iTunes: Keeping your Music Listening Interesting Using Smart Playlists

July 28, 2009 in How-To, Tips & Tricks by Bob Faulhaber

Do you have a large iTunes music library? Does some of your older music seem to “disappear” from your listening rotation? Well, using Smart Playlists you can organize your music library to keep your listening fresh.

Smart Playlists in iTunes allow you to setup your library to organize and develop playlists using a variety of criteria.

Let’s assume that you want to create a playlist with your highest rated music, but want to make sure that you haven’t listened to it recently. You would create the Smart Playlist as follows:

1. Open iTunes

2. Click File and then select New Smart Playlist

You will then be presented with the Smart Playlist dialog box.

From here you can select the criteria for the music to be added to the playlist.

We’ve now created a Smart Playlist of all the songs with a rating of more than 3 stars and not played in the past week.

Let’s assume you want to create another Smart Playlist with recently added music with the last 6 weeks and that you haven’t listened to in the past 3 days. If you use iTunes to manage your Audiobooks and Podcasts you have to add filters to omit those items.

You can create an unlimited set of playlists and even use Smart Playlists as criteria in other playlists.

If you want to create a master playlist that combines tracks from your other playlists, just use the other playlists as criteria.

Now you can create a wide variety of playlists, using different criteria to keep you music listening from getting stale. Remember, you periodically need to adjust play count numbers, date added criteria and other parameters as your listening and music purchasing or additions to the library change.

Smart Playlists give you the ability to customize your music listening using whatever criteria you desire.

If you’ve created some interesting, unique Smart Playlists, let us know by leaving a comment below.