My Music Muddle

So, I had one of those massive, 4th gen. iPods. It was top of the range at the time, I'd bought it when I was working and it served my exceptionally well for years. I spared no expense on the dock - a beautiful Bose dock with a remote control. I'd download all the music I wanted and I had playlists and everything was hunky dory.

4th Gen iPod with Bose SoundDock

Then my iPod died. I needed to replace it, but was now unemployed and couldn't justify spending so much money on something non-essential - I have my phone, right? And that plays music, so why buy a dedicated music player? That was my thinking.

So I tried that. Problem #1 is that the phone's not compatible with the iPod dock. We have a sound system, which Noah keeps adjusting the bass on (because it's his sound system!) So every time I go to use it I have to adjust the bass and the thing is behind the sofa. I also need to scrabble around looking for the cable, because it's never in the same plane twice. Then I need to find somewhere to set down the phone, where the cable reaches and where I can access it easily. All this is a massive deterrent, when all you wan to do is get on with what you're doing, when your time is so precious and you have a thousand and one things to do. 
Bose Companion 5 Multimedia Speaker System

But the main issue with using the phone as a music player is that  I don't really use a PC, so everything online I do on my phone, so using it for ambient or background music just doesn't work when I have to use it for everything else. Also, if the phone rings or I get an email notification in the middle of one of my favourite songs, it's like biting into a piece of grit in a sandwich.

iPod Touch

So, I splashed out on an iPod Touch last year! After probably two years of consideration and resistance, one day I just went online and spent top fucking dollar for the fucking thing, and it is so annoying. It's only 16GB for a start, and it's got apps and shit on it that take up half of that space - every time it updates itself, it needs more space. And it's not compatible with my dock. I bought a Music Angel, which is OK for the bathroom or watching films in my room, but not serious music playing. So I'm stuck with this useless and expensive piece of shit which means now I really can't justify spending more money on another music player.

Music Angel Best Friendz

The other thing is that I've been studying and working for the past couple of years. I rarely got the place to myself, and Noah has his own particular taste in music (hip hop, trap, edm...) The flat is so tiny, we either have to agree on what to listen to  (no), or go around with cans on. And I don't like wearing cans with glasses because it's uncomfortable and the sound quality and cable of earbuds make them useless.

So, yeah. I'm looking forward to getting this issue sorted out. Writing all this out has really helped me address it - it is an issue that needs to be resolved! I'm not working or studying at the moment, so I can spend some time on it. Plus, I'll have days when I have the place to myself so I can really get lost in some good music. 

A lot of my personal desires have been in storage for the past few years and getting this one out, dusting it off and unpacking it has had a very therapeutic effect! 



  1. I have similar issues with technology, catching and and keeping up with what I need/want, what works and what will be obsolete yesterday. I have a drawer of random electronic crap, and I shudder to think the money I have spent trying to figure it out and or meet my needs. I have a sort of cool set up right now that I have almost dialed in. I live an apartment built into a hill side with lots of little rooms and spaces at different levels. I have adapted to this unconventional unique habitat maze. I spend a lot of time alone and I need my music, stories, news etc, it grounds me. Its actually one of my favorite things, but this is another conversation for sure. Anyway, sound does not travel well and I do not like to blast music, I cannot handle blaring music, ideally I have a consistent flow of sound from room to room, with the ability to turn it up or down in each area. I knew there were wireless, Bluetooth etc systems, but they can be pricey and again, more crappy electronics...So I went retro, which makes sense..., my absolute favorite is to listen to live radio on the airwaves. But I can’t always catch shows or programs I like and also the stations I like were either ripped from the airwaves like KUSF, this broke my heart, or because of how I am situated on the hill side facing west I can’t always receive stations I like: KALW, KPOO, and also, for the most part radio sucks ass, I dont do advertising and commercials, yuck. So I created my own FM radio station, the call letters KMBA :) I set up a small FM transmitter, very low powered, only travels 100 feet or so and I picked a spot on the dial that had no transmission. Making certain to pay attention to federal broadcast laws and such. I usually go as far to the left on the dial as I can 
    I started out with a sort of crude basic transmitter that looked really cool, but the fan was so fucking loud and for a year I tried various things to justify my purchase like, putting it inside a metal box, closing it in a drawer, having it in remote place of the apartment etc, but all these attempts just brought up other issues…and I wanted it to be close to my computer that is where I can best control what is being broadcasted. So I bought yet another transmitter, after some more homework. It is quiet as a mouse, it does NOT have the widest frequency, and its kind of fiddly, BUT it is working great and it has a mute button, which I decided is essential. I have all my radios tuned into KMBA with a fairly good flow of sound. I am having a little his and noise but I am still tweaking things.
    I lost w bunch of music over the years with an old ipod and itunes account, mostly due to lack of knowledge and understanding. recently I have been down loading CDs especially old mix CDs from friends like you, and re-making playlists and save them to itunes. I also was introduced to Spotify about a year ago and it honestly has changed my life! There was definitely some growing pains, but I have learned how to use it well enough for my needs. I can also listen to all my podcasts, audio books or live local stations. Also, now that I have it set up to my computer and I want to watch a video say on youtube, I can and have great sound. The next stage of this is I want to be able to broadcast my vinyl but turntable is clear across the main room. I also want to learn how to record what I am playing so I can burn good old fashion CD’s and give them as gifts (with access to the digital file also) …. Oh well this response to your blog was quite therapeutic for me too. I took some quick pics of all my radios but cannot attach them to this comment if you want to see go to this Pinterest board

    1. Oh. My. God. Your own radio station?! What a stroke of genius! I absolutely love radio. Always have. Just searching through the static was one of my favourite things to do when I was younger.

      In June 2017, Norway decided it would be a great idea to stop broadcasting FM. If you want radio, you need to buy DAB. (This too is a-whole-nother conversation!)

      As for Spotify, I've tried so many times - SO MANY TIMES - I've lost count. There's something about it... For example, after our last conversation, I logged on and tried it out again, heard a song (while cleaning the bathroom) which I loved. Can I find it again? No. I spent hours yesterday looking for it (I can only remember one line of the lyrics which I'd paraphrased in my mind so it's useless). I thought there'd be a record on my account of what I'd listened to, but there isn't. And I couldnt log in for ages, so I ended up spending far too long on it, which is the very thing that keeps preventing me from addressing this issue. It feels like I keep wasting precious time and never finding a workable solution.

      Also, I don't like having to be connected to the net. The other day, I used my iPod to listen to music when I went grocery shopping. This is music that I own and I thought was actually on my iPod as a digital file. I got out of range of my home signal and the music stopped. Of course, I didn't realise what was going on at first, and it was probably raining, so I assumed my battery had died. Then on the way home it snapped on again.

      Also, I can't afford the Spotify fee of 99 kroner a month, just on music, and those adverts make we want to start a revolution. But I do need to find a solution, so maybe I'll give it one more chance (you should get a commission!)

      I know all of this is fixable. I know it's just a matter of adjusting my thinking. I know it's good for my mind to tackle the changing tides of technology as they rise up, but it's fucking hard! Music was so important to me that, back in the day, I chose having a crappy radio/cassette player over having a TV. When you have to prioritise things that don't really fill you with joy over things that you feel are not a priority, you end up losing little pieces of who you are. You end up empty or broken, or both.

      I started up my journal writing again and I've been trying out the #bulletjournal system, which has been overwhelming (another conversation?). It's quite a rigid system, but open to wide interpretation. I'm going to stick with it until I find a groove. One of the aspects that I felt was overwhelming was goal-setting. I've been so focused on things that have recently culminated, I don't have any immediate goals. I do now, though. I'm going to find a real solution to my music muddle! :D


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