iTunes: Organizing Christmas music

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by Mal, Oct 18, 2012.

  1. Mal macrumors 603

    Mal

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2002
    Location:
    Orlando
    #1
    So with Christmas now approaching, I'm looking into ways to organize my collection of Christmas music for a few specific purposes:

    1. I would like to separate the secular songs from the religious songs. If I'm listening by myself, I usually prefer them all mixed together, but in some situations where I'm playing the music for groups, I tend to prefer one or the other.
    2. I would like to separate the traditional renditions from the modern versions of songs, as well as traditional songs (with modern renditions) from new songs. This is subjective to a great degree, and I have no problem with manually labeling songs as one or the other.
    3. I want to be able to pull out combinations of these criteria using Smart Playlists at will. I don't mind creating these on the fly, although I'll probably end up creating several and keeping them around.
    4. I want to be able to quickly tag any new music I add and have it reflect these same categories. I have no qualms with tagging them manually, but I then want my Smart Playlists to update automatically with those changes.

    I don't have a huge collection of Christmas music, so manually tagging them wouldn't take too long (would probably take me, reasonably, about a week to tag them in my spare time, since this isn't a pressing matter). I'm just looking for the best way to accomplish this overall, as well as any suggestions for other ways of handling this. I would rather not change the Genre, as I like having all my Christmas songs set to having Christmas for the genre, but I'm open to suggests as to which fields are appropriate (Groupings is one I've seen recommended), and any tips of quickly tagging those. I've considered making a set of AppleScripts and assigning key combinations so I can append the appropriate tag to the existing ones for a particular track very quickly, but I don't know if this is more effort than is reasonable/necessary.

    jW
     
  2. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #2
    One method would be to use sub-genres. For example, you could create genres like these:

    Christmas traditional
    Christmas secular
    Christmas religious
    etc.

    That way, searching for the genre Christmas would find them all, but you could be more specific with smart playlists, etc.
     
  3. Mal thread starter macrumors 603

    Mal

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2002
    Location:
    Orlando
    #3
    I started to do that, but it was getting a little messy and hard to keep track of. I end up with things like "Christmas Modern Secular" and "Christmas Traditional Modern Secular", and a whole variety of permutations. Also, as mentioned, I like the idea of the Genre tag being consistent, since I often sort my library by Genre alone (or use the Genre section in my iPod touch's Music app). It might be a fall-back, but I'd prefer not to do that. I could definitely do the same with that Grouping tag, although I wish iTunes had something more like checkboxes that I could edit for that instead of manually typing it in. Dunno if there's a third-party app I could use for some of this to gain that easy editing capability.

    jW
     
  4. hollerz macrumors 6502a

    hollerz

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2006
    Location:
    Durham, UK
    #4
    I'd just keep the Genre as Christmas, and utilise the comments field. So you could have, for example, "Secular, Modern" in the comment field of one, "Religious, Modern" in another, "Secular, Traditional" and so on.

    Then Smart playlists with "Comments contains..." with various combinations.

    I really wish iTunes had multiple Genre fields for music though!
     
  5. Mal thread starter macrumors 603

    Mal

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2002
    Location:
    Orlando
    #5
    Out of curiosity, any reason you'd prefer the comments field over the Groupings field? I know some of my songs have other comments (some came filled with more information about the song or the full orchestra list, that kind of thing, although I don't know if I really care).

    jW
     
  6. peeaanuut macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2007
    Location:
    Southern California
    #6
    I would do groupings. Then you can make 2 playlists. 1 that includes what you want for yourself and 1 that includes what you want for everyone else. Then you can just hit random and go.
     
  7. hollerz macrumors 6502a

    hollerz

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2006
    Location:
    Durham, UK
    #7

    No reason! Would work the same way using the Groupings field!
     
  8. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #8
    I know what you mean. There are already hundreds of minor genres that would make it hard for me to classify music if I used them. I always use my own genre definitions to keep things simple, so instead of "New Wave of British Heavy Metal", "Dark cabaret" or "Experimental rock", I just use "Rock".

    I don't know about check boxes, but you might find something you could adapt to your needs from Doug's AppleScripts for iTunes.
     
  9. Mal thread starter macrumors 603

    Mal

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2002
    Location:
    Orlando
    #9
    Yeah, I actually used TuneUp! for a while, and one of the things it did well was limit my genre's to about 20 major genres (I customized slightly from there, but I try to keep it down to 20-25 maximum). I'm not good with that type of categorization anyways (I don't know the difference between light rock and pop, for instance), and don't care, so that made things simple for me.

    I've used some of those before, I'll look through for any that might be good for this purpose.

    jW
     
  10. Mal thread starter macrumors 603

    Mal

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2002
    Location:
    Orlando
    #10
    Well, I'm tagging songs now, up to about 135 so far. Utilizing the Groupings tag, and simply putting the appropriate tags separated by spaces, which looks nice and clean to me. I've got 8 tags that so far have been used in 34 combinations, although not all of those will be utilized. If anyone's interested in more detail I can share, but it's basically as I thought I was probably going to approach the problem.

    jW
     

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