maybe all one can do is hope to end up with the right regrets. -arthur miller


iTunes Anxiety

The "Top 25 Most Played" smartplaylist on iTunes really messes with my head.

I'm at least a little bit from the school that believes that what you like is nearly as important as what you are like (tm, High Fidelity), so the appearance of, say, The Get Up Kids on my most-played list is troubling on an existential level.

Now, contrary to my last statement, I am not a music snob. Movie snob? Probably. TV snob? Abso-fucking-lutely. But for all of those I think there's a place for "junk food": stuff you love but is terrible for you. I mean, let's be frank: listening to Britney is like eating Cheetos. Seems totally perfect at the time, but afterwards, you're all "huh. I just ate an entire bag of Cheetos/listened to all of "Hit Me Baby One More Time". I should never, ever admit that to anyone. And I should probably go to the gym."

My top 25 is mostly acceptable. My tastes are fairly diverse, so nothing has like 65 plays in the last year. My top is 29 (Howie Day's "Collide" and Guster's "Either Way"). No jazz is represented on the list because I rotate my collection too much. Some songs are underrepreseted because like more than one version. Example: I love Bush's "Glycerine" (shut up, it came out at the exact right moment in my life and shhhh.), and the combined number of times I've listened to the version off Sixteen Stone and the live at MTV Spring Break (acoustic) add up to 20, far more than Death Cab's "Lack of Color" (16 plays), or Guster's "Fa Fa Fa Fa" (14), which I don't even like that much. Individually, Neither "Glycerine" makes the list, even though combined they are right there with the Smashing Pumpkins' "Today" (21).

Sometimes I look at the list and get totally freaked out that, like, Toad the Wet Sprocket is up there, so I listen to Queen's "Under Pressure" (which, by the way, is the best song for finals EVER) three times in a row to get Toad to go away. Also, I think I like "Under Pressure" better than "Bicycle", which was already on the list, so a little manipulation of the list might be in order there.

Another example of the "Glycerine" problem: Dave Matthews' "Proudest Monkey" made the list (16), but "Crash in to Me" and "Satellite" did not. Three versions of each of those babies, adding up to 20 and 15 times apiece. Individually, each has a pitiful 5-10. There is no justice in iTunes.

So I write all this to say: please don't judge me by my Top 25 Most Played. It's given me such a headache already.


  • At 5/23/2005 10:08 PM, Blogger Sarah said…

    Ha, that is so true. I like my top 25, but it's hardly a representative list - I mean, it doesn't include Radiohead - and it's definitely not in order. "Hide and Seek" by Imogen Heap (from the OC finale) is at the top, with 55, just because I accidentally left it playing on repeat the other day.


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