Sing like no one is listening

My music organized by albums in iTunes

My music organized by albums in iTunes

I cannot imagine a world without music. I have friends who can drive a car for hours only listening to road noise. ACK! Kill me now! Having music on my boat is just as important as food and water. The sad thing to me is a lot of people take its power for granted and don’t give it the respect it deserves.

Music can turn around a bad day, enhance a good day, excite a boring day, or calm a scary day. On my boat I have an iPod tied to the stereo system who’s sole purpose in life is to have my music ready to go at a moments notice. I even have play lists setup just for cleaning the boat. A task I hate, but find bearable with some fun high energy music.

In today’s digital music revolution a problem I see all too often is not being able to find the right music. Lets face it, digital music mysteriously disappears into the dark unknown void of our electronic devices. It’s not like the old days where albums where proudly displayed in our living rooms.

When there’s down time on the boat I take the opportunity to organize and integrate new music into my library. For better or worse my music is managed by Apple’s iTunes, even with it’s flaws I can’t find a better solution.

The first thing I’m going to recommend is to get your music library onto an external drive (SSD would be best) 1. In the event of a catastrophe it’s much harder to recover your library than the computer itself. Trust me on this, I’ve been there.

For me I like to have all my music organized by albums, a product of my 1970s vinyl childhood! I even created an Album for misfit songs 2, ‘Todd’s Essentials’. This album is where I keep all the singles and one-hit wonders that have no home. I’ll even combine albums for easier song selection in cover flow.

Cover Flow

Cover Flow

Play lists!..I’m a huge fan of creating play lists! Having these ready made personalized radio stations immediately on tap makes getting to the right music so easy. You just have to remember to periodically refresh them to keep things interesting.

After that I download my selected play lists to the dedicated iPod, stow the laptop and we have music at our fingertips for weeks to come.

'Shazam' iPhone app for tagging music on the radio

iPhone app for tagging music on the radio

At some point your library will become stale, you’ll need to find some new songs. I also have a plain old AM/FM radio and a satellite radio receiver aboard. Listening to local island radio stations is a ton of fun for me, they remind me of college radio. Of course satellite radio offers the whole world for new music.

I also use the iPhone app ‘Shazam’ to tag new music on the go. Then later when I’m on-line and getting ready to expand my collection I have a ready to go list of new tunes.

To wrap things up give your music some love and maintenance just as you would all the other life supporting elements on your boat. Get those soul touching songs you love so much out of the void and back on the stereo. If you’re looking for inspiration I have my entire library on this website, check it out! If you have a great song please share! 3 Good music is always welcomed!!!

Turn up the tunes and sing like no one is listening!!!


  1. iCloud can be helpful but for us cruisers trying to recover gigabytes of data from a remote location it may not be feasible
  2. Yes, I’m referencing Rudolf the red nosed reindeer
  3. By share, I mean the song title not the actual music file, that’s a no-no
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  1. Ivor Green on November 1, 2014

    “Drive a car for hours only listening to road noise”….that me isn’t it?

  2. Lynne Kammer on November 2, 2014


    • Todd Martin on November 2, 2014

      You have to admit they represent a significant genre from the ’70s

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