The Perfect iPod Collection blog is nearing its logical conclusion. I began the project almost seven years ago, and started the “big countdown” of my favorite artists a year later. Over the next six years the profiles became more elaborate, as I refined the typical artist template with pictures, videos, and a list of significant contributors. I am deeply indebted to YouTube and Wikipedia; without them, the blog would be woefully inadequate.
Though much time was spent creating the profiles, the majority of time was devoted to research, and the effort to create an integrated, small library of mostly 20th Century music. I’ve spent far too much time with it lately; there should a greater sense of pride when I study and listen to it, but there are many days when the mind is tired of acquiring and evaluating music. I’ll never stop the process of perfecting the little library, still only about 50 GB in size, but I need to pick a stopping point for writing about it. Over the next few months, here is what I hope to accomplish:
1. I recently ranked the artists a second time, with their updated ranking dependent on both number and quality of songs. The artists are ranked by number of stars awarded. In the case of a tie, the greater number of songs prevails. The updated rankings can be found on a new page called Artist Rankings, which will provide a link to each artist profile. The first fifty profiles are edited and linked; once an existing profile is upgraded and edited a final time, I will provide the link on this page. Some of the old profiles are quite brief. They will never be very informative, but I can add a few links, a picture and, if available, update the video links and song lists.
2. The Wish List page is no longer relevant. I will replace it with a Links page, with a few relevant links.
3. I will eliminate most early posts, most are which talk about recently added songs, or are early attempts at artist profiles. I’ll keep a few favorites. If you have a favorite old post, please let me know. I’ve cleaned up the Index page to reflect the change.
4. There are fifteen artists remaining, with ten or more songs that merits an artist profile:
Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings
Mary Chapin Carpenter
The Guess Who
Sam & Dave
I will eventually complete these, though I may prioritize other interests and writing projects.
5. Finally, I need to finish off the project with a significant analysis and general discussion of the results, which will also be completed in due time.
6. It would be nice to figure out how to get some recognition, and perhaps a little money with this project. There are 177 artists with ten or more songs, and their music comprises 55% of the total collection. Perhaps there is a market for the song list, either alphabetically or by artist. It’s impossible to compete with the All Music guide and Rolling Stone magazine, and their teams of expert analysts; perhaps there’s a place in the world for a charming, individually created list. I’m not convinced that knowledge of music theory is a prerequisite for this exercise, nor do I feel great writing is essential. This exercise also belongs in the realm of collectors and categorizers. It’s vital to value the opinions of other experts, especially the musicians who cover their favorite songs, and follow the lineage of the great songs to their origin. Ultimately, the ratings became somewhat unimportant; either a song is either in the collection, or not. At least that’s how I do it.
Ratings Breakdown, April 14th, 2015:
5 Star Songs: 76 (0.8%)
4 Star Songs: 641 (6.4%)
3 Star Songs: 1959 (19.6%)
2 Star Songs: 4002 (40.1%)
1 Star Songs: 3287 (32.9%)
0 Star Songs: 17 (0.1%)
Songs Currently Under Review: 42
Average Song Rating: 2.01