As I obliquely alluded to earlier, I accidentally nuked the hard drive with all 65GB of my music on it. It was my own fault; I blew out a partition I shouldn’t have. I tried to recover the data but it was no dice. Off it went, into the aether.
Sometimes after you experience a tremendous loss, you find yourself left with a sense of Zen-like clarity. It’s as if a burden has been lifted from your shoulders rather than imposed upon you. Some tether you didn’t know you had has been removed, and you feel a sense of freedom and release that seems antithetical to what you think you should be feeling.
This is not one of those times. I’m pretty damn pissed.
Some of you may remember The Great Music Project of 2005. That’s now being repeated; I’m up to “Alex Chilton” on my ripping. That’ll get me most of the tracks back, but there are plenty that won’t be there.
Fortunately, I use WinAmp for my music listening, and WinAmp 5 has a music library feature. Said library is kept track of elsewhere, but even though the actual music files are gone, the library still exists. So I have a record of every mp3 I had at the moment of impact. A Black Box Recording, if you will.
I won’t be reinstalling everything. I had plenty of crap that I didn’t know why I had it in the first place. In fact, at first I thought “You know, I’ll just rip the stuff I KNOW I want and then, from there, only rip other disks when I feel like listening to them.” That’s certainly a reasonable idea, one that a sane person would come up with, but part of the appeal of ripping everything was hearing the stuff I hardly ever listen to. When I’d put all 14,000 tracks on random play and hear something I hadn’t listened to in ages or had never really given a good listen to in the first place, that was nice. So what the hell, ripping stuff is easy and doesn’t take long, so I’m doing it again.
Once I’ve reconstructed what I want, I plan to buy a backup hard drive. This won’t happen again. Not on my watch.
The other silver lining in this dark, dark cloud, is that recovering form this involves figuring out which albums I had only downloaded before, hadn’t purchased as such. Now, I have this condition where I can download a jabillion albums and enjoy them and say “Hey, I really need to buy this” and then the second I walk into the record store I’m all “Huh. I have no idea what this ‘music’ is of which you speak and can’t think of a single example of it I would like to purchase.” So I’m making a LIST, folks, a list of albums I had only downloaded before, albums I gotta BUY. So that’s a good thing, I think.