Starting the library from scratch, how do you keep it minimal
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  1. #1
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    Default Starting the library from scratch, how do you keep it minimal

    The time has come, my library has succumbed to 2 major issues: 1) Ran more then half of it through Platinum Notes before realizing that it ruined my songs, 2) Downloading wayyy to many okay tracks from DJCity.com resulted in a bloated library of stuff that i've hardly played, only cause I thought I might need it.

    I think a big mistake I made was putting my entire iTunes collection into Traktor, rather then keep it to the stuff that I was really going to DJ with. Even DJCity I'm feeling isn't worth my money. I rarely find tracks there that are must haves. I feel it's too easy to download stuff because your not paying per track, you just try and accumulate as much stuff as possible during your membership.

    How many of you guys have done a complete overhaul of your collection? What do you do to keep your library minimal and packed only with the your must play hits.

  2. #2
    Tech Guru synthet1c's Avatar
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    I was guilty of copying a friends harddrive a couple of years ago.. I found that we had similar taste but not the same.. but due to me stealing the tracks we started to sound the same and because I hadn't taken the time to select and get to know the tracks, for a couple of months I was just randomly picking tracks based on their key and hoping for the best... not the smartest way to dj...

    I deleted all but about 200 tracls sorted them, tagged and rated them so they became my own, now I always carefully choose and buy new tracks, I never download from blogs unless the track is not yet released to Australia.

    After purchasing I instantly sort, tag and rate the new tracks and chuck them on my ipod to listen to a couple of times before mixing them (helps me to really listen to a track to get to know it better). Anything that I would no longer play goes into a recycle bin type folder that I usually give another listen to before deciding if it gets deleted, archived on an external or put into the sub genre's classic folder... Generally I just delete them though as I never really listen to the tracks on the external...
    Why did the elephant get lost... Cause the Jungle is MASSIVE!

  3. #3
    Tech Guru mostapha's Avatar
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    Make regular, full, automated backups.

    And delete things. Think you don't want to play it? Gone. Have a better track? Delete it. Don't quite remember? Bye-bye. You'll always have things in your archive. Regular, automated backups make it really easy to delete tracks. If you find that you're missing something, you can always go find it.

    Other than that, just figure out whatever you have to do to be really selective when you're buying things. And sometimes, starting over is just the thing.

  4. #4
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    Started again myself a few months ago, from a massive library of a good 20,000 tracks, accumulated over years from all my CDs (most i ripped as VBR mp3 to save space before i knew what i was doing), record pools and friends.

    When i re-started my collection, i promised myself i would aim for FLAC (obviously not easy to buy FLAC, so buy wav and encode) quality, instead of heading straight over to Juno (or digital tunes, which is quite good you get flac/wav for no extra cost) and browsing for stuff, i made myself sit down with a notepad and do a brainstorm of genres > artists > songs that are my tunes, building my library on this basis means that it contains only my sound/style.

    Then you can sort of build outwards and accumulate music that you don't nessecarily play, but like to listen to, and end up with a good balanced library where you know at least every artist just by listening, and eventually most of the tracks.

    In my "listening" library i currently have 2215 tracks, i'd say about half of those are tracks i'd actually play in a set. Which is a great margin compared to what it used to be.

    Edit: Might be worth mentioning that i usually buy full albums as opposed to tracks, i always get a better sense of the artist/s with a full album, and find shit loads of gems that i would miss if i didn't preview.
    Last edited by Maxted; 03-22-2012 at 06:53 AM.

  5. #5
    Tech Guru Nicky H's Avatar
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    I do it a little bit different
    When I buy new tracks they go in a folder named after the month - March, April etc
    Then in there I have genre folders, house, tech, deep etc

    I do that throughout the year then at the end of the year I go through the folders and listen to everything

    If it doesn't sound like a track I would l play regularly I delete it - then everything goes into a new folder named 2011 (or whatever year it was)

    You gotta be prepared to delete stuff else you end up with thousands of tracks that are useless

    And doing it this way I know I can dig through my older stuff and it will be something I like
    SC | MC

  6. #6
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    I have a 2tb external with everything on it, its my back up and my go to drive if I'm at an event were the crowd may want something out there I would not normally play. I do a lot of gigs that turn out that way.
    Then on my laptop I have 600gb hard drive. On it I keep two major list, My Promo only collection and the top 100 billboards from each year back to 1970. (back to 1950 on the external). Then I have a few file I create, like dinner music for wedding, Party list for that all over crowd and even some for specific gigs that I do regularly. Then I have files I create as my top crates. These are just groups of songs that are put together to go well together and the top songs that I like to goto.
    I try not to delete anything in good quality, I may not like it, but you never know when a VIP will request something off the wall. I dont like saying I dont have it. I may not play them and tell them why, but I dont like not having it.
    I really need a good system, or way to orginize my external though. One day I want to sit down an delete all the double I have.

  7. #7
    Tech Mentor TreTuna's Avatar
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    Lots of good advise here, of course we all have our own strategies... I'm actually about to have to do a complete reorganization myself.

    Personally I have a master backup of ALL my audio files... Which leads up to around 30k+ tracks or 900 gigs worth. These are all on one external drive. Now, on my computer's drive I have two folders, one for music I would use DJing, and one for just stuff I like to listen to but wouldn't necessarily make it into a set. Right now that library contains about 8k files and is way overly-bloated. At the moment I suffer from about the same thing you are. I was part of a few DJ pools that I was just downloading and downloading from without properly making sure the tracks were worth it and organized properly.

    This is where the backups come greatly in hand. As long as you have a master backup, you should NEVER be afraid of that delete button. In fact, it should be one of your best friends! Now I spin a lot of sets that are mixtures of many different styles and genres so I have to keep a lot more stuff around then most, but that doesn't mean it has to get cluttered.

    When I start my collection over again this is my general approach.

    1. Backup my DJ folder one more time to be sure it's completely up to date.
    2. Move everything out of my main DJ Music folder into a separate Evaluation Folder.
    3. One-by-one move the folders of music I know I use back into the Traktor folder and import to collection.
    4. Go through each folder right as imported to be sure that the tracks located within are indeed tracks I want to keep.
    5. Delete those I don't want.
    6. For ones I do, make sure they are tagged properly, striped, keyed, have proper cues, and are sorted into the right playlists.
    7. Repeat for every folder I want to import from the old collection. - This can take days by the way...
    8. Now I go over my backup drive, and make sure there's nothing there I want to pull in that wasn't before.
    9. If there is, use steps 3-6
    10. Finish up and hit Beatport for anything new!

    That's a general 10-step process I go through when redoing my collection, which ends up happening at least once or twice a year. It's definitely a pain in the rear to redo your collection, but puts things in a much better prospective and makes it much easier to find things you want.

    Now I'm in the process of organizing samples for productions... Yay!
    Tre Tuna
    DJ and Recording and Mixing engineer for live and studio sound
    Traktor Pro 2.7.1 | MacBook Pro Core 2 Duo 2.5ghz 4gigs ram
    Stanton STR8-150s | Ortofon Q-Bert Carts
    NI Z2, F1, Machine MK I, RigKontrol 3 | Dicers | PadKontrol

  8. #8
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    Awesome advice from everyone here. My library was driving me nuts, I felt like it was taking me way to long to find my next track cause I had to sort through so much junk. Do you guys think I should just scrap the record pool altogether and us the $100 to buy tracks I love. I do find the record pool useful for getting me tracks for the mainstream crowd and it does have great instrumentals and acapellas. Other then that though it's a lot of filler.

  9. #9
    Tech Guru synthet1c's Avatar
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    ^ definately if you consider that 75 tracks is about 4 sets worth of music without playing any repeats, it makes sense, and you can replenish that amount of track quite easily with new ones every month so you stay on the forefront of you chosen genre... Just take care of your library and you will have a personal archive that you enjoy listening to and can pull things from to mix it up a bit.
    Why did the elephant get lost... Cause the Jungle is MASSIVE!

  10. #10
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    Well so far i've deleted 5000 tracks, and I haven't even gotten to the ridiculous David Guetta remixes that I downloaded from DJCity cause I thought "I might" need them. I think I will end up getting rid of the DJcity account. I can say there's probably less then 100 tracks from there that I've found useful. The dj friendly hip hop edits are nice but so much filler there. I've only been at it for 2 days and already I feel better about where my collection is going.

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