This is the part where I am hoping having a blog helps me out personally. I am attempting to use the power of crowd sourcing. I am hoping someone tells me that this app already exists.
My music collection has grown over the years. When I first got a CD player, it was a race to see how long it would take to replace all of my vinyl albums. It was a question of money, availability (Some albums were not yet out in this new format.), and taste (Did I still even like those songs?). For some artists, I can confidently say I have a complete set of their work, e.g., Todd Rundgren, Led Zeppelin, Peter Gabriel. For other artists, I think I have everything, but am not so sure, e.g., Heart. I know I don't have everything by Genesis, because I gave up on them when they went ultra-pop.
So here's the app I am looking for: What Don't I Own? It would work like this:
- Fire up iTunes.
- Click on a "What Don't I Own?" button.
- The app returns a list of all of the albums and individual songs that I do not own by the artists in my Music Library.
- The list has Buy buttons on the items linked to the iTunes Music Store.
- I can sort the list by artist, most missing, or least missing.
- I use the Buy buttons to complete my collections.
If the app wanted to get fancy, users could specify a threshold for artists to be included, e.g., Don't show me items for artists where I have fewer than 2 albums or 20 songs. That way I would not get bombarded with items for artists that I only have one song of because they appeared as part of some compilation album. There could also be an exclude list even though I have an existing and sizeable collection, e.g., Genesis.
So does this app exist? Let us know at [email protected]. I hope the answer is yes, but Googling makes it appear to be no. As an alternative, this could be a web service. The user could upload his iTunes XML file, and the web site could use the iTunes Store API to look up what is missing.
The willingness to buy music is alive in the lab.