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How to use your Mac to maximize your concert experience

Lesa Snider | July 22, 2015
With all the effort and expense it takes to attend a concert, a smart person makes the most of it--starting far before the concert happens and extending well after the final encore. In this column, you'll learn how to use your Mac to milk every last drop of enjoyment from your concert experiences.

concert hero

With all the effort and expense it takes to attend a concert, a smart person makes the most of it--starting far before the concert happens and extending well after the final encore. In this column, you'll learn how to use your Mac to milk every last drop of enjoyment from your concert experiences.

Find the artist's current setlist

Since artists can't play all their songs at any one event, limit your pre-concert listening to the songs they're likely to play. To discover which songs are on the set list for the current tour, do a Google search for "[artist name] setlist 2015" (be sure to include the quotes so the search results include the whole phrase). Depending on the popularity of the artist, the setlist may be easy to find or you may need to root around a bit. That said, the website Setlist.fm is particularly helpful.

Gather the songs into a playlist

Once you discover which songs the artist is likely to play, create a new playlist in iTunes that contains only those songs. If you're a big fan, odds are you own many of those songs already (or maybe they're in Apple Music).

So fire up iTunes, locate the artist, and then select a few songs (or albums). Sometimes it's easiest to create a temporary smart playlist that contains all the artist's recordings by choosing File > New Smart Playlist and then entering the name of the artist. Next, Control- or right-click a selected item and, from the menu that appears, choose "New Playlist from Selection" (or press Shift-Command-N). When you do, iTunes creates the playlist, opens it, and highlights the name. Enter something meaningful, say, Dick Dale Concert July 2015, and then press Return.

Find the songs you're missing

If you're missing a few songs from the setlist, you can easily buy the albums that contain them or the individual tracks from the iTunes Store. To do it, click the ellipsis (three dots) at the right of any _song_--not an album, artist, or playlist name--you already own by that artist and then choose "Show in iTunes Store" from the menu that appears. Once the store opens, you can view other albums by the same artist by clicking the album icons or, if you're hunting for a certain song, enter its name into the search field at upper right and press Return.

On the other hand, if you don't own any songs by that artist, just enter their name or a song title into the iTunes search field and press Return. In the resulting menu, click "Search for [artist or song name] in iTunes Store."

 

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