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The Nightmare of Maintaining Your Music Library [Opinion]

Like many in my generation, I started listening to music on CDs. I used to sit in a rocking chair with my “skip free” portable CD player (I can’t remember if it was a Walkman or not) listening to Now 4 or No Doubt. Around the age of 16 or 17 I was given my first iPod: a 30 GB 5th generation iPod Classic (although at that point it wasn’t called “Classic”). I can vividly remember sitting down at my computer and slowly importing dozens of CDs into iTunes and syncing my iPod. I remember when Tri-tone meant that my CD had been imported, not that I had a new message. I began buying music straight from iTunes instead of visiting the then large, now non-existent CD section at my local Best Buy.

Eventually my iPod was stolen. I looked at cheaper iPod knockoffs, but since my car didn’t have an auxiliary port I was still fairly reliant on CDs. At the time, any music I had purchased through iTunes was copy protected. I contemplated burning CDs of my albums to get rid of the DRM, but I wasn’t convinced of a solution yet. I could store music on my SD card, but that was limited in storage. To make matters worse, more and more devices were being released without an SD card slot. That left physical syncing, which was on option, but at that point why not get an iPod for music?

I eventually began to look into services like Spotify and rdio. I wanted to use a subscription service because I was tried of buying music from Amazon and iTunes and trying to organize and sync everything. On top of that, I had old tracks from iTunes that were still laden with DRM and were therefore unplayable on non-Apple devices. Subscription services cost $10 per month for streaming and offline caching so it seemed like a win-win situation. I could have most of my music library available on any device for a low monthly fee and never have to worry about synching album purchases or whether or not certain albums are playable on certain devices.

I received one of the rare Spotify accounts that does not require a Facebook sign in from a contest. At the time I wasn’t interested in the solution because I didn’t want to stream music on my phone all the time. Once I did a little more digging and discovered music caching options I began to think about a subscription service much more seriously. I didn’t care for the look of Spotify, but even more importantly, it was beginning to seem like everyone and their mom (literally) was using the service on Facebook. I don’t like being coerced into using Facebook and I’m much more hesitant to support services that support such behavior. Most important of all, however, was Spotify’s lack of music options. While Spotify’s album selection continues to improve, when I was first looking at it, the service lacked many of my favorite albums.

Shortly thereafter I began to use rdio. I really liked the app (especially compared to what Spotify calls an app) and rdio’s library had about 95% of the albums I listened to regularly. The app had a consistent interface on both iOS and Android (while Windows Phone’s app remained frustratingly buggy) and while I missed the gapless playback I had become accustomed to, it provided the cloud-based music ecosystem that I had been longing for. When a new album would come out I would open rdio on my phone or computer and tell it to sync the album to my phone to listen to offline. Sure, every now and then I would get the hankering to listen to The Jakes’ EP or Childish Gambino’s EP and be forced into the stock music app, but overall rido had the library, app, and ecosystem that I wanted.

After much hand wringing I spent 4 or 5 hours last week cleaning up my iTunes library, buying tracks that had come out since I joined rdio, and setting up iTunes Match/Google Music. While I was deeply in love with rdio and the dream of cloud-based music, I caved into the iTunes Match/Google Music solution because several album labels are still refusing to release their music on streaming services until several months after release while others are refusing to put content on streaming services at all. Those holes in streaming services libraries can be filled in with stock music apps, but maintaining two separate libraries is a nightmare. Sure, I can set up Spotify to sync both my local library and my cloud library, but that means maintaining multiple libraries and doesn’t deal with DRM issues.

The solution for me was to pay for iTunes Match. I already had a lot of music that I had purchased through iTunes that I would like DRM free and iTunes often has exclusive tracks for albums. $25 and a few hours later I have the same library that I had with rdio, but I can play literally any song I want on any device. I don’t have to maintain multiple libraries and I don’t have to wonder if an album I want is available to me; I just go download it.

I wanted to believe that streaming services were the future of music, but the reality is that services like Spotify and rdio have limited libraries. Until someone can offer me a streaming service that lets me stream every track out there and upload my own personal tracks for streaming, I’m going to stick with iTunes Match/Google Music. Despite the increased expense of paying for albums more often and the heavy initial time investment, iTunes Match/Google Music provides a vastly superior experience. While we have the technology to provide the best music experience, issues like paying artists a fair amount for their work and getting all of the content out there onto any device continue to plague subscription services.

  • gk08

    Does anyone know of any easy way to convert itunes DRM music to portable mp3/ogg files? I have a couple of thousand songs on itunes that I would desperately like to use on other devices. The only method I have heard of is to burn these to cds which seems way too time consuming.

  • You young bucks complain too much about managing your music collection. Try managing a room full of cassette tapes and records. Then try digitizing all of those, then ripping the hundreds of CDs you bought throughout the 90s. Add them all to iTunes album by album and making sure they’re all properly tagged and sorted into what you believe to be the correct genre. Then have both your hard drive and your iPod video crash within two days of each other and repeat the whole process over again. Then sync to Google music over a 2-month continuous upload period. Then tell me again how hard you have it because your favorite app doesn’t have four favorite emo album. šŸ™‚

    • I was with you until the emo quip.

      • Haha. just poking fun at you dude. People are sensitive about their music tastes šŸ˜‰

        • Indeed they are I imagine people who listen to emo music are especially sensitive. How long did it take you just to get everything into iTunes?

          • If I had to quantify it, I would say about a month’s time (total. as in 24 hrs x 30 days) And then again when disaster struck. Now i keep 3 redundant drives, my 160GB Ipod and Google Music updated.

  • the head and the heart!

  • Itchy_Robot

    I like to own my music, and use it on any device. So I buy mp3’s. I buy from who ever has it the cheapest … Amazon or Play store usually. I place those in my ‘Music’ folder on my PC hard drive, and Google Music monitors this folder for new music, automatically uploading it and making it available on my phone and any browser. This is the perfect solution for me and I highly recommend it to all my friends and y’all. It is painless and easy. I also backup my ‘Music’ folder onto a portable hard drive every month or two to be safe.

  • PhoenixPath

    So here’s a question I’ve had for a while…

    Why the heck can’t Google Play sync music from your Android phone to it’s service?

    I have Amazon MP3 on my phones. In order to get a track I purchase through it on Google Play, I have to copy the stupid thing to my computer….how archaic is that?

    Google Play sucks. The app is horse manure, lacking several basic features found in just about every other music player on the planet, and the service itself is greatly lacking.

    We need a better alternative on Android…

  • spunker88

    My first MP3 player was a Creative with something like 256MB of storage and a AAA battery. I started my MP3 collection then and have just kept expanding it since. I refuse to use any DRM format and cloud streaming is too expensive with the price of data. I’d rather have instant access to my music on local memory, meaning microSD cards. To this day I still keep my music collection on a microSD that I can take between my phone and my car radio’s SD slot.

  • Trey Mitchell

    *Cough* grooveshark *cough *
    it’s only 3$ a month
    Or at least until they get shutdown….

  • google music is workin great for me. i had a 60gb mp3 player that dies in a few hours now. its just having data service wherever i go. i stream music everyday, at work, driving. etc.

  • Derek Ross

    I don’t understand the need to pay for the iTunes Match service at $24.99/year. I use iTunes on our households main computer, namely because it’s extremely easy for my girlfriend to use, get and manage music, and update her iPod. Install Google Music Manager and all of that music is now available on any of your Android devices free of charge. I guess this iTunes Match service basically does the same thing but for Apple devices, and charges for it? My girlfriend can keep connecting her iPod to the computer when she wants to sync and I’ll save my $24.99, thank you.

    • I used iTunes Match to get rid of the DRM on the songs I purchased before 2009 so that they would play on non-Apple devices. There are other ways, but that’s the way I chose to do it.

  • Symbiotx

    I think streaming music is a neat idea, but definitely not practical. With data limits, that’s precious data that you don’t want to spend. Also, my biggest problem is that I can’t stream music when traveling in the midwest. Nothing like a car ride where you can’t listen to music for 30 minutes at a time because somebody wants to push the cloud.

    • Most services offer offline caching to solve that problem, but it doesn’t deal with the holes in the libraries.

  • since the start of the mp3 event i have maintained my library independently i dipped into the zune and itunes and quickly rejected them as they try and control everything while being really bad at it. However, now with google music i am elated. it just sucks up the directory of my desire, and streams it to all my devices. its great. sure i have to clean up some albums and art every once and a while but for the most point every time i buy a CD (yes i’m that guy) i go home and rip it and by the time the disc is done its on my tablet or phone. Also google music is the only service i have bought into for digital purchases, as i can download drm free at any time as well as the really cheap sales they have.

  • I’ve become a big fan of Slacker, because of the caching piece. Don’t want to ‘steal’ music, and don’t want to buy album after album…. I just want to say “80’s Rock” or “90’s alternative” and let Slacker pick a big chunk and cache it for me when I’m on wifi. šŸ™‚

  • TheWenger

    So what you’re saying is DRM sucks balls? I think we can all agree with you on that.

  • John Davids

    lol people pay for music? what.cd + audiogalaxy = win

  • Mordecaidrake

    I buy my music from Amazon, I have the Amazon music downloader auto add music to iTunes which then organizes my files as I like them (iTunes is the only program that auto organizes the file system for your music). At that point Google Music then syncs it to the cloud for me automatically, and for when I need it locally I purchased iSyncr awhile back and I can use that or just pin it through Google Music. It’s wicked painless.

  • socalrailroader

    <–Started listening to music on records, 8-tracks and cassettes šŸ™‚ I got my first CD in High School, around 1988.

  • Alan Paone

    I switched from CD’s and Google music to Vinyl and Rdio about a month ago and I won’t be looking back. Google music isn’t actually supposed to be available in Canada, so its not especially reliable. Rdio is worlds cleaner and faster for me. Probably my favorite thing though is that I don’t have to fix any album art in Rdio. My Google library was a mess because WMP attaches assy 8×8 pictures for album art and itunes gets CD data wrong about 2 in every 3 CD’s I try to save with it. It was nice to only manage my music in one place, but I had to fix it all and it was tough to keep up. Rdio doesn’t have everything, but it has *nearly* everything. Most of my music listening is transistory, I only listen to a handful of albums more than a couple times, I can buy those on vinyl, listen to the most everything else on Rdio and get whatever’s left over from the library or HMV, or barring that, TPB because dammit, I tried. If you have more than a couple thousand tracks Rdio is a really great option.

  • Bob G

    Only thing I really read in this article was GAMBINO!!!!!!!!!!!!!


  • ezerpdog

    The Head And The Heart… Yeeeeasssss.

  • Doug

    I love AudioGalaxy, it does a nice job on my desktop collection. Now that I’m moving to Ubtuntu I’m loving Subsonic. For my streaming music Slacker, at 9.99 / mo, has a pretty good selection of latest release albums and lets me search, create lists,etc.

  • gkinsella2

    I still dub cassettes on my dual deck boombox…oh wait, uh… šŸ™‚

    I have to put my vote on the iTunes/Google Play combo. I suppose it depends on how much music you purchase each month to determine whether the streaming bit is good for you. I’m perfectly happy with buying from iTunes or Google Play Music, especially now that Google has recently gotten access to more titles. I’m easy to please though, so I’m happy with the options out there.

  • Aj

    You listen to Childish Gambino? DL just got a whole lot cooler.

  • 303 repeat

    how has no one here ever heard of Subsonic?

    I haven’t had to sync a device in years plus subsonic lets you do video.
    I would recommend this before paying for any service since there is no limit here on how many you can have online because you have created your own cloud.

    • Kountaphit

      I agree. I’ve had subsonic since it came out and have never looked back. You can pull up your collection from any browser with an internet connection or from the app on any ipod, iphone, android, or windows phone.

    • Audiophile

      I used to use subsonic, however the overall experience was plagued with bugs, and general instability in my experience, I tried services such as Orb, as well as Plex .With Plex seeming to be the most feature rich/stable of the three I used it up until Google introduced Google Music as some sort of a god send. It’s ALWAYS online, and ALWAYS works, even if my server’s go down. Thank you Google!

  • Am I the only one who knows about MP3inity?

  • time_span

    For people who like to have EQ customization, gapless playback, FLAC support and have large libraries there is really no good solution. It is a huge hassle for me to manager my music library as is but having it sync between multiple devices is almost impossible.

  • I use Google Music to store my music, if it’s not on Google Play, I buy it off Amazon MP3, it downloads to my music folder, where Google Music uploads it immediately. Easy as pie.

  • cooksta32676

    Double Twist didn’t work on about 1/4 of my itunes files. My entire library is on WMP in WMA format, and the same library is in itunes. Any idea how to get everything into mp3 format on an Android friendly app. I tried Google but it took about 3 hours for the first cd, so I gave up.

    • MyStroPro

      If you have configured your settings for MP3 import off of a CD on iTunes, you should be able
      to right click and get the option to “Convert to MP3 (or whatever
      format your CD import settings are)” Everything I ever converted has worked on multiple devices without a

  • krair

    I’m actually kind of surprised by this article and lots of the comments… I started out using iTunes and then Google Music. Both worked great, but man I listen to a lot of new music, and my friends and I constantly share new music, so it became a HUGE pain to buy sooooo much music and then trying to share it with friends.

    Then came Spotify. Yes at first the library was limited, and the android app was rough, but syncing my own music wasn’t bad. I then decided to go premium and haven’t looked back since. I have my favorite playlists synced for offline playback at 320, and stream at 192 (although you have the option for 320). These days with LTE (and an unlimited plan), no matter where I am or who I’m with we can listen to ANYTHING. The library is huge now, and has tons of local and micro bands. And the best part? My friends and I send each other music and playlists daily and I don’t have to worry about buying an album I will listen to 5 times then get bored of. I was spending ~$100 a month on music through iTunes, and now for $10 a month I not only get to listen to anything I want, but I have more cash in my pocket to see the bands live! Shame on those who still steal music…

    Ultimately it really is the fault of the industry which is extremely resistant to change. Not going to get on my soap box for that, but being an artist in the industry for 5 years taught me why music is what it is today…

    Maybe it’s time to reevaluate the services you mentioned… most of your descriptions sound out-dated.

    • I reviewed every major subscription service before posting this article and was using rdio exclusively for the past year until last week. I’m very familiar with streaming services. Every service has holes in their library, which means best case you have two libraries to manage, worst case you miss out on some music. While I will certainly miss the ease of sharing music with the few rdio friends I had, I found that most of the time I want to share music with someone I do it in person.

  • Why is the word DRM being used on here? There is no such thing as DRM music anymore, from anyone. iTunes will strip the DRM from your music for FREE. Do you mean proprietery format? iTunes sells their music as ACC files, but you can convert them instantly to MP3 files for free right in iTunes…

    • rggarrison

      How do I do this?? I have about 700 .m4p files downloaded from iTunes that I have no way of converting without burning to a CD and re-importing each song. It’s a pain. How do I convert these files for free??

      • Alan Paone

        There should be an option to create an MP3 copy…somewhere

      • MyStroPro

        If you have configured your settings for MP3 import off of a CD on iTunes, you should be able
        to right click and get the option to “Convert to MP3 (or whatever
        format your CD import settings are)” – I’ve done this on tracks I had
        from 2005 so I can’t see it not working on any file they have.
        Everything I ever converted has worked on multiple devices without a
        hitch (as a DJ this has been a big concern with ever using iTunes for

    • Because not everyone is aware of the options to remove DRM files. iTunes does it for $25 with iTunes Match or you can burn the files to a CD, but other than that any track purchased through iTunes prior to 2009 has DRM.

      • In iTunes, you can covert an old DRM-laden song to an mp3 version or to another AAC version, either way they will be DRM-free. Or you could move folder of songs and redownload all purchases, DRM-free. Either way is really easy and costs nothing.

    • Logan Anteau

      Do you realize this would be double encoding? You’re taking a already “lossy” format (AAC) and re-encoding to another “lossy” format (MP3). You lose information each time. This results in a very poor quality MP3 file.

      • You don’t understand digital formats do you.

  • iNfAMOUS70702

    Google music doesn’t show the album art for most of my music and that’s a big deal for my OCD ass…Amazon works great…I would use iTunes if it was available on android

    • I spent many hours working on that back before iTunes began to find it for you automatically.

  • trixnkix637

    I use Amazon & Google Music. Google automatically syncs files in the folders I’ve designated so I literally don’t do anything at all. The hardest part is maintaining a good enough signal so my streams don’t get interrupted.

    The only advantage Spotify has for me is the ability to play any track available on demand thru the service. Of course, you have to pay a monthly fee for that & I’m too cheap to care that much.

  • “Until someone can offer me a streaming service that lets me stream every track out there and upload my own personal tracks for streaming, Iā€™m going to stick with iTunes Match/Google Music”.
    But Google Music IS a cloud streaming service. You just need to provide your own tracks.
    You probably mean “subscription service”, not “streaming service”, right?
    My solution is (sadly) Google Music + torrent. Works like magic.
    My only pain is a limited storage on Google Music.

    • I don’t steal music. That isn’t a solution, that’s a crime.

      • jcorf


      • As a musician, I give you all of the yes.

  • Silver Veloz

    That write-up was exhausting just reading it. All I did was convert my CD’s to .mp3 format and moved them into my music file on my desktop/laptop. Then copied them onto my SD card and now to Google Play Music. Simple enough. I’ve never used iTunes or any other service (pay or free).

  • moelsen8

    Anyone in this situation should search for Requiem.. a program that strips ish*t of DRM. Takes some searching, but once you have it and have the right version of iTunes (archives are out there too) its painless to remove DRM. Then I figured out you have to batch rename your files from .m4p to .m4a (I think.. its one of those combos). Even without doing that you can play your files on a lot of stuff.. I had to do that so my sansa clip+ could recognize them. I would’ve had to spend 100-some bucks to get iTunes to convert them, but F that. We already paid for them. Takes some work and know-how but its doable.

    • rggarrison

      I’m downloading this now. If this works and will help me convert my 700+ .m4p files to .m4a, I will be super excited.

      • moelsen8

        you have to remove the DRM, and then the m4p files will play on anything that recognizes them. i believe the m4a files are the more widely recognized ones (hope i’m not talking out of my *ss). but i noticed this because the ones we got before itunes dropped DRM were one extension, and after the other. so then after i stripped the DRM I just renamed them to the unprotected extension since they’re all the same file type, and all was well. i think apple just used (i believe) m4p for it’s protected files. just make sure you have the itunes version that the program requires. took a little to get up and running but it worked well for me

        get a batch renamer from download.com or something and you’ll be good to go then after it works.

    • MyStroPro

      Or you could just use iTunes to convert to another file format – say mp3 or AAC. This functionality is built into iTunes now.

      • moelsen8

        No way really? Damn. That would’ve saved me a lot of time if it was around a bunch of months ago when I did it.

        • MyStroPro

          Yea – It worked for me on all this crap I accidentally purchase during the DRM years. Long as it is an authorized computer, I can’t see why it doesn’t work.

  • ericsorensen

    I was forced to go with Amazon cloud for my music cloud storage. Google music CANNOT GET THE ALBUM ART working for my music. I can’t accept that.

    • p_droid

      That seriously bugs the hell out of me. Anyone know of a fix?

      • Darksthour

        Yea I go and open google music in the browser. Then click the little arrow next to the art at the bottom right and edit music options (or whatever its called). Then in the new window change the album art to what I want. I usually just google image search the album for the artwork and can find a good pic there. Just save it to my computer and change.

        • jcorf

          This is what I do as well, so annoying. I really wish Google would fix this.

      • lamenting

        Embed the art in your MP3 files, or do what Darksthour says.

  • I agree that music library management is a total mess right now. It’s even more difficult if you want accurate Last.fm scrobbling, metadata, and lossless support too.

  • Sangro Azul

    Sorry to go off topic, but does anyone know of a decent car cradle for a galaxy 3.6 media player??? Thx!!

    • PhoenixPath


      Mounts in the CD player, fits nearly any device. Perfect solution for me (I don’t use the CD player anyway since all of my music is on whatever device I have mounted.)

      • Sangro Azul

        Thank u for the info. Will definitely check it out!!

  • My problem is when I use to download on napster and stuff everything’s tags are all messed up, over the years have aquired duplicate files and have files everywhere, I am looking for a good free music organizer, but haven’t found anything I like yet to get my 20,000 songs organized

    • SD_Scott


  • Mr ilheis

    You must be young because there was no mention of cassettes in the opening paragraph. šŸ˜‰ As far as streaming goes in my book I hate it and iTunes. I only by physical CDs so that I may rip them at 300+ kbps or purchase online from Amazon.

    • I did have a few cassettes growing up, but by the time I began buying music on my own CDs were the format of choice. šŸ™‚

    • rggarrison

      I could tell when he said he got his first iPod at 16 years old. I was in my 20s before they first iPods came out! LOL

    • baniels

      He said he was 16 or 17 when he got his 5th gen Ipod.

    • Dan

      don’t even mention 8-track or reel to reel, you must be young šŸ™‚

  • Matthieu Hausig

    Subsonic was my mainstay before Google, Amazon and Apple started their own services and its still a great option. It isn’t the flashiest but it avoids all the drawbacks of the others (annual fees, storage limits, tagging and matching errors, lossless support).

    • Audiogalaxy is way better than Subsonic. Same principle though – streaming from your storage.

      • ostensibly

        I hate Google’s interface, Amazon’s isn’t bad but I don’t need to pay for cloud storage, iTunes is awful and laggy. I use Media Monkey for library management, Plex for streaming.

  • Rickerbilly

    Amazon MP3 is far better than iTunes. AND you own your music.

    • Fattie McDoogles

      You own your music in iTunes too… It doesn’t offer a streaming service outside of playing your own music.

  • Chris Hollenbeck

    I bet there are a few past Napster, Limwire, and uTorrent, users out there….

    • SD_Scott

      Usenet is where it’s at.

      • necroscopev

        Love me some SSL Usenet!

    • You forgot Soulseek and edonkey/emule

      • The Race To Die

        still use soulseek to this day. its far from dead. between that and it-leaked im all set.

    • !trigger

      • DanKemple

        in college we also used DC++ to share stuff. This was of course after the collapse of Napster’s free sharing. Limewire was next followed by Frostwire.

    • JT22knight

      LIMEWIRE!!!! those were the days.

    • ddh819

      the original audiogalaxy was kinda nice

      • rekem

        Yup. So is the current incarnation. Stream your music straight from your PC to your phone, no uploading to the cloud required. Even compresses it for us Sprint users who can’t even stream a f’n 192kbps song w/o it pausing every few seconds to buffer.

        • ynksbsbll2

          Totally agree, Audiogalaxy is great. Provided I have service I can access all of my songs from my server (though I do keep some frequently played music on my SD card just in case).

          • The Race To Die

            exactly what i do. my collection is too big for google music.

    • sporty

      Remember when Napster came out. Was ALL over it! Then that went south and Limewire, Bearshare-which I used the most and a few others came out. Now it’s easier to just get it over the phone. Musicjunk,which I believe went under and a few others out there. Also use Amazon. Tried iTunes years ago-forget that DRM can only use on this or that bs. No thanks. Not gonna tell me what I can do with my music. I came from recording records to cassette, jack!

      • michael arazan

        Music junk was the best one of all of them, still works if you have the app still even though its not in the market, I still have it on my D1

  • Trevor

    I still buy CDs unless I only like one or two songs on an album, in which case I usually just buy it from Amazon (forgot I could buy from Google!). I use Media Monkey to organize my music, which works pretty well most of the time, but not without hiccups here and there.

  • Bionic

    Amazon music works on any device. That’s what I use and it automatically backs up to Google Music when I sync with my computer.

    • I have had problems with Amazon syncing with my pc, but google music works great all around for me.

  • mechapathy

    I remember when tritone meant an interval spanning three whole tones.

  • Dillon Brown

    Great work on the piece! It is certainly a topic that needs discussion. I personally use spotify, because I have an account without facebook integration and for my needs its pretty sufficient and cheaper. I listen to a lot of music and streaming for me excellent because of my coverage and data plan. I does bug me that I can’t stream tracks I put into spotify, and even more the absence of a library on mobile with only the option for playlists. That is really fustrating because I don’t like making playlists and want a no work alphabetical list of my artists. The real issue with music in general is the industry. DRM is such bull, because we are paying the price for a physical object, when it is not, and don’t completely own it. I want to pay the artists for their hard work and skill, but most of my money is paying all the middlemen .

  • I tried Spotify for awhile, but there are some major voids in their library for my listening preferences. The app has been getting better, but is still buggy and artist radio just doesn’t work well. I will still use the free streaming from time to time, but no more subscription for me.

    I buy most of my music on Amazon, then load onto Google Music so that I can play anywhere. May consider moving to a subscription again if I find a better service.

  • I don’t understand what the big deal is. Google Music makes it almost too easy.

    If the play store doesn’t have the track I want, I buy it from Amazon, and it downloads the files into the folder that the Google Music services watches and syncs. Its automatic. I hit the buy button and its on every device that I can play music on in a matter of seconds.

    • itznfb

      Yuuuuuuup. Prior to Amazon MP3 my library was a disaster…. Post Amazon MP3 & Google Play I don’t even think about it. iTunes can burn in hell. Don’t know why anyone would ever use it. Apple fanboys even hate on iTunes.

    • The big deal is the possibility of spending $10 per month to have your music everywhere without you having to maintain and organize the files. Google Music and iTunes are able to deal with some of the maintenance and organization issues, but they’re pricier and a bit more complicated to set up than rdio or Spotify. You get what you pay for, though: iTunes and Google Music are superior services.

      • michael arazan

        There are apps in the Play store that allow you to download mp3 music for free, I have 2 of the apps on my phone and some have album art as well. Most of the music I download for free are the same records, tapes, and cds I have bought over the years, from classic rock of led zepplin to besties and rhcp, to alternative music from the 90’s till now.

        • Fattie McDoogles

          The problem with that is the artist and labels aren’t getting paid as much because of apps like that. Which is part of the problem for licensing with Rdio and Spotify.

    • Lucky Armpit

      What works for me is something similar… I buy all of my music through iTunes. When I purchase the music from iTunes, the following happens automatically:

      1. iTunes downloads the music to my laptop

      2. The Google Music “watcher” that sits in my Tray automatically uploads the music to Google Music’s website

      3. Google Music on my phone detects the new music and downloads it to my phone

      4. Offline Music Importer moves it to my SD card

      While it may seem like many steps, it’s all automatic and I have a 15 Mbps cable connection and 4G at my house so it only takes a few minutes. And I only have to maintain my iTunes library which is perfectly mirrored by Google Music.

      • bobbymay1

        Is it mirrored now? It used to be if you delete tracks off a playlist in iTunes it wouldn’t delete them from Google Music. Ended up with a bunch of weird playlists and it bothered me too much. Might go back if they have changed it.

  • I freaking love Spotify. I listen to a lot of dance music so a lot of songs from my favorite producers are unreleased IDs and remixes, but Spotify really does have a good library for EDM, and I didn’t expect it. Plus, I can just upload the IDs and remixes on my own and listen along with the streamed music. It’s amazing, especially offline listening. I really think you should give it another try. The library is always growing and some artists (like Cazzette) are releasing albums on Spotify exclusively.

  • bucky500

    MOG has done right by me…always has what I’m looking for (except for the usual hold-outs you mentioned), streams at 320, great discovery system and artist radio actually plays similar music.

  • C-Law

    How are you playing iTunes music on android?

    • Easily iTunes sells MP3 Format or AAc or whatever but it can still be uploaded. Stick to Amazon it is so much easier.

      • Tim Schall

        Amazon is great, but I go with whatever is cheapest. Amazon has great sales. Also Amazon (256) and Google (320) have the best quality IMHO.

    • I store my music in iTunes and sync to android with iSyncr. Works well for me.

      • PhillipCun

        i used iSyncr and its not a great solution

    • iNfAMOUS70702

      I use isyncr…works great

    • Set up Google Music to sync your Music folder on your computer (or whatever folder has your iTunes library). I used iTunes Match to get my library DRM free and I was good to go from there.

      • I have itunes match…. now how do I get rid of DRM? Sorry if I am repetitive… but many would find a great use if you created a tutorial article. Just a thought, thanks for the post..very nostalgic being that I am 26.

        • Any album that iTunes matches with its own library can be downloaded again from Apple DRM-free. The way I did it was to move my iTunes library to a different folder, delete the iTunes library files, and start over with iTunes. That cleared my library so that when I turned on iTunes Match it let me download my songs. Then I just downloaded the songs that had DRM to replace in my original library.