an mp3 is just a music file that has been compressed to make it easier to distribute on the web. it can be played in most major players (Windows Media Player, iTunes, Real Player). For popround, we recommend that you upload playlists (eg. from iTunes) as continuous mixes.
– mp3 creation software
whether you are recording a dj set, a gig, joining together a playlist of individual mp3’s or changing file format, you will need some sound editing software. these are pretty straightforward packages, often with buttons that look like the ones you used to have on your cassette player (play, stop, record, etc.). i strongly recommend audacity (free).
with the mp3 format, you decide how big or small you want the file to be (the level of compression). ideal compression settings are:
channels: 2 (stereo)
bit or sampling rate: 192 kb/sec
i record at cd quality (around 44100 sampling rate), save as a wav (just in case i want higher quality to burn to cd) and then save as 192kb/sec mp3. i then upload the mp3.
– creating a single mix from an iTunes playlist
create a new folder on your desktop and drag the files from your playlist into this folder:
download and run the miniscule MergeMP3 program and open up this folder in the application:
at this stage you may need to reorder the playlist using the Up/Down arrows in the toolbar. once you’re happy with the order, select the Merge button and choose a location where you want the mix saved.
you then take this mix and upload it to popround.
– creating tracklistings for your posts
tracklistings can be copied directly from itunes to a spreadsheet program like excel. select all the tracks in iTunes and go Edit > Copy and go to a blank spreadsheet and go Edit > Paste. you can then delete the columns you don’t want and either again copy and paste it into a new post on your wordpress dashboard, or edit it first in a text editing program (eg. Word) to the following format:
[song name 1] – [artist name 1]
[song name 2] – [artist name 2]
you can see an example here:
– other recordings
in theory, anything that has a ‘line out’ socket can be hooked up to a computer or mp3 recorder and recorded. with more than one microphone, things get pretty tricky pretty quickly. i have recorded an acoustic set (vocal and mic’ed guitar) through the sound desk of a small venue to great affect. full bands (especially the drum kit) cause a particular problem. that’s why good sound engineers are rare and well paid.