Posts tagged organization
TaggedFrog adds audio previewing

imageI bugged the author of (delicious/flickr style) file tagging software TaggedFrog to add support for audio file previews and v1.0.1 has it. (Make sure you grab and install Croak on the download page.) I'm also told if you need mp3 support to download the irrKlang library and place the irrKlang.NET2.0.dll file in the root folder of your TaggedFrog installation. It'll automatically enable mp3s in TaggedFrog. (It's not included due to licensing issues.)

This is a pretty great solution for Windows musicians looking for something similar to Audiofinder for the Mac. Thanks Andrei!

Sample Organizer progress

One of the nice things about finishing the new album is that I can indulge my useless creative impulses again without feeling quite as guilty. Last couple of days have been a flurry of making a tagging (aka non-hierarchical – delicious/flickr style) audio sample organizer. I mentioned it earlier here and here.

With a lot of obsessive struggling and swears, all the main functionality is there (in “sloppy learning-windows-programming-as-i-go” style):


It indexes a directory and all its subdirectories for .WAV files, saving them to a local database. You can select folders in the tree on the upper left and you can select files on the right side and they'll play. If you right-click on files on the right side, you can enter tags (also known as labels and keywords). The tags are saved and displayed in the lower left panel. You can then click those tags to display the files tagged with them. This way a sample doesn't have to belong to only one directory.

Also drag and drop to most audio apps I've tried works fine, preferences are saved via XML. The buttons at the top are just for easy testing and the search does nothing.

Brad’s .WAV browser

Welp, after my last post on the subject and emails to the author of Sample Tagger, I broke down and whipped out the C#. After a bunch of hours, I have this: bradwavbrowser2

It indexes a directory tree on the left, shows any .WAV files that are in it on the right when selected. Selecting a WAV file plays it (or you can hit the play button). And you can drag and drop the files into any audio application I've tried (Ableton Live & Sound Forge). Next is library saving and tagging I guess.

Can I also say how freaking annoying it is searching for Microsoft development related documentation and tips and examples on the web? Let's see, first there's the difficult-to-search-for terms: C#, .NET, ADO.NET, etc. Then there's all this other crap that gets in the way like ASP.NET, .NET being available in a billion different languages (C++, C#, Visual C++, Visual C#, Visual Basic, J#, etc, etc) so even if you do find what you want, it's probably not in the right language or platform. Frustrating.

Dear Google (re: Gmail contacts)

I love Gmail. Conversation views, labels, keyboard macros and super fast search – it makes my life easier. One thing I also love are the email contact groups. It's like tagging for humans and I love to categorize the people who email me (podcaster, blogger, fan, booker, musician, artist, family, mortal enemy, etc). But it's not as easy to group people as it should be. Here's my easy to read prototype that I'd appreciate you forward to anyone you know at Google:


Instead of having to mouse over a contact name, get that card to show up, click More, click Contact Details, click Groups and select the group, instead I propose that all that be right in that popup. Amazing idea! I'm a genius!

Anyway, I'm sorry for the tone of voice. It's mostly due to the hour I just wasted trying to get Greasemonkey to do exactly this. I love you Gmail, I could never stay mad at you.

Sample organization (semi-)nirvana

One exhaustive search and some tireless tagging later, my sample library dreams are mostly realized. The winner? MediaMonkey 3.0 beta. Voila:


MediaMonkey 3 adds support for multiple genres and a "track browser" similar to the one I like in foobar. It doesn't work exactly as I want -- I'd like to have two genre columns and be able to select, say "drums" and "kick" and have it exclusively display samples that are tagged "drums" AND "kick". But it doesn't -- it shows any that are tagged drums OR any that are tagged kick. But doing keyword or keyword -> album is still a great improvement over simple directory hierarchies.

It's also really helpful rating samples that I use frequently. MediaMonkey 3 also supports multiple libraries, all the file formats under the sun, drag and drop to Ableton Live works good and it's totally free, woooo.

And here for your benefit are the results of my many media player experiences trying to find the right sample organization client:

foobar2000 v0.9.5 - Just... complicated. Need foo_custominfo to handle WAV format genre metadata. Then that data doesn't work in the facets view, etc, etc. I'm sure some foobar hacker could make it do what I want, but I don't have the time or energy.

musikCube - Has facet view, does drag and drop, doesn't do multiple genres.

Winamp - Sort of does what I want with enough wrestling -- though the interface is a little retarded in the mind. But it won't do sample drag and drop to Ableton Live, so you're out.

wxMusic - Crashed reading in my media library and gave me lots of warnings that it couldn't read certain WAV files.

mp3rat - mp3rat only does MP3s I guess. Imagine that.

I just saved you a lot of thankless work. Enjoy!

Sample organization

With completing all recording and sequencing on my next album and me regaining my enthusiasm for making new music, a complete sample library reset is in order. I'm a sample hoarder but my current setup (30-40 gigs of loops and samples in d:\music\samples\ subdirectories) has always been awful. The hierarchy's all wrong and it sucks to browse. For a long time I've wanted a tagging style sample browser but I understand it's a limited market.

But lately I've been using the latest beta of foobar2000 for my mp3 listening and organization. One thing I totally love about it is the facet view:


You can enter a search query or click in any of the panels (you can choose what tag you want each facet to be based on) and it narrows down the other panels based on your selection or search query. It's really fantastic and makes it easy to explore your collection.

So a light bulb went off last night: this is exactly what I want for my samples! With some help from the foobar2000 forums I set up another copy of foobar and had it index my sample directories. Big problem: foobar saves all the metadata to the actual audio files -- .WAV files don't support genre metadata. Boned.

I've been scrabbling around trying to make foobar do what I want with various plugins but it's a pain in the ass. Now I'm on to trying other media players...