This summer I had a leisurely pre-concert dinner with some friends that I first met nearly thirty years earlier while working at the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. Over our dinner conversation, my friend shared his continuing struggle with being able to consistently transfer music from his CD collection to his PC and then onto his iPhone - the ultimate destination of this content for listening to music in the car and on-the-go.
We talked for a while about the obstacles he was encountering and agreed to have a phone chat when he was back home and I could clear some time to talk him through the process. After several attempts to arrange for this "consult" during the summer and fall, we finally connected last Wednesday evening to see if we could solve his problem once and for all.
Because he was using a Dell PC and I couldn't see what he was seeing on his computer, it was a bit of "the blind leading the blind" for a period of time that evening. However, after about 90 minutes of troubleshooting, we at least were able to verify that he was able to "rip" (i.e., copy from a CD to his computer hard drive) the music tracks he wanted to used for this test and successfully play them within iTunes. One of the challenges was that he was using Windows 10 (which I have yet to experience - I'm still on Windows 7 at work) and it turns out that Windows 10 appears to want him to consider importing music into its own resident music player. After getting past many of the dialog boxes prompting him to use the Windows 10 app, we were able to have his iTunes for Windows app capture the music he wanted.
We closed the phone call agreeing to regroup the next day when I would be at work and sitting in front of my Windows machine in my office, so I could better guide him through the menu options of iTunes for Windows (which is designed somewhat differently than iTunes on the Mac). The good news was that, early the next day, he called me and reported that indeed he had been able to sync his iPhone to his computer and successfully transfer the music for his mobile listening pleasure.
The frustrations encountered by my friend as described in this brief anecdote is likely happening more often than not for many people. My intent in this "Music + Audio" blog is to discuss how to spend more time enjoying the music you love and less time fighting with the technology designed to make the music experience a more ubiquitous part of our lives. My hope is that this section of my website will prove to be one of the more enlightening areas of my "advice column", since almost everyone is capable of experiencing the joy that music can deliver.