Organise hidden tracks in iTunes

How to easily split a hidden album track into two separate songs using iTunes.

I’m not sure what the point in hidden tracks are. Y’know – you get an album with 10 songs on it, then track 10 it followed by 5 minutes of silence until an unannounced 11th tracks is aired. Maybe it’s because they’re not so confident about the quality of the song or maybe it doesn’t seemed to fit anywhere else in the track listing. For me it’s usually a pain. If I’m listening to music, I want sound, not nothing.

My solution to this is to break-up that last track into two separate songs, simply using iTunes. It’s easy, here’s how…

  1. Add ‘(Original)’ to the name of the song in question
  2. Play the track and find the time at which the first song ends
  3. From your menu bar select ‘File > Get Info’ and go to the ‘Options’ tab
  4. Type that time into the ‘Stop Time’ field making sure the tick box is checked
  5. Select ‘Advanced > Create MP3 Version’ – this may say AAC or another encoding type depending on what you have selected in your import settings, see Preferences. iTunes will then create a second copy of that track with a cropped ‘Time’ matching the what you entered in step 4.
  6. Rename the new track with it’s correct title
  7. Now repeat the process from on the original track from Step 2 for the second song, but of course this time altering both the ‘Start Time’ and ‘Stop Time’
  8. Remove start and stop times from the original track
  9. Delete the original track from iTunes but leave the actual file on your PC – (optional)

That’s all there is to it. Now you can listen to the album without any big gaps and rate the hidden track, fantastic!

Oh and also, those functions I selected from the iTunes menu are also available from the contextual menu (this little pop-up menu that appears when you right-click or ⌘-click).

Little iPod jumpers

iPod wears: orange sock; grey beenie; purple roll-neck
iPod wears: orange sock; grey beenie; purple roll-neck

Since buying my iPod about 9 months ago, I’ve wanted to buy a suitable case. Up until now I’ve had my iPod in an old Sony MiniDisc jewel bag. As the damn thing broke and Apple replaced it with a spanking new shiny one, I thought it was time I got something proper to keep scratches at bay.
My iPod’s either in my pocket or in my bag, so I wanted something that would be slim line and also offer a little padding. I’m not keen on the belt clip stuff. iPod’s were designed to fit in your pocket and the bulky cases defeat the object. So I waddled down to the Apple Store in Regent Street and got myself some iPod socks.
At £19 (for a pack of 6), they’re not cheap. Luckily Pete stepped in and when halves with me and somehow picked the rubbish colours – thanks Pete! I think they’re great. They do just what I need them too. Simple yet functional.