Keeping up with Music Media 108

I have escaped from the cardiac care unit after six days. Hurray! To be fair to the QEQM hospital in Margate, they give patients individual freeview televisions with built in DVD players, rather than the ridiculous Patientline rip off, and they don’t pretend mobile phones interfere with medical equipment (or bring down low flying aircraft, which they would were the entirely fake airline warnings true). I was able to patch my laptop through by using my phone as a hotspot, though unfortunately the phone data signal was weak to vanishing.

But one thing the experience did bring home to me was a problem with the portability of my music collection. I had downloaded my CDs on to my laptop and even purchased some music online. But I would like to put the collection in a still more portable format. The difficulty is I have over 14,000 tracks comprising some 1200 hours, currently in a windows media format.

I want an MP3 player but they don’t seem to have that much storage. I want a portable music player, as small and simple as possible, not something that phones, plays videos, connects to the internet or offers nutritional advice. I have great difficulty finding what I need as on close reading it appears that most devices don’t have a very high proportion of advertised memory actually available for music storage.

Any advice? I am constantly amazed that at least one well informed person on absolutely any subject you will name reads this blog. I don’t apologise for the lack of a proper post of commentary today – I am meant to be resting!!

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108 thoughts on “Keeping up with Music Media

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  • Phil


    Yes, it is impossible to avoid corporations. I use supermarkets as a convenience. But most of my food comes from local (as local as you can get to london) farms distributed by a relatively small company.

    But it is another thing to recommend apple and google to fulfill a need to have 14,000 songs at your fingertips.

    Why does anyone need 14,000 songs. They can’t all have a particular meaning to you. It is more often a corporate led consumner training festivel idolising idiot self serving musicians.

  • Jon


    I only own 3,634 songs taking up 26GB, pretty much all of which mean something to me *. That said, my Phillips music player only holds 4GB, and I tend to be quite happy to delete stuff and copy new things as and when. But I can understand why technophobes may be less comfortable with all that hassle.

    I agree, avoid Google and Apple where you can, especially their products that lock you in to their advertising/purchasing walled gardens. But let’s not write off people who do use them as anti-progressive 🙂

    * Plus a few items winging their way now, including Bon Iver’s eponymous (second) album, which is breathtakingly beautiful. For any fans of folk/rock crossover, I warmly recommend it.

  • thatcrab

    Why does anyone need 14,000 songs?

    This is good point for using a tiny little £20 32GB sd card in your phone. Which will hold about half of them, keep the bulk organised in a laptop or desktops storage. I think a full size 500gig harddrive costs about £50.

  • Phil

    Kingfelix 8 Jan, 2013 – 8:30 pm
    “Much music is the antithesis of mindless consumerism, i.e. art, my boy.”

    Most music is exactly mindless consumerism.

    “Stop being so dreary. Community radio? They’re going to play Fela Kuti followed by Swans and then an interview with Ray McGovern.”

    You must listen to different radio to me. I like to be played great music that I have never heard before. That’s why my radio is tuned to resonance fm.

    But you keep your headphones and your david bowie poster. Obviously substitue david bowie with whatever gobshite you have postered on your wall. You know, next to your che guevera poster.

  • thatcrab

    Paradoxically Google is still one of the least bad players in the game. Though duckduckgo is a better search engine.

  • kingfelix


    “Sure you mock anti-consumerism as organic elk worship.”

    Wrong. And with your ‘little consumer’ jibe, the only sane response is to call it as I see it, you take the tone of a proper little prick.

    What I am mocking is that there’s much of a way to sidestep corporate products when it comes to modern technology. The alternative of ‘going without’ and engaging in a personal boycott, etc., while principled, only condemns one to not being able to fully participate in society as it stands.

    You are being too Citizen Smith about this, and sounding like those knobs who denounced Occupier because “How can they protest against the 1% while owning iPhones”

    It’s more complicated than that.

  • kingfelix

    FWIW the reference to an organic computer produced by the Navajo was a nod to the Sandbenders in William Gibson’s sci-fi masterpiece, Idoru.


  • kingfelix


    You keep doing that sociopathic thing of thinking you know me and my tastes.

    You don’t.

    What a total waste of this incredible opportunity to communicate with one’s fellow humans regardless of location.

    If we’re going to do the pop psychology diagnosis, you sound like the chap who didn’t get to go to university, hence your snide references to staples of student life. Bit bitter, are we?

    Really, can’t you do better than just being insulting? Seems not.

  • Jon

    Phil/KF, easy does it! You are both 90% in agreement, so let’s not fight pointlessly. Perhaps you should go halves on a Navajo peace pipe?

    @thatcrab – I’m a regular user of DDG, and their bang syntax is awesome, but Google (imo) still do a better quality search. I’m sticking with the Duck however, in the hope that their algorithms improve.

  • Phil

    Jon 8 Jan, 2013 – 8:50 pm
    “I only own 3,634 songs taking up 26GB, pretty much all of which mean something to me”

    In for a penny…

    See even that I find nonsense. What does a song mean to you? The sheer volume suggests not a lot. Are you sure your not confusing the comfort of familiarity with meaning?

    I find meaning hearing someone new saying something slightly different. Four skinny punks screaming down the pub. A chinese blues singer at the 12 bar. Considering the democratic nature of nose flute orchestras – each player has only one note. There, got that from community radio.

    I’ve never even heard of the swans.

  • Phil


    You started the slanging mate. But that’s right run away. Typical chicken shit student poseur.

  • Phil

    Go and listen to your fav radiohead song. You know, the sad one with the great video.

    Who the fuck are the fucking swans anyway? Prick.

  • kingfelix

    I am not running away. You don’t seem able to/want to bring the hostilities to an end. Oh well.

    The worst I said to you in my opening post, which for you constitutes, ‘starting it’, was to use the word ‘dreary’ to describe your position. From that moment on, you have continually made judgments about my life and tastes, though without knowing the slightest thing about me, and have generally done your utmost to be unpleasant, For that reason, I saw fit to upgrade you from being dreary to being a prick. And since then, you have done everything in your power to prove me right with regards to your disposition, i.e., come what may, and despite my trying to draw a line under things, you continue to be a prick. What purpose that serves, I do not know.

    Now, not that it matters, but I will state this very clearly. I am not a ‘student poseur’, though I do work at a university. I am sorry if this invalidates my entire existence, as all the real men of this world disappear down a coal mine at dawn.

    Now, it’s very late in Taiwan and I must sleep, but if it makes you happier, bitter man, I will return when I awake and review whatever nonsense you’ve expelled.

  • kingfelix


    Radiohead and Blur are the two bands I most dislike, so I am not sure what you are getting at.

    And clearly, if you, the all-knowing arbiter of all things, the omnipotent Phil, have not heard of Swans, then they must be rubbish, etc.


  • Gari Sullivan

    Storing data yourself is so ‘the noughties’. This day and age, you don’t store and you certainly don’t buy (because even when you think you’re buying, you’re actually just borrowing until you die).

    The key phrase is: Data On Demand. Movies, music, porn (if you are into that) If its data, it can be accessed on demand.

    Check out spotify for your music. If you do want to do it the old fashioned way, get yourself a memory stick and fill it with 100 or so tunes to keep you going.

    btw, to convert your files to a different format, do a search for ‘Convert MP3s’ You’ll find a site that converts files in any format.

    Hope you get well soon.

    If you are bored and want to fulfill your desire to learn more about Syria, you might want to visit my Syria site

  • thatcrab

    I dont seem to be the only one with a lurgie at the moment.

    Jon, I didnt know about the bang syntax yet, i find duckduckgo a lot better at finding sensible references for some things, though not for programming. ‘Startpage’ Its subcategories down the right hand side are very handy.

  • daniel

    I saw Swans recently at Koko, Camden, in North London and they are an group that have to be experienced at least once in your life-time and were one of the key groups of the 1980s.

    Two essential albums of theirs are Children Of God (1987) and Soundtracks For The Blind (1996).

    Resonance is an interesting London-based community radio station that I first began listening to during the late 1990s when they were based in Tin Pan Alley near Tottenham Court Road.

    BBC6 Music produce two interesting programmes, The Freak Zone, and its sister show, The Freakier Zone on Friday and Sunday evenings.

  • thatcrab

    Luxurious music suggestion for Craig. £200 120Gigabyte player. Battery time 100 hours listening, 10 hours video.|cat:17846944|prd:17846944

    160Gig version for £250 available from other deshpickable suppliers.

    Something gets my goat – High precision digital binocular rangefinders – for Golfers! Cost 200 to 1000 quid. They are all the rage it seems.

  • Vronsky

    Dump the technology. Grab your wife, go buy yourselves a cheap pre-theatre dinner and then on to a live concert. Life’s too short to be sitting around with bits of wire stuffed in your ears. Here’s where we’ll be on Friday. Batteries not included.

  • thatcrab

    Thanks for that info Daniel, ill check that out. I recently became re-impressed by ‘The Sundays’ Amazing music to me.

  • Phil


    Before this deteriorated I was absolutely not making any judgements about you. How could I? I had no idea who you are. I was making serious points about consumerism in a half baked fashion. That you took I was talking about you being a student or something was entirely you.

    Read through the posts. I am going to bite back at someone who calls me “boy” and “dreary”. Especially someone who won’t let ignorance stand in the way of poorly stereotyping community radio. Especially someone who talks of downloading 2000 albums as a sign of commitment. Especially someone who thinks music is the antithesis of mindless consumerism.

    After all that I had simply worked out that you are a twat. So I bit.

    “Radiohead and Blur are the two bands I most dislike, so I am not sure what you are getting at”
    Jesus harry christ. You are still thinking about you and your favs. This band are better than that band. She’s a better singer than them. The second album wasn’t as good. That vid is brilliant.

    My point has nothing to do with radiohead themselves. It’s about the way you consume what is put on yer tele. It’s about having a commitment to collecting music in such volume that the only meaning can be consumerism. It’s about how that commitment to consumerism translates into buying useless plastic shit for no good reason. It’s about how that useless plastic shit numbs your imagination and kills the african children you bleat about on blog comments.

  • thatcrab

    I though Radiohead was a poor choice, too easy because their merits are obvious, if not unique in popular music.
    You are too passionate about this Phil, that trail of blame was broad and brittle.

  • Phil

    How can the notion of ‘collecting’ music be anything except consumerism.

    You are being sold ‘cool’ things to turn you into a fucking consumer. You quote greedy millionaires instead of writing a poem. You buy fashions paraded by the vain to enrich corporations.

    Throw away the mp3 player and don’t ready ok magazine. Go watch a busker and learn the nose flute instead. Did I mention the nose flute instills democratic sensibilities. Listening to mp3 players isolates you, instills the facism of hero worshipping pop stars and thus kills the poor.

    Come back and I’ll bite yer fuckin legs off.

  • thatcrab

    I see there is still little danger of a diverse but harmonious thread breaking through :/

  • Villager

    Phil, i noted that patronising ‘my boy’ remark myself. That was the spark. I think you handled it well.

    On your larger points i tend to agree with you. May i add here the word ‘attachment’ to your arguments. That is to say carrying around 14,000 songs indicates to me a kind of unhealthy psychological process of possession, accumulation and attachment. This psychological structure spills over into other fundamental aspects of how we live our lives. And also kills creative (as opposed to re-creative) living and freshness.

    Even the weightless weight of 14,000 songs on the latest gizmo weighs heavy on the psychological mind and is dangerous to one’s health, ie the way i see health and sane living. Its quite simple really but people will complicate it.

  • Phil


    I actually like a little bit of radiohead. Especially the sad one with the great video. Is it called “no surprises”? Very clever song which I consider almost modernist art (with the barely discernable lyrics that require close attention).

    Of course, I don’t listen to it over and over. I don’t require it to be available the moment I desire. I certainly don’t ‘own’ it.

    But you’re right. I am ranting. It’s been a bad day. A really bad day and I have let off some poorly expressed steam. Sorry. But I do mean what I amn trying to say.

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