Obsessed: So Many Songs, So Little Time

Shawn Ryan

Nine thousand, three hundred forty-seven.

Big number, huh? Seems big to me.

It’s the number of songs currently in my iTunes music folder. And it’s less than I once had.

About four months ago, I opened iTunes and saw that I had 13,500 songs. Since they’re uncompressed — I hate mp3s — it added up to about 300 GB. I had to buy an external hard drive to hold them.

“Gee,” I thought, “I may have too many.”

So I began the task of going through the songs, listening to each and culling the ones I didn’t really like. Yes, it is somewhat embarrassing that I found about 4,100 songs that didn’t pass muster. Sort of indicates that I might be a music hoarder.

I admit, collecting music has been a longtime hobby for me. Using paper-route money, I bought my first stereo when I was 12 years old — I was hooked. That being the late 1960s, I started out with LPs, since they were the main source of music, but later moved to 8-tracks because you couldn’t scratch them and once I started driving, I could play them in my car. At one point I had about 200 of them.

I moved back to LPs a few years later; they sounded better, you could record them to cassettes and — again — take them in the car.

Then CDs came along. Mesmerized by convenience, I switched over to them like pretty much everyone else. I had collected about 1,100 CDs until I was broken into and thieves took them. Actually, they broke in one day, took half of them; came back two days later, crowbarred the new lock I had installed on my front door and took the rest.

The point of all this historical rambling is simply to note that music has always been a major part of my life. Always will. I can’t imagine a day when I don’t listen to music in some form or fashion.

Is it an addiction? Yeah. But a harmless one, I think. I’m not robbing anyone to feed my obsession; my bills are paid; food is on the table.

And quite honestly, I’m pretty sure I’ll never hear all 9,000-plus songs on my iTunes between now and the time I exit this mortal coil. But that’s not the point. It’s enough to know that I have them.

But let’s face it: 9,347 means it’s all killer, no filler. Right?

Uh, right?

Contact Shawn Ryan at 


Related Posts

Comments are closed.

Social Icons