How to arrange classical music on iTunes?

Jan 5, 2010
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Chicago suburbs
Your Mac's Specs
Macbook Pro 13", 4th gen Touch
Anyone else have a lot of classical music in their iTunes?

Is it frustrating to you that the world of iTunes is geared more towards pop music?

What I mean by that is that with classical music, there are hundreds of pieces by one composer. The Artist column is nearly worthless.

I'm setting up my Macbook Pro now, and ripping most of my classical CDs. I have the complete works of Mozart and Bach, which is about 320 CDs. After I rip them, finding what I want is really hard, because it doesn't all fit on the iPod screen.

On my old computer, I abbreviated everything, for instance: "VS1-1 BWV1001" which meant Violin Sonata #1, 1st movement, BWV catalog # 1001.

Doing this manually is a real pain in the ***.

How are other classical music fans addressing this?
May 18, 2008
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Amberley, Canterbury, New Zealand
Your Mac's Specs
MacMini 14.3, 8.1 & 4.1, OS 13.5, 10.14, & 10.11 & 10.6; Macbook Pro 8.2, OS 10.12.
Like you, I have a significant classical music collection in iTunes. Because I know the pieces so well now, labelling doesn't bother me much, but I see your point.

Have you checked View > View Options? You can specify which column headings will show. What's more, back in iTunes, you can shift the columns L< >R to get them arranged in the order you want. You can also resize the width of each column.

Your MBP is going to limit the amount/width of data you can view, but fiddle about with columns and dimensions to get a reasonable compromise.

Trying to catalogue all the works within iTunes will indeed be a major exercise, and, quite frankly, I don't think that facility within the application was ever intended. Might I suggest that you catalogue everything with Excel or similar, and use it to refer to when the music, which you've identified with some symbol or key, is playing.

You've mentioned the works of Mozart and Bach, so in effect you're storing hundreds of pieces that are movements comprising complete works. The 'pop' world, which is in the majority, cannot grasp this concept. iTunes will have been developed for the majority.

PS. wouldn't it be nice to have a little AppleScript that 'popped up' in a small window to tell you what piece was playing, and its details. Now there's a challenge for you.

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