that have a dimension.)
Aesop Rock - Bazooka Tooth (I'm not really sure why I have this. I think I burned it to CD so I could delete it off my iPod or something)
Air Miami - Me. Me. Me. (I still like this album a lot. Check out a couple tracks from it below)

Alice Donut - Mule (This album is OK. I used to think it was a lot better than it was)

This could turn out to be a fruitful blog series or it could be something I tire of and abandon in a week. Either way, I know you guys will stick with me.


Austin said...

With a name like "The Back-up Plan" I was afraid you were going to post about the terrible J-Ho movie of the same name. (True I haven't seen it, but I've seen enough of the previews as well as J-Ho movies to know it's terrible).

Tracie is always trying to clean out our iTunes of songs she knows we don't listen to, but I'm of the mind that we may want it someday, so we should keep it.

I think I may be the only one, though.

Jacob I. McMillan said...

Maybe one day this blog post will be more popular than that failed comeback attempt of a movie bomb.

What do you think Professor Frink is rocking out to on his headphones in your icon? I say Rush.

Austin said...

Those are his Hamburger earmuffs, ready to hit the shelves once he solved the "pickle matrix." Mayvin.

And I think he's rockin to the Zep.