New method of organization

Since the arrival of my iPod Nano last winter, I don’t listen to my CDs much anymore unless I am in my car. However, that is no excuse for not keeping them neat and tidy while on the shelf. For years I organized them alphabetically within their respective categories: Comedy, Soundtracks, Classical, and Everything Else. It worked fairly well for a time in my life when I listened to the CDs themselves. Of course, since all of my music has been transferred to my iPod, I don’t need that same ready access to those CDs as I once did. So, I decided to get a bit creative in my organization, inspired by one of my favorite people. The trick to this method of organization is to find similarities in the CDs you wish to organize.

I began by finding CDs that were numerically inclined: The’s, The B-52’s, Eiffel 65, Electric Six, Louis XIV, The Jackson 5, The Eroica Trio, and The Dave Brubeck Quartet.

Some of my CDs were rather colorful: Al Green, James Brown, Blondie, White Town, Redbone, Pink Floyd, and the soundtrack toThe Blues Brothers.

Others were quite delicious: Smashing Pumpkins, The Cranberries, Wild Cherry, Cracker, Fiona Apple, Gin Blossoms, Hot Chocolate, Hall & Oates, and Cake.

Some people had the same names, so they had to be moved together: Joe Jackson, Luscious Jackson and Michael Jackson; Kool & The Gang and Coolio; Rick Springfield and Ricky Nelson; Billy Ward and Billy Joel; Bob Dylan and Bobby McFerrin; Benny Goodman and Richard Goode; Norah Jones and Spike Jones; and (naturally) Ryan Adams and Bryan Adams.

Organizing your music in such a way may produce royalty: Count Basie, Nat King Cole, Elvis Presley, and the soundtrack to The Royal Tenenbaums.

Of course, most of my CDs are for commoners who have regular jobs, like Men At Work, The Carpenters, Cutting Crew, and Mike + The Mechanics, all of whom work with the soundtrack to Grease, Nine Inch Nails, The Cars, Crash Test Dummies, The Postal Service and Garbage.

Some of my CDs had an inclination towards anatomy and medicine: Corey Hart, Talking Heads, Belly, Tears for Fears, R.E.M., Kiss, Collective Soul, Wang Chung, The Offspring, Dead or Alive, Spin Doctors and The Cure.

Others were a bit more animalistic: A Flock of Seagulls, Buddy Holly & The Crickets, Squirrel Nut Zippers, Adam Ant, Counting Crows, the soundtrack to The Truth About Cats and Dogs, Blue Öyster Cult, and The Flying Lizards.

Some CDs were a bit more travelled: Journey, Foreigner, Boston, Kansas, Asia, and Space.

Then there were the more material CDs, like The Bangles, The Cardigans, and The Walkmen.

The rest of my CDs, unfortunately, didn’t fit into neat little categories like those listed above. The remainder had to be alphabetized like in olden times. Before I did that, though, I did manage to make a small pile of CDs that are fun to say, like a-Ha, Dishwalla, Weezer, Yo-Yo Ma, Björk, Bananarama, and Kajagoogoo.

The moral of this organized tale is that alphabetizing is not always the way to go. A change of this sort is good, especially for someone (like me) who has a place for everything. The change doesn’t have to be extreme; I wouldn’t organize my books by the color of the covers, because that would just be silly. But I do think I will still be able to find my CDs this way, perhaps even more quickly.

I would love to know how others would organize their CDs; perhaps someone may find a more original way to do it.


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