Monday, April 20, 2009

iMix, you Mix, we all Mix for iMix

Okay, I hope I'm doing this right....

One of my favorite bands on earth, if not my absolute favorite band, is Broadside Electric. If you're not familiar with them, well, I could tell you that they once described themselves by the phrase "eclectic electric Celtic acoustic," but actually the band has evolved quite a bit since then, so that phrase doesn't really begin to cover it. Put it this way: if you go to one of their concerts, you should not be surprised to hear to hear, in quick succession, gory Child ballads, Klezmer tunes, Bob Dylan, Gilbert and Sullivan, and a few rollicking reels, played by five musicians on at least a dozen instruments. And that would be just the first set. Oh, and they're all really nifty people offstage, as well.

So, I love these folks, and in a recent mailing they sent out, they suggested that one way for their fans to promote their music would be to make an iMix on the iTunes store containing some of their songs and maybe 10 others by "popular artists." So I looked up the directions and it didn't seem too difficult--in fact, I already had several playlists on iTunes containing one or more Broadside songs, and I figured I could just publish one of those. Upon consideration, I decided that to get a good sampling of music I should combine two playlists, which I had entitled "Light" and "Darkness," into a single playlist called "Chiaroscuro," and publish that. So I spent a happy hour or so selecting songs from these two playlists and arranging them in a pleasing order, interspersing the lighter and darker material. Then I tried to publish it to iTunes and hit a snag: many of the songs in my collection were not available on the iTunes store. So a little more pondering ensued as I looked for alternate versions of these songs on iTunes. (Example: the entire Beatles catalogue is unavailable on iTunes, so I ended up with a live George Harrison version of "Here Comes the Sun" and the King's Singers' version of "Blackbird," which is actually quite nice. The Califone version of "The Orchids," by contrast, isn't nearly as cool as the Genesis P-Orridge version, but what can you do?) A few songs had to be cut completely because iTunes didn't have any version available at all, or at least not any that I found acceptable. So after considerable tweaking, I arrived at a finished iMix that I was reasonably happy with.

Now, here's the part I hope I'm doing right. ITunes provided a link labeled "Publish to the Web" that is supposed to make my iMix available via my blog. (I assume that you can't actually listen to the songs unless you own them, but you can listen to a short clip from each song to see how you like it, and if you're interested, you can buy it.) So I'm going to give this a try. Here's the link (I think):

1 comment:

Amy K said...

How cool! I clicked on the link, and up popped iTunes, and there they all were!

What a lovely collection of songs, too. I love that "Walking in Memphis," and "Nighswimming," and the King's Singers version of Blackbird which I hadn't heard in years.

Now I just have to figure out how to make one myself...