Last week, I rushed home after the Kodaline/Good Old War show pumped up to churn out a review and upload some pictures. I got to my computer, fired up Lightroom, opened Word, and then I noticed that LR popped an error that my library was missing. I didn’t think anything of it, but when I went to pull up my recent library backup, I felt an immediate surge of panic when my drive was nowhere to be found.
This wasn’t any old drive (2 years old), it was home to my digital music library and my photography (all of it). It wasn’t a planned downsizing, but my panic didn’t stem from the music loss (thanks Spotify) but my photographic history. It was this realization which surprised me, there was a time when I would have had a nervous breakdown when my MP3s simply vanished into the digital ether, but not today (well, not about my music at least). When I took the plunge and subscribed to a digital streaming service (initially Deezer, but Spotify these days) the amount of music on my phone gradually decreased to the point of actually not having any at all as streaming has completely taken hold.
There used to be a time when I wanted to have immediate access to my personal music library, it was both a badge of honour and a security blanket of sorts. These days I want to be able to grab my phone, select an album on Spotify and stream it to my handy Bluetooth speaker. Technology has blown right past the need for a huge MP3 catalogue and has lessened the blow when your digital storage opts to kick the bucket. Even if I can’t recover that lost data, it is rather refreshing to have that reset button pushed in regards to my digital music collection.
I knew streaming music was an interesting evolution in music delivery, but never did I think it would be as personally revolutionary as it has proven to be. iTunes is on my computer as it has been there since the days of my first iPod purchase (3rd gen) but aside from backing up my iPhone I couldn’t tell you the last time I required the services of Apple’s music player. As such, while this digital downsizing was completely unexpected, it is surprisingly welcome.