This weekend I played a large summer festival called Dominator about an hour and a half outside of Amsterdam in a area called Leidschendam. The event is put on by an organization named Art of Dance and they are one of a small group of companies that control the Dutch techno scene. There were a few stages ranging from 2-5,000 kids in front of them. It was a daytime festival and luckily it was all sun and there was a nice lake to sit by too. They put me in the Hilton at the airport and unfortunately we got stuck in traffic on the way to the gig so I arrived and had to rush to the stage and instantly start performing. It was only when I was plugging in my wires I realized I forgot my Macbook Pro’s power adapter in the USA! I had to run the live show + M-Audio Firewire 410 (Amazon link) off the internal battery. Luckily it worked 100% fine and I had a great time performing. I have a checklist that I go over several times before I fly so it’s strange I made such a basic mistake. At many of these large events like this one they only give live acts 30 minutes to play so I edited a lot of my songs down to the nifty neat parts. I played two new songs, jumped up on the turntables, ran down into the audience and made a costume change (took my coat off!). See you next summer!
I’ve been recording music since 1989 and each year since I’ve saved my songs, stems and album covers on Cassettes, DATs, Zip Disks, CDs, DVDs, assorted hard drives and even in the cloud. Today with each new important music social network or online music retailer that arrives I have to upload my entire catalog again. The past few times I’ve done this by digging into all the old CDs repeatedly. Today I put an end to that madness. I purchased a portable bus powered USB 2.0 drive that is the new grand central station of all the music I ever created (and all the music on my record label). Each release is in its own folder containing the song in all formats, artwork and remix files. When it’s time to upload to Trackitdown I have 320kpbs MP3s using the Lame encoder ready. Beatport? No problem Wavs are at hand. Oh yeah, I also keep 30 second previews saved too.
This is a novel idea but I feel good that I finally got around to it. I think this massive futz was just in the nick of time as my old Tascam DA-30 DAT machine was making squeaking sounds. The next step is to use SuperDuper! and regularly clone the new baby. It’s true that someone could steal my entire music catalog all in one swoop but those interested are already doing that online (har har). I put a .txt document on the drive titled Contact_Me.txt. I hope if the drive ever does get lost, stolen and found a nice person will be kind enough to reach me. I’m considering also encrypting the drive. I’ve heard Leo Laporte on the TWIT podcast mention software to just that. What was it called again? As long as it’s not too tricky or kill the performance of the drive why not.
So what exactly did I get? I’m in Berlin so I walked down to Alexanderplatz to Mediamarkt and grabbed a Western Digital “My Passport” 160GB bus powered USB 2.0 drive. I know Firewire would be a bit faster but I am purely just using the drive for file storage and I have more USB ports than Firewire ones available. This drive was only 67€, anything with Firewire was over 150€. Check out the photos of this thing: click here I know its geeky to look at hard drive photos but this thing is uber nice. It’s white, tiny and has a white LED power light that also blinks when the drive is in action. To top it off it came with a short white USB cable.