Apple Music is a nightmare and I’m done with it

[Editor: Be sure to read Dave Mark’s response to this post]

I love Apple. I love them because they take difficult problems and come up with innovative, simple solutions. The things they make just work and we trust them. Unfortunately, my experience with Apple Music has been exactly the opposite. As of today, I’m missing about 4,700 songs from my library with little hope of getting them back.

I had high hopes for Apple Music. I really wanted it to work and become my default music streaming service, but after the problems I’ve experienced over the last couple of weeks, I’m disabling it altogether.

My problems started about a week after installing Apple Music. While Apple Music Radio and Playlists worked well, adding music to my library is nothing short of a mind-blowing exercise in frustration.

I started to notice that whenever I added an album to my library, not all of the songs would get added. When I looked at the list of songs, there would be some missing—sometimes, most of the album would be missing. When I clicked the “Show Complete Album” button on my Mac, all of the missing songs would show up with an “Add” button beside them.

Why do that when I already told Apple Music to add the album?

From what I can tell in my tests, Apple Music is deciding itself, based on your library, that it will not add duplicate songs. For instance, I purchased a lot of Black Sabbath albums over the years, but not all of the compilations. I went into Apple Music and added a compilation album, but it didn’t all get added to my library. When I looked at all of the songs that didn’t get added, they were ones that I already had in my library.

In another example, I added Bob Dylan’s “Blonde On Blonde” and his “Greatest Hits” albums. The “Greatest Hits” was short three songs—the same three songs that are on “Blonde On Blonde,” so Apple Music chose not to add them to the “Greatest Hits” album. It’s not unreasonable to want to listen to an album in the context the artist wrote it, and then other times, just listen to their greatest hits. It’s my choice to make.

However, if I decide I really want those songs, when I click the “Add” button, nothing happens, which seemed odd to me. If adding the songs is an option, why won’t they add to the library. I went to my iPhone and tapped “Show Complete Album”—when I tapped on the song to add it, the option was to “Remove from My Music.” This means that my iPhone thinks it’s already added, but the song isn’t showing up. What I had to do is go through all of the songs, remove them from the library, and then click add to get them back in the library.

I went through about 15 albums one night and manually added all of the missing songs. It was frustrating, to say the least, but I did it. I nearly lost my mind the next morning when I checked my iPhone and Apple Music and taken out all of the songs I added the night before. I was right back where I started.

In some cases, like Bob Dylan and Neil Young, a few of the songs show up twice on one album. When you tap to play the song, they both show the animated icon in iTunes, as if they are both playing. Note in the screenshot that the songs are different in terms of their length of playing time. Either Apple Music shaved a few seconds off one of the tracks, or they’re from different albums.



Other strange things have happened too. For instance, I added ZZ Top’s “The Very Baddest” album. Instead of downloading all of the songs from that album, it downloaded them from multiple albums. So now I have several ZZ Top albums, each with a few songs on them.

Apple Music also decided that I like Electronica and Pop music. I found this out by going to the setup screen to redo my entire account and see that if that helped fix my original problem. I deleted the categories and bands that Apple Music put in, but it didn’t help the overall problem.

In another case, I own Led Zeppelin IV—and all of their other albums. However, when I look at it in Apple Music, it doesn’t recognize that I have it and gives me the option to add it to my library. With all of the other problems I’ve been having, I didn’t even bother trying that.

I tried adding one Neil Young album six times and it just wouldn’t go into my library. I finally just gave up.

If all that wasn’t enough, none of my devices seem to sync, so my Macs don’t have the same songs that my iPhone has, and neither of them match my iPad.

mac2The Recently Added from one of my Macs

maclibTaken at the same time, the Recently Added from another of my Macs

I’ve tried logging out of my accounts on all my devices and allowing Apple Music to rebuild itself. I’ve turned iCloud Music Library on/off and I’ve done just about everything else I can think of doing. Nothing I’ve tried works.

The only thing that changed since I started using Apple Music is transferring my Beats account to my new Apple Music subscription. I can’t say for sure if that caused all of these problems or not, but it was around the same time.

I know I’m not the only one having this problem. There are threads on Apple’s support forums detailing similar issues to the ones I’m having, and I’ve noticed tweets in my stream reporting the same problems.

At some point, enough is enough. That time has come for me—Apple Music is just too much of a hassle to be bothered with. Nobody I’ve spoken at Apple or outside the company has any idea how to fix it, so the chances of a positive outcome seem slim to none.

As if all of that wasn’t enough, Apple Music gave me one more kick in the head. Over the weekend, I turned off Apple Music and it took large chunks of my purchased music with it. Sadly, many of the songs were added from CDs years ago that I no longer have access to. Looking at my old iTunes Match library, before Apple Music, I’m missing about 4,700 songs. At this point, I just don’t care anymore, I just want Apple Music off my devices.

I trusted my data to Apple and they failed. I also failed by not backing up my library before installing Apple Music. I will not make either of those mistakes again.

I’m going to listen to what’s left of my music library, and try to figure out all of the songs I have to buy again. I’ll also download Spotify and reactivate the account I cancelled with them a couple of weeks ago.

  • Nicholas Chan

    I’ve deleted all of my partial albums before adding the entire album from Apple Music. I figured the partial albums had different metadata formatting. Works 100% fine for me doing it this way and I’m happy.

    • Chris Brightwell

      Except that now you’ve trashed your DRM-free files for DRM-encumbered files.

      • CZ

        if you save those old files or iTunes Library, you will still have the DRM free files. Someone offer a good solution; start fresh on Apple Music (separate from your library) and add songs to library from Apple Music for songs you already own. Keep two library. Old library saved elsewhere, new one with all DRM version and new songs added

        • RediPonto

          start fresh on Google, spotify, or any other working service

          • Iconoclysm

            Problem there is that Apple Music has a larger library.

          • Anatoly Ponomarev

            Spotify has a larger library then Apple Music

          • Gonzo Oin

            Source ?

          • Harry Balsagna

            Does every adult look like your mamma to you? Hoe hard can it be for you to confirm it if you want ironclad facts from an internet message board?

          • Groove Music is even larger

          • TECH

            u do know that Apple music library is streamed from a “separate” catalog don’t u… Its not streamed from iTunes store.

          • Quinn Williams

            No. look it up. What about Taylor Swift on Spotify?? Nope!

          • PeteyP

            It’s not about numbers. Sure, Apple may have more mainstream music but not everyone wants to listen to top 40. I got rid of it due to it severely lacking EDM and international artists. If you want to jam out to Dr. Dre or Taylor Swift all day long, have at it. Those of us who are tired of sound-alike cookie cutter mainstream music prefer the more versatile alternatives.

          • Rex Racer

            Spotify has a larger library THAN Apple Music Spotify has a larger library THAN Apple Music Spotify has a larger library THAN Apple Music

            NOT S̶p̶o̶t̶i̶f̶y̶ ̶h̶a̶s̶ ̶a̶ ̶l̶a̶r̶g̶e̶r̶ ̶l̶i̶b̶r̶a̶r̶y̶ ̶T̶H̶E̶N̶ ̶A̶p̶p̶l̶e̶ ̶M̶u̶s̶i̶c̶

          • willy vlyminck

            Certainly in progressive rock

          • Alexei Baboulevitch

            And yet, with many of my favorite electronic music artists and albums, Apple Music is still missing a ton while Spotify has most of them.

          • AndreaB71

            Xbox Music has the biggest library, over 40 milion tracks.

          • Moe Better 11

            40 million tracks for xbox “music”? That does not like like many at all … are they all 256kbps Digital Right Manglement Free?

          • I don’t see the offset – a little garage band from the east coast 1965. How about that. Sp Oh Xbox – meant for hyper consumers who don’t know anything about music.

          • willy vlyminck

            Which you never will be able to hear, so what is the point?

          • Mark


          • TECH

            Apple knows to to get the fish 🙂

          • Sigivald

            Google has an unlimited-music subscription service with offline mode withOUT DRM?

            … no?

            Yeah, nobody does.

          • subscriptions? lol – you mean you people don’t know how to go out and buy a record anymore? how fucking lame. please line up to get shot .

          • shreyansh jain
          • trashbat

            Except Spotify is still missing a major amount of music I listen to (as does Apple Music/iTunes store but at least I can get that unified view). Google was the other way at first – the locker without the store and streaming. Suspect Apple will get there, but I think it would have been better for them to have made Apple Music a separate product at this stage, which imported iTunes libraries non-destructively?

        • Mark Krieglstein

          That just defeats the purpose of what I understood Apple must to be, which is from what I understood was to integrate the music you already one be digital download or cds that you have imported into i tunes, i thought the app would recognize you already own the music so would save time and cloud space by just connecting you to an online library.and being apple I thought that it would be great 95% of music you own would be available in their cloud so you not have to upload a huge personal library to have all your music available all the time.

          • Sigivald

            iTunes Match does that.

            Apple Music is a subscription streaming service that allows offline listening via DRM protection.

            Jim’s best complaint here is that his iTunes Match subscribed stuff got hammered by Music, which is not supposed to happen.

            (And this is why you always keep backups.

            “Apple has it in the cloud via Match” is not a backup, just like “it’s on RAID” is not a backup.)

          • Matt Chauvel

            itunes Match is a bitch when you change country. I made the mistake of accepting itunes Match when it was first offered while travelling (having already had to change or maintain multiple Apple country accounts over the previous decade and dealing with the hassle of maintaining valid credit cards in the US, UK, France and Malta) in order not to lose already-paid-for content, and lost almost my entire music library. Fortunately I still had it on a couple unsynched devices and was able to illegally copy it elsewhere (if that’s the only choice you give people…), but as far as apple devices go, it was a really nasty surprise. So, I wholeheartedly agree with you, maintaining proper independent backups is an absolute requirement, but I still think Apple’s treatment of international, nomadic customers (most of whom are in their wealthiest, highest paying subscriber segment) is absolute shit.

          • Moe Better 11

            That’s impressive … never though of a multi national iTunes Match collection. This is what some call capitalism and multinationals – craptalism … which also goes well with craptology.

            I have no idea what dickheads see in punishing loyal and PAYING customers – even fans get the stick from time to time – for doing the RIGHT thing – because of some SOB somewhere … sipping his or her tea.

          • @nsmartinworld

            Has nothing to do with your economic prejudice but with copyright laws. Law, you may not have heard, it produced by governments.

          • Coatsey

            I totally agree. I am another person who moves around the world and got it’s like pulling teath.

          • jb

            the problem with Match is the 20k song limit.

          • Moe Better 11

            25K is a bit low for some though I think it is a 97.8% solution … YMMV, and void where prohibited.

          • Moe Better 11

            I do love your, “it’s on RAID” is not a backup. A redundance array of Inexpensive disks is never a backup, though it can help in a pinch. RAID0 is a good way to frag files, but then you pay for the (nearly) bullet proof drives and only have stuff on them daily… but then does anyone know this (beyond techies and IT folk)?

          • Moe Better 11

            That is why – in part – the Apple Music is a massive mess in one pants, but then I think some people (Apple?) like to poop their pants from time to time. I mean other firms do this daily, so why not every few months!

          • I am literally spending my ENTIRE day trying to go through libraries on 3 computers, find the original drm-free files, and unify/consolidate everything. This is ridiculous!

          • Rex Racer

            Literally? really?

          • regardless – it’s all fake. artifice of real analogue music means it’s criminal to sell. nice scam.

        • Why doesn’t Apple provide an official solution for this? They clearly seem to NOT care which is frustrating.

          • 0987654321

            Why? In my experience Apple software just doesn’t work…

          • this reminds me of when they abandoned Aperture for the lackluster Photos solution for Mac.. many photographers wrote about their issues on different web outlets and Apple Feedback.. Apple never responded.. they announced that in OSX 10.11, they will start adding new extension ability to Photos for MAc… So Apple must be hearing outcries over Apple Music and will maybe fix but never give an ETA..

          • My only problem is that I don’t know if it’s safe for my to enable iCloud Music Library when I have lots of my own music – ripped original CDs.

          • polarbear4

            yes. Photos doesn’t seem so hot, either. and i love most of what Mac does–so user friendly, usually.

          • Moe Better 11

            I dodged that “Aperture” bullet! I’m not sure why Apple feels the need to “dumb” down everything – to a point its not bad at all. The problem lies for the pros and semi pros who have spent countless hours with the older (possibly better) software in an effort to do something … and now the car is about to run off the cliff – this also happened for FCPro – when Apple decided the old (possibly better) software would no longer be available… I only really expect Adobe – or (actually) Quark to be so daft!

          • Harry Balsagna

            50,000 estromen scream in ecstasy every time Apple sticks the corporate cock in their pooper, and you think Apple respects them? Really? I mean, Really?

        • Bangelica

          I would recommend using musconv for transferring your music playlist from one service to another – Bangelica

      • jeffsters

        Of note…If you are an ITunes Match subscriber there is no DRM on songs you matched.

      • Nicholas Chan

        You expect me to switch to Zune?!

        • Christian

          Funny you should say that Nicholas. I had my Zune HD for years, while family and friends went through iPods like water, and I never had any problems with it like they were complaining about. I ended up losing it about a year ago (left it in a rental car) and because it was no longer sold (even on Ebay people were asking ridiculous prices for it) I ended up getting an iPod touch. The only problem that irks me with the iPod is that every time I sync new music to the darn thing, it deletes other songs. I’ve googled how to prevent this so many times, yet it keeps happening. I NEVER had that issue with my Zune. Microsoft gave up on it, which was something they should not have done. It was a great product.

          • Marky

            I still have Zune software and its’ awesome..It does not mess with your current library at all. I thought Apple Music would be the same…but it really messed up my library (on free trial) and I had to reinstall backup. So staying with Zune/Xbox music for $99 per year.

          • Moe Better 11

            I think the issue you could have is that the Zune may hold your entire “library” – yet the iPod may not (depending on model, etc.) and with all this – attempts to hide the file system and prevent “theft” –

            Apple had to cowtoe to the labels, because (cocaine is a helluva an expensive drug – rehab is worse!) … so I think your Zune is an iPod circa 1999 or 2002, which was pretty cool when you could use an iPod like a portable HDD and for music and it just left off the phone and other fancy parts!

          • popweasel

            are you that guy who got Zune tattooed on his arm?

      • Bart

        Confused much?

        • Sigivald

          I agree ,except for …

          Especially on a Mac, that would be just STUPID?

          It’s not like Macs are more prone to disk failures or OS damage than competing platforms, eh?

          • AvalonNYC

            Maybe more prone to user error..

      • TECH

        Backups are vital..

    • JD Tomten

      Didn’t the latest iTunes release fix the Apple Music / Match issues people were having?

      I probably won’t renew music and haven’t downloaded anything from it yet, but hoping it doesn’t trash my Match songs that I’ve spent many hours fixing up over the many years…. (sometimes having to re-do them due to corruption of trying to store my large library on a NAS device.. how Apple gets away with corrupting libraries like that is also beyond me)

      • Jeff Lengersson

        It fixed it for some users with very specific scenarios. Others like me, especially those with a current iTunes Match account, are still dealing with corrupt libraries.

      • Pic889

        Which is the reason I never trust any “cloud” service for important data (aka family photos and videos and music gathered over the years), and my backup solution involves dumping my data into at least two physical harddisks (yes two, your irreplaceable data must be on two separate harddisks, one of them preferably an external harddisk). I am a dinosaur, right? I should be using one harddisk copy and the cloud copy, or all-cloud. But I ‘ve never lost any data with my method though.

        I use cloud services to offload pirate stuff on (which I can always redownload at will) and as an additional place for my music, but I would never trust a cloud service (which can be pulled by the company any time it wants based on some obscure line in the terms-of-service btw) to be one of the two primary copies.

    • eljobsodiablo

      Soooooo, you took Apple’s mistake and made it your problem.


      • Nicholas Chan

        Far from it.

    • Wooba

      So if I want to have zero problems I have to go through 400 different steps… no thanks!

      • Nicholas Chan

        1-step. Delete your entire library.

    • mfogel

      First thing I tried and it didn’t work for me. Apple Music / iTunes is a piece of crap and requires a full time job to manage. I do like Apple Music’s interface better than spotify but spotify just works and apple music does not.

  • djr12

    I can only imagine the levels of white-hot fury I would experience if this happened to me. This is sobering. As a longtime iTunes Match subscriber, I’ve known the headaches of trying to make that service work properly. Now it seems like Apple Music has extended the tentacles of their bad record on services to do real damage.

    At some point, they have to learn and understand that 98% isn’t good enough for their services. They’re asking us to trust them with our data, and they aren’t good enough. It’s great that they lavish insane attention to detail on the bezel of an iPhone or getting the color just right. They need to lavish that insane attention to detail on their services.

    • mark

      well, TM should get you back to where you were before it all broke. At least Apple gave us a way to fix it quick too.

      • jeffsters

        At least…then again you need to have set that up and be using it.

        I am a maniac on BU! I have my non-connected music BU drive. I have a locally connected USB TM HD, and I have a Time Capsule. Even then I feel unsafe as what if my house burns down! For this I got a MS OneDrive Business Account that comes with unlimited storage.

        I really hate to be the “we told you so guy” but I had something similar happen MANY years ago with photos and I have vowed never to take my important data for granted again.

        NOTHING is bug free.

        • Sigivald

          slow clap


          If it’s not backed up, it’s already deleted.

          If the backup isn’t tested, it’s not backed up.

          If it’s not backed up offsite, odds are 50/50.

        • Johannes Bols

          That’s a Zen koan. But with Apple, there’s bugs, and then there’s the shit they release to the public to let the endusers become the BETA testers. I didn’t pay one third again as much as I would have done for a Windows operating system, so I could become a Mac repairman. BASTA!

          • Jeffsters

            It’s not your fault.

    • Stirlol

      If I have to download my entire music folder from back blaze won’t be Too Pleased, at least they aren’t missing though!, music is item number 3 on my backup priority list; My work Wife’s original music and work Music collection

      The rest

    • Amen. Your last paragraph is the best piece of thinking and writing I’ve read on Apple’s cloud problems. I wasn’t in the market for Apple Music precisely because iCloud is not reliable (for me). I use it daily but it’s got too many bumps for me to put even more trust in it.

      I’m a very long-term user (1984) and it’s been great watching Apple gets its collective #### together over many years. But, as you say, the remnants of eWorld, MobileMe and other failed online services seem to be sticking with Apple. I wonder where the problem is and why they’ve not tried to root it out. Maybe it’s Eddie Cue himself who is no doubt untouchable at this point.


  • TheMacAdvocate

    Prepare to be Arment’d.

    • groberts1980

      I love that this has become a verb. Yeah I’m waiting for the backlash and this being a subject of all the podcasts I listen to.

      • freediverx

        Normally I’d say it’s unfair to judge Apple so harshly for an issue on a new service, which may be corrected in the near future.

        But everything I’ve seen over the last several years points to an Apple that is either unable or unwilling to dedicate the resources necessary to deliver top notch cloud services. And by top notch, I mean just competitive with the likes of Dropbox, who manage to work perfectly all the time, despite being a cross-platform product without Apple’s knowledge of or access to their private frameworks.

        The iPhone is Apple’s cash cow, and it’s apparent that everything else in their product line must play second banana when it comes to budgeting and resource allocation – and cloud services appear to be at the bottom of the heap.

        • Funny you should say that. I’ve had no problems with Dropbox for years until this week, when one of my machines suddenly decided that my Dropbox folder has ten times as many files in it as it actually does, crashing the sync.

          • groberts1980

            Again, anecdotal evidence. Your example doesn’t mean DropBox sucks.

          • No, but their support certainly does, even for paid users. They have no phone support or chat. They have a 24-48 hour turnaround time on tickets, which applies to every response. I first contacted support about this issue 6 days ago, and through multiple responses where I ruled out the general public idiot suggestions (“you should consider compressing some files”) and maybe finally got through to a support engineer who understands something ONLY after complaining at them on twitter, I’m still no closer to an actual resolution. Dropbox is magical when it works, but it seems to be a complete black box with no discernible debugging capability when it doesn’t.

          • Idon’t Know

            Yeah but Dropbox does suck.

          • Steve

            The first link is clearly a user error. I’m not saying Dropbox hasn’t had any issues or anything like that but to use Dropbox as a sole backup and the to be messing with it while it’s syncing doesn’t sound like a good recipe to me on any service.

        • ILL TROOPER

          Welllll… There was that time Dropbox was victim to that massive security breach. And then the other time.


          So, while I too wish Apple would tighten it up on cloud services (and I happily use and recommend Dropbox regularly), I would hope for even more from these companies.

          • Zancudocom

            What I like about Dropbox is the Dropbox Stores, over 200 in the U.S. If you’ve got a problem you can make an appointment with a Dropbox genius and get it solved, face-to-face. Same with Samsung, Microsoft, and all the others. Come on Apple get it together!

        • groberts1980

          I think it’s incredibly unfair. I didn’t mean to say it’s funny in that I agree with the site. His is anecdotal evidence that means nothing in my opinion. My experience with Apple Music has been flawless. But then again, I don’t maintain a music library locally. I’ve had iTunes Match since the beginning. Maybe Apple Music is more problematic when you maintain a large number of local files in your library. But it will get better over time.

          • Jeff Lengersson

            It hasn’t gotten (much) better over time.

            I’ve had iTunes Match since it debuted, and while it’s ok for playing music on the go, I’ve had to implement workarounds to make sure it doesn’t corrupt my home library. (I use a second iTunes library just for the cloud.)

            A whole new crop of bugs came up for some iTunes Match users with the introduction of iCloud Music Library, whether they used the new service or not.

            This is the opposite of “it just works”.

          • I’ve been considering creating a separate iTunes library to use just for Apple Music with the iCloud library turned on, and leaving it off on my main library that houses my large local collection of music, to avoid any shenanigans with my carefully curated library of tunes. Is that what you’re doing Jeff, and is it working as you’d expect?

          • Jeff Lengersson

            It did work for a while, but I had to be super careful not to accidentally change the settings. I finally gave up and started using Plex for streaming music instead. It has its own issues but it doesn’t touch your files.

  • Cowboy_X

    It is so hard to read reviews and opinion pieces about Apple Music and not silently judge the author for his taste based on screenshots.

    • Chris Harrison

      Are there really any surprises here?

    • BlueBoomPony

      Because your taste in music is the One True Truth?

      • Cowboy_X

        Where did I say he had bad taste in music?

        • Sigivald

          “Judging” tends to imply negativity, in common English use.

          And to judge him negatively is to suggest he has bad taste in music, again, in normal interpretation and usage.

    • JF

      Except you didn’t do it silently. Dick!

    • Melting Granite

      His taste in music is pretty damn good. He’s not limited by fear and incuriosity.

      • Sarah Balfour

        Really…? All seems fairly standard, bland, mainstream, AOR stuff to me, like you’d hear on just about any radio station anywhere on Earth.

        You want weird, I’ll show you mine – most of it I almost guarantee you won’t have heard of.

        • Liberal Hater

          And that makes you special somehow? Who cares? Just listen to what you like and let others listen to what they like.

        • groberts1980

          You’re joking, right? Are you actually playing out the exact stereotype of a hipster? “I listen to music you’ve never even heard of, and that makes me better than you.” Really?!?

        • koopapoopas

          I bet your weird stuff is not going to stand the test of time since it’s probably just a rehash of old music, but you haven’t heard the old music enough to see it.

          • Sigivald

            I’d take that bet on my music library.

            (But I don’t think listening to weird music makes me a special snowflake or superior.

            Just weird.

            Which I already knew.)

        • ligeglad

          I wonder why they are mainstream? There must be a reason right?

    • marcoselmalo

      Haha, you wicked person! If you don’t have anything nice to say, come sit by me.

    • Glass houses cowboy. Judging you became pretty easy with that facile statement.

    • Craig Jacobs

      It’s not like he’s a Justin Bieber and One Direction fan. That would be truly worrying.

  • I’ve had many of the same problems, and I understand exactly how Jim feels. For some of us, our music libraries are sacred, and Apple has damaged collections that we’ve been maintaining for a long time.

    • bdesham

      I’d be hard-pressed to choose between losing all of my music files and losing the thirteen years’ worth of iTunes metadata I’ve built up.

      • marcoselmalo

        iTunes Match presented me with similar problems, especially losing years of CD rips, CDs that are in storage 1,500 miles away.

        Luckily I had it backed up. Check your time machine drive if you lose anything.

        • groberts1980

          You hit the nail on the head. Is Jim saying none of what he “lost” is backed up to Time Machine?

          • marcoselmalo

            That would be super embarrassing! Sort of like catching an ardent environmentalist not recycling?

          • groberts1980

            Not that having it backed up excuses what Apple Music did, I’m just saying… He had backups, right?

      • Sigivald

        I sure wish there was a nice way to have iTunes export/import that metadata.

        (Oh, I know it’s in the Library file in XML, but … it’d be nice to have it be better at, say, not having hardcoded paths, or recovering from that better.)

    • rogifan

      Perhaps Jim speaking out will get Apple to act? I know he’s not Taylor Swift but…

      • …Jim’s much hotter.

        • CZ

          Jim has direct phone line to Tim.

        • art hackett

          That’s far more disturbing than funny. I can’t un-see that now.

          • freediverx

            Could be worse. He could have said Miley Cyrus.

          • Can beards twerk?

      • CZ

        A major prob is metadata in Apple version vs. yours. Going to be a major thing to tackle

        • freediverx

          Yup. Huge annoyance every time iTunes tries to turn trance into dance.

          • HMage

            What’s more, labels submitting the music to itunes often tag trance as “dance” so it’s already broken at itunes store level. Which is annoying.

        • narg

          I get tired of iTunes not having metadata on so many of the albums I own.

          • Moe Better 11

            iTunes is fairly retarded when it comes to meta data – even for things you purchase – even for things – when you tell it to “get data…”. Its like on some days – iTunes goes full retard! I mean WTF Apple? We expect better for are hard won and purchased ware.

      • William D

        It’s got to be an Apple Music PR nightmare.

        He may not have the broad main-stream recognition that Swift has but as a well known and respective member of the community and to boot a well known music lover and musician this is so bad as it gets all over the  blogs, all the core  supports..

        • Moe Better 11

          sometimes, Apple means well

      • SuperMatt

        There’s a big difference between charging for streaming and fixing a complex issue like this. If it was easy, this wouldn’t have happened at all. For 99% of people, it does just work. Sadly, it’s very bad news when something like this fails for even 1% of people.

        • Moe Better 11

          IF THIS WERE EASY? WTF – Apple is paid – by its customers to make the rock science that is IP and the “cloud” – EASY!

      • oliversl

        I wonder if P. Schiller will tweet this post. lol

      • Taylor doesn’t have a beard to unleash on Apple…

    • Susie Ochs

      This is why I like my streaming separate and I’m keeping my Rdio account. If someone has put so much time and effort into maintaining and tagging a large collection, sticking it in something with iCloud (in this case iCloud Photo Library) in the name sounds like a recipe for disaster.

      (It’s also why I have crates upon crates of CDs, still in their jewel cases, stored in my garage.)

      • oldwhig

        I haven’t had any of the problems Jim and Kirk have had, but I’m leaning the same way.

        I always thought that I wanted to unite the music collection I’ve curated for 30 years with an “unlimited” streaming library. But now that Apple Music does just that, Utopia’s not all it’s cracked up to be.

        Think I’ll stream and sample on Rdio or Spotify, and collect in iTunes.

        • That’s what Google Music offers too, right? Upload all your music files to Google Music, plus subscribe to the service to stream music you don’t own.

          • @cheshire137:disqus yes that’s exactly what Google Music does, and it has worked flawlessly for me in the couple years I’ve been using it. Sure, there are issues sometimes when combining my collection with the unlimited streaming (such as if I had uploaded a couple tracks from an album then added the full album, my personal tracks wouldn’t show the right icon or something) but nothing like the level described here and it has never, ever lost any of my own music. The only downside is that the “stations” aren’t as good as e.g. Pandora, but even that’s getting much better. I’d choose them over Spotify or Apple Music anyday.

          • Idon’t Know

            Except Google sells your data to advertisers whether you like it or not. Also its worth it to me to pay for Pandora since their streaming stations are far better than anyone else and they are cheap.

          • Moe Better 11

            Yes, all “Google” data is subsides by YOUR data … though it could be anonymous and secure, who would trust a for profit corporation. Corps, Incs, etc… are know for killing any intelligence that remains on this planet. It should be noted, that the will of the many is sometimes the folly of a few, in charge, who are completely removed from reality. Just look at the whole XBONE issue with their genius leader – who is AFAIK – gone, because he seemed to think it was OK that YOU have a 24/7 internet connection to use something you already paid for (and not so ad supported either).

      • art hackett

        Yep. After years of trying to control pics/vids on my portables, photo library’s screwed the pooch by sticking vids everywhere and destroying my storage and forcing downloads do every shot I want to look at, and of course you can’t just delete stuff from one device. Seriously pissed now.

      • Rip those CD’s to lossless FLAC, pick up a nice new dedicated music player for under $500, and hear your music the way it was meant to be heard — full of life, emotion, and full quality, available to you whenever you want it, because you own it.

        I’m trying to wake people out of this “10% is good enough” cloud that streaming has put us in.

        • Susie Ochs

          No way. Convenience trumps quality for me. I can’t hear the difference.

          • thx for admitting it, have fun!

            you won’t hear a difference using the apple gear b/c it’s unable to render audio in high resolution. apple spends about $5 on the entire audio chain in their devices, it just can’t push high quality audio, it’s for general mainstream use.

            if you ever see a new DAP check it out, you might enjoy it.

          • Moe Better 11

            I’m pretty sure Apple spent way more than $5 on my DC G5PPC audio “pipeline” and it can sound EFING awesome – though I’m not a hard core (studied) audiophile or producer…

            I’m pretty sure the G5 does at least 24bit/96khz, but it could be higher…. I know my ’09 MacBook Pro is a bit “fast & loose” with the audio, though that could be the issue with mini stereo plugs – or the DAC….

            224kbps MP3 or AAC is the max compression for me.

            Some day I’ll get a quality pre-amp and massive TUBE “driver”…

          • believe me – apple is using lower-quality parts in the audio chain of it’s devices. these are mainstream, voice-based, low-price parts that have to do hundreds of tasks.

            can it sound “good”? well, “good enough” i suppose. i know a few people that have used the mac’s internal sound card to put albums out, but that of course is just in the last 10 years since there’s been no quality lately anyway. no way they are ‘professional’ level, and most people using computers to produce get an interface first and foremost, which is better audio hardware than stock apple.

            i can’t speak to the mac directly, but i have read that Apple spends about $4 per iPhone on the SOC that handles all audio tasks – in, out, AD/DA, music, gaming, and voice recognition.

            So yes, that is a pretty amazing $4 chip. But it’s not “high-fidelity” even it can play 24bit files. It can’t convert them properly, and it does not have the analog amplification to render them to the speakers properly either.

          • It can sound passable. I listened to my phone/laptop for 15 years now before getting a ponoplayer. Apple’s audio is paper thin and full of sparkle and crunchiness, but there’s really no life in it. I don’t really expect it either, being my non-living assistant.

            But it’s a $5 chip designed for multipurpose audio. It’s primary purpose is to play bedazzled sound effects and your ladies phone call voice and your youtube videos in loud environments through tiny speakers. Being a hi-fi is not on it’s list of features. Steve Jobs himself said this.

            But yes, your phone plays music. And we love our music, so we love that it plays it. Good enough!

            The crusade I’m fighting is to inform people that there’s so much more out there. 20 years of digital compromise is over. You can have convenience with full quality in 2015. You just need a new DAP from Fiio, Pono, Sony, etc.

            And it ultimately leads to a happier life. The crunchiness and lossiness does ultimately have an effect on us. Our brains are spending too much time filling in the blanks, trying to put the quality back. Just leave it in in the first place.

        • Idon’t Know

          Plenty of audiophiles will scoff at the idea that CD is high quality and they would be right since it is a lossy form of storing data.

          • Susie Ochs

            Plenty of audiophiles will scoff at pretty much anything!

          • Idon’t Know

            Since you decided to post saying nothing I’ll add that anyone should be able to understand that ripping a lossy format to a lossless format makes no sense let alone the idea that a “dedicated music player” somehow plays “pristine” sound quality with its tiny DAC and average headphones.

          • Susie Ochs

            My post was to say that in my experience, audiophiles seem to enjoy telling other people how to enjoy their music, when such advice wasn’t sought and isn’t needed.

          • qwerty12

            Exactly. One gets tired of audio snobs scoffing at things only the same 1% cares about.

          • CD isn’t technically lossy if the tracks were recorded at 16/44. Most music from around 1996-2003 probably was recorded at 16/44.

            If the tracks were cut or mixed at 24bit, at some point it had to be down sampled and then dithered to 16bit. They probably compared a few dithering algorithms (they all sound different) and then dithered down to 16/44. I agree with you that this is “loss” but I also agree that dithering (fuzz) and downsampling is different than lossy compression. It sounds different, and it doesn’t impart bad tones or artifacts. It just loses something. Lossy compression is more offensive than downsampling to my ears.

            This should not be a surprise if you understand what downsampling means – the computer has to take a waveform containing a possible 16 million datapoints per second and put them into 65k slots. Yes it has to reduce from 16000000 to 64000. Doing this leaves all kinds of sharp edges and distortions so dither was invented. Dither smears the waveform like a fuzz just enough to cover those nasty downsample edges. Can we hear it? I can. Dither is necessary to cover the huge data loss happening when going from 24/96 to 16/44.

          • Moe Better 11

            I always thought that 16bit, 44 or even 48Khz was pretty low quality – though that is what they had in the late ’70’s when this stuff was being “designed”…

            I do think the recording labels would have been smart to move to a higher bit rate (less “lossy”) format sooner – as it could have shown people who care about sound a real (or at least potential) value.

            Clearly some bands value the full nature of their sound as well…

          • I watched a presentation with the head of Sony music’s extensive back catalog re-issue department. He said they moved to 24/88 or 24/96 in the mid 90’s as their archive format for the vaults. But he also said that at that point, all the labels combined had only digitized an estimated 30% of their entire catalogs. He said it might be closer to 50% now, but there are still all sorts of analog tapes that have yet to be digitized. Since the late 90’s these are being transferred at 24bit quality.

            When Apple introduced “Mastered for iTunes” around 2007 it helped push 24bit as a master format, even for lossy compression. It’s ironic that Apple is sitting on lossless 16 and 24bit masters but they won’t sell them, they only use them to feed their lossy compressors. They won’t even sell them for $2 a track or something. Their $1.39 ‘iTunes Plus’ feature is not higher audio quality, just more extras.

        • Sigivald

          Or just use v0/320MP3 or 256AAC, and drop FLAC.

          Because you can’t hear the difference.

          No, you can’t. Not in a blind test. Nobody can.

          (Idon’t is right in that the headphones and DAC make much more difference than anything else

          He’s wrong in calling a CD “lossy”; unless you can hear over 20khz and under 20hz, you’ve lost nothing; the Nyquist-Shannon theorem has proven that RedBook loses nothing in that range.

          If a CD is “lossy”, then every possible recording method is “lossy”, and the term has no meaning.)

          • Wow you are telling me what I can and can’t hear? I mix and produce music and it’s very easy to hear 24bit audio sounding better than CD, and it’s very easy to hear CD quality sounding better than 320k lossy. This is stuff some of us have been doing for over 20 years now.

            It’s also a lie that no one can tell. Almost everyone can tell. The “blind test” is so flawed that all it returns is confusion, which is wrongly used in the belief that no one can tell. It’s constantly trotted out as proof that there is no such thing as quality, anywhere, in audio.

            Go on, show me a blind test that proved anyone could hear anything, anywhere. There are none, because they all show confusion, pointing to the test methodology.

            In real time, in regular listening to music you know and love, quality changes are easy to notice. ABX tests ruin all of that, confuse the ear, take us completely out of a natural listening state, and skew the results into statistical mush.

          • Moe Better 11

            “It’s also a lie that no one can tell. Almost everyone can tell. The “blind test” is so flawed that all it returns is confusion, which is wrongly used in the belief that no one can tell. It’s constantly trotted out as proof that there is no such thing as quality, anywhere, in audio.”

            I do belive you are on to something. I mean scients can be dumb at times… and maybe they are trying to confuse the “ear” … and the signal processor for said ear. I think when you how something should sound, if you hear it – with a clear head and clear ears – you can pick out all the problems – or most of them … depending on the play back.

            Most people wont pay attention to music that much. I mean with Miley Cirus and others – it would probably drive them mad… it would probably drive me mad too – since some songs are bad or just too catchy … and with training and different “ears” and signal processors – people will pick out – or fail to pick out different things …

            Transients are way important and “science” seem to leave that out completely… music moves fast. Computers are awfully slow for “real time” processing. Someday…

          • Totally agree. I won’t let modern pop define all “music”, it’s just the lowest common denominator. Pop has almost always sucked, from the beginning of time. Whether it’s boy bands or dubstep or blip-hop or whatever, if it’s pop it’s usually horrible and uses every new trick and scam they can muster. Still comes down to the song – if it’s a classic, you got something regardless of genre.

            It’s the art that must be preserved and respected, and the junk comes along with it.

            No one has ABX tests that show positive confirmation of quality. Anywhere. It’s the null test of itself, haha. ABX tests of mixed music themselves provide nothing of use, it’s garbage data. Garbage data kills quality.

            Only people arguing online about digital music while cranking their 10% files even consider ABX test results or a graph spit out by a DAW. Real producers and real music lovers use their ears, their senses, and their humanity to pick what sounds best to them at that moment.

    • art hackett

      While extremely disappointing, frustrating and a giant PITA, I can’t believe someone like Jim didn’t plan for this with suitable backups. I can’t imagine what a disaster this will be for normals once they figure out this is a problem. Maybe the Apple’s solution will have to be reinstating all albums/tracks DRM free, but identifying all the tracks involved will be er, problematic. Sure hope Eddy’s time machine is working well, or will his dancing be in front of a firing squad? What an unmitigated disaster. Makes Runaway Train like like a bedtime story.

      • Sigivald

        “but identifying all the tracks involved will be er, problematic”

        Not if Apple had anything resembling proper logging/datawarehousing going in the first place.

        I mean, if I was doing such a system, the first thing I’d store for everyone who signed up for such a thing was what they already possessed and I was replacing.

    • William D

      Indeed, Kirk. Photos and music. intensely personal. If I posed a photograph of a famous landmark and Photos replaced that with somebody else’s version of a similar viewI’d be equally aggrieved.

      • The difference is most people would not put 90% JPG compression on all of their favorite images and then get into arguments online about how the 10% version is the exact same thing as the 100% version. But this is the case with music.

        Very backwards IMO, since music conveys so much more raw emotional content than any single given image.

        Music in the studio is around 100mb/song. It was reduced with downsampling to around 50mb/song to fit onto optical discs. It’s then reduced again using lossy compression to around 5mb/song to fit onto dial up modems and 2001 iPods.

        This 5mb version is literally 5% of the total program. Call it ‘inaudible’ if you want, but 5% ≠ 100%. Perhaps your ears only 5% work if you believe that.

        btw – Some places now skip the 1st step, taking the studio masters and making the 5% version from them (mastered for iTunes). A step in the right direction but they are still peddling 5% files.

        • Sigivald

          That’s an … odd analogy.

          My photo of me in place X is absolutely different from anyone else’s photo of anyone else in place X, because the relevant thing is “me”.

          My version of, say, “the album version of South of Heaven” is not meaningfully different from anyone else’s, unless someone used abysmal encoding – which no iTunes sourced file ever does. Arguably a lot of people would get improved quality by having the iTunes Store version replace their home rips at defaults.

          Further, let’s not pretend that file size has much to do with quality.

          A modern compressed file from a good source (ie. CD via a modern codec and settings like iTunes defaults, or via iTMS) will pass an ABX blind test against audiophile ears on good DACs and headphones against CD or even the studio master.

          Because unless you’re an inhuman mutant, you can’t really hear over 20khz [and the musicians rarely can with modern music, since they tend to damage their hearing!], and the Shannon-Nyquist theorem proves that 44k can encode that perfectly with room to spare; CDs are not “lower quality” than masters; the extra data is to allow mixing down without going below the 44k threshold in the final product, nothing more.

          Your “50% version” is identical to the “100%” in terms of what non-mutant human beings can actually hear; the “5% version” is still identical in terms of being able to reliably tell which is which.

          • thx for the reasoned reply, not snark. but your entire premise is based on ABX tests, and I am completely serious that they need to be thrown at due to total garbage results for music listening tests. Everything you say to disprove that people can hear more than 0.3Mbs per second of vibration data – all of it – is based on what you have heard about as ABX test results. So we won’t ever find agreement if that’s all you have. ABX music listening tests are so flawed that the only thing they can show is confusion, and they are only used by the side pushing confusion because it aligns with no decrease in quality.

            Even golden ears can barely pass ABX tests of single-step decreases or increases in quality because of the entire faulty premise of the ABX test — we can’t compare side by side so we have to compare against a memory.

            A memory of sound is very very different than sound itself. Comparing between two sounds is very unnatural and confuses our ear/brains.

            Are you with me? Probably not, that’s ok. Producers and engineers have known about 24bit audio for decades now, it’s no secret or argument. It’s just only been heard in recording studios and rich guy living rooms until now. The new DAP’s can push out real quality audio and the 16bit and better files are still around waiting to be purchased. I buy about an album a month now, I hadn’t done that since 2002.

          • I reject ABX tests as proof of anything more than confusion. They cannot be used to prove a piece of music is better or worse because they are fatally flawed. They only show confusion so I reject them as invalid tests.

            As far as people’s versions, if they have the CD and it reads, they have a better version than Apple will sell or stream to them. Apple has many 24bit masters in their servers but they won’t sell them without reducing them over 90%.

            If they don’t have the CD or their CD won’t read they should buy the highest quality digital version available and own it forever, and support the artist and the music industry as a whole.

            There is nothing mutant or weird about listening to music. Don’t insult me by claiming I’m so special that only I can hear this stuff. It’s basic – listen to a snare drum, listen to a cymbal splash, a high hat, listen to the reverb in your favorite singers voice…. it’s very simple. Guitar distortion with layers that you can’t render in MP3. There’s a lot more to stereo music signal than frequency. Frequency is but one of many measurements.

            You can’t run from the math, audio does not break basic rules of math.

            CD’s push out an effective bitrate of around 1.0Mbs. Lossy files reduce that to 0.3Mbs for reasons now expired.

            24bit audio, what was used in the studio to record and mix the work of art, needs between 2.0Mbs and 6.0Mbs.

            And by the way- Netflix HD needs 7Mbs so we have plenty of bandwidth for this, we just devalue music next to almighty TV.

        • marcintosh

          Again with the percentages. Compression doesn’t work they way you think it does.

          • I know how lossy compression works. It uses a couple different methods to try to hide what it’s throwing away, each of them degrades or destroys signal in it’s own special way. They try to hide this destruction in several ways, and they ultimately attack the art of recorded music because they attack the air in the recording, the attack, the timbre, and the decay of instruments to do their data reduction from around 50mb to 5mb.

            You can put your hands on your ears and scream “but no one can hear what’s in that other 45mb!” but they can. Easily. Picking out lossy compression isn’t hard for people over 30, it is such an obvious smaller and damaged signal.

            Modern music, if that’s your thing, does what it can to cover all of this up and uses the bandwidth it is given (<0.5Mbs) to the fullest extent. Modern audio compression, automation, and plugins are all used to pump and hype the music to it’s highest possible amount, masking the total lack of bandwidth the modern person is subjected to.

            And the saddest part is it all worked, because perfectly smart people like yourself and probably most of the rest of “modern man” thinks they have been given better than they used to have.

          • marcintosh

            I appreciate that you are very passionate about sound quality, but you really need to appreciate that to the average consumer the loss of fidelity from compression is negligible. They don’t notice and don’t care. This article is about Apple Music not syncing properly and deleting files, please stop changing the subject to the sound quality of streaming music.

          • qwerty12

            Again, this. The audiophiles that care so much about sound quality wouldn’t care about streaming audio in the first place, and the rest of us don’t care to be treated like the Clampetts over something we’re not concerned with.

          • “average consumer doesn’t notice and doesn’t care” is no reason to suppress the truth. the average consumer doesn’t notice or care about much more than convenience, price, and trendiness in these issues.

            imagine trading JPG’s of fine art was something to do. imagine selling JPG’s of fine art was an actual market. imagine some artists coming out against the selling of JPG versions of their art. imagine other artists saying “oh well” and making their art look like JPG to begin with, or just compressing it themselves and selling it.

            ok stop imagining. when music is that art we do all of the above and more. we devalue it, stomp all over it, destroy it’s resolution, pay next to nothing for it, then complain that it sounds horrible and the artists are greedy bastards. makes no sense to me.

    • Steve

      I’m more shocked that you veterans don’t have backups. For something so ‘sacred’ and in some cases not owning the CDs anymore seems like a really poor decision.

    • I wouldn’t let my lossless music library anywhere near iTunes Match or iTunes in general for fear of it being lost or replaced with 256k versions.

      I use JRiver to manage media and also side-load most stuff right onto MicroSD cards or the Pono internal storage.

      If Apple really wanted to make a move in music they would be pushing sound quality up, after helping to lock it down 15 years ago.

      There are no longer the bandwidth restrictions that made 10% files necessary. MP3 was just a transitionary tech, people, time to leave it behind.

      • The iTunes Store has not used MP3 files since it was launched.

        • splitting hairs – AAC is basically MP4, rebranded by apple. So

          The iTunes Store has never sold lossless audio files since it was launched.

          • No, it’s not rebranded by Apple.

          • @kirkmc:disqus OK, not re-branded, but ALAC has the same exact process and lossless compression scheme as FLAC, which was released 3 years before ALAC.

            Apple wouldn’t play FLAC so they made their own version of it. If a standard is already out that works fine, and you decide to make your own version of it for unknown reasons, that’s not much more than re-branding. You aren’t bringing anything new to the market.

          • Idon’t Know

            No AAC is not basically MP 4. Google it.

          • really? from wiki:

            Advanced Audio Coding is designed to be the successor of the MPEG-1 Audio Layer 3, known as MP3 format, which was specified by ISO/IEC in 11172-3 (MPEG-1 Audio) and 13818-3 (MPEG-2 Audio).

            It’s part of the MP4 format and it’s very similar parts of a very complex little codec.

            Are you claiming that AAC and MP3 are somehow different, and not lossy?

          • Idon’t Know

            You have serious issues with reading and comprehension. I didn’t say anything about lossy or not regarding AAC and MP 4. I see you are the genius who thinks that CD’s are a lossless format. Then you posted something from wikipedia that you clearly don’t understand. Read the entire article. Start by understanding the difference between a format and a codec. Oh and you have a Pono. That pretty much says it all. Run along now unless you want to be spanked again.

          • Haha please, you don’t know jack, arguing made up terms to justify audio downgrades. In the studio the audio is recorded at between 1Mbs and 6Mbs per second. It is also mixed and mastered at that level. Then it is shrunk once, perhaps twice, to sell or rent to modern man.

            AAC is lossy. Period. So is MP3. I know the difference between a codec and a file format. Words words words. It still comes up under 400k actual bandwidth no matter what you are using, assuming we are still talking PCM.

            Guess what, 5.8Mbs > 1.4Mbs > 0.3Mbs if it’s all PCM. I’m talking effective bit rate. Most CD’s are between 700k and 1300, most 24bit recordings are between 2000k and 6000k, depending on the sample rate and dynamic range of the material.

            So your point again, that Apple doesn’t use MP3? So what, they use MP4, oh wait, the AAC format which contains the MP4 codec, or wait, um, who cares? It’s all LOW DEFINITION. Nothing more than a transitionary format that refuses to die because of jackasses like you.

          • Moe Better 11

            CDs are 700kbps? or 700KB/s? Since I use slightly older terms, it is important to see a bit rate in equvialents… though everything these days is in bits, it used to be bytes…. Also, iirc the stated bit rate of CDs is (or was) ~ 1,400KB/s

            Yet I am almost (?) wrong …

            Its 176KB/s for 2 channel redbook audio CD. What got me was that it is actual 1,411kbps also – they are the same number (more or less).

            These could also be interesting…

          • 1400KB/s is the theoretical maximum, yes, you are correct. But most PCM files @ 16/44 don’t actually use all of the bandwidth. When you apply FLAC lossless compression and look at the file sizes, you see that most CD files push between 700KB/s and 1200KB/s, some as low as 600KB/s. This is why 320KB/s perceptual codings (MP3/AAC) is hard to easily distinguish between CD, it’s actually only reducing 50% or less.

            The real issue here is that 24bit PCM audio files average 1600-2400 KB/s and that is too large for the CD format.

          • +Moe Better 11 – not sure what happened to my reply from a few weeks ago.

            Basically, CD’s have different effective bitrate based on how much bandwidth the song is using. I’ve seen as low as 300 (<1960 music) and as high as 1350 on some 90’s CD’s.

            Correct the max bitrate a redbook CD can hold is 1411kbps. My collection of 300+ CD’s average around 900kbps EBR.

            The equivalent I’m most interested in is video streaming. Most people have (or could get) Netflix HD streaming into their house and that is 8500kbps+, but they have been led to believe that they can only handle 256k of audio streaming. We have the infrastructure to stream 24bit audio to people but there hasn’t been the demand yet.

          • I’ve replied a few times, it’s not taking it, not sure why. You are correct and I might have mislabeled my units.

            I know the simple definition of Effective Bit Rate for flac files – the file size / the run time, aka How much data is used to render that song within that run time.

            CD-Audio files had ‘blank space’ in data terms that a scheme like flac can remove. When you make flac’s from CD files they come in at all different effective bit rates because the musical program on each track is different. Old pre-1960’s material sometimes shows as low as 300k, modern CD’s will run 1300k, and the average I see is about 850k.

            Note this is not loudness – this is bandwidth. How it’s used is up to the artist/mixer/masterer. I see loud CD’s at 700k and more dynamic CD’s at 1200k, sometimes the opposite. Point is, they aren’t connected. Something can be loud and big or loud and small in audio. It can also be quiet and very large.

            Moving to CD in the 80’s was net-neutral in my opinion. Overall accuracy and warmth of sound declined, packaging declined, but nearly every other thing improved. I call it a wash.

            Moving to MP3 in the 00’s was a clear step back. The only thing improved was convenience. Everything else declined: sound quality, artwork, profit, credits, communal enjoyment, etc.

    • narg

      After one such fiasco with iTunes years ago, I keep my library separated from any special service or paid software. I created that library with a Zune, of all things. Zune is long gone, (call me stupid, but I liked that software, the hardware was just OK though.) but the library remains due to the way MS did things, (and still does them somewhat today) by using well known standards and simplicity. I can manage it manually or with other open source software very easily. So, maintaining it afterwards was just as easy. I feed iTunes and other services from this library, but will never mix it together as one.

      • Moe Better 11

        I do not think you could ever acuse MS of using “standard” or “simplicity” though some of their stuff is easy to figure out. Sound Jam was great … so was iTunes, when it was mostly music and you know “tunes!”.

  • Troy Patterson

    I’m not saying this is the “right” answer, but couldn’t you just create the Best of or greatest hits with a playlist?

    • Marc Palumbo

      Why would he have to do that? What if you own 100,000 songs? You will go through all the music and re-create the albums?

      Not a great start for the music service, but I haven’t seen a rant like this.

      • Troy Patterson

        For a short term fix? Yes. Also the album as a whole is still available when online just not from the My Music section. Still playable by just going to it in Apple Music.

        • Marc Palumbo

          It shouldn’t have to be this difficult. What happens when the fix is introduced? Delete all the playlists?

          • freediverx

            Actually deleting a bunch of playlists is about the easiest thing I can imagine doing. Creating them is a different matter altogether.

        • freediverx

          You realize he only gave a couple of examples, right? It’s likely the same Apple issue screwed up many other tracks and albums in his collection.

          Workarounds are fine as temporary solutions to isolated issues. There is no indication that this problem is either temporary or isolated.

  • Kirielson

    Damn, totally valid reasons though.

    The problem is that there’s no impetus for Apple to fix it (i.e. any competitive Music management system).

  • ericdfields

    From what I can tell in my tests, Apple Music is deciding itself, based on your library, that it will not add duplicate songs. For instance, I purchased a lot of Black Sabbath albums over the years, but not all of the compilations. I went into Apple Music and added a compilation album, but it didn’t all get added to my library. When I looked at all of the songs that didn’t get added, they were ones that I already had in my library.

    I’ve had issues like this when I purchased a single or an EP by an artist who later released an album containing the same songs. I couldn’t buy the full album because the iTunes Music Store thought I had some songs off of it already. I also couldn’t have the full album experience until I redid all the metadata of the EP tracks to match their place in the album. It was a lot of jiggery-pokery, and I probably bought the same tracks twice a few times, but all of this is just saying that these weird symptoms have been in the iTunes Music Store for some time now.

  • Of all the streaming services, the one with the best UI is Rdio time and time again. I guess i’m lucky that Apple Music isn’t available to Android yet because I am not in the mood to rage quit any harder than I am right now with Spotify (which I decided to try again because their catalog is amazing).

    Sorry to hear the “Music Industry Game Changer” was a dud for you.

    • oldwhig

      Yep. I still like Rdio UI best. I wonder why they’re not getting much traction in the market. They’re way behind Spotify.

      • Mostly catalog. It’s so garbage. It’s very confusing how these licensing deals are structured that Spotify can get things so easily and Rdio is constantly struggling.


        • freediverx

          Which is another reason why I have limited sympathy for the piracy issue. Record labels’ greed and indifference to the needs of the end user.

          • rattyuk

            It’s nice to pay the end generators too.

            You want music, pay the musician.

          • studuncan

            Then go to their concerts, buy their t-shirts. A lot fewer middlemen that way.

          • rattyuk

            Coz actually writing and rehearsing and recording music is irrelevant?

            What are you 20? For fuck sakes does nobody think that the music itself has any value?

            What happens if you are an extremely shy musician – say XTC’s Andy Partridge – who can’t perform live due to extreme panic attacks. Does that mean he shouldn’t be allowed to fucking eat?

          • Sigivald

            Musicians who want to make money today should skip the label and release independently.

            70% of album sales via iTunes is pretty good.

            Concerts and merch, well, are pretty variable and brutally expensive in time and capital.

    • Alexei Baboulevitch

      I adore Spotify’s iOS app. Some of the UI touches there are simply brilliant. The desktop client is awful, though.

  • NSDelToro

    I had the same issues. I lost my entire library twice and I was charged 5 times for the free trial. Apple was hopeless when it came to helping me with the charges. They would refund me and deactivate my account. They said I was charged because I had used the trial, which makes zero sense. I gave up and I filed chargebacks on all of the charges. Very frustrating, indeed.

    • Stirlol

      I think you’ve got an issue with your time machine (Delorean model not the backup ones) when you travel to future timelines make sure to not connect to 5G, or set your device to 2015 trial period dates.

  • ChuckO

    haven’t found any major problems like this but I have been confused by the Chinese wall between Apple Music and My Music. I also used to manage “My Music” through Playlists which is gone. I don’t know how it’s adding “My Music” to the iPhone now.

    And finally why did they take the shuffle button away. I don’t want to have to pick a song to start shuffling music.

    • Siri. “Shuffle Play all my music.” Done.

      Have a lot of music by one artist? “Shuffle play songs by Marillion.” Done.

      Like to listen to that copy of Pharell’s “Happy” on repeat? Siri will do that for you, too, and not even judge you.

      There are several other ways to word commands to Siri. I believe they are pushing Siri in order to keep people from looking for buttons on the phone screen while they are driving. That is a good thing.

      If you can’t speak for some reason or other, then, yes, a big red button labeled “Shuffle All” when you open music would likely be helpful. In situations other than driving it could be helpful. However, I don’t see picking a song and then choosing the shuffle play button to be too much of a hassle (plus, shuffle play remembers the last selection). I’ve been using Siri since the update anyway.

      • What if you don’t use Siri? I don’t. I only ever use Apple Music on the desktop.

        • jeffsters

          Really? Uh huh…it’s so hard to select Control:Shuffle:On? Or heck Genius Shuffle or command-Space?

          • ILL TROOPER

            Is it hard? No. Was it easier before, when there was a button? Yes.

            I hate when essentials that have been around for years get moved or put further down the button-clicking chain for no good reason.

        • Sigivald

          Same thing with play-all-by-artist, too.

          (I don’t use that, but my girlfriend does, and it’s driving her crazy.)

          Some artists now have a “shuffle” button on their artist page, when sorted by artist.

          Some don’t – and this is in all cases artists with more than one album.

          Why? Nobody knows.

          This is radically bad UX by Apple standards, though merely a wart by non-Apple standards.

        • Probably my fault for assuming the original post and this particular thread I replied to are dealing mainly with iOS UI.

          I use iTunes mainly for DJing online, so I make extensive use of the Up Next functions. I rarely use it to shuffle play or even stream to the AppleTV, usually opting then for various internet-based radio stations played from my some iDevice through the AppleTV or a standalone bluetooth speaker I have.

          Yes, Apple needs to drastically rethink iTunes on Mac OS.

      • ChuckO

        I never think of Siri for that but that is the best option. Still don’t see why they removed the shuffle from the top of the song list. Picking a song to start shuffling is bad. What most people would end up doing is always picking the first song in the list which could be the same song for a long time, so you keep hearing that.

        How about the question about how music get’s added to “My Music” from iTunes? Anybody understand how that works. I really want to be able to control what get’s on there preferably through playlists.

        • freediverx

          The fact that Apple has hidden or removed essential functions from their Music UI is all the more infuriating when you consider all the unwanted garbage they’ve larded on top of it.

          Buttons I’d love to get rid of:

          • For You
          • Radio
          • Connect

          Menu items I’d love to get rid of:

          • Start Station
          • Create Genius Playlist
          • Show in iTunes Store

          The UI is so bad it seems as if they hired a bunch of laid off Microsoft guys to design it.

          • ChuckO

            It sounds like you could just live in the “My Music” tab.

            I’ve also seen stuff on the web about hiding the “Connect” tab.

            I don’t find the UI/UX bad. It seems clear to me. I just think once you sign on you don’t want to know the difference between “Apple Music” and “My Music”.

          • Sigivald

            “Stuff I don’t use” is not the same as “garbage”.

            Remember, “show in Store” makes sense for people using Radio.

            And lots of people – again, using Radio – want to start Stations from a song; this is actually really good for discovery.

            Demand better configurability? Sure.

            “Garbage”? No.

      • freediverx

        Siri should never replace basic UI controls.

        • Alexei Baboulevitch

          Especially when you still can’t avoid looking like a dork when you talk to your phone in public.

          • isitjustme

            I am not sure which is worse walking to a phone in public or talking to a bluetooth device and waving one’s hands.

        • Yes, it should, particularly in driving situations. Hunting for buttons on a screen is never preferable when driving, whether they are large, small, or even somewhere on your dashboard. I would also argue that “shuffle” is not a basic control. Play, Stop, probably Back and Forward are, but shuffling, rearranging playlists, and all of that — nope.

          When not driving, then probably some tweaks to UI are necessary. (Again, I can see using Siri in many use cases, such as listening to music while doing dishes, not wanting to head across the room to change a song, etc. but I can see some times when I would want to push a button on a screen.) However, claiming something should never be the case or that something isn’t available when it is will not do us any favors.

          • DeanMN

            Let’s pretend you had most of your tongue cut out during surgery to remove cancer. Or let’s pretend you’re one of millions who don’t have the ability to speak for any number of reasons. This is exactly why basic controls should never be replaced by Siri.

          • Hey, let’s pretend that we can make up extreme situations where anything might not work.

            I imagine someone in the unlikely situation you just made up has a lot more problems than figuring out if they can use a phone or not while speeding down the highway. And that’s beside the fact that if they cannot speak at all, then they likely aren’t using a cell phone in the usual way people do — speaking into it — and I suspect they are not using TTY while driving either.

            This is why pretending is fairly ridiculous. Not that I disagree about basic controls, but, honestly, they are still there and likely always will be. The assumption that all those basic things go away completely is ridiculous — probably even a straw man argument.

            Voice actuation is a much better way to navigate through phone use while driving. And that isn’t even perfect. Go look up studies of people being told to do math problems or speak/count backwards while driving to simulate thinking hard about what to say to someone on the phone while trying to watch the road. It isn’t pretty.

        • DeanMN

          Exactly. Not everyone has the ability to speak.

    • Jovan

      Im late….but you guys can just hit the picture next to whatever you want to shuffle. If you want to shuffle an artist hit the artist’s picture…Same goes for the album.

  • George3C

    I have not yet loaded Apple Music and will now avoid it, based on the reporting on The Loop and elsewhere. It was certainly appealing, I have to admit, and I almost joined, but held off pending getting a new MacBook. Fortunately, all my music is backed up on external drives. Thanks for the mention. Thanks to users in comments who have gone over their issues.

  • tomtubbs

    Why not apply the standard – wait till the .1 update to the OS mentality to new Apple services? It’s shiny, new, buggy, and they’re actively working on it. Leave it a few months, and by iOS9 launch it’d likely be better.

    • Brainfire

      While their hardware and (in some cases) software get better after the first revision, their services tend to stay bad forever.

      • Swissdude

        I would have to disagree on this one. Can’t say I have an example of anykind that you just wrote about.

    • freediverx

      I don’t recall the last time Apple actually fixed a cloud services issue with a .1 update.

      • Sigivald

        Well, this is their most widely-used cloud service ever, and got highlighted, so … this is a likely first time for such a thing.

        • Sigivald

          (Ever except for iCloud backup, that is … but iCloud backup itself isn’t a hotbed of trauma.

          Now, photo sync, for instance, has warts that seem to drive people barking mad, but the basic “back up settings and contacts and stuff” part works pretty well.)

  • GaryK

    I have been one of the rare users who have been able to flow with the changes to iTunes over the years, including the UI changes. Because my main view, the Playlist view, suffered from feature takeaways I refrained most recently. I struggled with the “buglets” and subtleties of the iTunes Match service and finally came to like it well enough. Hearing it too was trashed by iTunes 12.2.2 (supposedly fixed in I still have it turned off even with my downrev copy of iTunes (12.2.1).

    A hint: If you want to revert you can even under Yosemite. You will need a copy of the old version installer and a copy of your current version installer. Using Pacifist, you can figure out where all the iTunes files are buried, delete them, and install an old version. You’d best have a backup of your ITL file and all of your media from before you upgraded, figure on using them, and then plan to re-add files you may have added between the time of you upgrade and the time you reverted.

    • jeffsters

      A hint: use Time Machine and get a large HD that you can leverage with a tool such as Carbon Copy Cloner to image your drive the night before you do large updates like this.

  • Owlypuff

    I’ve had a lot of the same issues with Apple Music, especially with it not adding duplicate tracks even though I explicitly tell it to add two albums with overlapping tracks (e.g. The Very Best of Fleetwood Mac and Rumors). When I first added the compilation and then added Rumors afterwards, Rumors was missing every single song that was on the compilation album, but when I added Rumors first and then the compilation album, they both look fine. It’s super frustrating. Using iTunes for Apple Music on the Mac also makes me miss Spotify, because it’s just really buggy and slow and generally off-putting. Simply opening iTunes and then starting to scroll in the list of artists is broken, as it will start loading something and then scroll me back up. So I scroll back down, and it scrolls me back up. We play this little game three or four times every single time I open iTunes, while Spotify always just works and has never given me any issues.

    Apple Music has also messed with which versions of which songs are played on my phone. As an example, I have a “bootleg” live recording (aka not available on Apple Music) of a tour from a band as well as all of their CDs in iTunes (prior to activating Apple Music). I have all of these saved locally on my phone. When I use my phone to play one of these albums via Apple Music (for example in a playlist or just because I forgot I had it locally), a random selection of the songs seem to be replaced with the live versions, even though the album name corresponds to one of the released, non-live albums. Generally, everything related to possible duplicates of songs (but they’re not even duplicates – they’re completely different versions) is messy as hell.

    • adamschoales

      So I’m not the only one with issues of bootlegs popping up for studio albums. Good to know.

      I can’t say I’ve had as much trouble as Jim but the service is still frustrating. I find it’s GREAT on iOS, but the iTunes version is atrociously bad.

      It’s a good thing the trial is for 3 months, because if by September it’s not all much better I’ll be sticking with Spotify…

  • Troy Patterson

    I’m having trouble locating the section that says “and I contacted Apple and they said…” If you’re really willing to delete your account and buy 4,700 songs because Apple lost them without asking for their help I’m amazed.

    • “Nobody I’ve spoken at Apple or outside the company has any idea how to fix it, so the chances of a positive outcome seem slim to none.”

      • Swissdude

        He just doesn’t know how to use the system. loosing 4700 Songs? Come on everybody makes backups of songs. also just incase the HD breaks. So I have backups of ym songs on 2 HD’s installed in my PC and one backup on an external drive. And in anycase you can always get the tracks back from itunes via the ‘buy or bougt’ button (not sure what it’s called in english). And voila there you have your songs again. Realy don’t know what that dude is doing. Seams to me he has not much clue himself.

  • wills96

    You’re holding it wrong.

  • GadgetGuyNYC

    What’s really weird to me is that Apple created two separate services (iCloud Music Library and iTunes Match) with roughly the same functionality. With both services active, they seem to compete with each other. Unless I’m doing it all wrong. Which may be possible but I’m an advanced user and I can’t figure out how to use just iTunes Match and not iCloud Music Library. This is very un-Apple like.

    • rogifan

      Is iTunes Match only for people not using Apple Music? If you’re using Apple Music does iTunes Match switch over to iCloud Music Library?

      • BC2009

        You can use both together. iMore explains it. What iTunes Match gives you is DRM-free matched tracks since they come from the iTunes catalog (which is DRM-free). Apple Music matches songs from the Apple Music streaming library (which has DRM). If you have iTunes Match, then iTunes Match matching supersedes the Apple Music matching. There is still a bug for folks trying to match songs from their iPhone rather than their Macs because the Mac actually analyzes the track, while the iPhone looks at metadata. As such, the iPhone will give you the DRM track to prevent you from stealing tracks and doing a mass download.

        The fact that these and many other articles exist is a testament to what a mess this whole thing is. Apple is blowing their chance at staying atop the music industry with these complications.

      • freediverx

        No, they’re separate and complimentary to each other. Apple Music is all about rented music, while iTunes Match is about cloud storage and syncing of music you own.

    • David Roth

      GGNYC, I agree its confusing, and that that’s un-Apple-like. But, iTunes Match is critical to me. I have many tracks that are unlikely to ever be in a streaming library. Having access to those tracks, alongside the iCloud Library is my favorite feature of Apple Music.

      • oldwhig

        Exactly. This is the (under-appreciated) killer feature for listeners whose collections go back before the age of iTunes.

    • Scott Adams

      I suspect part of the confusion is being created by the labels/licensing rather than Apple. Another big part probably comes from the fact Apple has hundreds of millions of legacy customers that bought/ripped digital music over the past 14 years. Every other provider is able to essentially start their on-demand streaming service from scratch.

      Nevertheless, it’s still confusing. It’s an Apple trying to please too many sides/people.


        The labels throw a monkey wrench into everything, but the confusion is all from Apple trying to shoehorn a $3billion boat anchor into a fragile house of cards named iTunes, while balancing a series of spinning plates on sticks called iCloud.

        Beats may not be the solution Apple needed, but it’s going to be the $3Billion write-down they deserve. I’m keeping my fingers crossed my stocks don’t take a hit.

  • Andrew Hart

    I agree. I wrote an article on Medium about my own frustrations with it, which were totally different than yours, but I think equally valid:

    • Sigivald

      Those bugs are just baffling.

      (Well, not the “inconsistent right click vs. widget”; that’s actually got precedent, and it’s ugly, but more Wart than Bug.

      But the rest of it is just weird; like “maybe his install is corrupt or something” weird, unlike Jim’s problems, which read as “iTunes/Music screws up really big libraries sometimes”.)

  • not doing any opdates that include apple music .. learned my lesson

  • Woochifer

    Glad I’ve refrained from activating Apple Music. I learned the hard way that Apple provides easy upgrade paths, but no easy path back if you change your mind (e.g., iOS, iCloud Drive, iTunes, etc.). So, I now tread very carefully before making any irreversible changes.

    After upgrading to iOS 8.4, I’ve pretty much concluded that Apple’s current music initiative is being driven by everything EXCEPT the user experience. The new iOS Music app is a step back in every way. The interface just sucks, and much of what worked before has been replaced by functions designed more to tack on Apple Music features than improve the user experience.

    As an iTunes Match subscriber, the new Radio function basically ruined how I use my stations. For user-defined stations, I actually have to look at the “Recently Played” list and find my stations there. Unlike before, where I had my stations arranged in a specific order, the Music app now reorders the stations every time I start the app. This, and the smaller list view, makes the app far less useful to use in the car, where I do most of my music streaming.

    • I like iOS 8.4’s Music app better. It isn’t great, but 1.0-8.3’s was so very, very bad…

    • Stirlol

      Only problems I’ve had so far is Hearts on songs. Sometimes it will crash the music player, from what I’ve worked out this happens when it can’t contact the server within say 10-20 seconds.

    • jeffp3456

      i have found that i can create new stations from search but i havent found how to update itunes match so anything i add is not getting synced. I actually was foolish enough to think that iTunes couldn’t get any worse but Apple has proved me wrong.

  • crateish

    I started from scratch and added albums not in the store, like The Beatles, one at a time. Everything is working great for me.

  • marcintosh

    iTunes has always been more song-centric than album-aware. Clicking the Album view in the Music app or iTunes on the desktop doesn’t show you albums in the traditional sense. It shows you singles, sorted by album. I have plenty of ‘one hit wonders’ that just shouldn’t show up in my Albums view because I don’t own the whole album. It kind of explains why it wouldn’t let you download songs you already have when you’re trying to grab a whole album. Sorry for your troubles. 4,700 songs! Dat sux.

    • Sigivald

      It shows you singles, sorted by album. I have plenty of ‘one hit wonders’ that just shouldn’t show up in my Albums view because I don’t own the whole album

      Most people, I think, don’t think of “album” as a view where “I shouldn’t see a given artist at all, because I only have a few songs or a single”.

      They think of it as a way to see songs from an artist, grouped by release, be it “album” or “single with a track or two” or whatnot.

      The idea that it should only show Full Actual Albums is … well, it’s non-traditional at best.

      (Or EPs? Or do they need an EP view? How about a punk-style very big single with six tracks on a 33rpm 7″?

      Is a 25 minute song a small album or a long single?* Do those terms have any real meaning outside of physical media and label marketing/contract contexts?

      *Between, say, prog rock and the more experimental sorts of metal or jazz, that is much more a real question that some might think.)

      • marcintosh

        For people of a certain age the word ‘album’ has a specific meaning in terms of music. Songs on an album are like chapters in a book, they’re related parts of a whole experience. If that meaning has evolved to the definition you suggest (songs from an artist, grouped by release), then that could have only happened since the introduction of the iTunes Store. The traditional definition of an album is the one that was in place for over 50 years before digital music existed. The actual non-traditional idea is being able to buy any song off an album (instead of only the songs that the record label/artist decided to release as singles) and then categorizing that ‘single’ as an ‘album.’

  • I had a similar (I think) issue. At least it’s the only one I’ve found.

    My issue was, I have a live show of a Metallica concert on my machine and, when I went to listen to one of the studio versions of the song on Apple Music (because I don’t own that version) it would just play the live version.

    The only thing I could do to fix it was add (live) at the end of one of the songs, remove it from being matched online and re-upload. That seemed to fix it, but i have yet to do it for the rest of that show. And, I don’t know where else I’ll run into this on my account, so I’m a little nervous now since Jim, one of the biggest Apple and music enthusiasts out there, has called it quits.

    Hopefully these are just growing/launching pains and not an indication that Apple Music is going down the well-trodden path of failure that so many other “services” they have offered have.

    • Owlypuff

      This was one of my issues as well. Apple Music as a whole just seems to completely disregard the idea that multiple versions of the same song can exist at the same time, and it causes a bunch of problems.

      • Swissdude

        I thought there was a way to have double titles displayed or not…can’t you set that in iTunes?

      • Bangelica

        I would recommend using the musconv tool if ever your interested in transferring your music playlist from one apple to other music libraries. – bangelica

  • drale2k

    “Nobody I’ve spoken at Apple or outside the company has any idea how to fix it”

    wow, that’s bad

  • Aryno Wyrth

    “I also failed by not backing up my library before installing Apple Music.”

    Wow. This is one of the more shocking revelations in the entire article. The two or three problems I’ve encountered in a library with over 6,000 songs were easily rectified by going to my BACKUP.

    • Prof. Peabody

      I think it’s good on him to admit it, and very bad of you for trying to make him seem stupid for it though.

      • Aryno Wyrth

        How did I “try to make him seem stupid”… by mentioning it? You don’t think it’s worth mentioning? I think Jim’s a pretty bright guy, which is why it’s so surprising to me. Sorry that YOU are offended by it.

        • There’s probably a good-at-the-time reason for it. I’m an Apple mis-step away from losing a ton of music right now because I lack the hard drive space to keep it these days.

          Something I need to correct.

          • Aryno Wyrth

            I hear you.

          • freediverx

            If you’re using the cloud as primary storage, you’re just asking for it. Hard drives are cheap.

          • No argument. However, cheap is not cheap enough right now for me.

          • rick gregory

            IF $50-$100 for several terabytes isn’t cheap enough then I’m sorry but you don’t value your music very highly. And if you have dozens of terabytes of music I’m going to wanna see your receipts for all the purchases (that last… i’m kidding. I think. 🙂 )

          • Basically, Canadian pricing is not favourable right now. $100 would get me a 2TB without an enclosure. I need two drives, each with enclosures. I figure that’d be about $300.

            Right now I have more pressing needs for that $300. While I’d hate to lose my music, it’s less important than other things… even some that are luxuries.

          • rick gregory

            Damn… that hurts. Backblaze (though that has issues of upload time and bandwidth constraints)?

          • I’ve got that, too. 🙂 I could probably buy a single drive and download the music to that and exempt it from backup, but that wouldn’t really cover all the bases. And I’d like to have a complete answer. 🙂

          • rick gregory

            Crap. I was about to type out what I’ve done… and I realized that I have all of my music on a local network shared drive… and not cloud backed up (Aside from iTunes match, but the originals are lossless…)

            BRB after walking my talk….

          • Heh! It’s actually a tough problem. 🙂

          • Swissdude

            And external Hardrives are chepa too these days.

          • rick gregory

            Wait.. you can buy 4 TB drives for around $100…. how can you lack disk space?

          • Sigivald

            He’s in Canada; the exchange rate is not favorable.

            (The $124 for the cheapest 4TB on Newgg US gets you … a 2TB with shipping via

            At 1CAD = $.77US, it’s brutal up there.)

          • rick gregory


        • Aryno Wyrth

          Looking at my post now, I think the all-capped “BACKUP” could come across as a bit dickish; apologies, wasn’t my intention.

          I guess it was “good on him” to mention it… but then, he HAD to mention it, didn’t he? Otherwise, the loss of songs (only part of the problem he encountered) would be much less of an issue.

          • Swissdude

            not to worry Aryno, because you actually just nailed it! He does look foolish, and I would say he is. No backup? How foolish can one be. My dad learned the hard way. Never made a backup from his iPhone (after I told him to make one at least 10 times). then he made the upgrade all went fine untill the restart he had the magnifying thing active (didn’t know how to turn it of) was just pressing and ‘clickin’g on the iPhone screen. which ended up blocking the iphone and a reinstall of the iphone was neede to activate again (so no backup all data was lost). Where was the problem? between the ears. Same goes for this funny Jim dude.

        • Prof. Peabody

          Everyone makes mistakes

          • Stirlol

            It’s true, about ten years ago now I lost a 300gb RAID mirror worth of data; dodgy raid controller was writing zeros into all my files, slowly, so my backups were slowly corrupted too. Never again!

            Raid backs up to externals, Time machine too And lastly, backblaze for acts of God or Addicts stealing my stuff

          • Sigivald

            Don’t forget – as your original exemplifies – “test the backup”.

          • Jimmbo

            Listen, if he lost that quantity of data, it’s not just that he made the mistake of failing to run another backup pass before installation. It’s that he never, ever, backed up these thousands of music files.

            That’s more than a “mistake”. It’s inconceivable .

          • Sigivald

            I can conceive of it.

    • Alexei Baboulevitch

      Maybe Jim should try Backblaze. 😉

  • whodakat

    I’ve accumulated over 50k songs in the last decade or so. I wouldn’t have any idea if some songs were missing. Oh well, works for me!

  • Herding_sheep

    I like what they tried to do with Apple Music. But man, is the implementation so sloppy and unlike Apple. The app itself, I feel is poorly designed. The navigation structure makes no logical sense. Say I’m listening to a song, and I want to go to that album, there’s no “show all songs from album” that I’ve discovered. Or at least a consistent way. I’ve found that if I play a song stored locally, tap the ellipses, then tap the song/album title at the top of this popover sheet, it will take me to the album. If I’m just streaming some song from Apple Music, when I do this it takes me to a blank screen that says “Unknown Album.”

    Honestly I’m really disappointed in the application and the implementation. Connect is so painfully barebones and poorly designed. Sure, the interface is kind of PRETTY to look at. But thats not good INTERFACE design, thats graphic design. I’ve always been a fan and completely on-board with the UI makeover thats happened under Jony Ive and Alan Dye recently. I think the UI in Apple Watch is brilliant. So I can’t quite understand how they dropped the ball so bad with this new Music app. Some parts are great, others are just painful.

    And then there’s all these bugs and issues. I’m not sure what Apple was thinking. Were they rushing to get the service out? Why? They lagged on streaming music for years, whats with the sudden rush? I guess suddenly declining iTunes sales lit a fire under them, and they rushed out a sloppy app.

    • rogifan

      Do we know that Alan Dye is responsible for the Apple Music interface? I believe iTunes under Eddy Cue has its own software team and most likely it’s own UI designers. At least I get that impression based on job listings on

      • Herding_sheep

        Each big app has their own set of teams, at least thats the impression I get. But all of Human Interface still funnels back through the HI department. Whether Alan Dye personally took lead, or simply oversaw some of the team, the HI department still has some say. Particularly on iOS I’m sure. They don’t design every single application, especially massive in-depth things like Final Cut Pro X or even iTunes, but on iOS I’d find it hard to believe the core HI team wasn’t involved in some way. And my qualms with the UI are all directed to the iOS Music app.

    • jsd

      There is definitely a “show all songs from album” but they went out of their way to hide it. Tap the “…” in the bar at the bottom with the song title, artist name, etc. An action sheet with “start station”, “share song”, etc will appear. Tap the top of that sheet (above the actual choices) and it will go to the album.

      • Herding_sheep

        Once again, I already addressed this in my comment. Read my entire comment. Its not consistent, and only works for songs stored locally.

    • freediverx

      “Say I’m listening to a song, and I want to go to that album, there’s no “show all songs from album” that I’ve discovered”

      Click any song’s ellipsis button. The resulting menu has a thin title bar that links to the album.

      So the good news is that the function is there. The bad news is that it’s so unintuitively designed that nobody knows how to access it.

      • Herding_sheep

        Did you miss the part where I said that? When I tap that title under the ellipses for songs stored LOCALLY, it takes me to the album. When I do that for a random streaming song on Apple Music, it always takes me to a blank screen titled “Unknown Album”

        And this is functionality I particularly want for streaming, not my local songs. Because if I’m playing a playlist in For You, and it presents me with a song I haven’t heard in a while, I’ll say to myself “oh yea, I want to listen to this album again”

  • I recently had more than half an album disappear for no reason. A ripped CD, no less. And hundreds of other songs became unavailable to me that were in the cloud. That problem seemed to fix itself when I started and cancelled the trial. I hope it doesn’t do too much damage. I knew I should have waited before installing the iTunes upgrade.

    Perhaps a good indicator or Apple Music’s confusing focus was the presentation of it. I still don’t understand it and will stick with iTunes Match which has worked just fine for my collection.

    I feel for you, Jim!

  • David Malcolm Puranen

    After Apple Music corrupted half of my 8000 song Library, I tried to rebuild it with the service, but eventually gave up. Apple Music as it stands right now is an utter travesty of a service.

    • ken

      LOL Dumb fat phag loser. What’s going on in your life, Fatso? Your posts show that your into video games, sh-tty music, and posting your hate on conservative blogs. In other words, you’re ghastly, repulsive fat nerd with no life at all. Bet you couldn’t even get an old blind man to let you blow him. If you ever looked at that body in a mirror you’d never stop puking.

      • qwerty12

        You had to sign up just to type all that garbage? I pity your life choices.

  • Jordan Clemons

    I use(d) Apple Music on a Windows computer and an iPhone. Everything worked just fine until this morning when iTunes repeatedly tried to download an entire season of Mad Men I previously purchased onto my computer. Upon cancelling this sync Apple Music doesn’t work on my PC or my Iphone, I only get the message “You do not have permission to access the requested resource.” message on my iPhone.

    Needless to say I owe Spotify an apology email.

  • freedonuts

    Wasn’t some article on The Loop on backing up your music library before importing in Music?

  • Magor34

    I just wish Apple would make an all new music app. iTunes should’ve died a long time ago. I like to see a Spotify-ish app but with the same features that Apple Music has. Spotify’s app is just perfect but I rather have a first party service on all of my devices.

  • Moo

    In case you didn’t remove anything from your Mac, try restoring an older library from ~/Music/iTunes/Previous iTunes Libraries. Maybe things are still there but not showing up because of the Apple Music changes that were made to the .itl file.

  • GFYantiapplezealots

    That’s too bad. I LOVE it and it’s all I use now!

    • narg

      You’re in a small group. Very small.

      • SuperMatt

        I doubt it. Most people are using this with no ill effects. However, it’s well known that people with negative experiences are always more vocal about them than people for whom it just works. How often do you see people singing the praises of the electric utility when they go a year with no outages? You only hear the complaining when it goes out…

  • underscore

    Maybe next time you should use something for a bit before you praise it too much…

  • Prof. Peabody

    This is why I’ve stayed away from Match as well. The bottom line is that Apple (and most people apparently) don’t give a rat’s behind about ALBUMS.

    The removal of overflow in iOS 7 (an excellent method of arranging your music if you use albums), while at the same time not even replacing it with anything useful was a giant clue there.

    If, like me, you are a person that still buys whole albums, listens to albums and thinks of their music collection as essentially a collection of albums, then a myriad of problems arise when trying to use Apple’s products.

    Sadly it will only get worse from here.

    • Never had that problem with Match. Though I certainly wouldn’t recommend it now that Apple Music is out, and I’m going to be downloading all my music ASAP now.

      • freediverx

        You do realize that without iTunes Match, any songs you download from Apple Music will be DRM-locked and will disappear or become unplayable whenever you cancel your subscription, right?

        • Nope, that’s not how iTunes Match works.

          Or at least not how it worked. Hang on.

          checks Still no DRM.

    • marcintosh

      Exactly. They launched the iTunes Store with the promise of being able to buy a song for 99¢. It drives their whole sales model. Albums only showed up later as a ‘bulk discount’ charging the same price no matter how many songs. I wish I could program for iOS, I really think there’s a market for a jukebox style app that plays whole albums uninterrupted.

      • I don’t understand how that would be different than playing an album in the Music app.

        • marcintosh

          Playing the album isn’t the problem, finding the album is. The Album view in iTunes doesn’t show albums in the traditional sense, it shows all songs sorted by album. So it’s possible to have an album with only one or two songs. I guess the big difference in my dream app would be not having to search for complete albums among all my music because it would only play complete albums. To be fair, the new Music app on iOS has made it a little easier to get to the album I want by sorting the albums by artist instead of album title. And I realize this is a major first world problem.

  • That’s my least favorite MM album.

  • Robert.Walter

    Guess we now know what the old Mobile Me crew has been doing these last several years…

  • Simon

    The time you have wasted on this reminds me of my endless woes with Apple Photos. I have had my share of issues with Apple Music too. I am discontinuing both services. It is so disappointing, I had such high hopes that Apple would ride in and finally fix music and photos for everyone. I should have known, based on all their previous cloud service efforts, that this was too much to ask. iTunes match is still buggy after 4 years, so I can’t see them fixing Music and Photos any time soon.

  • Robert.Walter

    As an engineer, I hope that Apple takes a hard look at its s/w development and verification processes.

    That something like this can launch scares me for Apple’s prospects for success without litigation should they enter either the medical device or autonomous vehicle segments.

    Flaws like Jim described are an irritating pisser, but are survivable. Such flaws in either the medical or auto industries can kill.

    As a fan, customer and shareholder, I would be much more satisfied if Apple management were biased toward announcing that a release had been delayed to get it perfect, rather than to deliver a flawed product on time. (And then to make the necessary personnel corrections to ensure it doesn’t happen again.)

    • Sigivald

      Well, only rumor-mongers have ever suggested Apple is going to enter either of those segments, so I wouldn’t worry about that.

      (Oh, Apple’s in the auto segment … doing infotainment. Not self-driving or car-control.)

      As a software developer, I assure you that with an install base the size of Apple’s, you absolutely cannot find all the bugs before you ship.

      Hell, you can’t even find all the big, nasty, important bugs before you ship.

      (I also agree that Apple probably needs to turn up the test/verify process a bit for the Cloud stuff, but it’s also a really bloody awkward thing to test – I’m sure they tested easy “here’s a thousand songs and two devices” cases.

      It’s hard to test the “here’s 30,000 songs and two devices and also the songs have a lot of live/studio duplication and half of them are ripped and they’re also using Match, but inconsistently” case.

      Hell, it’s hard to even design the test to catch the bugs ahead of time!

      The more I develop software on a large scale, the more I’m amazed anything ever works in the first place…)

  • Robert.Walter

    Syncing seems to be a real weak point in the ecosystem… Music, photos as others mention here, my own experience has been related to keychain, text shortcuts, and now with the public betas, the loss of all my pdfs in my iOS devices, but not my elcap Mac (yet syncing of all to the iOS devices or deletion of those on the Mac isn’t happening because sync is not working like it used to.)

    • Sigivald

      Yeah. (I mean, I’ve never had those problems, but I also never tried.)

      Sync, across multiple devices and NOT in a strict one-way heirarchy?

      It’s hard.

      So hard that everyone screws it up, at some level, whenever they allow simultaneous two-way sync.

      (Doing it one way, or first one then the other, and have fun fixing the merge or deciding who wins manually? THAT’S easy; scp can do that from a commandline.

      Getting it to “just work” with complex objects and lists and two-ways?

      It’s more difficult than rocket science.)

  • Jeff Lebowski

    I’m glad I didn’t sign up. I still have my iTunes Match account which, as far as I can tell, is working fine. I don’t believe I’ve lost any music, but then again, I haven’t made any modifications to my library that might cause some of the issues Jim describes.

    My gripes are with the new Music app. What a mess. There are so many things wrong with it, it’s difficult to know where to start.

    But the most baffling thing to me is that one third of the iPhone top screen real estate on the “My Music” and “Playlists” tabs is dedicated to “RECENTLY ADDED”. In ALL CAPS followed by album covers of three albums. WTF? There is no way to get rid of this. I rarely add new music, but even if I did, why does this immovable “feature” exist? Who decided that your three most recent additions/purchases should occupy one third of the screen permanently? Baffling design decision.

    • The Fantastix

      Funny how everyone uses and experience things differently… to me this recently added ‘feature’ is the best thing ever… on the previous version of the music app i always had a hard time to find my latest purchases

  • Kevin Potts

    I’ve concluded that it isn’t worth it for me to download songs/albums from Apple Music that I haven’t already purchased. I only spend about 10 minutes a day without either an LTE or WiFi connection (when going through an underground transit tunnel). I always make sure to back up my phone on my laptop when I sync, so I have hard copies of any files I may lose to Apple’s latest loony behavior with iTunes. I made the mistake at one point of paying for iTunes Match, only to have it take some of my existing music and split albums up, reassign cover art, and otherwise take my carefully-curated music collection and play havoc with it. I turned off iTunes Match on my iPhone, and re-synced, and things went back to normal.

    Periodically, as I listen to Apple Music at work on my iPhone, the system just decides I don’t have an Apple Music subscription, and I have to restart my phone to get it to remember I do (attempts to log out and back in are met with failure, as the log-in attempt just hangs or doesn’t acknowledge I submitted credentials). After hearing horror stories like this one (not just this article), there’s no way I’m enabling the cloud functionality so I can localize any music I haven’t actively purchased.

    It’s enough to make me seriously consider just going back to Spotify. 🙁

  • zenwaves

    The other day I was listening to Jim & Merlin’s podcast, and Jim was contentedly saying how he had all his music in the cloud … I was a bit surprised, as being a super music fan myself, my iTunes collection is way too large to be ‘matched’ by any company’s cloud offerings (currently 50,372 tracks, 390GB).

    Thankfully for this reason, I’ve never enabled iTunes Match or iTunes Cloud whatever … (which I always knew would screw up my anal-retentively organized meta-data).

    Sorry for your loss, Jim, I would be pissed too.

    • gsxdsm

      Amazon supports 250k tracks

      • zenwaves

        Thanks, just checked, actually, only 50K, but that might be close enough – what I want to make sure of before I use any of these cloud matching services, is that they won’t mess with my meta-data.

  • Johnny Styler

    Apple Music killed my albums too, also my own maked compilations. These albums are now splitet in single songs. its nice to see 100 times the same cover on the album view mode. so i had to modify the metadata and it worked till the next day. everything was messed up. i desided to go back to rdio. the usability on rdio is thousand times better.

    apple music is a revolutionary piece of crap. the ui and ux department should be fired, the testing crew also.

  • Thanks for the warning Jim. I’ll cancel my account and keep iTunes Match. Luckily I pushed my iTunes library off to an external Thunderbolt drive and it’s being backed up to another one.

    Too bad the labels would go after us for sharing songs ripped from our CDs that are now hard to get ahold of. At least you can pick many of those CDs up for $.99 plus shipping used from Amazon if they’re really important.

    • freediverx

      There’s no way in hell I would pay twice for the same music. If I’ve ripped a song I paid for and it’s lost for some reason, I will replace it at no cost via whatever means I have at my disposal.

  • Johnny Styler

    ps. it is trent reznors fault.

    • freediverx

      Right, because Apple’s cloud services have always been so reliable until they hired him. /s

      • Johnny Styler

        this mess has is not only the iclouds problem. it is a decision thing. you cant mash up different stuff like, itunes match, icloud,, apple music, itunes, beat, and i dont know how many things together. apple went into the FEATURITIS trap. the result, shitty software. trent is the brain behind the applemusic app.

        • Sigivald

          Sure you can. Those are actually pretty natural fits for one-another.

          The problem is not that you can’t combine them.

          It’s that it’s hard.

          But done right, it’s better than five separate apps, two or three of which play music and two or three of which manage files…

  • Steve Riggins

    I backed up my entire iTunes Library to an external drive before enabling Apple Music/iCloud Music Library. Just for these cases.

    • samdchuck

      Why are you not consistently backing up everything ‘just in case’?

      • Steve Riggins

        Oh I am. I have offsite backups, at work backups, at home backups. In this case, I made a fourth backup, just the entire library, so I could easily compare any changes, and it just made restore easy (as I copied to my server over Ethenet vs. the slower time machine restore or digging out my previous clone drive from the safe)

  • I’d recommend Google Play Music All Access. No nonsense approach that just works where Spotify and Apple Music fail with bugs and bad design decisions.

    • freediverx

      No matter how bad an Apple service is, it’s never going to tempt me to replace it with a Google service.

  • Scott Adams

    The shame is Apple Music would have been a really good launch if it had limited itself to on-demand streaming, partner playlists, and Beats1/radio for the initial launch. At that point, it’s just some minor bugs and issues with UI/info design.

    Add Connect later. Add integration with owned iTunes collections later when they could rewrite iTunes from the ground up. They didn’t have to do All The Things on day 1 of product launch.

    But as a result of letting project scope creep (yet again), they’ve unnecessarily marred the rep of Apple and Apple Music, and added another log on the ‘Apple doesn’t get the cloud’ fire.

    I left my 25,000+ collection behind for the Apple Music trial. I turned matching off before starting and Apple Music isn’t on my Mac. My existing collection lives on my Mac’s iTunes. Apple Music exists on my iPhone. I don’t need them to mix. Works great.

    If I want to listen to Blonde on Blonde, it’s available to stream from Apple Music. I don’t need my particular owned version. Bob Dylan gets a little extra money. If I want to listen to something not on Apple Music, oh well. I’ll listen to it at home if I remember. In the meantime, there are 30 million other songs I can listen to.

    • freediverx

      For me, “integration with owned iTunes collections” is the only reason I’m using it. Otherwise there are plenty of superior music streaming services available. This was not an optional feature, but the lynchpin of the entire service.

  • Andrew Kasian

    I was surprised at the implementation of Apple Music. I honestly thought you would just keep going to the iTunes store and instead of a ‘buy’ button if you were a subscriber you’d see an ‘add to library’ button. I miss seeing all the songs rated too in the Apple Music interface.

  • I have similar experiences with iTunes Match. Not a total disaster but a completely sub-par experience. Won’t likely be renewing.

  • BC2009

    I get all of this except the part where a guy like Jim Dalrymple of all people is not running Time Machine is on his Mac to backup his iTunes library. My entire Mac is backed up to TimeMachine as well as to an cloud backup service. Not having a backup from which to restore some 4700 songs from is shameful for anybody who blogs about technology.

    I’ve been considering turning off Apple Music because I simply have not had much use for it. This article probably clinches it for me. I buy my songs and I really don’t need much more than iTunes Match service to help me manage my library. I’ve been trying out Apple Music since it launched with no problems yet, but also with no benefit other than being able to listen to a few songs I don’t own that I otherwise like. I think I would be better served by using the Apple and Pandora radio stations to discover new music and just tapping to “buy this song” when I hear a keeper rather than paying $10 per month for an all-you-can-listen buffet of songs that I mostly don’t care to hear.

    I think what I would really like from Apple (and would pay for) is a service like Apple Music but for Apple Video. Give me all-you-can-watch access to all the TV shows and movies in the iTunes library for a set fee every month with the ability to download videos for offline viewing. I would pay $20 to $25 per month for that service.

  • Ronnie

    I totally agree with this. Apple Music is a huge fail as well as iCloud Music and Music Match. These “services” have decimated my playlists numerous time. Now, I only use iTunes for purchased music stored locally on my computer, and Spotify for streaming music. Apple Music is crap.

  • scon87

    I’m having many of the same issues. I’m going to wait it out and hope that they get around to fixing these problems eventually.

    I’m very disappointed in this Apple product for the time being. Did they do any testing whatsoever before pushing this service out worldwide? What a bizarre roll of the dice for a company that usually wants to make things just work. I’ve learned that their cloud/online services are very different in quality than the physical products.

    If I’m still having the same problems by the time my free trial is over, I’ll consider my options.

  • Apple support managed to cancel my free trial. Yay!

  • adambadam

    You don’t have a time machine back-up from four weeks ago that has an iTunes organized music folder? Seems like it should be super easy to just go in and replace.

  • Serious Sam

    Quel suprise, Apple Music is as user-unfriendly as iTunes.

  • Most of my woes all with the listening queue management (for which I depend a lot). I’m a paid Rdio subscriber and they do a great job at it. It works consistently and it’s preserved on the cloud so you can resume it from any device. Another things that really frustrates me is that you lose the queue if you use radio or if the application shuts down, after a prolonged period of inactivity. In summary, there’s no way I can plan a good listening queue with Apple Music 🙁

  • Phil Randle

    I have maintained a single sentiment this entire time regarding Apple Music, they should have left the existing library function out, just let you upload your own missing files.

    I started Apple Music fresh, moved all of my iTunes Files to an external HDD and wiped iTunes clear and I have had nothing but a pleasurable experience using it, all my playlists, adding music to library, saving for offline use (while small hiccups in 8.4) it works beautifully in 9.0b4.

    I had the opposite sentiment with Spotify and Rdio, tracks were skipping, offline songs just disappear, songs would change quality mid track and I had to adjust my headphones. Beats1 is great on Apple Music, my only request is that they make playlists longer, easier to find and a lot more of them. Playlist support is the only thing I miss from spotify.

    • freediverx

      “they should have left the existing library function out”

      You mean leave out the one competitive advantage they have? The only reason I’m using Apple Music is because it lets me access my own music and streamed music in the same place.

  • Marie Cox

    Ugh. Personally I liked to create my own stations and now you can’t do that without paying. Boo. I love Apple, too, but Apple Music is a loser.

  • Andrew Collier

    The Music app in iOS 8.2 just doesn’t know how to keep its databases in order. I haven’t even enabled the Apple Music trial, and yet it was quite capable of confusing itself about what’s present on the iPhone.

    About 20% of my albums don’t show up in the list of albums (or by Artist) even though they are shown in the list of Songs; from there they play correctly, and they have the correct Artist and Album name. You can even show that album while playing the tracks. But it’s never in the list of all available albums.

    The Search function is broken too – a shorter, more generic search string sometimes misses results that are found with a longer, more specific search string.

    And yes, Radar or GTFO: I’ve reported it (21781208).

    Don’t consider me an iOS hater; you can take my iPad out of my cold, dead hands. I use all kinds of apps on that. But on the iPhone, sadly, Music is by far my most-used app and at the moment it just isn’t fit for purpose. I’m probably buying a new phone towards the end of this year, but if I don’t see this being fixed then it probably won’t be another iPhone.

    • Sigivald

      I’ve found taht the Music/iTunes/whatever app in iOS has always had potential bugginess.

      Previously it’s always been fixable by removing all the music from the device and re-synching.

      I suspect that might be the case for you here, since nobody else – despite copious problems – has not described this problem, which honestly just sounds like a corrupt library.

      (I do wish iTunes had an option for just “rebuild the library file on my device”…)

      • Andrew Collier

        You right, and (particularly since iOS 8) I’ve had to restore the iPhone on a regular basis, because after about one sync in three it does its usual trick of losing all the artwork, or making song from outside the music store actually unplayable (but still taking up space in “Other”). Speaking of space, how hard should it be for the iPhone, and iTunes, to agree on how much empty space there is on the device? They usually disagree by gigabytes.

        However, this particular problem is indeed new to me, but what I didn’t mention is that it happened on the first sync immediately after a restore. There’s been no time for gradual corruption to creep in, which makes me suspect it’s that 8.4’s music has become even worse than before.

        I still miss “album shuffle” from my click-wheel iPod.

  • jranft

    I’ve also had this partial song problem with many of my Wilco songs that I log ago purchased from Apple. The only solution I’ve found is the delete the iTunes album, and then download a bit torrent version of the album and re-import it. Apple has driven me to replace purchased music with pirated music.

    • freediverx

      What? You already paid for the music. It’s a testament to the RIAA’s propaganda program that you believe you’re stealing by torrenting songs you previously paid for.

      • Sigivald

        Yeah – you paid for a license to that content.

        You’re not pirating it by redownloading it from a third party.

  • I miss filesystems (!ding!). They were easy, they could be backed up, they could be understood. Clouds cannot. And Siracusa warned us all of this.

  • BongBong

    Holy cow. Apple is really screwing up if The Beard is mad at them. Whoa!

    I think Apple is really losing focus on the simple and well-thought out products and software that served them so well under Jobs. Leaving Jony Ive alone to entertain his own desires has given us the Apple Watch so far, which is nice but not a world-beater. Jobs was the dissatisfied perfectionist that Apple needed. The driven, ‘screaming in your face if you disappoint him’ genius they need again.

    You can’t make omelets without cracking eggs…and you can’t perform at top levels without stepping on some egos and inner company territory.

    • rogifan

      The buck with Apple Music stops with Eddy Cue. He’s in charge of Apple’s services. He’s in charge of iTunes Match, iCloud Music Library and Apple’s streaming music service. Perhaps Tim needs to take him to the woodshed over this the way Jobs tore into the mobile me team.

      • BongBong

        Absolutely right. Apple Music (and iTunes in general) is an utter mess.

  • dreyfus2

    Well, I had most of these symptoms happening within a day of installing 12.2 and I warned people in many places, including here and on AppleInsider, immediately… Sorry it happened to you, too.

    In my case “only” around 2,300 tracks disappeared (plus all metadata fucked up to the degree possible, some songs I had in 10 versions are now there 10 times in the same version, around 400-500 tracks purchased on iTunes when there was still DRM are gone with no mean to re-download them without paying again (Apple support ignores the issue completely), and so on and so on.

    This software should never have been released without a fat BETA label on it. Whoever was involved in this disaster, and I suggest starting with this sugar-daddy-karaoke-pisser with his psycho shirts. should go. If Forstall, who was the last to deliver quality software, had to go for Maps which were at least working and not destroying other people’s property, then these clowns are due as well. Also, Apple should openly admit to these problems and provide options for people to get their media back, e.g. by enabling re-downloading of old content.

    Also highly miffed at most of the Apple media. Some as brainwashed as Miss Coldwell on iMore calling these issues FUD, when proof of them was all over the Internet. For weeks now, the only reliable and truthful comments came out of AppleInsider and (get that) sites like Forbes… Not at all happy it happened to you, but if your clear words can finally cause Apple to do something about it, it might at least serve one purpose…

    • James Hughes

      Yup. It’s because of your posts that I was hesitant to install the newest iTunes and have not actually. My music is intact and backed up. I trust no one, not that much at least.

      Ive been manually managing my music since iTunes came out. I used to use the program that Apple bought and turned into iTunes, Soundjam. I was actually disappointed when I found out they sold to Apple.

      So here we are, Apple bit off more than they can chew. I am beginning to think it’s what they do. And you know what? They’ll fix it and Jim will be back. Wait for it. I don’t mean that in a snarky way ether. At least Apple tries. They fuck up and make it better, that’s more than I can say for any company out there now.

      Sad? Maybe. But it is what it is.

      • dreyfus2

        Yes, agree. And I think it is ok to go back once they fix it. But so far they have not even reached the “admitting the error and providing the most basic remedy” phase… Which is quite a distance from fixing anything IMHO.

        Apple was e.g. super careful (and for good reasons) with moving people from iPhoto to Photos. No online gimmickry was turned on by default, old libraries remained where they are etc. They also were careful with the iWork makeover. The old apps remained on your computer, no files were converted to the new format automatically and everything potentially dangerous (like losing formatting options when updating the format) caused proper alerts with a mean to cancel. This is how you do things, especially when touching stuff people care deeply about.

        And then, a point update to iTunes, an application with multiple flaws – but not once in over a decade touching any files unless you told it to, starts deleting thousands of files, even bypassing the recycle bin… and not a single warning anywhere, no “beta” sign, not a single alert box… zilch.

        This is failure at a staggering level, And at least they should man up and admit it, then tell people whom to contact to get their property back. And while they are at it, add some coupons (not for Apple Music, please) to compensate for the hundreds of hours lost ripping music and putting in correct metadata. Once this has happened, I have no problem looking again.

        (Glad you’ve avoided the trap!)

    • rogifan

      So I wonder what happens to Mr Cue. If Apple Music is this f’d up I fear for whatever TV service they’re going to launch.

      • dreyfus2

        This guy seems to be made out of Kevlar. He was involved in the MobileMe disaster, he was involved in the iBooks disaster, he certainly had his fair share in screwing up the entire second half of this year’s WWDC keynote… and just goes on. Escapes me.

        But then, most problems in this case are more related to iTunes software (and to some degree, as far as the lack of usability is concerned) the iOS Music app, with iTunes 12.2 being the worst culprit. The service itself (as far as suggestions and the radio stations are concerned) is not at all bad. If somebody has a blank library, or a library containing only current (post-DRM) purchases, he might be fine. Allowing an untested matching algorithm to touch local files on user systems was the worst possible idea… the confusing user interface, some metadata hiccups etc. All unfortunate and unnecessary, but not dramatic. The GUI will/must improve and unless someone deleted old “previous itunes library” .itl files manually, there are means to recovery, as long as you can get your media back. Depending on the size of the library, this can take quite some effort and time though.

        Fortunately, with TV and movie stuff, all current content from the iTS can be re-downloaded anyhow, and even with movies and tv shows being there since years… they have never adjusted iTunes metadata to cover them properly. There are no fields for actors, director, camera that I could have maintained. Heck, iTunes does not even know what languages are available for my movies… I had visitors from France recently and their kids wanted to watch a movie in the evening. Guess how I had to figure out which of my movies (almost all purchased from iTunes) have a French audio track or subtitle? By starting every single movie and then checking the available options, which is a joy on the Apple TV. There is not a single field in all of iTunes you could search for that! They can’t mess something up there, because there really is nothing to begin with 🙂

  • jeffsters

    23,000+ song library here. I have two MBP, 1 Mac Mini, 2 iPad Air, and iPhone 6. No issues. Though I have some interface suggestions! BTW, even before Apple Music, I bought an $80 1TB drive to hold my music in case of an HD failure etc., not doing that has only compounded what perhaps could have been solved. Lesson for everyone else!

    • jeffsters

      Update: opened iTunes I actually have 24,490 songs, 70.5 days, or 190.94 GB.

  • Scott Stocker

    Streaming should have been a separate app, separate service. Both from UX and a backend development perspective, combining the streaming service with regular music from iTunes is needlessly complicated.

    • ChuckO

      No, they need to be seamlessly integrated. That’s one of the big problems here. Jim’s scenario with some album songs in “My Music” and some of same album from “Apple Music” should be invisible to the user. You just see a complete album.

    • jeffsters

      Disagree. This can be fixed and that fix is not multiple music apps, libraries, play lists, etc.

  • I learned my lesson with MobileMe, and I consider that lesson with every new major “service” Apple promotes. They just don’t know how to run a service. Period.

    I was re-introduced to Apple’s sub-par performance with services when I decided to try Family Sharing with the parental options for my wife and I’s iPhones and my son’s iPad. What a nightmare that has been.

    Nothing Apple does with iTunes or music apps & services is good. Or even average. They’re all horrible in comparison to other apps and services.

    I wish they put as much effort into making sure their services worked right as they do in their industrial design and other software.

  • Sorry to hear things went bad Jim.

    Nobody should delete their original media ever. Songs, photos, text, you don’t just trust any cloud service even if they really really promise it works.

    • jeffsters

      Worse, in this case no back-up at all, as iTunes Match IS NOT a cloud back-up solution.

  • swingerofbirches

    I’ve been an Apple product user since 1982. Apple Music confounds me, as well. I would have to go out of my way to make a product so difficult to understand. I absolutely love Spotify and use it on my Macs and iPhone all the time. It improves upon the original iTunes interface. It is simple and elegant. I love being able to drag tracks right from the search results or start a playlist by double-clicking it. It’s not just Apple Music. I used to really “get” iMovie. I don’t get it anymore. With Apple Music I am grateful to Apple for one thing: not buying Spotify and ruining it. At this point, they seem incapable of making great apps like they used, and the last thing you should ask Apple for is to upgrade their existing apps because they only make them worse (I would say Photos for OS X is an exception, but iPhoto was pretty bad—examples of Apps getting worse: Pages, iMovie, iTunes). For me, Apple has become a platform for third-party apps. I rely on Spotify, OneNote, Word, Dropbox, etc. The best applications are no longer the first-party ones (apps like Keynote, iPhoto, iMovie, and iDVD used to be so far ahead of anything else that they made the Mac—now I’m happy if I get an OS X release that doesn’t do something really weird to screen sharing or file sharing—I’ve given up even on Mail working with Gmail—I now look to OS X to be an “OK” bare bones OS that I use for third party apps, and it sometimes fails at that).

  • I joined Apple music to give it a try but decided to cancel as well. I just looked and sure enough, all my vinyl is still there. Nothing missing. I guess I’m one of the lucky ones.

    • jeffsters

      Perhaps, or perhaps like those that swear Yosemite crashes every hour, or like me never crashes (networking is getting better), it’s just that this stuff is complex and a lot can go wrong when the unexpected is found. Again the solution is BACK-UP and then you can troubleshoot or revert. The author blames Apple Music, it likely is at fault, but we’ll never know the root cause because we have no way to go back and walk it through. That’s a shame for all and should be an embarrassment for someone who cared about the data enough to write this but not enough to back it up.

  • jtulley

    Is this beta?

    Did you back up your files?

    Did you give feedback on the behavior?

    If you’re in iOS9/El Capitan, you have to expect weirdness. Beta is beta. If you don’t want to deal with weirdness, wait for the live release.

    In any event, you should have kept Spotify running in parallel until you were confident Apple Music was going to do it for you.

    Granted, some of this is on Apple. Apple Music, iTunes Match and iTunes are clunky offerings. But some of this is a self-inflicted wound if you didn’t do your due diligence and back up your files.

  • If any other service was this new everyone would be saying “it’s just launched, give it a chance!”

    • dreyfus2

      Huh? I use iTunes software since 2003 and while it got worse and more confusing all the time, it never remotely did what no application on earth should do… randomly delete files and mess with my content.

      These things do not just happen. There are actual lines of code that have not been there before that do these things. Someone wrote them, dozens of people looked at them, likely hundreds of people tested them… they all failed. And the only explanation for that is lack of project management and clear instructions, like which constellations to test for.

      I use computers since 1981 and have participated in dozens of beta tests (and wrote quite some software myself). A software that deletes files without alerting the user is something I have not seen in all these years.

  • Apple Shareholder

    Tell that to Al Franken-Stein.

  • Ben Stuyts

    Ahhh, so it was programmed by their podcasts app group.

  • laserman5000

    Overall I love Apple Music… The only problems I’ve had are with sync on my iPhone. Your case sounds horrible, but I also didn’t have any songs that I didn’t buy on iTunes (no songs from from CD etc). I also never used beat. I think you should be able to add songs to Apple music from the iTunes store (having two places to search music is fucking stupid) but other than that it’s so much better than spotify and the human curation has really opened up a world of music to me. I do hope they simplify it though. As for bugs, I’m sure they will fix those over time.

  • bradpdx

    Gosh, I’m feeling left out. I’ve had Apple Music/Match since day 1, a library of about 23K tunes, sync’ed across 2 Macs, an iPhone and an iPad. I’ve been adding albums and songs from Apple Music, buying some from the Apple Store, and adding some stuff that is definitely not at any music store. The result? It’s fine. All of it. I haven’t noticed anything like described where albums are shortened due to redundant tracks for “greatest hits” collections or the like – they all appear intact for me. My playlists are all together, even the really old ones. I’ve got great backups, but I haven’t needed to use them.

    I’m not saying that nothing is wrong, clearly people have been experiencing issues. I just wanted to add a datapoint.

  • Paul Starkey

    Sad but true – this profound level of inconsistency and overall bugginess has me on the verge of cancelling my Apple Music account as well. (I certainly will not be paying for it once the trial expires!). For shame, Apple.

  • Smackdowninator

    Apple Music is an unmitigated disaster on the scale of MobileMe. The decision to merge Music with the Beats streaming services has resulted in a Frankenapp. While merging your own music with Apple Music sounded good in theory, the execution has been nothing short of a disaster. Further, the whole app UI is appalling. Stuffing all the functionality of the old Music app into a single tab in Apple Music’s “My Music” tab has taken a really good app and f##ced it!

  • kps

    I must also raise my hand as somebody who generally loves the Mac ecosystem but have been burned over the years by the way Apple/iTunes have handled my music library. Occasionally, I will go to search for a song I know I digitized from a CD I owned years ago and realize it somehow never made the leaps forward from various Mac/iPod/iPhone upgrades. I should be happy that I somehow retain as many as I have in my current library. But several of those songs, I will never see again as I have no intention of searching for the CD/album, buying it and re-digitizing. As somebody else on here said 98% is not good enough when it comes to stuff like this. It’s an extremely big deal to some people and if they happen to be in that 2% fail group, they’re going to be burn-the-house-down pissed.

  • Cranky Observer
    = = = I love Apple. I love them because they take difficult problems and come up with innovative, simple solutions. The things they make just work and we trust them. = = =

    I’m interested in this statements, along with the comments below of the form ‘this isn’t like Apple’. The dysfunction described is also true of the various flavors of Apple photo management “around” [as the kids these days would say] iCloud and iDevices. I had high hopes over converting my non-techie family members to an Apple cloud photo system. First release – horrible. No problem, second release will fix right? No. Not the 3rd, 4th, or 5th release either. Not simple, not straightforward, and utterly contemptuous of anyone who uses a DSLR or imaging device other than an iPhone and destructive to the data of people with 16 GB (or smaller!) devices.

    So given that that has been going on for over a year why would we have expected anything different from Apple Music?

  • brinke

    I’ve for 13K songs in iTunes. Still using 10.7, absolutely no chance I will update past that unless 10.7 just stops working. Once in awhile iTunes does something stupid- but I can live with that. (This is on a Windows machine.) To protect myself I have all songs backed up on 2- TWO – Seagate drives, and the entire collection (except DRM files- thanks!) was uploaded to Google Music, AND backed up on OneDrive and a small portion of them on Amazon Music. Overkill? Maybe. But I’ll never lose my songs, either. (Did I mention I used to keep one of the Seagate’s in a safety deposit box?)

  • This is just fucking inexcusable – I can’t imagine how angry I’d be if a poorly-written service destroyed a chunk of my music/photos/whatever-I’d-trusted-it-with. Apple has gotten better with their services, but Photos and now Music have shown they still have a long way to go.

    I’m eventually going to give Photos another chance some day, but I don’t see myself moving to Apple Music any time soon. Google Play Music-4-life.

    On a side note: PLEASE backup your files before trying any new service. The only reason I didn’t set my computer on fire when Apple Photos decided to do bizarre things to my library is because my photos are backed up several other places.

    Never trust a single service with any file that’s important to you. Period.

  • Somebody Please get Jim a seal burger and a Heiniken before he kills someone

  • Gab

    Photos and Music: both of these digital worlds that used to be perfectly ordered, managed manually by their owners using Apple Software (Aperture) and then Apple simply decides to destroy it for you, trying to provide a unified experience for first time late users. This is really sad.

  • Alexei Baboulevitch

    Very much inclined to agree. I didn’t lose any of my music, but I ran into the mixed album problem and a ton of sync issues. Very frequently I would tap the heart or “make offline” icons and see them revert right in front of my eyes! State, including saved albums and ratings, would also frequently be lost, especially between iOS and OSX. Spotify has a much better UI and none of these issues… I just wish they’d fix their terrible local upload interface!

  • I opened a case on the no duplicate songs issue. It took a while to get a support engineer who grasped it but after a couple escalations they finally said that their engineering team was able to reproduce the problem and is working on a fix.

    Now, whether they actually fix it or not, who knows. But they do know about it, can reproduce it and are supposedly working on it.

    Complaining to people online doesn’t really do much so I suggest everyone actually opens a ticket and keep asking for escalation until you get to a support engineer high enough to know what they’re doing:

  • Kyler Finn

    Damn, you struck a nerve. I feel your pain.

  • Paul D.

    A stupid question, perhaps, but surely you had backups? If not, you were always one computer error away from losing your music collection.

  • Dale P

    I thought I was alone – I have had so many issues since it launched. My phone was unable to access any of music till I wiped it completely clean. I’ve encountered your bugs and many more besides. Cue, Iovine, Dre, Reznor and everyone else involved should be fired – they have decimated Apple’s music pedigree in one fell swoop.

  • muddi900

    Oh no the application that has been destroying music libraries for over a decade still sucks. Shocking news.

  • Wow, thanks for sharing this. I was considering trying Apple Music when I switch back to an iPhone this fall, but now I think I’ll just stay with Spotify, which is working great for me.

    I can foresee now people telling you how they didn’t have any of these problems with Apple Music and it worked just perfectly for them, as if that somehow invalidates your shit experience with it. I’m glad to see this write-up of what exactly went wrong for you. So frustrating when you can’t trust a service to handle your data.

  • Jerry Suppan

    Possession is 9/10ths of the law. What you possess, you own and control. All these various cloud music services, you are not in control of your content, and you have to pay for that scenario as well? No thanks. I stream my own music from my own NAS if I want, or maybe stream internet radio stations. But I am not entrusting my data to online cloud services, especially Apple’s Even iCloud is more or less half-baked compared with Dropbox, Google Drive, OneDrive, et el…

  • Stirlol

    /scared though I do keep my Main Library away from iTunes, mostly been using music on iOS and loving it. They better fix this issue though as I don’t want to have to delete or re add entire libraries to iTunes Match again! Australian Internet Upload speeds are shocking, first match took approx one month!

  • jag

    I also failed by not backing up my library before installing Apple Music.

    But you have a full backup of the machine from when you installed Yosemite, right? Or on Time Machine? Or…something? Even an old Mac?

    I don’t mean for getting EVERYTHING back. I mean for this case:

    Sadly, many of the songs were added from CDs years ago that I no longer have access to.

  • Tatsh

    Looks like I still have to keep my CDs and vinyls (no tapes here).

  • Smackdowninator

    The problem for us now is what app can we use to sync our music with on an iPhone and not be forced into using the Apple Music app?

    For me, there is only one course of action – that is to switch back to listening to music on my iPod Classic and reinstall and activate Google Play Music.

    Which then drastically reduces the “stickiness” of the iPhone for me.

  • blairh

    iTunes is garbage. Never again.

    Apple Music (Beats 1 Radio aside) is garbage. There are countless issues of this variety as described in the post. Go look at the Apple support forum and Mac Rumors forum.

    Google Play Music does an excellent job of maintaining my cloud music library plus they have very good radio stations and the streaming option if desired.

  • Brian Beam

    I understand your frustration, and I’m not trying to let Apple off the hook; when things don’t work as advertised, then they need to fix it. However… enabling a new Apple-provided cloud service without having a backup of your irreplaceable data was a mistake, as you’ve learned. Also… you say alot of the music you lost is from CDs you no longer have. Not to be hardline here, but can you really say that you “own” that music then? For example, if I were to go to the used CD store, buy 1000 CDs and rip them to iTunes, then go sell the CDs back to the store… do I still “own” those digital tracks? Seems to me the answer is “no”. So whether your particular CDs were lost, stolen, damaged, given away, etc., it all seems about the same to me…

    • Cranky Observer
      = = = However… enabling a new Apple-provided cloud service without having a backup of your irreplaceable data was a mistake, as you’ve learned. = = =

      So that’s clearly documented by Apple, and ‘just works’ tools are provided to do the backup? Does Apple also have a clear accessible document explaining not to use Version 1.0 of their services?

      • Brian Beam

        Does Common Sense really need to be documented somewhere?

  • Craig Jacobs

    I resorted to copying all my media to my NAS and using double twist on my Mac to play music. It’s so bad I am probably getting an Android phone to replace my iPhone. Of course the fact that an iPhone costs $750 has something to do with that too…

  • Steve

    Cancels spotify before he knows if Apple Music is worth it? Rookie mistake. I’d say the punishment fits the crime.

  • Tenacious MC

    Have you tried turning off “Music Available Offline” under “My Playlists”? After doing that, any music I added from Apple Music would instantly show up in my library, and songs added to my playlists would sync up on all my devices.

  • Melting Granite

    Apple has the worst music file management software in existence, hands down. It’s is wholly non-intuitive and clunky, and rife with errors.

  • Pete Laberge

    Buy a generic MP3 player, and a good set of earphones. Upload your music yourself, and be your own music service. ….

  • Sarah Balfour

    I’ve yet to try AM – & not sure I will given this discussion – but it’s up to an artist whether they want their music on a service – or not – Apple can’t demand they supply it (bands on RIAA-registered labels aside, I have no truck with the RIAA, and most of the bands/artists to which I listen regularly, don’t either). I listen to a lot of underground stuff (primarily industrial/EBM/aggrotech/darkwave, but some hip-hop (UK, none of that gangsta shite), but I also listen to a lot of – primarily British – bands, mainly ’80s/’90s that most have forgotten, and I’m always impressed when a service pops one up that even I’D forgotten (and there ain’t many, all those years of Peel Sessions mean my knowledge is pretty extensive).

    My primary service used to be, before it quit streaming in the UK 15 months ago, and I’ve yet to replace it in terms of the sheer number of artists and tracks it carried; sure, the streaming quality wasn’t the greatest but, when you’ve limited funds, you’ll accept it (it was only £3 a month).

    Since then, I must have tried every service available and dismissed each one for varying reasons; Rdio had real issues with tagging, so that definite articles were ignored (e.g. The Fixx (UK ’80s post-punk/new wave outfit) and Fixx (an upstate NY MC I’d never heard of – and never want to again) were treated as the same; it could distinguish acronyms either (so Orb and O.R.B., were identical) and, finally, bands with identical names, but from completely different genres weren’t separated (e.g. Kingmaker (early Britpop band) and Kingmaker (thrash/hardcore outfit from Virginia)). I cancelled when I started constantly hearing the wrong bands, got too frustrating. I also found Rdio to be FAR too repetitive, and I was starting to hate tracks I’d loved for years.

    My main service is currently Google, although I do have Deezer for when I fancy a change (though, with it being European, I find it lumps all bands within a particular genre together, irrespective of language – I never realised how massive reggae was in Poland, until I subscribed to Deezer!).

    I MAY look at Spotify again, but their artist-based stations frustrated me, simply because I could never fathom out how they worked – if there’s any logic there, it escapes me).

    I tried Tidal, but cancelled pretty quickly (which reminds me, I think they still owe me £40).

  • michaels99

    Other than the issue where some people couldn’t play things from connect (or sometimes stream anything at all), that seemed to be caused by DNS configuration issues at Apples end, I’ve had no real problems at all. That’s not to say there aren’t bugs and Apples attention does seem to be slipping in that regard.

    That said, syncing is hard, no one does it right all the time. Dropbox, Google Drive, Box, One Drive, Exchange. All of them have problems from time to time. Data shouldn’t get lost, Apple needs to do better, but it does happen with all providers. And whilst I have sympathy for Jim’s plight, (acknowledging that the bug that caused his problem isn’t his fault), he should, especially as a tech journalist, know to back up, back up and back up again. For me that is the most shocking aspect of his story, that someone who’s livelihood depends on technology doesn’t backup his critical data.

  • CodeJingle

    Apple Music is basically in beta testing alongside iOS 9 and OS X El Capitan. There is a reason they offered it free for 3 months. It wasn’t just to get more people signed up. It was for Apple to give themselves an opportunity to work out the kinks while reducing their liability. I’m sure Apple will fix the issue by the time they start charging for the Apple Music service. You shouldn’t write them off so quickly while they are in the 3-month incubation period. At least try once more when iOS 9 and OS X El Capital are RTM and Apple Music start charging money for the service.

  • Ben

    I’m in the exact same boat. I’ve lost a lot of metadata, lost a lot of my music. Thankfully I have some backups (yet I don’t really want to spend my scarce free time on this).

    My library was kind of important to me, and Apple, over all these years, made me feel, that my digital/media identity, my hub, was important. Now they’re trashing it.

    I’ve had bad experiences before with iTunes Match, where it replaced songs I had purchased previously, with matched versions, only that these were slightly different renditions. So I canceled that, waited a year for the subscription to lapse and was back to normal. Thankfully 128 GB iPhones were out by then.

    The bad thing is Jim, your initial praise made me try out Apple Music. I so wanted to trust them. Alas I hope I’ve been burned the last time. The only takeaway I see is: Never trust an Apple service. Especially if it has anything to do with the iTunes group. Does nobody in the leadership ranks of Apple, have an iTunes library of decent proportions?

    So sad.

  • Jimmbo

    I hate to ask the obvious question, but don’t you do regular backups? External drives are so cheap. It’s not 1992.

    I’m not trying to rub salt on your wound, but it’s been a long time since I’ve heard of a power user suffering catastrophic data loss. How is it possible you’re not fully backed up? I don’t trust Apple or anyone else with my data. I trust my data to multiple backup drives (including off-site). Period.

  • Voice in the Wilderness

    No CDs and no backups?

  • William D

    I get the distant impression that any testing Apple did for AppleMusic they were essentially testing on people within the company – who all had free iTunes accounts and all their music, unlike in the real world,was purchased from the iTunes store. The databases were much easier to resolve etc.

    • michaels99

      If that’s the case, the whole team should be fired. Testing 101 is to test edge cases and that example is anything but an edge case.

      • William D

        Obviously I haven’t a clue. I don’t know a single Apple employee so I may be completely wrong but it just feels like a case of testing in a[n artificially abnormal] bubble.. or they released it knowing there were problems. It has to be one of the other…

        • michaels99

          The trouble is they are testing in an abnormal bubble. The only way to test on realistic scale is to beta test it, which they couldn’t do. Which coincidentally is what’s making this feel so much like a beta test. Jim’s problem is particularly bad, Apple should have got any data loss bugs out of the system before release but these kind of problems afflict all syncing services e.g Drop Box etc. Which is why Jim of all people should have known to Backup his data,

          Spotify was terrible when it was released, Apple will fix the bugs but I really do think they should have released it as Beta software first.

          • William D

            I agree with you. though I don’t know why they couldn’t have had a slow roll out – i.e give access to iOS 9 and 10,11 developers and perhaps even the public beta programme. But they clearly rushed it.

  • Paulo A.

    I think this is not a problem of Apple Music but a problem with the iTunes 12.2 itself. Once I updated (and I did NOT activated Apple Music) I lost all my movie and TV shows library as well. I think it is related to the fact that I store my library in a NAS and have opted for iTunes to not use other library. I believe that in order to be able to mess around with our libraries iTunes must re-construct the library. As I did not allowed it, iTunes simply destroyed it. It baffles me how management in Apple let’s iTunes run like this for years long, it is really a bad media management software. I am more and more migrating to Amazon.

  • jameskatt

    What a Rant. Sure Apple Music had a bug. But it is now fixed. AND I LOVE APPLE MUSIC! Having to no longer buy music since nearly everything new is available to you as well as nearly everything else ever recorded is fantastic. And it is a huge bargain for the family plan.

  • Peter

    Come on, Jim – NO BACKUP?!???

  • no library backup? ouch.

  • marco1959

    After all the problems I’ve had with every other service that involves iCloud, I’ve been sitting on the sidelines and waiting. Thanks for the warning.

  • JJJ

    those two screenshots of the app in vertical position both look like they’ve been edited by a 5 year old. That line-height, the font choice, the way lines break to the next line… my god what a clusterfuck.×640.jpg×640.jpg

  • JohnDoey

    This post reminds me of when the Paris Lemon guy admitted iOS 7 had been crashing his phone daily for the first 6 months.

    It is tech bloggers own fault. You are the guys who asked Apple to make their products into Windows/Android clones. You are the guys who hold Apple responsible for their massive 2+ year software quality crisis maybe once a year. If that. You are the guys who are betraying regular users by demanding Apple products be designed By Nerds For Nerds.

    • JJJ

      please, go on! I like where this reply is heading but it feels incomplete.

  • willo

    Forestall was fired for the Maps implementation. Eddy Cue is in charge of services. Holy crap. That guy is “one of the good guys” and nobody can touch him. But in reality he is a joke when it comes to driving Apple Services. It´s a mess. Apple need to fire Cue, and get fresh blood driving Services.

    But there is no way Tim Cook will touch Cue, as he is “one of the good guys”. All Apple services could go down for weeks without anybody touching him.

    I say fire him. Apologise for terrible services. Hire someone talented from Google, and get to work.

    • William D

      I don’t understand how he is still there. if you had to pin down the one area of the company that is a mess – and others are leaping ahead like Google, Microsoft and Amazon – and for the matter much smaller companies – we’d all say services. Is Tim too afraid to remove him?

  • Buy yourself a good oldschool HIFI-Stereo system – grab a good cd and listen to the music. I swear you – you will never ever again listen music through crappy streaming shit. I lost a lot of emotion to music with MP3. And streaming killed nearly to 100%. To go to record store – listen to some CDs and than finally buy it – is something completely different than having “all the songs of the world” on your fucking smart phone. I am going oldschool, i even buy some good old tapes. And guess what? It feels fucking brilliant 🙂 So come on – join the oldschool train. Spotify is the same shit as Apple Music. And when Spotify is gone – where is your music? A CD, a record or a tape – will stay forever. (Found some days ago a tape from the 80ies – still working – sound acceptable 🙂 )

    • exactly. we as consumers, especially apple fans, have taken such a downgrade in audio and we just accept it, year after year, decade after decade. even steve jobs himself couldn’t believe that people took to mp3 so fast and so totally. he thought it was transitionary at best.

      a freaking walkman from 1988 with fresh batteries, playing a good tape, sounds better than an iPhone. it’s fuller, bigger, rounder, warmer, more natural sounding.

      a discman from 1994 might even sound better than an iPhone playing lossless files, i would not be surprised. a home stereo from the 70’s or 80’s has discreet components that the iPhone could only dream about.

      but convenience wins all in the digital age, quality always takes a back seat. i just don’t see the restrictions anymore, netflix could easily stream us 24bit audio and i’d personally pay $20/month for it, assuming i had a device that could render it properly.

  • Before I signed up for Apple Music I backed everything up and stuck it in Google Music as you can store all your music on that service. All I want to do really is listen to my back catalogue and find music myself. I listen to Classical and Opera and apple music messed all that up, my Pavarotti albums disappeared and adding albums was difficult also the songs are not in the order of the damn album and I checked shuffle wasnt enabled. Really sucks. Going to stick with Google Music as I like having all my music accessible to me and then if I want a streaming service I can sign up with them as their service looks nice and simple.

  • Christopher Jackson

    Apple (and don’t get me wrong, I still like them over the alternatives) has seriously gone down hill in the past year, IMO. Things, like this, that had always “just worked” are becoming more difficult and less reliable than they used to be. Even something as simple as changing my account password resulted in a three week period where my MacBook, iPad, and phone refused to play nicely with each other, and even to this day wireless sync works at random times for no apparent reason then just quits again for days on end. I am not saying Steve was the reason, but it sure seems that way. Apple had better get it together soon as they are rapidly becoming another Microsoft. “Here, have this because this is the level of effort we are willing to step to, never mind whether or not it works or is easy or intuitive or supported at all after we ladle it out to you.” If it becomes much worse – having to put up with this level of pain, I will seriously consider moving back to a much less expensive platform…

  • jason

    If you already purchased the songs, you have no need to buy them again. I’m sure your bank and the company you purchased the songs from would be able to work out a validation process if you don’t have a receipt. I’ve done this before.

  • mehlkelm

    I had some songs not showing up on the iPhone. Turns out, these were songs marked as “explicit”. I went into Settings -> General ->Restrictions on the iPhone and turned on (!) restrictions, allowed explicit contents for music, podcasts and iTunes U. Then I turned the restrictions back off.

    The missing songs were back.

    Hope that works for some other people as well.

    • Do You by any chance sync Your own (offline) music between devices?

      • mehlkelm

        Not from device to device. Only through Apple music (or, I guess, through the cancelled but not yet run out iTunes Match).

  • Hi guys – I am in this situation: I have lots of my own ALAC music on iTunes on OS X. I used to sync a playlist with my iPhone and it was all fine. Now I want to use Apple Music, too. I was afraid to turn iCloud Music Library on OS X so I didn’t. But! I want to have iCloud Music Library ON on iOS. Turns out that now I can’t sync my ‘offline’, ‘local’, however you call them now, playlists.

    I just want my own music and Apple Music living in a perfect harmony together. How can I configure this?

    Is Apply seriously, nowadays, not capable of providing that?

    • jsd

      It’s not possible. Music on iOS and iTunes on desktop are organized around the concept of “The Library.” You can’t have two different libraries active at one time. On Mac you can switch libraries by holding option while launching iTunes. On iOS you can’t switch between two libraries. You can turn Cloud library on and off, but once it’s off you’ll need to get music onto it again via iTunes.

      • I don’t get it. Apple Music is not a separate library – it’s just sort of ‘module’ attached to iTunes now. What you imply suggests that I can’t have my own music AND music from Apple Music – which I think it’s not true since it would be stupid – why can’t I have my own music and streaming as well?

        • jsd

          You can have your own music and streaming, of course, that’s one of the big selling points of Apple Music as compared to, say, Spotify. What you can’t do is have locally synced music and cloud synced music on one iOS device. If you want your music plus Apple Music combined, then you need to enable Cloud Library. This will disable local iTunes-to-iOS syncing completely. Given the experience some people have been happening, you should definitely back up your local iTunes library first though! (I didn’t have any problems, but it sounds like many people did.)

          • OK now I get it – but are You 100% sure that iCloud Music Library disables syncing completely? That’s really sad because with iCloud Music Library enabled on both my devices (iphone and mac) I can’t be sure if my actual, proper offline tracks will sync correctly to iPhone.

    • if you are in ALAC format you need to get a better player than an iPhone, in my opinion. get a Fiio or a ponoplayer and keep those ALAC’s on MicroSD cards and you will not only get far better audio performance you will have your phone to do phone things and not interrupt your music.

      • The point is: I have ALAC files on OS X’s iTunes library and I don’t want to loose it turning Apple Music on – I now sync some of my ALACs to iPhone in 256 AAC anyways since my iPhone is 16GB.

        • makes sense, whatever works and stops apple from deleting your music.

          in most other things i’m all apple – but i broke out of iTunes about 2 years ago, started buying FLAC and using JRiver to manage my media, and I’m much happier about it now. iTunes is still there as a free thing but Apple has crapped on quality music for too long for me to support them.

          it’s like “sound quality” cannot be improved anymore after 1999. it was taken off the chart of things to improve. for those of us who have been working with and mixing in 24bit for over a decade now it’s a hard thing to watch the consumer audio space, and especially this new breed of internet expert who screams “snake oil!” anytime anyone wants better sounding audio.

          consumer audio – the only tech that goes backwards. our fathers and in some cases grandfathers had better fidelity music players than we do.

          we might have the smallest and the most music players ever in 2015, but we don’t have the best sounding ones when you compare back to previous generations (unless you have a ponoplayer!)

          • Well in terms of sound quality I’m aware that it’s helluva of a compromise – that is listening to music on MacBook’s built in sound card or an iPhone. BUT! I used to have separate devices for listening to music and I’m tired of it.

            I used to have Audio Interface I’d plug in to my Mac but that failed too – with every OS X update there were audio issues.

            All in all – I want to use iCloud Music Library very much BUT I want my lossless library intact. Can Apple provide that now? Clearly not and that’s what scares me.

          • I think if you want a full quality lossless library available whenever you want it you will have to own it yourself. Good luck playing with the cloud and the match service, but if I was you I’d keep all that music backed up and away from iTunes.

          • Well, You are right but something like Ponoplayer is too bulky for me. What would You recommend?

            What earphones do You use? I’m asking about on-the-run listening.

          • On the run – I’m not sure, perhaps check the Fiio product line, they use the iPod classic shape and there’s alot of accessories for that. Ponoplayer probably is too bulky for running unless you had a fanny pack or backpack situation, or a custom belt holster. Check out the forums at to get an idea of other portable hi-fi rigs.

            I also can’t recommend ear-buds for running, sorry. Mine fall out even walking and riding. I generally use open-back sennheisers or audio-technica cans at home, on the road, and in the studio, but they are pretty big and not fit for exercise.

  • richardmac

    How long before someone high up at Apple freaks out about this post and Jim gets his problems solved? Put another way, with all of Jim’s connections, if HE can’t get Apple to solve his issues, none of us have a prayer. And much props to you, Jim. Apple apologist my ASS. That said, I feel bad for you, Jim. My experience with Apple Music has been fairly good, actually. Knock on wood.

  • Liberal Hater

    While I haven’t lost songs that I’m aware of, I’ve dealt with playlist problems that make listening to music a chore. Songs don’t want to stay offline for listening. Songs won’t play on playlists. And on…. I’m sticking with Spotify. It just works. Go figure.

  • Many thanks to Jim Dalrymple for his persistence and his thoroughness in the face of Apple’s not-yet-ready-for-prime-time technology. I’m an old man with music stored on vinyl and compact disks, an old man who’s toyed with iTunes for a few years now, and Jim’s experience and efforts are a fair warning.

    • rip those cd’s to lossless flac and get a ponoplayer with about 2 more 64gb micro-sd cards. you will be a very happy man, i think. your cd files will sound better than you’ve ever heard them and you can buy new HD files with no optical discs now.

  • marcoselmalo

    I’m encountering problems of a similar nature on my iPad (I’m an iPad-only user at this point). It’s frustrating!

    However, the discovery on Apple music is the best I’ve encountered. And I’m finding obscure bands (old favorites from my misspent youth), local indie bands that self released LPs to sell at their shows.

    Some aspects of Apple Music are really great. For now that’s enough for me to stick with it and hope Apple fixes what’s broken.

  • SuperMatt

    Sounds like the thing to do is make a backup of your iTunes library and use Apple music with an empty library? Weird that you’d have to do that, but it sounds prudent if you don’t already have a backup of your library.

  • This is my first time visiting this website (came through Gruber’s).

    Your musical taste is one of the reasons I’m starting to read this everyday from now on (although I know music is not the main subject here)

  • How about just get a nice new DAP and play lossless files if you already own them?

    It will sound FAR better than anything streaming through a phone. You have good taste in music, you shouldn’t be listening to 10% versions.

  • Reasons2AvoidAndroid

    Am I mistaken in thinking that a ripped song is not ‘owned’ if you aren’t also in possesion of the CD?

    • William D

      Obviously if you went on to sell those disks I cant imagine it would be legal in any territory. If you are backing up for your own personal use and the disk you had before is just ‘lost’ i don’t know.. guess it depends on the country..

  • Ruurd Pels

    I wonder how much of this chagrin is of your own doing. You started using a version 1 product extension. You obviously ‘forgot’ to make a backup of your music. And you’re complaining about the inability to add music made by Neil Young – someone that has a vested interest in not being on streaming music products in the first place. But you still blame the ensuing destruction on somebody else. I think this is unfair. Besides. According to my residential expert, Spotify isn’t cutting it.

  • MikeWilkie

    “Wah, wah, wah. I’m old and still want to lug around files for each of my songs and an ‘expert’ who failed to backup his library before installing a major iTunes upgrade.”

    Apple Music is buggy, no doubt. But seriously, your actual problems result from user error.

    • William D

      Not having a backup is user error. the mistakes  are making isn’t user error… It’s only a problem when you add both ends of the equation. But realistically for most people outside the tech bubble – this is precisely what will be happening

    • nydame

      Users are always going to make errors. Good software makes it impossible for users to screw up catastrophically.

  • William D

    I’m just hoping that because this is written by a known Apple ‘cheerleader’ (if i can put it like this] who is relatively respected in the community that somebody at Apple will sit up and notice to improve things. Yes there soul have been backups but you cant blame the user end of things when a service that’s sold as if it solves your woes is buggy and changes things.

  • Beancounter CPA

    I had over 10,000 songs from ripped CDs on my 128GB iPhone, After starting Apple Music, all these songs were deleted from the iPhone and the only way to play them is if I am online. I spent a lot of time with Apple Support, which doesn’t seem to know much about iTunes. The solution is that, from the iPhone, I need to use the “Make Available Offline” command for each album. Since I have over 700 albums, I need to do this over 700 times.

    By some accounts, Steve Jobs’ main function at Apple was to be the tweeker-in-chief. In other words, nothing from Apple went out without his own personal quality control. It seems that Tim Cook cannot properly perform this function,

    • jsd

      You could make one giant playlist of all 10000 songs then tap “make available offline” on that one playlist. I know it’s not a great answer but at least it will save you 700+ taps…

  • davco9200

    I think iTunes is a terrible program for people with large amounts of music. Smart Playlists have been broken for years and several major revisions, playlists by default have “sort by track order” hidden, and iTunes match was erratic at best. I had hoped that Apple had really listened and done a complete re-write of iTunes for Apple music rather than just bolting on more features onto a poor infrastructure.

    I switched to Google Music (even though I am an Apple user throughout every product) 4 months ago and don’t regret it.

    • BongBong

      Google Music is a great free backup for the music library.

  • AnObserver

    You forgot about the fact they switch explicit tracks for clean ones too.

  • So, I’ve had a lot of the same issues initially because my music library is just objectively too big. Most of my tracks were duplicated and syncing was all over the place, but it has worked itself out now.

    Forcing iTunes to update the iCloud music library fixed the whole library, but I had to make sure that it was running in the background and it took about a week get there.

    Having a lot of patience and looking at spinny circles is not fun at all but it does seem to work.

  • David C.

    Shame on Apple for screwing up their software so badly.

    Shame on you for not having a local backup. I run Time Machine on my Mac (which has my complete music library) and I have two bootable clones of that Mac (updated weekly) as well.

    I’m very surprised and disappointed that someone with as much experience as yourself doesn’t have a similar backup strategy.

  • I initially was pretty jazzed about Apple streaming and the features that came with it. But with recent outages I realized my music listening enjoyment is uncomfortably dependent on Apple’s ability to robustly deliver their service.

    That’s not a position I’m willing to put myself in.

  • Willie Abrams

    I’ve had these problems with iTunes Match (without Apple Music). I add a compilation album on my Mac, go to my iPhone, and the first song isn’t listed on the compilation album (probably because I purchased the song as a single). Apple may think this is a good idea, but it’s a terrible user experience: I expect music to import and display as I imported it and I expect all my albums to remain whole.

  • SuperMatt

    Sad to hear it. However, how can one be a tech blogger and not even do the most basic thing of all – back up their computer? A spilled coffee could’ve destroyed all your data, not just a few old CDs…

  • oliversl

    Thanks for been honest.

    My worst fear came true, another new product from Apple that is too flawed to be released to the public.

  • narg

    ” innovative, simple solutions. ” Wow. What a load of B.S. Apple did this a few times long ago, and did it well. Today they make technology as difficult to work with as any other technology company out there. Heck, even Windows 10 coming out soon makes a lot of things easier than Apple does in any of their OSes. Those that use Windows Phone know it’s always been a LOT easier to use, and much more innovative in some areas. I’m not an Apple hater, far from it, as I use Apple products daily myself. But, I’m getting tired of the bull that bloggers post about “how great Apple is” when in fact it is far from the perfection they erroneously right about.

  • matthew-phillips

    works almost perfectly on my phone. has broken regular service with iTunes Match and iCloud on my computer. NOT cool, considering how much music i’ve bought on iTunes Music Store over the past 10 years.

  • Benny Boom

    I find Apple products, but especially services, are increasingly painful to use. Weather it’s the horrible UX of the (which will still never finish reading the catalog from iTunes), or iCloud Photos Albums (which make a big mess of my collection, give you no clue, or simply lie, about where you can remove photos from, or simply fail to re-sync dates, if you make any modifications manually). It’s not very pretty in Apple’s world these days, and as someone who’s only using their products (and Linux for hacking) I find it increasingly frustrating. I know my way around an OS, but I really don’t want to be forced to fiddle.

  • Jonathan Cohen

    It’s disappointing to hear all these issues. Having been a Spotify subscriber for a few years, and before that Rhapsody, Rdio and Yahoo! Music, I didn’t have much music within iTunes. I think Apple Music’s radio and playlists represented an innovative take on music discovery – and wrote a review saying as much on Medium – and had encountered a number of quirks, UX challenges and tech failures, which would seem to be par for the course for a project launch, even from Apple. But I didn’t lose my library of stored music, which existed on a hard drive, separately from iTunes.

  • This smells like the Maps fiasco all over again. They got spooked by other entrants beating them to market and losing out on precious control over their platform, so they rushed something half-baked out to everyone. Google Music has done a superb job of combining my personal library with unlimited streaming. I’m sure Apple Music will get there in a couple years, but that’s little consolation to anyone who got screwed by being a faithful early adopter.

    • BongBong

      So will Eddy Cue now apologize or be fired by Tim?

  • paulgpetty

    That makes two of us.

    At least I can rest easier knowing that I wasn’t the only one. After spending 30 minutes on the phone last week with Apple (800-my-apple); I pulled the plug too.

    I had a trial family plan. I backed up all my music & cleared every instance of iTunes (removed all old songs, playlists, and settings) and then enabled Apple Music (family plan) on 2 iPhones, 2 iPads, a Mac mini, & a Macbook Pro. I then, from the mini, re-imported all my music. I set up 2 synced playlists (one for kids & one for me). Then I unleashed Apple Music …

    I went hog wild adding songs, albums, stations (from For You). I tried syncing all the devices. Everything was ALMOST synced …

    I dismissed a few glitches — bug mistake.

    And then a week ago authentication stopped working. Every device prompted for login to iCloud repeatedly. And when I did that sometimes nothing would happen. I ‘d attempt to stream something to no avail. No UI feedback. And sometimes eventually the playlist UI would send me to the Sign Up screen.

    Apple reps had no idea how to remedy.

    Done & Done. I’m back on Spotify, too.

    And if someone from Spotify ever sees or reads this, here’s a new tagline:

    Spotify: it just works.

  • Arun kumar

    Things dont just work anymore. Steve is dead.

    • BongBong

      But one of those things can be fixed.

  • Robert.Walter

    Just as with the Taylor Swift episode, it should have never come to this. For a company that professes it loves music, it sure has developed a tin ear on this sphere of its business. For a platform built on the concept of “it just works”, folks on the development level seem to have forgotten this imperative. For management fond of “part of our corporate DNA” statements, they better consider some radical gene therapy to deal with what seems like counter productive mutations in practices, because it seems them old genes are a changin’…

  • Very interesting article. I do have the same problem with managing the library, plus 3 very specific issues with no solution to date :

    • on a Windows computer, iTunes will stop playing at random after a couple of songs. There are a couple of threads on Apple’s forums, but no solution.

    • on my iPad, when browsing Apple Music library via the artist view, accessing an individual album will make the Music app crash. There are a couple of threads on Apple’s forums, but no solution.

    • on my Mac, iTunes will sometimes refuse to play a giver song and skip to the next one in the queue. iTunes will very often skip at random tens of songs. There are a couple of threads on Apple’s forums, with some people having solved the issue by changing their DNSs. That trick didn’t work for me, but even so, I’m not willing torely on a third party company for my DNS’s to fix Apple’s mess.

    These are no little problems, but rather critical ones that fuck up the entire user experience to say the least. Or just make the service unusable on Windows. I just cannot rely on Apple Music at work on Windows, it’s. not. working.

  • Idon’t Know

    I have a subscription to Spotify and Pandora. I really recommend Pandora for radio stations that I can curate and are better than any other streaming services radio stations I have tried. Anyway I thought for sure Apple Music would allow me to cancel both Spotify and Pandora but now I’ve turned Apple Music off and it will take a lot for me to turn it back on again.

  • NicolaiLinde

    I love how everyone forgets that the first version of anything Apple releases is shit, it takes a couple of versions for them to mold it into something that works. And then everyone forgets what happened and goes back to praising them for never making mistakes.

  • Brian S

    I’m so done with these types of blog posts, where people complain for every single thing even when its free.

    Rule #1, always have a backup of your files (documents, pictures, music, videos, etc), What is this amateur hour?

    Go back to Spotify, we won’t miss ya! (btw also a Spotify user so now bashing them)

    • qwerty12

      You liked your own post? Really?

  • Jon

    Apple just keeps putting more nails in the cloud services coffin. No doubt this was a rush job. For a company that perfected online music purchases they sure screwed this up. No surprise since there was an article a few months ago reporting that inside Apple, this music transition was just short of a hot mess with multiple people leaving the company who were involved.

  • Fowen Conwath

    Disaster for me as well. I have only a few hundred songs in iTunes library from my CDs, or bought from iTunes. But most of the songs were added after installing 8.4 and subscribing in Apple Music (I was using Spotify till now). but syncing iPhone with my iTunes library is not working properly. I was fixing it twice, but I can’t get it working now. Songs are in iTunes library, on my iPad, but not in iPhone. They just disappeared, and are gone. And I have tried everything. Sign out/in, restart, reinstall, remove all data/settings… I’m afraid update will take months, but who nows, if it will be fixed.

  • JohnK

    I’ve long since changed my mind from “Apple is a hardware and software company” to “Apple is a hardware company and OS company.” I can’t remember the last time I was really delighted with Apple apps. Aperture? Nope. iMovie? Nope. iTunes? Definitely nope. iPhotos? Close. Some apps are perfectly fine (Messages, Safari, Maps, for example) but too many are just too unusable for me to still consider Apple a company good at creating software.

    • trip1ex

      Apple is a UI software company. Their software always has a great look and feel to it and always has some nice shortcuts to the features most use most of the time.

      It’s just that sometimes the underpinnings aren’t all that.

      • JohnK

        True, they are a UI software company, but I’m not sure they’re at the top of their game anymore. I do’t think their software has a great look and feel…the UI on iTunes (and now Apple Music) is atrocious on both the desktop and iOS apps. I think there’s just too much crammed into one App for it not to be. I don’t know if this is UI or UX (not my field).

        When I first started using a Mac the UI was a real delighter, but I don’t find that to consistently be the case anymore.

        • trip1ex

          Well you’re used to the Mac now. YOu’re at a different stage of the relationship. Your new girlfriend is now your wife of 10 years.

          And iTunes has some UI problems like how you find tv shows/movies you own but don’t have on your Mac or syncing with other devices which I swear could still be a lot easier although there isn’t much need for it nowadays.

          But overall the UI is pretty good.

          I mostly find myself saying I wish Apple did this UI when I use software from other corporations.

          • JohnK

            Ha. My complaints are around the modal interfaces and not knowing how to get back “home.” Am I looking at my music library, the Apple Music library, the music on my iPhone, a playlist (and where is the playlist – my music, my phone, my iPod, in the cloud?), an album, a station?

            Granted, I’ve non-Apple software (on OSX, PC, and iOS) that’s just as bad or worse, but iTunes only seems to be getting more features and less usable with each release.

  • It would be really interesting to see just what role DRM had to play in this dog’s breakfast.

  • Yev from Backblaze here -> Jim, let me know if you want a trial code, we back up iTunes, so you’d at least have a backup of your entire library should this continue to be wonky, not that it’ll help you for what you may have already lost, but any backup of iTunes with roll-back history should help in the future!

  • Aman


  • Meredith

    My guess is that Apple deliberately engineered this so it doesn’t have to pay streaming royalties on songs people already own. Don’t count on it getting fixed any time soon.

    • eljobsodiablo

      That’s exactly what’s going on, and they’re going to end up paying in the court of public opinion and with cash for trying to split the baby on this thorny issue.

      I hate to say this, but Steve wouldn’t have accepted these terms.

    • Cranky Observer

      I suspect several of what the long-time, experienced digital music collectors posting here as bugs or bad design in Apple Music are the labels and Apple working together to try to recreate a closed, corporate-controlled purchasing and listening ecosystem. That it deletes your old ripped CD tracks is a feature (to Apple and their suppliers), not a bug.

  • That’s a shame. I have a 6+ year old library that’s around 90GB, and I’ve had absolutely zero issues with Apple Music. I love that can add full albums when I want, and simply purchase them (as I did before) if I want to DRM-free versions.

  • JuanGuapo

    I have a 4.3k song library in iTunes, I’ve been a (iTM) Match and (now) (AM) Apple Music subscriber since Day 1. While the problems detailed above are inconvenient and annoying, it’s hardly as systemic or odious as some people are making it out to be.

    • iOS vs. iTunes Desktop. iOS will simply be a reflection of what is on iTM/AM; therefore, if your iTunes library is corrupted/malformed, it’s not surprising the cloud library is also malformed, also.

    • Rebuild your iTunes library. This is easy, and is detailed on Apple’s website:

    • Duplicates. The duplicates thing is not uncommon but preferable to losing data. My guess is the meta data does not match what is coming in/out of the library, so iTunes errs on the side of caution and makes a duplicate. Annoying but understandable. This is not a new issue with AM but originated with iTM; if you have a corrupted iTunes library, the issue only gets worse.

    • Purchased Music. Any/all music you’ve ever purchased is available on iTunes at all times, even if you delete it from the cloud. Go into (iTS) iTunes Store, click Purchased, Sign-in, then see ALL vs. On My Computer music files. I had an issue where a Bob Dylan track (sensing a pattern here) would absolutely not join the album it was supposed to be part of. I deleted the entire album from iTM/AM, cloud and all, then went to Purchased in the iTS, and re-downloaded it. No problems after that.

    • Matched vs. Purchased vs. AM. I’ve only seen it happen once or twice and only with specific albums where a Purchased iTunes song (.m4a) got “matched” to iTM, thus sending down a duplicate, “matched” copy of the same song. I’ve not seen it affect Artists or Playlists–only a few songs on the same album. My guess is iTM didn’t pick up the purchased songs’ metadata and thought it was a ripped copy. A bug but not a showstopper. iTunes already has the option to find/display duplicate songs from the same or different albums so it’s not like Apple is just seeing duplicates for the first time show up in iTunes.

    • AM DRM vs. iTM DRM-FREE. Apple predictably released a fix for this. Although I’ve not seen or been able to replicate it, it’s no surprise this was a bug, and clearly an easy one to fix.

    As an aside, the only bugs/issues I’ve encountered so far with AM have been the following two…

    • Duplicates within specific albums by specific artists (i.e. Bob Dylan, Michael Jackson).

    • “All [Music]” not showing up consistently on iOS. I have to click the artist I want to listen to, and if the “All” category doesn’t show up, I have to go back to the Artist list, then re-click the artist a 2nd time to get it to show. Definitely a bug, everyone I know right now with AM is having the same issue with All [Music] showing up.

    Were I to switch from AM, the only alternative I’ve seen (so far) that interests me with its capabilities has been Google Music. Otherwise, I’m sticking with AM for the foreseeable future. 🙂

    • qwerty12

      “While the problems detailed above are inconvenient and annoying, it’s hardly as systemic or odious as some people are making it out to be.”

      Even if you were to take away cranky people and those who are tech-challenged, the Apple Support forums on both Music and Match/Cloud Library belie this assertion. Lots of open threads, few solutions.

  • I’m a re-switcher back to the Mac for the quality of the hardware and the reliability of the OS. And I’ve had to feel my way through all the “ecosystem” products and OS changes that have been created and evolved as I soldiered on with Windows.

    And the longer I’m back, the stronger I’ve come to feel that those are still my main reasons to be back, as I’ve abandoned using nearly all of the products that are built around “ecosystem lock-in” in favor of solutions that are not only widely cross-platform but also both more robust (in terms of the kinds of problems discussed in the article and thread) and/or less costly.

    E.g., DropBox, Evernote, Google Photos, 3rd party photo editors, Google Play Music.

    I use SugarSync as my cloud backup service for my heterogeneous multi-computer Mac/Win/Android devices…. …and Carbon Copy Cloner to supplement Time Machine (which I hope to never actually have to go into – I’ve heard stories, and I UNDERSTAND what CCC is doing).

    This not only avoids the kinds of stories I’m hearing here, I can pick my digital gear going forward from any number of manufacturers and developers according to what’s most suitable, priced right, etc. at the time.

    I also use Word because it’s still the Lingua Franca file format of the people I share docs with, I’ve mastered it and I don’t have to “export” to share, etc.

    Tho’ I do use Keynote and Numbers on merit ‘cos files I create there are nearly all for my own use. And I’ve had no problems with the free 5GB of iCloud storage to date, so that’s OK, used mostly for my numbers and keynote files I only need on my Mac.

    Otherwise I’m happiest as an Apple customer for its basic, fundamental advantages while increasingly avoid the things they tout the most as the reasons to buy in. And a strategy that’s “just working” better for me.

    • trip1ex

      except Apple Music is multiplatform just like all those services you mentioned.

      • Except Apple Music’s (including iTunes/iTunes Match) is causing/having the kinds of issues across its platforms reported here, and you pay for Match.

        I uploaded my cuts to Google Play years ago for free (yeah, yeah, they’re targeting me – but go to any web page and you’re being tracked by companies likely even less ethical – Ghostery reports six trackers and widgets on the page I’m typing this on) – it’s never lost a cut, their instant mixes are at least as good as the Genius ones by me, they’ve added free “radio streams,” I can build playlists that meet my needs, I can play them anywhere I can sign into my Google account on PC browser or smart phone and I don’t have to think about anything.

        And they leave my hard drive and web backups alone, so if everything went south with them, I still have all my music organized in folders by artist and album (with Jazz, Classical and a few other things defined by me in their own sections).

        Meanwhile, every time I let iTunes have any role in organizing, storing and syncing my music it’s always started to do things I woudln’t have in ways I wouldn’t have.

        So I seldom find value in Apple as my web nanny.

        Beats 1 and other new curated streams aren’t bad, though.

        PS: It will be interesting to see how well Apple implements Apple Music on Android, and what they include and don’t (e.g., not included already is the 90 day free trial).

  • Craig Jacobs

    I’m most definitely not in the “Apple is doomed without Steve camp”, but I’m reminded of the mobile me debacle and this exchange:

    He asked the team what MobileMe was supposed to do. Someone answered, and Jobs said to that person (and everyone else), “So why the fuck doesn’t it do that?”

    Maybe Tim Cook should take a cue from Jobs and ask that same question about Apple Music…

    • rogifan

      Maybe it’s time for an Eddy Cue demotion.

  • Jonathan Cohen

    It’d odd: I can’t replicate the same track “twice” issues mentioned in the article – made both Dylan “Blonde” and “Greatest Hits” ‘avail offline’, and no issue; in fact, it includes both “Rainy Day Woman” tracks separately, as there’s a one second difference between the two of them. I wonder if my lack of issue is because I don’t have Dylan in my owned iTunes collection.

  • trip1ex

    What computer guy doesn’t at least use Time Machine to back up there stuff?

    Anyway I’ve had weird problems with iTunes over the years. Album art disappearing. Albums randomly and suddenly being split into 3. Even missing music. And then my experience with iCloud services like photo streaming has been one of confusion as to what is where.

    and so I can totally see these kinds of problems creeping up.

    But the way to be an Apple fan is to adapt to what or who they design the product for. In this case, I don’t think they are catering to the guy who wants to upload a ton of stuff. Apple figures they have enough music for the vast majority and anything above and beyond that is not going to get nearly as much attention.

  • jameskatt

    QUOTE Jim Dalrymple:

    As if all of that wasn’t enough, Apple Music gave me one more kick in the head. Over the weekend, I turned off Apple Music and it took large chunks of my purchased music with it. Sadly, many of the songs were added from CDs years ago that I no longer have access to. Looking at my old iTunes Match library, before Apple Music, I’m missing about 4,700 songs. At this point, I just don’t care anymore, I just want Apple Music off my devices.


    • Are you telling us that you kept NO BACKUPS of your entire music collection?

    • You kept your irreplaceable music on a hard drive that one day will die suddenly??

    • You call yourself tech saavy but don’t even keep your most precious music backed up?

    • So when certain music files were lost, you don’t have an immediate backup copy to use???

    That was a stupid INEXCUSABLE move. The lost of your music files permanently is largely your fault, not totally Apple Music’s fault.


    • Always keep 3 physical backups of your precious data. Hard drives can be replaced, data cannot.

    • Also backup online to CrashPlan. They allow you to keep backups of hard drives you do not always connect to your computer. They also allow you to keep unlimited VERSIONS of your data. This way, if Apple Music or other app changes your music file, you will always have the original file to retrieve. New versions do not replace the old versions.

    If you did these correct backup methods, you wouldn’t be throwing a tantrum. You don’t lose your precious originals.

    • Craig Jacobs

      Lots of people are focused on this. Yes, yes. no backups blah blah blah. What is more INEXCUSABLE is Apple releasing such a shitty product. They apparently have learned nothing from MobileMe.

      SOLUTION: Create services that don’t fuck up your customer’s data.

      • Swissdude

        Allways make a backup. There is no excuse for this. Solution is to RTFM! And if you turn off a system or make an update etc. you always mack backups. I you don’t it’s your damn fault for being a fool!

        • Craig Jacobs

          True but irrelevant. There is no excuse for a company like Apple to make such crappy software and services. We know they have the skills to make great software – see OS X for example. We know that they know they have had problems in the past. See Mobile Me and iCloud. Therefore we know that Apple has the skills and resources to make stuff that doesn’t suck. Why don’t they?

          The face that Jim may or may not have backups is besides the point and does not excuse Apple from releasing shit.

        • Craig Jacobs

          True. And irrelevant to the point. Sounds a lot like you are apologizing for Apple here. There is no excuse for releasing shitty, bug-laden services to your customers. None. Apple apparently has learned nothing from the clusterfuck that was Mobile Me, and to a lesser extent the mediocre service that is iCloud. Seriously – how come Dropbox works on all my devices and cross OS without skipping a beat but Apple can’t make iCloud work reliable on their own devices and only their own devices? I loves me some OS X and Macs, I like my i-Devices. But I hate Apple’s services and the abomination called iTunes. I’ve been an iPhone user exclusively since 2007. That may change if they can’t fix the iTunes mess.

          • Swissdude

            No apologies for Apple, if one doesn’t do simple tasks like backups…that is not Apples fault. Like a car if you do not wear the seatbelt… your fault. It’s just the precaution. That’s what I meant. Not the issue of the quality of the SW or service… that is another issue.

  • So much discussion about 10% music files. Like arguing over who’s fax machine has the best greyscale output.

    It’s 2015 people, we can all listen to full quality music now if we want to. There is plenty of bandwidth and storage, go get a good DAC and throw away the 90’s versions of real music files you are hoarding or streaming. An album is actually 300mb-1gb, not 35mb of compressed garbage.

    Push apple to sell the 24bit and 16bit lossless masters they have sitting on their servers but won’t sell because the $4 audio chain in their devices won’t impress when playing real files.

    I can’t believe that you all accept this continual downgrade in audio quality, but you all own HD TVs, HD cameras, HD monitors, HD car dashboards, HD video games, etc. Everything but our beloved music gets a quality upgrade and it’s killing our ears and our collective psyche.

    • qwerty12

      Just stop. This isn’t about audio quality, it’s about technological challenges with Apple Music. Using the same irrelevant stance on audio quality with 90% of the posts you’ve made on this article do nothing to address the many issues iUsers have had with buggy services.

      • just listen. why argue about music services if you don’t care about sound quality?

        if you love it so much you’d want more than 10%. ever wonder what you’re missing?

      • it’s all connected. netflix is pushing 6Mbs to us for $20/month or less. if streaming music companies want to stream 0.25Mbs only they should charge, what $0.83/month? but they aren’t, they are trying for $10+ with inferior quality, restricting bandwidth for no good reason.

        it’s not 1999 anymore, we don’t have dial-up modems and our storage is now GB and TB’s.

        the technological challenge you speak of is nothing but marketing and convenience issues. the idea that they will “match” your collection with 10% files is ridiculous on it’s face.

        if sound quality were improved people wouldn’t be complaining (as much). apple used to care about the core feature of a product, it’s core use, it’s reason for existence. iPhoto doesn’t automatically 50% jpg all of your photos, and apple doesn’t sell you lower resolution screens because they think you aren’t bothered by pixels. In certain areas they push quality, in other areas (like iTunes music) they run from it.

  • Jared Barden

    Except you don’t have to buy the music again. It’s in your Purchased section of your account.

  • VRSmiffSteen

    O U C H !!!!!

    Tim, you listening ????

  • Leonardo_Oliveira

    I have experienced similar problems, and others. In all, this app is a big piece of sh*t, it’s been poorly written, and released feeling unfinished, which is something I don’t usually expect from Apple.

    Some of the Problems I’ve experienced:

    • Bad performance, sluggishness, freezing
    • Problems adding music
    • My Library’s metadata has been wreak havoc-ed ¬¬
    • Songs take forever to load, and stops playing in the middle (while Spotify never does that on the SAME connection. Srsly, Spotify only takes 1-2 seconds to load while Apple Music takes 12-18 seconds on average)
    • My device, which was running flawlessly on iOS 8.3, freezes sometimes when going to the Home Screen from the Apple Music app.
    • Sometimes when I click a suggested album or playlist, it just doesn’t open!!!
    • The UI is bloated, poorly organized. Never expected this from Apple, that’s sad. : /
    • Takes a lot to load on my iPhone 6.

    Well, it truly is a nightmare, and I’m glad I didn’t cancel Spotify. If only Soptify had a Music Locker like Google Play.

  • radii

    because I always hated iTunes I never went any further with apple for my music but there is a simple coding fix for the playback-in-order when selecting album playback … apple is trying not to duplicate tracks in your overall reservoir of tunes but it can easily code for a placeholder/seek function so if you already have Track A in your music reservoir but it was not included in an album you added because you already have that track when you select to play that album, it should pull the track from your reservoir without you having to do anything

  • Karl Rowley

    It would seem that Apple misunderestimated what is would take to build a good streaming service. It doesn’t look like the whole thing is being managed right.

  • Marcelo

    The author’s problem is two-fold. First they think Apple is special. Second they want to stream music. My computing and mobile device have never included Apple products and I have no desire to start using them. I typically play music files rather than streaming them and have done so for more than a decade. Again I see no benefit from changing to streaming.

  • Jmaharry

    Was your library backed up? If so, you lost nothing in the 4700 song fiasco. If it wasn’t, you don’t have much business wring a tech blog. I’ve had great experiences with Apple Music so far. Some issues, sure, but the the entire service is so ambitious and innovative that the potential benefits for a music lover are hard to deny. Perhaps your issue is that Apple’s algorithms are seizing up in the face of so much calcified white guy dad rock.

    • qwerty12

      Making an error in not backing up his files does not equate to his capacity to write on tech matters. And insulting his music…how does that even matter on the subject of the article, or is it just being shitty for shitty’s sake?

      • Jmaharry

        “Making an error in not backing up his files does not equate to his capacity to write on tech matters.” Cling to this delusion if you like, but trusting a tech writer who fails to backup his or her data (and the reasons for backing up, i.e.,”if it’s not backed up its already corrupted,” as someone has already and smartly remarked in this thread) is like trusting a mechanic who doesn’t bother to change his auto’s oil. As for my remarks about Darymple’s depressingly ante-diluvian musical aesthetic, it matters because it’s something I can make sport of. Just like you, within the bounds your very limited vocabulary and critical faculties, can make sport of me for making the joke in the first place.

  • Jack

    Lets reconstruct his thinking,…I mean his real thinking.

    He say he lost 4,700 songs. If thats 5% of his collection that he bought on CD, that would need about 9,000 CD’s. It cost about $180,000 to buy this many CD’s in a shop (average $20/CD).

    Now he see, I can get the same collection for just $10/month…..

    No wonder he is pissed off. LOL

    • Swissdude

      sure but if you do not have the subscription anymore..where are the songs? can you still listen to them?

  • Jack

    PS. Jim, you are a guy, it doesn’t work the same as with girls that send Apple letters, and say with Love… Addy Cue only does what girls ask him to do. …

  • mattack

    What do you mean “CDs years ago that I no longer have access to”?

    If you no longer have access to them, how is that not copyright infringement?

    • Swissdude

      it’s not.. because the CD might be scratch, undreadable etc. But you would still own the rights to that CD. And here the copyright law allows you to make copies and iven pas on to family and friends. You are not allowed to sell named copies that is.

      • mattack

        So I presume you mean in Switzerland? That’s not true in the U.S.A. If you can legally make copies & pass on to family & friends, why would anybody buy it?

        If you give away/sell the CD (in the USA), you have clearly made a copy and can’t keep the “ripped” versions for your MP3 player.

        • Swissdude

          You can copie and give away. But you are not allowd to sell it. That would be ilegal even in Switzerland. But giving away… no problem. That’s the reason why you pay (for cassetes used to or still) the copyright what ever it’s called tax. So you pay that for any digital storage media (MP3 player, cds, etc.).

  • Gromit1704

    When I got the 3 month trial for free, it seemed like a good idea to finally sign up for iMatch. However, that means I do not really know whether the problems I am experiencing are down to Apple Music or iMatch. But, it seems like an awful lot of songs in my library, when I click on them, say that track is no longer available. Then there are tracks that are there but are completely hidden for some reason. I look under the artist and they cannot be found. I search the song title and I find it. Also wrong album artwork.

  • Adrayven

    I gotta ask, no Time Machine ‘or’ Carbon Copy Cone Jim? ummm.. really?

    Backups are like a religion to me.. one carbon every month or so and on-going daily Time Machine backups to my external NAS. One is my disaster backup (CC) and one is my easy to rollback to type backup (TM)

    I don’t like ‘cloud’ backups, I have to much data, and don’t like it out of my hands. I cannot imagine not having at least one of those local backups going.

  • Cranky Observer

    Ordinary human beings, however competent or incompetent they may be in other areas of their lives, do not spend their time obsessively reading Slashdot or Macworld or hitting refresh on Apple Support Forums’ “Newest Post” link. If ‘it just works’ means the ordinary human being has to know the details of backing up the arcane iTunes and iCloud systems and is supposed to know ‘not to use [released] Version 1.0’, well, it doesn’t just work.

  • G. Bromeo

    Wow, that is an ouchy. I hope Apple steps up and makes it right. We’ve all seen this coming – the deluge of complexity. We’re soon going to have a technology hangover if we keep drinking it down and asking, no, demanding yet even more.

    After reading all this, it kind of makes me want to go back to flipping through my binders of CDs, sitting down with a hardcover book, and simply relax. I might occasionally glance at the ticking mechanical clock on the wall to make sure I’m not staying up too late.

  • With all this complaining, is anyone doing anything useful like opening a case with Apple? Or are we just going to hope the people at apple who can fix this read this blog and wade through the mostly useless comments?

    • As Jim says in the post, “Nobody I’ve spoken (to) at Apple…” So they are aware of the issue.

      • Yes, but the more people complaining about it the higher the priority it becomes.

        • qwerty12

          Except Apple has received a ton of these case requests, if the Apple Support forums are to be believed, and since a vast majority say Apple personnel have been of little help to them, the author’s stated opinion that no one at Apple has been of help is believable.

  • Chan

    Keep your local copies separate (for now) and use Vox like something to listen to them.

    Start a new with Apple Music and you don’t really have to buy anything since radio and Off line Play also there.

    There will be a day Apple will fix this.

    That’s the best advice i can give

  • stevenbennett

    Like Jim, I’ve had issues with Apple. I still maintain music and computers don’t mix. Ok, for casual listening, and listening on the go, it can be useful, but for proper listening, and saying ‘this is my music library’ it has to be Vinyl & CD, not data on a PC or a cloud, or a stream (re-marketed radio where you have to do the Disc Jockey’s job yourself).

  • Sam_Mallery

    I wrote about the person responsible for ruining Jim Dalrymple’s week –

  • Alexandre Isurugi

    It’s been what, a month? less? Of course a new service will have bugs and missing certain features. Seems premature to just dismiss the whole tihng without giving it a chance.

  • nubero

    I buy my music and get a free, uncompressed backup, no drm, high res album art with liner notes and the encoded file format of my choice (Apple Lossless in my case). Also I can choose which album version to buy and where since they can differ from country to country. It’s called CD…

  • Swissdude

    First of who is this Jim Dalrymple? And one thing tha always pops up with problem is: RTFM…!!! If you do not know how to use a system/tool/device/etc … then first look between the ears for the mistake. I had a similar case where songs wouldn’t sync to my iPhone (song in the playlist that is). After a while I found out that on the iPhone the explicit titles wasn’t activated. So therefore all E-Titles did not get synced onto my iPhone. And how can one be missing 4700 songs? They are all in the iCloud just redownload them again check under bought titles or whatever it is called in english. I have to say that it seams to me this Jim dude struck a deal with Spotify!

    And damn dude charge that phone before you sync anything. 😉

  • Hydro Mac

    It was and still is a clusterf**k but it is beginning to look like Apple is S.N.A.F.U.ed, since they are concentrating on profits rather than making quality products that they use to be known for when Steve was around.

  • kunit

    Instead of spotify, i suggest you give Google play music a shot with your data. Hasn’t let me down yet and has an even bigger selection of music for the same price.

  • JacktheMac

    Apple have more money (and probably better R&D) than God. For them to release anything that does not work, and has not been tested, tested and then retested, is inexcusable. Apple Music, like iTunes Match before it, is FUBAR.

    Why is the world’s greatest technology company serving us up with this shite ? Whatever happened to things Just Working ?

    (Disclosure: Apple since 1984, never owned a PC, Apple evangelist until recently).

  • JacktheMac

    Apple have more money (and probably better R&D) than God. For them to release anything that does not work, and has not been tested, tested and then retested, is inexcusable. Apple Music, like iTunes Match before it, is FUBAR.

    Why is the world’s greatest technology company serving us up with this shoote ? Whatever happened to things Just Working ?

    (Disclosure: Apple since 1984, never owned a PC, evangelist until recently)

  • One blogger figured out a way to recover his trashed library.,news-21300.html

  • I like and use Apple tech, but I’ve never been terribly comfortable with iTunes. It’s never been great and recent versions have been horrible. Whenever Apple tries to cram in more features and functionality, it only gets worse, and creatively breaks things in novel and entertaining ways. Sync has been just awful. The App should be broken into its separate functions. Music Linbrary. Media Player. Store portal. Streaming Service. Sync tool. But this tale is brutal. If you love and are invested in music, this is a road of pain and betrayal.

    NOT enabling Apple Music or iTunes Match.

    Sync has been a PAIN IN THE ASS since I first got my iPad. I have a music collection of a lot of odd and random stuff, Lakota Ceremonial Music, Pow Wow, African Drumming, World and Folk stuff from indie labels, pagan stuff ripped from artist burned CDs, Cassettes and Vinyl! NOT risking all that going POOF because it’s not in Apple’s database.

    Each update to iTunes the last few years has been less useful and harder to use. As for streaming, I’ve got a perfectly good Pandora subscription, and base tiers on Spotify and iHeartRadio – I’m covered, yo. Apple is WAY late to THIS party, and showed up badly dressed.

    And they don’t bust up my collection like a bunch of hipsters breaking into your house and trashing the stuff on your music shelf they don’t listen to. “I can’t believe your listening to THIS lame shite!” CRASH* “What is this crap? Fuk dat!” **CRUNCH

    I would be like, “STOP THAT! NOW GET THE FUCK OUT.” It might be shite, but it’s MY frakkin’ shite! LEAVE IT ALONE. I’ve already had one music collection destroyed by fire… but it was due to an ACTUAL HOUSE FIRE.

    That’s legit. I didn’t pay for the privilege.

  • James Alexander

    This is a rare case for sure. I would bet most people are using Apple Music with little or no problems at all. Not sure why anyone is still using iTunes because they need to clean it up and out. Separate the program because it does way to much. Yes they can makes some fixes dont get me wrong but this is probably a less than 5% of an issue. Everyone I know who has been using it loves it and will continue on with it after the free 3 months. I would hold off your the main review after IOS 9 comes out.

  • jshock

    Great article. I have had similar issues with my music collection (which I rely on quite a bit when traveling internationally – and for running). Apple has collapsed many of my albums into ‘unknown album’, misplaced singles, lost some others, and can’t seem to remember what i bought at times. Most of this really happened as a result of iTunes Match. I have reloaded my backup many times and the problems reproduces. I have written Apple and they have not responded. I went to the Genius bar and no one knew what to do. Apple has a few problems – a major metadata problem on the back end matching album-centric files (CD) with digital (singles). this is a complex data issue to resolve and i think they never invested in the right resources – a major product issue with the people behind iTunes and AppleMusic. This product should not have been released and it’s time these guys simply separate the content forms (music, video, books). personally i think they lack the passion anymore. – a major customer service issue. Tell me how many of you want to wander in an apple store to resolve this? The quality of help there is just diluted and has proven to be nothing but a waste of time I really despise going in there anymore.

    Sad. I invested a lot into my music collection and bought a lot of apple devices to help me enjoy. They have lost my trust and I hope someone can come along and innovate. I know Apple bets on the fact that no one will – and you won’t leave. Seems like we are stuck.

  • DTPyeahUCME

    Apple lost the right to organize my music almost immediately after I signed up for it. They never could get it right for me, a DJ who needs to know where my songs are at the second I want to play them. I quickly learned that iTunes was NOT a simple way to help me stay organized. Rather, I would end up in a maze of frustration that I could not find what I was looking for and cueing a far second-best track. Instead, I keep everything offline, and whenever apple asks to take control of my music, it is a great big NO! I make short playlists of my new music (or music that I want to study) now. Everything is done in playlists, where I have complete control. I can even add the beatles if I want to.

  • seancairne

    Apple Music has trashed my iTunes Match. I have (had) over 125 gigs of music (yes, I back up). I’m a musician and use it for work. Now I’m not sleeping. I am angry. My plan is to go back to buying CDs. Apple has lost my trust. They may fix this but when the next update and new product comes out will they screw up my profession?

  • Tom Karmen

    Couldn’t agree more. I like Apple products and had high hope for Apple Music. But so far, Apple Music is the worst service I ever used: – missing tracks in albums – a lot of albums are not available on Apple Music, but are on Spotify – bugs, bugs, bugs… – lags, lags, lags… – cumbersome and inconsistent UI – server issues – and so on…

  • Vengeur

    I feel your pain, Jim. My iTunes library is dominated by metal music, and today Apple Music’s “For You” feature recommended a playlist for a band I’d never heard of called Theory of a Deadman. I foolishly took the bait and started to play it, only to hammer frantically at my keyboard a few seconds later to turn off the disgusting sounds that vomited forth from iTunes. Turns out they’re signed to a label started by Nickelback’s singer. NICKELBACK

  • Steve

    I feel the same, Jim. And unfortunately, this level of sloppiness seems to apply across all of Apple’s cloud offerings. I can’t even begin to consider using iCloud Photo Library until Apple has cleaned up their act and even then only after a good solid year of non-issues. Apple doesn’t seem to respect how precious our digital belongings are to us.

    • Tom Karmen

      I hate Apple Music so far because of all the bugs, lags and inconsistent UI, but I find iCloud Photo Library is not so bad. I’ve tried Google Photos, Flickr and Apple Photos with iCloud Photo Library, with a large photo library. Google Photos didn’t work at all (both the web interface and uploader software (tried on PC and Mac) failed to upload photos) while Flickr uploader on PC is still in Beta and has some issues.

  • duane

    I start my iTunes and it points to random itune.xml files or whatever that library file is. I point to the correct location, but it’s like it never loads. I pull a backup copy from my external drive and that seems to “fix” it like it’s become corrupt. Most times it just wants to make a new blank file. If there was something else… ANYTHING else, I would move to it.

  • Annamarie Wiersma

    I got a new Iphone 6 and I was told to upgrade my itunes version which I did. Over the years I always loaded my music cd’s on my computer. As I installed my Ihone 6 , my whole music library except for the ones recently purchased from Itunes got deleted. I still have this music on my Ipad and Ipod but am told by Apple support people that I can’t reinstall those on Itunes. They told me I should have backed them up on a separate hard drive first before upgrading. In my innocence I thought backing up my ipod through Itunes was enough they didn’t tell me then “separate harddrive”. The only way to get them back they tell me is by downloading my cd’s to the computer again. what the heck! I discarded those when I moved thinking I hadmy music in enough other places. Why can’t I sync I tunes off my Ipod and then install them on my phone? I’m utterly frustrated and furious. As far as I’m concerned they stole all my music. The support people also told me I had to upgrade my IOS8.3 for Ipod to Ios 8.4. Now that is all messed up too. Who are these people and what are they trying to achieve?

  • MB ark

    Gave up month ago, enjoying the breath of fresh air that Google Music offers. Way better free service, and a pay service that destroys anything else around.

  • Riya Khurana

    Buy Magic Tablet Napkin compressed tissue, coin tissue – pack of 100 online at low price in India

  • Frost

    I’m going to write this really quickly and sloppy because I don’t care enough to be perfect. I just want to give my two cents on Apple music. Basically when Spotify came out, I started to use it and I liked it. And for the past year and half I’ve found myself using nothing but Spotify, I liked the idea that I can basically listen to music on my desktop and iPhone with everything staying in sync. Also when I was at a friend’s house I could login to my Spotify account easily and have all my music on their computer. Overall my experience with Spotify has really impacted my life in the respect that I’ve found myself really listening to music more. Before I would only listen to the radio because I always found it to be a “chore” to manage my library’s and sync my devices or pay for new music. And actually to be honest with all of you, most of my music has come from torrents. Not that I really care but for a minute I actually liked that I just had to pay $10 bucks for a service such as Spotify and know that I wasn’t screwing some company or artist for torrenting my music.

    I liked that there was something out there that was affordable and in general a pretty good product. Maybe they don’t have every song in the world but for what $10 bucks, so what? The way I looked at it was… not so long ago maybe you buy a $10 CD at best buy each month? I could supplement what song was missing by importing it into Spotify. Anyways my primary use of Spotify wasn’t really building a library but rather playlists, depending on my mood or whatever. But towards the end of my use with Spotify I really was finding it hard to find new music that I liked (I’m sure I’ll have comments and everyone will tell me how to do it… but at the end of the day I don’t care anymore about Spotify). I know Spotify has categories / genres but in reality they were just playlists that Spotify created and they were pretty much stagnant as far as I’m concerned.

    More importantly the categories, for example 80’s music was pretty corny. The songs in the categories didn’t really match what I thought in my opinion should have been. It was like the songs were stereotypical for that “genre”, if that makes any sense. And this was for all the categories / genres. What I really liked the most was the create station feature that Spotify had, basically you like a song and tell Spotify to start a station based on that style or genre and it would build a queue with songs similar, and as each song played you could continue to custom tailor the station. After a while of using this feature I also was getting bored of what Spotify was recommending, it just didn’t seem to really “work” the way they intended it to be.

    Another huge thing about Spotify that I found to be annoying was when it came to sharing playlists, sharing songs, and adding a friend to the service. Sharing a playlist with a friend doesn’t really work the same way it does on Apple Music, basically with Spotify you have to make it public and then that friend has to add you on Spotify, click your name and then they can see your public playlists. Not a big deal, but a pain in my ass for my friends because unfortunately…. the only way you can have friends on Spotify is if everyone is using facebook (now there is a work around for this but it’s a joke). Which brings me to my next issue was the fact that not everyone I know uses Facebook, so basically I can’t share my music with my buddies because they don’t have a Facebook account to integrate with the service, which really pisses me off because most of my friends including myself look forward to sharing music and building playlists when we kick back or just fuck around. (Now some of you might say that “well if everyone doesn’t have an iPhone they can’t really use Apple Music, this is true but fortunately for me and my friends we do lmao).

    I thought Spotify would take the approach in the market that would finally fill that gap similar to how Facebook is for social use, Instagram is for social use via Photos, and Maybe Spotify could be the Social use platform for music. And I mean it has in a way, but not enough to keep me as a member. Lastly, sharing a song on Spotify via a text message would send a link to whoever you shared it with, but when they clicked on it, it would open Spotify via their website and prompt them to sign up even if they had an account and was already signed up; rather then it just launching the Spotify app for whoever clicked the link and started to play the song. Fuck off Spotify!

    Moving on to Apple Music, basically when Apple announced the service I didn’t really give a shit. Updated my iPhone and then I noticed they had a free trial, so I signed up, and I’ll be honest I found myself for the next three hours playing around with the service. I wanted to see what it was, and how it worked. I wanted to see if it had a desktop player similar to Spotify, how the sharing functionality worked between users. I wanted to make sure it had every song from my Spotify playlists. And as far as I knew it had everything I wanted and then some. I fell in love with it.

    Initially I was worried because there was some talk about how the quality of the music was less than Spotify. Something about Ogg Vorbis codec versus Apple’s MP3 format. Not that I’m an audio engineer but I really didn’t notice a difference to make me think the quality of the audio was shit. Because if I did notice I could care less about all the other features Apple Music brought to the table, I would go back to Spotify but, that wasn’t the case.

    Basically Apple music is all around a better service (I think) assuming the user is on an iPhone. I think Apple Music is better in my opinion because Apple is the creator of the iPhone, the operating system which the service runs on, and the actual service (Apple Music). Apple has an advantage that Spotify doesn’t which is more control over the functionality and integration of the new Apple Music platform since they control the operating system. One Example is when using the iPhone and the screen locked, with Spotify you can only adjust the volume but with Apple Music you can actually “seek” through the song as well, without having to unlock the screen and go to the app in the case of Spotify. I know this is only one example, but if you actually looked at the application you would see the overall design and feel is more in tune with the operating system unlike Spotify.

    With Apple Music I can build a playlist, name it, and share it via text message with my buddy who also uses Apple Music, he open’s the link and boom he can see the playlist. He can click the check mark on the playlist and now it stays as a shared playlist (me being the author) in his playlists. And any time I make changes to that playlist on my end, such as changing the title of the playlist like adding or deleting songs, those too are updated on his end. Or if he doesn’t want to add my playlist as a shared playlist, he can create a new playlist and just “dump” or import my playlist to his with two clicks. It really is simple but I think people are not up for the learning curve moving from Spotify.

    When I want to share a song with someone I send the link via text and it does just that, it launches Apple Music and takes them to the song and they can click play. When Using Apple Music it really makes it easy when sharing music. Now I’ve been talking about sharing music a lot and I don’t want to make it seem like that’s all I care about. But I just think it’s important; going back to my point on “social use via music”.

    Apple doesn’t have a standalone player like Spotify, and honestly why would they if they already have iTunes. It doesn’t make sense to have another standalone player just for Apple Music if you’re already using iTunes to manage your music and iPhone (not that I have been since I had Spotify). Honestly I don’t even know anyone who uses iTunes anymore, it’s like we all have it but it just sits on the hard drive. But hey now iTunes has some use. Anyways in iTunes you’ll find the Apple Music service. Pretty straight forward you sign in just like you do Spotify and boom, your music and playlists are there. It’s the same thing as Spotify far as I’m concerned, it’s even better I think since it’s completely integrated with my existing library and iPhone. And it’s not like Spotify didn’t have the ability to go into iTunes. People still wanted to be able to connect libraries and now we have that.

    The Radio function on Apple Music is what you expect, it’s the same as Spotify’s categories / genres. It has all the different genres that you can pick from. If you click on a certain one, unlike Spotify it’s not a pre made playlist, it’s a different each time. I mean maybe on the backend it’s a playlist but to the user. As far as I can tell it seems to be different each time and from what I understand Apple has many people and artists dedicated to creating these radio channels way better than Spotify did (the last time I used Spotify). When you click on a certain mood category it really does fit the description unlike Spotify. Also the create or start station feature in Apple Music literally shits on Spotify. I don’t know how it works or if Apple has technology behind how it compares other songs, but if you tell it to play a similar song based on a specific song it does a pretty dam good job. Spotify has the same function but does not compare with Apple. Apple rapes in this feature.

    Part of this reposted topic from Brad Reed from BGR is a user complaint that his Apple Music in a nut shell is shit because it fucked up his library. The feature / service that screwed up his library is called Apple Match which is bundled / built into Apple Music. Basically unlike Spotify if you have songs / or audio file in your iTunes that do not exist in iTunes catalog of music, it will upload that song to the “cloud” and sync it to all your devices. So drag a song over to iTunes drop it in the music section, and in a couple minutes’ iTunes will upload it and push it to your devices. Pretty cool considering Spotify couldn’t do that. I don’t know all the details, but if you do have a song you purchased or maybe a CD you imported, Apple is supposed to cross reference its catalog to make sure it doesn’t already have the song and push it to your device that way it’s not wasting space in the cloud uploading songs Apple already has in its catalog that it can push to your device instead of the original on your computer.

    Now Apple has something new which is a full live broadcast in house radio station that Spotify doesn’t have. I haven’t really listen to it, I don’t really care about it, but some might. It’s there if you want to use it but you’re not obligated. I kind of think it’s a good idea in the sense that it makes me think of XM radio, where you pay a subscription fee and you have all these stations you can listen to. Well in the future I’m thinking that Apple will start to build more live 24/7 radio stations which is my whole point about this new Social use by music platform. Not only do we have a catalog of music that we can pick and choose from like Spotify, build playlists, share music with friends and family, follow real artists, we also have this extra function of a radio station. I know it’s just one radio station now, but maybe in the future they’ll have more, and maybe since now it’s a private service it will make it easier for artists underground or mainstream to get involved with radio similar to youtube for videos. I don’t really know how it would work but that’s just my thinking.

    Another thing I want to talk about is this annoying thing that everyone makes Apple Music out to be bad because of DRM. You don’t own the music that you stream on Spotify? You’re basically renting or leasing it. Yes Spotify has offline mode, which downloads a copy of the song locally to your device, but you don’t think it doesn’t have DRM too? Apple Music has the same shit, offline mode, downloads a local copy of the song to your device and yes it does have DRM which is the only way to control piracy. That way people don’t try to take the songs and share them with other freeloaders. They are both the same shit.

    Spotify is the mainstream service rite now that everyone who does stream music, uses. I mean that’s all that’s really out there that’s worth talking about at least. And because something new is out there, rite away everyone wants to run their mouths and talk shit. Don’t knock something till you try it. Don’t let peoples negativity towards something be your influence not try it.

    As far as I’m concerned everything Spotify has Apple Music has and then some, and that is a fact. It’s just the learning curve and moving library’s and playlists over that’s a pain in the ass. Most importantly if you don’t have an Android then it’s not for you. Spotify as far as I’m concerned is simply a paid for service that lets you access a library of music that you can create playlists and your own personal library’s from. You can also pick and choose pre made playlists that other users create including Spotify’s pre made genre playlist. Spotify has a desktop player and so does iTunes. Apple music has the same exact thing and it does a better job delivery those same features for the same price. Just give it a chance or wait till Apple works out some of the bugs.

    Lastly with any service or software, it’s going to be buggy. Your going to have issues like this guy did with his iTunes library. It’s expected from any new software service. But at the end of the day I know Apple will eventually have updates and fixes, and in time it’s going to be a good service that I think people should try. and Bye

  • Anthony

    I dunno why people are so insane about DRM.

    I can listen to almost any music I want, from almost any era, for about the cost of two cups of Starbucks a month. I could not give less of a sh*t about DRM.

  • Martijn Broekman
  • Kikosama

    I’m just wondering, because I don’t have apple music yet. I have a lot of remixes and extended versions and dubs from the 80’s and 90’s as well as privately recorded materials by friends and lots of classical compositions all of which I imported from CD’s or downloaded from private blog sites, that are not available in web stores anywhere. What can happen to those if I subscribe to apple music?

  • Melanie

    I think a lot of this may stem from the differences in how people listen to music (especially how the younger crowd does). Since the ability to download music has been around, I feel like its been a lot more focused on individual songs and not albums. I honestly can’t remember the last time I purchased an “album” in its entirety or listened to an album track by track. I purchase a song here form one artist, a song there from another. I don’t really care what “album” a song comes from…all I care about is the song, and I wouldn’t want a duplicate of it (different versions, yes, but not exact duplicates). So having Apple Music delete duplicates is a desirable feature for me. Of course, this isn’t to say that Apple Music shouldn’t be catering towards all types of listening habits, but I can see why it would want to have certain features which may not be “album” friendly. That being said, I’m running into a ton of other issues with it related to correctly syncing songs across devices so I’m not exactly happy with the service either.

  • Bryant Gold

    I’m equally as frustrated. Most of the music I purchased won’t appear on my phone, I see them on my computer but they won’t sync unto my phone.

    I’ve tried every possible troubleshooting suggestion I’ve been able to find but nothing has worked. I love apple but they really need to be more responsible with the way they handle new services.

    I have a similar problem with my boss’ MBP, for some reason the Photos app is extremely slow in reading his iphone and therefore he is unable to import photos taken on his iPhone to his MBP. So I have to import them with image capture and then re-import them into the photos app.

    I’m really hoping that the next updates for the iOS and Mac OS X would provide solutions to these problems. In the mean time I remain frustrated that the music I purchased for the main reason of being able to access them on all of my devices without having to stream them has been compromised by apple’s music streaming services.

    I’ve duly turned iCloud and apple music off but still don’t get all my songs on my phone. Way to go apple!

  • junkscienc

    Glad I never activated Apple Music if this is what happens. In the past I would have joined the early adopter stampede but there have been too many quality problems with Apple software recently. Podcast managemment with iTunes is an ongoing cluster. Apple won’t get my trust back until issues like these become a rarity rather than the norm.

  • qwerty12

    I haven’t even gotten to the point where trying Apple Music is worth my energy, and until iTunes Cloud Match Music Library Whatever has some energy put into it to address its many bugs, I don’t think I will take the next leap. I have a difficult enough time with my metadata being overridden (which, thanks to a new backup of my library, has stopped the bleeding a bit) without trying to force the round peg of my library into the square black hole that is Apple Music.

    Downthread it’s suggested that the author has Apple’s “ear”. If that’s the case, please encourage them to look at the many Support threads open on their website, because while 12.2.1 was a step forward, it’s still a far way from acceptable. My metadata is still screwed up in a few places, the program as a whole is very sluggish, and Apple’s support has been less than supportive of those of us with many issues still to be fixed. I know, my comments have not a lot to do with the author’s troubles with Apple Music, but all these components between Match and Music seem to be interconnected quite thoroughly. This whole episode is beneath Apple’s previous standards. I don’t like “It just works” devolving into “It just kinda works for some, depending on time of day and cosmic fate”.

  • Facebook User

    sad and funny how aapl/cook/jobs total arrogance and disdain for their customers in making them pay over and over at such high margins for the “privilege” of staying in the aapl “ecosystem”. point being that even when it is known that bugs / issues cause pain, workarounds, or loss – most aapl customers, like the author just shrug and pay again. that is why I m long aapl, because its management has high margins via its core policy, “screw the customer, and make them pay to get screwed again” . great company, great marketing.

    • Jmaharry

      Given Apple’s success over the past decade you realize you sound like a complete idiot, don’t you? Would you care to substantiate your un-original complaint that the company is arrogant, or disdains its customers? In fact, your post is just a dollop of the barf I’m sure you expel each day, wild eyed invective and fabricated assumptions under the category of “financial analysis.”

  • Rockbird

    It replaced my album art. And when I deactivated iCloud, it REMOVED all my album art. I’m now struggling to resync 50, 60GB of music. Apple Music is total trash.

  • Apple should be thoroughly embarrassed. I don’t have time to write about all the problems with Apple Music. Each day seems to bring a new error that completely sucks the fun out of listening and wastes lots of my time.

  • Jimmy_Tan

    Are you kidding?? Apple Music is awesome. Pretty much everything on it is far better than Spotify, even sound quality, oddly enough. All the complaining..jeez.

  • Nikman Shah

    I’m not an audiophile, nor am I a music enthusiast that keeps myself up to date with the latest releases of my favorite artists. And I definitely do not go out and buy, in iTunes or physically, those new releases.

    I used to be a fan of FM radio, but nowadays I get turned off by them as they air too much ads. Way too much, to the point where ads take at least 5 minutes of my listening time before any actual music starts broadcasting.

    To me, great music is great music, no matter the genre or artist. So the issues that Jim and Dave highlighted are totally insignificant to me. Particularly because I don’t buy any music, I don’t have my own music library, I don’t build my own playlists (I just don’t have enough time to do that), and I rarely listen to songs an album at a time. My musical choices on Apple Music are mostly using the playlists generated by curators in the For You section. Once I’m done with a playlist, I go to the next one in “For You”. If I feel like it, once in a while I play one of the songs recommended in the “New” section.

    So taking all the above into account, these problems are non-issues to me. I’m not sure how many people like me there are in the world, but if we are the majority, then it would seem the majority don’t really care about these problems. We already have a lot to think about in this world to really care what we are listening to in Apple Music. As long as it’s good music, I’m letting Apple take care of what’s playing. I’ll just listen. And I’m willing to pay, as I’m wholly satisfied with the trial period thus far. It’s been great.

  • Brian Ward

    I also have had playlists I’ve made get completely messed up because I “hearted” a song – it gave this greyed 4 stars to EVERY song on the album that the song I liked was on. So my playlist that has every song above 3 stars went from having ~500 songs to ~4000. I went through and removed those ratings only to have them re-applied when I restarted.

    I had new versions of songs, wrong album artwork, one album split into several different albums… My bad for trusting things to go so well.

    It all seemed so great the first day I cancelled my Spotify sub too but I’ll be bringing it back.

  • P. Obbard

    These issues sound very familiar to those that impacted Amazon Music a few years back. They have been sorted out now (and I use Amazon Music religiously), but were definitely a hassle back in the day. Sounds like Apple has some catching-up to do.

  • Bas Jansen

    That Apple deletes songs that came from your own CDs is inexcusable. Some of the problems you describe already existed in iTunes Match, by the way. It looks fine on the Mac, but on my devices it is completely shuffled and some CDs are split up in different CDs, with completely unrelated artists showing up in these. Awful, just awful.

  • Thank God I started backing up my music to Google and Amazon.

  • Laura Love

    This answers a few questions for me. I’ve been unable to get ‘Make Available Offline’ to work only very sporadically. It makes sense that it’s not adding songs to your library because you’ve already iTunes Matched them. It makes sense but in a bad way. If Apple don’t fix the bugs within the three-month intro period I won’t be subscribing.

  • Laura Love

    Had a brainwave: Why not turn off iTunes Match on my iPhone so that I can solely use Apple Music? Guess what? You can’t. There’s no way of turning off iTunes Match without also turning off iCloud Music Library, meaning you then can’t use Apple Music.

    Good one Apple. What a horse’s anus of a system.

  • It looks like the “not adding duplicate songs from multiple albums” issue has been fixed. I had a case open and after finally escalating to a high enough level support they said they were able to reproduce the problem. Then, this morning I got an email from support saying they were now not able to reproduce the problem (but they didn’t say they fixed it).

    I was frustrated so i decided to make a screen video showing the problem happening and as many times as I tried with different artists and albums I couldn’t get it to happen. Every time I was able to add a “greatest hits” album and then add the actual album the songs came from and on each of them all the songs were added to my library, even the duplicates.

    So, from what I can see the not adding songs on multiple albums issue has been resolved.

  • It treats Live Bootlegs disastrously too! I turned on Cloud Sync on my laptop, and had it already on for iPhone. Found that Live Bootleg Albums had not only covers but every live version of each song replaced by the original album version of the song with the same name. Awesome – who wants to listen to live music? Holy Sh*t!!!!

    Luckily my main music library is on a PC that hasn’t been infected by 12.2 and Cloud Sync, and will never be. Deleting user files en-masse without warning is a gigantic screw up that should have Tim Cook holding a press conference on the scale of Antenna-Gate.

  • CyberData4

    I just don’t have the time nor the inclination to micromanage my music collection around the bugginess of Apple Music. I’ll try again in a few months when they get their act together. Until then I’ll use Spotify.

  • tonyrage

    User error.

  • Roymathieu

    Man…if Apple music sucks (and it sure looks like it does) leave and go see some real services that work well! Google music is a superb service, Spotify also and even Rdio is better. Some people here need to stop thinking that Apple are still gods. They do good phones and usually good products but since the Iphone, they have a lot of difficulties with new products…the Apple Watch is a big fail and now Apple music…just leave!!

  • Scootter316

    I want the old functionality back. The new store is too limiting to the user.

  • Hydro Mac

    Still waiting for the new iTunes after the clusterfuck of a few weeks ago. Hopefully the clusterfucks at Apple will finally get the hint that apps for the iPhone and Movies and Music should have their own apps rather than in an app that tries and fail to do all that. I had hoped that eventually if they continue down that road with iTunes would be able to dispense beer.

  • wayofpeace

    just tried to buy a song… been doing so in Itunes for years… guess what, gives me no button to purchase it even tho i have $ in my account

  • derek

    You forgot all apple products suck major balls.

  • Peanut Turner

    Just wanted to say thanks for sharing your experience.

    Some of my most infuriating computing experiences EVER have come from trying to organise and access my (admittedly vast) music library via iTunes on Mac. The problems I’ve faced have often stemmed from iTunes trying (but failing) to be more clever than it needs to be, and attempting to ‘help’ me sort my library but only ending up making things worse, a lot like when a well-meaning friend or spouse tries to help you sort your garage but ends up making a bigger mess and causing the whole experience to take much longer because you’re the only one who can get things ‘just how you like them’. Problems like how it reacts when it thinks it’s found duplicate tracks, or how it organises tracks into albums based on metadata rather than their file/folder structure (which are usually pristine thanks to my OCD method of sorting) have often caused me to want to stop using iTunes.

    My biggest issue over the years (and one I kind of hoped Apple Music might put to sleep) has been with making and using playlists. I, like many music enthusiast, am obsessed with the artform of ‘the playlist’, but as any iTunes user will tell you, mess with anything under the hood (like trying to restore your iTunes library from another hard drive or similar) and your millions of perfectly ordered playlist tracks could be vapourised. There needs to be a solution to this, and until now I’ve even resorted to re-creating these playlists by hand in Spotify, so that at least they remain in the cloud, should my own ordering etc. ever get messed up. But with some playlists numbering tracks in the hundreds (thousands even!), this gets really old, really fast.

    I’m still undecided on Apple Music. I’m an iTunes Match user, but even that’s had its problems…. Still, it’s nice to be able to access my music and playlists (when it works!) from anywhere with an internet connection. Let’s see if Apple Music can improve on this….

  • Katia

    I fucking hate Apple. iTunes gives me nothing but trouble on a regular basis. The other day, I plugged my phone into my laptop to put a few new songs on, and over half my library just disappeared from my phone. My computer still tells me all my music’s there, but it’s not visible on my phone.

  • blogposterG

    Apple has completely botched this. Neither Match nor Apple Music are working for me in 12.2.2. It’s definitely enough to make me look for a different player/service. I do use Amazon music and rhapsody, but neither plays super well for phones/ipads.

  • James Hollender

    I hate the way I can no longer pick up where I left off when I do something else and then go back to iTunes on my iPhone.

    Apple is definitely going DOWNHILL.

    This morning I had to report problems my sales in the iTunes App Store:

    I’ve been seeing discrepancies between the reports by the iTunesConnect app and the iTunesConnect Sales and Trends reports. In all cases the latter has less items reported. I want to know why the discrepancy and how you can prove that Apple hasn’t been cheating on payments for my App Store sales.

    As an example I’m including 2 screen shots, one from each to show the results reported for yesterday, August 1st, 2015.

    In general it seems that app bundles don’t seem to be included, but in today’s case a $10 app isn’t included.

    It seems Apple is only concerned with profits, not satisfying their customers or even their developers anymore.

  • PeterJanney

    What happened to my own playlists, the ones in my own iTunes library?

  • PeterJanney

    Are we now to tolerate the fact that Apple is NOT going to allow up to transfer our own playlists from our iTunes libraries to our iPhones? I am a writer. I have a number of interviews that I need to listen to in my car, all of which are organized into playlists from my iTunes library.

    Why won’t Apple allow the new iTunes app to have our own playlists be a part of iTunes music on our iPhones?? Someone please tell me!

  • rbpromo

    What I found is that all my thousands of songs that I purchased years ago from record stores, received as gifts, or bought from iTunes and made playlists for them can no longer be burned! This “BURNS” me up as I paid for all the music I have on playlists and was able to burn CDs for years. Now I cannot burn any of MY own music. I do not expect to be able to burn songs that I get from Apple Music but I had over 10,000 songs of my own and cannot burn any of them. Anybody have a clue???? I want out of Apple Music and the new upgrade of iTunes.

  • Habib Malik

    I feel your pain!!! i hate the new app so much, all of my songs were doubled and the music i bought and downloaded can’t even be played unless i have wifi or cell service, and since i have sprint I’m out of luck. Sometimes songs won’t even play and to wait for them to be downloaded and available offline takes forever. I’m so miserable now, i rather use Spotify.

  • therealjamesg

    My experience; used the free trial for a week. Hated it. Turned it off. Now half my rare remixes of tracks have been replaced with vanilla versions thanks to Apple Music thinking it knows my music better than I do.

    Frankly, if it’s taken a track I’ve bought outside the iTunes ecosystem and swapped it out for a different version, that’s theft.

  • Sam Proud

    I too have had this problem, and Apple’s recent update/fix didn’t work. In short it is a real mess by Apple, and it’s not OK to screw up so many users iTunes Libraries.

    I think we should make Apple pay attention to this. Please sign this petition, and spread the word.

  • Kevin L

    It’s crazy… They spent so much time telling us they understand how personal and important our music is to us. All the guys in turtlenecks and untucked shirts stressed this was a way to enhance something they knew to be so important to us. Apple was connecting with us on a personal and intimate level… Then they hosed us, patted themselves on the back (See? It must be you, we have 11 million signups…) and act as if nothing happened.


  • Greebo

    So, why the hell didn’t Apple make a Music app, and leave iTunes freaking alone??? Anyone else think that Cue will go the same way as Forrestal? As someone else here said, this is the 3 Billion write down that Apple has to have. Pity. Apple had a chance to do something really great, and the bought Beats instead.

  • Apple36

    Question: Why does it change song when you start a radio station from the song your about to listen to??! for example.. say I want to listen to Netsky – ‘Rio’.. and kick off by playing it, I would assume starting a radio would start a continuation off the song I have chosen… but instead it just skips Rio all together.

    Really disappointed with some design aspects of apple music as well as functionality.. Its got loads of bugs (i can live with as they will be ironed out) but the illogical design is no match for spotify.

    Sort it out Apple.

  • Just Dan

    Apple Music – Making New Spotify Users Since 2015

  • Parker T

    I’ve also loved Apple for their simplicity. the Ipod classic, earlier versions of iTunes.. etc. Apple always had a way of making even the most complicated of tasks easy. Their interfaces were simple and beautiful all at the same time and it’s what made Apple appealing. But now, they’ve lost that, the new music app is a shining example of how much of a complicated mess things have become. Somethings in life are complicated, and somethings… like simply listening to music shouldn’t require a user manual with every release, they shouldn’t require hacks or workarounds. The job is simple, play music. period. I listen to my music at the gym. not match, no streaming, just good ol’ music I’ve downloaded and want to play on my iPhone as I workout -nNothing fancy. But now I’m fumbling through tiny hard to see and touch features (don’t forget I’m at the gym and pumped up working hard… ) just to repeat a song… I’ve had a iPhone since 2007. The Iphone 1. My iPhone 6 will be my last. I’ve seen the transformation the IOS has gone through, and it’s horrible. I truely believe that if Apple every wants to know why they’ve lost customers and supporters, the above is exactly why.

  • Jamie Blatt

    All id like to get back is an “All Songs” list for an artist. Hate having to go to a particular album to get a song.

  • TECH

    Apple music also only matches meta-data only, or title of the song, it does not look at duration, like iTunes Match does, hence iTunes match would be more accurate as matching anyway… the only difference is u have to do the “leg work” yourself with collecting music.. (not really discovery new music, unless u consider Beat 1 as “discovery” or Youtube etc..)

    Plus, iTunes Match is cheaper anyway…

  • Martin Newman

    I totally agree. It’s very frustrating. I phoned Apple customer service to try and see if I was doing something wrong. The man i spoke to said he had the same problems as me, but could find no solution. So, what now? Apple knows best? I’ve taken my iCloud music library offline and have started a trial with Spotify, as least that way I have control over what happens to my music. I can play what ever i like from my own collection, then access Spotify for new stuff. Why can’t Apple do this, and even if there’s a fix later, I resent the fact that I have no control over what happens to my own music, so I’m off.

  • Doug

    I am very disappointed with Apple Radio. I am going back to Pandora. Why? Apple has stations that I will never listen to but will not allow me to remove them from my list. Beats radio is at the top of the list and I want it gone. I’m not interested. I can not pick a list of artists to create my own station. I can say ‘play more like this’ but what if the artist I want never comes on? Once I have a station I can not edit it to add additional artists – WTF. I appreciate that Apple has “experts” putting radio stations together but they do not know what I want to listen to. I have repeatedly removed a song from a station asking for it to never be played again and guess what… it was back. Apple screwed the pooch when they first released Apple Radio a couple years ago. After what I believe was a lot of hard work they still don’t have it right. That said, I’m keeping my Apple shares, iPad, iPhones, iMacs, and MacBook Pros. But I am giving up on Apple Music – IT SUCKS.

  • Swartzy

    I refuse to update any more. I don’t care if I miss a few good things from Apple, I just don’t want all of their REQUIRED CRAP. I do not want most of the embeded APPS, nor the majority of the music app, I never buy music from APPLE, I have my own, and now I almost can’t play it so why use it. I will never pay them for a radio station, not worth it. I have an IPhone 6S and it will be my last. I hate ITUNES, hate it, why can’t I just down load my things, not theirs, mine, directly onto my phone. WHen they allow that then I might come back. It is all about CONTROL and I hate it. My music is my music not theirs, so leave me alone about it. OH also allow me to download the parts I want, not all of it. Microsoft allows you to pick and chose and I do. I would make my phone and IPAD more usable if they allowed it.

  • Apple Music is driving me bananas. For example, Editors Playlist are listed under “New” for some reason. Whatever. Well, find one you like and try to add it to “My Music”. Sometimes it will be added as a playlist in a section called “Apple Music Playlists”, which is what I want, but other times it will be added as individual tracks. In the latter case, I have to go hunt them down in my library and create a playlist.

    There is no rhyme or reason as to which behavior to expect. So many niggling little annoyances like this.

  • Mary McCabe

    I have one song left and Didnt even do the trial from Apple music. Was listening to an album on my I touch with WiFi off then turned WiFi on as a song I preordered was finally available. Well all of a sudden the only song in my library is now the one I preordered what happened to the other 3000+ I have no idea. I have chronic pain and listen to my iPod touch to cope with the pain

  • Asterick Jones

    You can upload 50’000 tracks to Google Music, plus there are purchasing options much like ITunes, got to be a better option, it doesn’t attempt to mess around with your hard drive it just uploads what you have! How can Apple Music be allowed to delete what you already have, sounds scandalous!

  • Forest

    Boo hoo. I love it. I’m done with you.

  • It’s skull fucked my music library and can no longer tell the distinction between what I already had locally and what’s remote. Streaming (on a 100Mbps connection) is a joke surprisingly. Such a shame they’re having this many issues so early on.


    totally agree, iTunes has turned into a big lie, big disappointment, I have no issues with SPOTIFY, IT’S THE BEST

  • EmbraceExtendExtinguish

    Re: Ian Rogers departure —

    Ian Rogers was long a prophet for artists owning their own data, including their customer data. Look at his videos and posts from when he was at Topspin. Apple co-opte Rogers, and parts of the Topspin platform, into an entity that defiantly does not let artists keep their own customer data – you have to go through Apple as a mediated platform, which is exactly what Rogers at Topspin spoke out against. This is a clear example of Apple pulling an “Embrace-Extend-Extinguish” on the artist-keeping-their-own-data that Topspin offered (and which has not kept up with innovations since Rogers left; just look at the albums and artists they cite in their examples). Perhaps Rogers realized how thoroughly he had sold out to exactly what he said artists should not, and quit. At least that’s what I’d like to think. Otherwise, Apple, having cannibalized parts of Topspin, simply spat him out after extinguishing him and making him a piece of their machine.

  • Well, I am glad I did not go for the Free Trial! I was 90% there yesterday!

  • Zamboolah Wigi Wigi

    I don’t know about you guys, but today I’m so frustrated with iTunes (for iPad) because I cannot repeat/loop a single song.

    Am I the only one experiencing this? I just discovered this today.

  • Dirk Wiggley

    Apple music is a cluster f*ck of features that I don’t want that cram the screen so that the controls have shrunk down to a size that only someone with fingers the size of an infant’s could possibly use them. I want a simple music player. What are my options?

  • charles rivera

    My problems began when I accepted an iTunes update that said it would “fix” the problems in music player. Turns out it made my player an Apple Music zombie. There is no such thing as “design” in this newfangled thingamabob, it is a slapdash, chopsuey, mishmash of haphazard confusion. Apple support and fora require that you go through a 12-step program procedure to “fix” what was supposed to be fixed. No guarantees it will work, though. Apple Music is the ugly, misshapen, bastard son of corporate greed and whorish tech.

  • Katia

    I fucking hate Apple Music. I wish there was some other service I could switch to that just gives me my music, and none of this radio, internet, cloud bullshit, but Apple has a monopoly. Every interaction with iTunes is a fucking battle.

  • Elmar Trefz

    A little clue its Eddy Cue, everything he touches doesn’t work. All the web service failures from Apple were his fault. Not sure how he can get away with it.

  • lm

    Thank you for the article, I was considering downloading apple music but maybe it’ll be best to find an alternative

  • Simon H.

    I’m so confused. Why in the hell won’t iTunes let me listen to song previews?! I click on a song in the store and it asks me to buy a subscription for Apple Music. I’m in ITUNES. Trying to listen to a SONG PREVIEW. And it begs me to pay it free money?! What’s with that?!

  • Ally

    I recently bought a new album off iTunes, and now only one of the songs is working. It says they’re all downloaded, but then Apple Music won’t play them. It just pops up with a notification, reading exactly;

    ‘While your membership is inactive, your music and playlists will remain in your library, but cannot be played. You can remove them in the Settings app.’

    But I bought the music for $16.99 and now it won’t let me play them? It’s saying I can remove them, but then that’s almost $20 down the drain. It might not seem like a lot, but to someone who rarely gets money to spend on things she wants, it’s a good amount.

    I looked at the membership renewal thing, and it says I have to pay $11.99! It just seems like a load of bull, and after I bought an album of music I wanted. Any ideas how to fix it? If not, I’ll stop by the Apple store sometime this week and see if they can fix it.

    • Ally

      Never mind hahaha I figured it out. You have to go onto iTunes, scroll to the bottom, select purchase and then it’s simple.

  • Rick Witten

    The iTunes interface has been in free-fall for years now. What used to be an intuitive, usable application is now a frustrating mess. I use Pandora almost exclusively because the Music app is so damn bad.

  • Brian Avenius

    I heard the horror stories about the iTunes updates and have held off, but experienced the same problems (entire ripped library and playlists disappear, iTunes purchases all show up as Cloud and not downloaded), after updating my PHONE ONLY! This is not the Apple that Jobs built. This is what I’d expect from Microsoft.

  • Sam Proud

    Please sign this petition if you think Apple made a mess of things here: Spread the word too… Thanks.

  • Hds Sergiu


  • Micael

    Same here! What a mess!

  • JFalcon

    “I also failed by not backing up my library before installing Apple Music.” I feel like this whole review should be trimmed down to this one sentence. It’s not apple’s fault you chose not to setup the free time machine application.

  • Carolyn

    All I want to do right now is to take my iPad and go to one of the playlists I created, select it, hit shuffle, and go about my tasks listening to my songs. Or, perhaps select one of my albums and have my music app cycle through the tunes in it. If there isn’t a simple way to do that, then please suggest some other app out there that I can download and have that happen. I don’t want to stream, and I don’t like buying music from iTunes. Suggestions?

  • Supermarioooo

    Can anybody help me, I heard all the horror stories about Apple Music so initially I didn’t bother with the free trial but I thought it’s been a couple of months now and it can’t be all bad so i tried it yesterday…. and it’s a complete nightmare. I’ve now turned off the garbage that is Apple Music on my iPhone 6 and also on iTunes but now it seems to have stolen loads of purchased songs that I had paid for on iTunes, I hadn’t downloaded a lot of this stuff and now looking through my purchases there’s entire albums of paid music that has gone!

    Some of the albums that are showing are totally incomplete, for example I paid for Banks’ album on iTunes which has 17 songs and now only 1 song is showing as purchased which begs the question where the hell have the other 16 tracks now gone, I’m not going to pay for that again.

    I always pay for music on Google Play and Amazon and I had a similar problem with Google Play too which eventually resolved itself, but this iTunes issue is far worse

  • Billy del Mountain

    Sheesh…since Day One years ago the system was screwed..took a long time to discover it was not my ineptitude or my computer…fool that I am I tried to go the whole hog again just a month ago thinking…..well…it’s still truly amateur hour….

  • polarbear4

    yes! maybe i’m totally out of it, but when i bring up my songs, my playlists disappear from the sidebar, so I can’t drag my songs to make a new playlist. it must be me.

  • MacZac

    This music player is geting worse and worse. I bought my first iphon because i liked the cover flow in it. Later the cover flow turned out to be much handier in a car . It was easier and safer to swipe large covers while driving then look for the tiny ones like now. The latest version is even worse! The play key is smaler and there are band icons instead of album covers which makes everything more confusing. My latest disappointment concerns on the fact that the player doesnt play by default the next album of the same author. It just gets worse and worse.

  • Hans Peeters

    All solutions mentioned here are a farce. Why do I need an masters degree in computer technology to avoid Apple screwing up 3.000 CD’s that I own and legally have paid for? There is really only ONE solution:


  • David Powell

    I realise I’m coming at this late in the day (months after, in fact), but I just have to say a heartfelt thank you to Jim. I’d previously thought I was the only person experiencing this and having half of my existing iTunes library wiped out overnight and Apple absolving themselves of all responsibility (short version- “you need to put it all back”). Great article- thank you- I’ll go through the rest of the comments to see if there’s a solution

  • stratomartin

    If S.Jobs were alive he would be walking from office to office with a machete in each hand….

    Apple Music, or whatever they call it this week couldn’t be more screwed up

  • Sam Proud

    This mess is not OK. Please sign the petition if you are unhappy about it:

    I’ve been trying to get help from Apple Geniuses and Apple engineers – still waiting for the calls back. Take responsibility for this mess? No chance. The people I’ve spoken to have no idea what is even going on.

  • Moe Better 11

    Some day Apple may figure out “software”. For others, there is no hope… so sad. Maybe its time to back to the trees, forest, valleys and caves of yore?

    Is fast, secure and reliable to much to ask for?

  • Ugh! I cannot stand it! It screws up all of my album artwork, which I am totally OCD about tagging correctly. Correct me if i’m wrong, but dont’ they advertise it as DRM free? Well, this got me confused, and with duplicates showing, I deleted the lower quality ones, thinking i could burn playlists to disc from Apple Music, or even just transfer across devices without any issue (am I misunderstanding the whole DRM-Free advertising)? Also, I just realized that you must be running Yosemite or later on any computer to use it. Well, I only run that on my newest, as I stick to 1 partition of ML & 1 of SL on my 2009 MBP Unibody. Believe it or not, my 2005 dual 2 GHz G5 still totally rocks for audio production & is a tank. But of course, Apple has disabled me from using the service on that computer, which, has my pro monitors, etc. good idea, still very flawed!

    At least with Google Play music, I can stream &/or download from any device. Why can’t i just remotely store my actual files, since i have a 50GB icloud account???

  • Christopher Durr

    Can be crazy hard to cancel Apple music. I see a class action lawsuit over this issue.

  • Kevin

    Because my payment surely went through on the 8th ($14,99 for family Apple Music Plan), of October but on the 13 all our family custom playlists would not run and had and error -42585 popped up . When I logged out of apple ID and back in they were all gone except for my purchased music. UGH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Do you even know how much time I spent listening and making the playlist for family and friends to share with? I should have stuck with Spotify I guess.(:

  • SeanW

    Thanks for your article. I don’t think there is any way to get Apple to listen but if there is it would come in the form of enough negative publicity to really hurt itunes.

    I just signed up for Apple Music. What a disaster. I have listened to several of the music channels and there is NOTHING that I consider to be good music in any of the genres. It’s like these channels were just filled with random music in a particular genre. Once in awhile I hear a song I enjoy if I click the oldies network. But even that only had two tunes I enjoyed. I could listen to AM broadcast radio and hear are more dense collection of songs I enjoy AND THAT’S IN SPITE OF THE FRIGGING COMMERCIALS ON BROADCAST AM.

    Dear Apple, You never had any business going into the music business. You have injected more pain into the musical experience than any single entity I’ve known.

    I HATE ITUNES and the only reason I don’t rid myself of your stupid product is there is no alternative.

    On the one hand I figure you’d be aware that your product is terrible. Even on Trader TV they hate it. One of the pundits there lost over 15,000 dollars worth of music and Apple doesn’t give a shit.

    Sell itunes to someone that can create an easier platform and just take a licensing fee. That would make everyone happy because let’s face it you don’t have a clue how to make a music platform and you should stop trying to. You can’t do it. You aren’t smart enough when it comes to music software.

  • Martin Petersen

    I’ have the same’ problem! ..and more, my iPad can not finde “My music” program, and wont connect with my airplay/Apple Tv

  • No.Name.Girl

    I want. to fucking. cry. My music was not backed up. 75% of my CD’s from the 90’s and 00’s are scratched. CD’s I fucking paid for. I hate you iTunes. I hate you Apple. I fucking hate what you have done to my music library. I hope your stock plummets. I hope your stock crashes and fucking burns. I hope someone burns down your headquarters like Ron Livingston did in fucking Office Space.

  • Alpha Omega

    I agree….. Apple is trying to capture to much info and in the mean time making them-self an inferior product.

  • HA

    So after a tough day at work I decided to play a smooth jazz playlist. I canceled my sub after a Christmas song begun to play. Yea it was a jazz Christmas song but c’mon. Christmas?

  • Dizcuzted

    Apple Music is possibly even worse than iTunes. Ugh.

  • Patrick Ethen

    I read the first paragraph & thought to myself… Should I continue reading an article by someone that doesn’t do even the most basic of all things? Back ups?

  • Justin

    the apple music is the worst music stream i have ever used!! While I am downloading songs to make them available offline, it stops or does not download anything… I have always used good products from apple but since i have downloaded ios9 it was by far the worst ios ever launched….. my phone starts to do things it have never done…. I am so disappointed with this…

  • It took you 12 years to see what this scam is all about? Holy you people need help. Do you not remember ‘soundjam’ the app that was the perfect solution for playing artificial approximations of analogue sourced audio files? AKA MP3’S !!! ??? Like everyone is walking around with a badge of false pride that they have their latest dummy device – yet no one (yeah that’s sweeping – real numbers, I’d say 98%) of commercial consumers know what they are doing or getting into or what rights they are throwing away. What self proud dimwit is reading the legalease when they install anything? No there is too much more to brag about when they have a mind full of pop culture references to meme about. I’M NOT EVEN JOKING.

    Invest a bit of time about the history of what you are into and the facts that all of these record companies and itunes are involved in criminal activity selling non physical product that disappears or is locked or you have to pry open with ‘code’ . All a waste of time and lacks all logic.

    You are being the uber slaves. Do not ‘jump to another ship’ like ‘spotify’ – again another trap of paying for fake music.

  • again proves most people want to be spoon fed – you are the zombies that those heros you worship on TV , destroy every episode. you are the minions you go laugh at in the movies. you are the goyim the Jews control.

  • Henry Maguire

    Fast forward to November and it’s still unusable. I signed up for the free three month trial on my Macbook. Authorized the single ($9.99) plan. Opened it up on my new Apple TV. So far, so good. Then I tried searching for an album to play. No albums. Just “radio stations”. Meaning if I randomly get a song stuck in my mind, I can’t come home, turn on my stereo system and play it, as you can with Spotify on Roku, Amazon Music on Fire, etc. etc… I have to use another Apple device to add the song to my music, wait for the Apple TV to sync, and then I can play it. Basically the same amount of steps/time I’d need to take to airplay Tidal or Spotify or some other non Apple TV-supported streaming service, except Apple Music is supposedly native. That’s ridiculous. Spotify on Roku is a buggy mess, but at least the basic usability was thought out. And that’s not the worst of it. None of my other devices seem to know that I’ve signed up for Apple Music, besides my Macbook and my Apple TV. Not my iPhone, iPod, or iPad. They all think I need to sign up. That interface is basically blocked- there doesn’t appear to be any workaround to tell the devices I’m already signed up. Meaning Apple Music is essentially bricked on all those devices. Meaning I can’t listen to Apple Music in my car or while I jog. It’s clown time over at Apple the days… This sort of tone deaf not ready for market garbage is like something out of early 2000s Microsoft…

  • Tracey

    I have been having a 3 month row with Apple about my lost music. 4 Lots of technicians later, one f*ked Macbook Pro and I’m still around 30gb short. I know I’m not the only one to lose music. It’s like apple looked at my music collection and said “oh, you didn’t buy that from us….. DELETE” I’m currently in descussion with a European Consumer Rights group. Despite Apples T&C’s, they’re not allowed to leave something in a worse state than they found it in. The fight goes on, but I won’t roll over. I’d be interested in talking to anyone who would like to join in the complaint. Music is a precious thing – and it doesn’t solely belong to apple. They need to know that….

    • Sam Proud

      Couldn’t agree more. I’m in a similar situation – receiving no help from Apple support at all.

      Would love to know how you get on. Happy to talk more.

      Also, set up a petition here: Please sign and spread the word.

    • Ольга Тарасенко

      I have NOT used Apple Music and over the course of iTunes life, have purchased less than 2 dozen tracks. My entire 10K track library consists of tunes that I have ripped from my personal CD collection. It also includes tracks that are not available commercially, as they were private recordings. All that being said, iTunes has removed trax from playlists, it has not transferred various trax from playlists, randomly. It may transfer trax 1,4,9 from an album but not 3 and 10. It will also randomly delete trax from devices where the trad are already on it. Every time I sync, something new goes wrong. It is frustrating beyond belief as many trax are simply not in the iTunes Store. One guy at the Genius Bar said with each very of iT, the artistic copyright protection gets stronger. That may be, but on trax where there is no copyright? WTF Apple?

  • mhikl

    I’ve been an Apple supporter since the late nineties when I ran completer labs that were said to the best in our district. My first Apple computer was a IIe and then the Macintosh with an external hd. But now, with the trouble I am having with iTunes, my respect for this company is at a low. If there were a way to have my files on my iPads and touch, I would jump at the chance. Instead, I am stuck with iTunes that continuously loses my music, audio books and probably other media I don’t even want to think about. What a disappointing company Apple seems to have become. I made a few complaints when asked for my review and now Apple does not even send me review forms after visiting the Apple Store. I wonder if this little trick is why Apple has such a claimed good standing from its customers. Shady. Namaste and care, mhikl

  • Cristina

    Can someone tell me why my Adele album is no longer in my music library? I am subscribed to Apple Music but now the album is completely gone

  • Martin Hatchuel

    Apple is shit. It still tries to push the lie that it’s all about simplicity and functionality. It’s lost all credibility.

  • Olegrumpy

    Itunes is a pain. I don’t want to categorise, add tags or look at stupid artwork. I just want to download my music to a simple player, that lists the album, and artist, plays the music, finds duplicates, and does NOT require any stupid iPod or apple media. Anyone help??

  • Degru

    I don’t understand why it can’t simply reuse the same file and just add multiple song entries into the database, if it insists on eliminating duplicates no matter what.

  • Jim Marven

    I am going to attempt to learn a guitar solo, different than the studio that was performed live in concert, but I need tips.

    Viz Dawg – Get Me The Ball

  • Jim Marven

    Nice post.. Oldies music is the all time favorite music. I really liked old music. The Oldies music gaining popularity very much..

    Get Me The Ball

  • Beaver

    Totally agree. Apple Music is Horrible!

  • Michael Nelson

    The new apple music won’t let you just buy the music you want. I don’t want some radio like Pandora, I just want to buy the songs that I want to hear!!!!!!!!!

    • Michael Nelson

      Just give me the music that I want when I want it Apple… We miss you Steve Jobs!!!!!!!

      • Michael Nelson

        Throw the Pandora scam out the window!!!!!

  • Michael Nelson

    The bottom line is I do not want to listen to some radio channel to pick and choose the specific songs that I want to buy, oh yeah I don’t want my existing songs to ever go away, because I already paid for them!!!!!! Apple you better wake up!!!!!

    • Michael Nelson

      If not then just bring DVD’s back and to hell with iTunes!

    • Michael Nelson

      You are not going to make extra money from this new digital facade sorry! At least not from smart people that already paid apple for these songs, sorry Apple we own these copy of these songs now, as it should be!!!!!!

  • lb

    only some songs stream competely. it keeps cutting off. back to spotify

  • B. Jefferson Le Blanc

    From the beginning I had a sneaking suspicion Apple would mess this up. Since Yosemite came out on an accelerated development schedule they have been trying to do too much too fast. If you need icing on that cake, Apple Music is it. As if iTunes wasn’t bad enough already, Apple Music turned it into a stinking pile of horse sh*t (to mix metaphors). I didn’t even try Apple Music when it was free; in my mind it wasn’t worth the risk. Time has proven me right, sad to say. Unlike most, apparently, I took Apple’s problems with Yosemite as a sign of creeping ineptitude. In any case, Apple has never done well with cloud services. At one point they simply lacked imagination and commitment. Now they are glaringly incompetent as well. This is a sad, perhaps even tragic, state of affairs. In recent interviews Tim Cook claims not to have lost sight of Steve Jobs’ focus on quality. He claims as well that success hasn’t gone to their heads. The facts, unfortunately, paint a different picture. Obviously Tim lives in a bubble where Apple’s cascading failures just don’t register. And no one at the company has the nerve to tell the emperor he has no clothes on.

    Given how oblivious the folks at Apple are to their own mistakes and failures, it’s only a matter of time before this once great company fulfills the predictions of all the hectoring doom sayers. Even Microsoft has shown more flexibility in dealing with blunders (Windows RT and Windows 8). And they’ve moved to rescue their reputation from the OEMs who burden their hardware with crapware; now MS is making their own, crapware free hardware.

    Apple, meanwhile, can’t get out of its own way. 🙁

  • April Spitzer

    This very issue has caused me to decide to leave Apple altogether. I’m sick to death of fighting Apple Music. I work hours on getting my music library on my iphone exactly as I want it, and then I find myself in a dead area with no 4G only to find that the music I meticulously added to my phone is MISSING. I can’t for the life of me figure out why Apple changes the Apple Music platform three times a year or why they have decided to do the thinking for the music owner by removing music randomly.

    • Steve Kruckheimmer

      If you lose your online connection it makes sense that music stored in the cloud wouldn’t be accessible. When viewing the contents of cloud music, for each individual album or track, choose the option to make available “off line” to avoid this problem.

  • samanta

    Amazing surprises technology improving out now is a programmed master debit card that can withdraw cash from a cash machine (ATM and POS) just got one from harren of hi tech computer software technologies tried on a machine and it worked surprisingly need one for trial too? contact him on his mail messenger

  • Sam

    I was having the exact same issue — songs weren’t coming up under the artist name on my iPhone, but they were listed as being on my phone when I was looking through iTunes; when I searched for the songs manually and played them on my phone, it displayed “Unknown Artist” at the top of my screen….. It was impossible to find anything…

    But I seem to have gotten everything smoothed out.

    Last night I restored my phone to factory settings, then loaded a back-up, but I’m not sure if this is actually a necessary first step

    1. In your itunes library on your computer (NOT YOUR PHONE), hit [Command + i] and uncheck the box “Album is a compilation of songs by various artists” — Apply this change to ALL YOUR MUSIC in your music library. – (YOU HAVE TO DO IT TO YOUR LIBRARY. THIS WON’T WORK IF YOU ONLY APPLY THE CHANGES TO THE MUSIC ON YOUR PHONE)

    2. (Assuming you don’t do a restore), deleted every song off my phone. Wipe the song library completely from your phone. You could try to delete just the problematic music files on your phone, but I wanted to start from scratch…

    3. Drag the songs you want back onto your phone. Bam… That’s it. *If the songs transfer but the artist listings are inconsistent, you can [Command + i] change the Album Artist name so that it’s the same the artist name.

    That should do it. Good luck.

  • Steve Kruckheimmer

    I preview music, on my PC, at and download tracks I like at the same time, keeping written notes, in a journal. This way I get the mp3 version, and I put copies in various other folders for backups before transferring to Apple or other devices.

    There is a bit of confusion, at first, with the Apple music service, about whether I’m adding a single track or an entire album to “My Music.” Keeping track of downloaded music is a job, this could only be more difficult if some is purchased and the rest isn’t. With the old record collection these worries didn’t exist.

  • Steve Kruckheimmer

    Don’t forget, with Apple Music you’re not actually buying particular CD’s or tracks, you’re renting them. So it’s not as if Apple is stealing from you when a song disappears from your “My Music” list. In the Apple Music system you’re simply “bookmarking” what music you like. When you buy and download music (and do the usual backups), the problems described in this article do not occur and the “owner” has complete control over his music collection, but even then one must master the art of properly tagging the music files so things will appear as one expects.

  • Obadiah Steinway

    When I open MY MUSIC I get a picture of some woman staring wistfully into the distance (presumably wondering where the f*ck her music has gone too).

    I no longer trust Apple to put the consumer experience ahead of greed. I used itunes out of choice. Now I have Apple Music cancer all over my phone.

    I only hope they stay away from serious things like medicine and transport.

  • bindu
  • sree
  • Naomi

    Glad I am not the only one. Just turned off my free trial. I am officially done with Apple music as every time I have an album for a little while my songs start to disappear and I hate it. Don’t suggest turning off Icloud music library because I’ve done that, it just still stuffs up. Don’t get me wrong I love Apple I love my IPhone but I hate Apple music. I would rather pay $50 month for a popcherry vip subscription than for a service I trusted for a time and then it stuffs my music up.

  • Thank you a million times for your testimony! You explained so much so well, I am torn between avoiding the risk of … ok, I am taking the risk.

    When all the things you wrote happened to me, I contacted Apple. I tried the support forums, calling the store, going to the store, going back to the store to meet with the geniuses. I was so excited, because I never had met with someone so smart they could be called geniuses in public.

    In the end, the geniuses gave me the same thing all the other Apple contacts gave me: the unique feeling of being told the problem is caused by me being an idiot. The angle of their noses all were the same, because all those people expressed personal sympathy for the frustration I was experiencing. I verified that it was personal, by checking my notes and seeing they all personally sympathized the same way, using the same phrases and tones of voice. If it had not been so personal, I might have jumped the wrong conclusion and suspected their step-by-step process for handling tech support and system usability issues includes a step for persuading the customer they sympathize, based on a similar experience they had that made them feel bad, the way I was feeling.

    Once they have you thinking that someone is on your side, they help you through the bad news: there is nothing they are going to do with your computer or phone, because it is in perfect working order, and how that means, if you think about it, the cause of the problem I am having with the computer is not the computer, so it must be _________________ they are saying I am the problem. I really love that..

    Then they repeat the sympathy step where they cannot relate as well,because as they admit, theyh never have had to face the discovery, like I had to face, of being really dumb and therefore, the cause of my perception of malfunction is me not knowing how to operate the computer. Questions relating to whether the computer acts dumb because some of the decisions Apple made about what it does really ought to be reconsidered, those questions are referred to the Change what The Romans Did department, which has a perfect record for producing the same consistent result: no effect.

    At least they are willing to tell me they will help me any way they possibly can, then introduce me to their paid support services who provide a repeat performance of The Computer is Fine the Problem is You Are An Idiot and I am a Genius, (sing it!), but with the added bonus of zapping dough from my bank account even before I have signed the electronic contract that gives them the power to sodomize me and say they are sorry while escalating my case up the chain of Same Deal, Higher Cost, Could Be Better But It’s Going To Be Worse!

    I am arrogant. i hate being arrogant but I cannot help it. From what my friends have said, it’s an annoying, disrespectful attitude with an unjustified sense of goodness that puts me way into the zone marked “Ahole” and I am not taking about the first green on the mini golf course. I cannot fix it because it is a kind of psychological problem the way being an alcoholic is a psychological problem, only drunks can become better people. I would have to abandon inflated, false beliefs I depend upon for my unjustified sense of esteem. I really hope I am not proud of being arrogant. I am one person used totally by the values of arrogance. See? I did it right there with a grand gesture of regret of being arrogant, but here I am, more arrogant than I was a moment ago.

    There is something arrogant about Apple computers. Using that arrogance to help me understand that the problem with iTunes is of my own making makes me love dealing with Apple the same way I love sleeping on thick beds of thorns and broken glass, with people stealing my stuff and the other people playing the urinal game with me trying to sleep.

    And even after all that, I cling to the belief, the way iTunes is setup with iphone and my mac is for a purpose that is not to make a product useful to its purchaser. They actually said said what I thought: they set it up this way because I had no right to copy pirated music, and they had no answer for, “what makes you think my voice memos are pirated music?”

    Truth about pirated music? The fact that Apple introduces that topic into the discussion is their confession that their customer’s interestes are not at the heart of their product design.

    There is one person who was able to make Apple a success. He did it twice. He had a unique talent for making products people liked while double dealing the product with people besides the buyers of the product. Well, that guy is dead. Without my good friend and colleague Stevie J., Apple’s future is like the future of the excellent but non-rechargeable batteries in one of my flashlights. Bright today. Less bright tomorrow. The condition is terminal, There is no chance of more than a finite and measureable amount of life left in those batteries, same as Apple computer, where golf is more important to the team in Cupertino that makes nothing except pieces of paper they put on top of the machines they pay to have made in China when the machines are put in boxes with shrink wrap. Yep, the machines are designed in Cupertino and when my good friend Stevie J. died, Apple’s ability to design the winning products died too.

    With Stevie gone, the Reaper has picked up his pace on march to Apple’s door. When the reaper strikes first blood from Apple, we all know, if we are honest with ourselves, iTunes is going to be disembowed, spread across the floor, dying surely but too fast for my preferences. The longest slowest most agonizing death for iTunes is what I want. The way folks used to get slowly cooked over a fire ,where the height of the human roast could be adjusted vertically to draw out the moment of death for the time desired by the event staff, or the Dutch deal of being engorged with milk and honey to make your guts a bomb set go off in an hour, using the hour for breaking all your bones so your arms and legs can be braided around the spokes of a big wooden wheel, saving the expense of rope without sacrificing reliability of the knots, then leaving you and the wheel on a thatched roof to be eaten by birds and bugs for a week with a life expectancy of at least several days but not more than ten (the no meals or water program provided the upper bound) or in a pinch, even the boring ol’ crucifixion or skinned alive soothing the wounds with salt would be enough of a gesture that I might be able to experience peace once again in my life. These are my hopes and dreams for iTunes, which are impassioned only by my objective knowledge of what I know to be true and just, because if I were driven by hate or spite, well, that scenario is beyond the scope of this thread.

  • Just need to keep this thread up to date (March 29, 2016) by reaffirming that the Apple Music app on iOS 9.3 still undeniably sucks.

    What. A. Complete. Nightmare.

    I feel sorry for the software engineers who write this crap, and for the backend engineers at Apple who must salivate whenever they use a Google/Amazon cloud product/service. I mean, the Apple team are amateurs compared to the what the cloud/data scientists at Google/Amazon are doing. It’s like interns being pitted against their PhD-holding department heads!

    The app can’t work for more than 30 minutes without suffering some sort of phone-crashing dilemma (I’ve downloaded the logs through XCode; trust me, it’s the Music app). I’ve used it at myriad wifi hotspots and LTE/4G areas, just to rule out connectivity issues (again, Google/Amazon seem to have no issues, so don’t blame it on not-the-Music-app Apple blowhards).

    I have resorted to using Google Play instead. I’ve even had better luck using AudioGalaxy, WHICH STREAMS MUSIC DIRECTLY FROM MY COMPUTER AT HOME, WHICH IS CONNECTED VIA A 10MPBS COMCAST CABLE MODEM)!

    I’ve made a single folder on a home screen far, far away (about 7 screens in to the right) from my main Home screen and tucked the Apple Music app deep down in it, making sure that no one (unfortunately, I know where it is) can find it.

  • Hayden Grant

    Apple music sucks. I was trying to make a playlist for an important event, using the music Apple Music makes available to you. One day, as I was reviewing my playlist, Apple signed me out by itself. When I signed back in, about 3/4 of the songs were GONE. Along with a few other playlists as well. It had erased all the songs downloaded with Apple music and only left the songs I had bought myself. I am infuriated and still haven’t gotten all my songs back!

  • Luke

    Saw this blog entry on the same topic and wanted to share here:

    Seems like a major, major problem. Thanks for sharing your experience, I hope I can avoid the headache and the (crime) of losing music I’ve spent decades collecting.

  • Gunnar Berg

    No- they take the trivial and make it complicated. As well as overstepping their bounds.

  • Rat scabies

    I’m literally baffled by this…Why is Apple Music deleting files off your hard drive – AT ALL? Is this a bug or a feature?

  • Patrick Ethen
  • Ivy Scale

    It is absolute shite

  • LInda Lowell

    I agree – for different reasons – but I refuse to buy from iTunes, even if it’s the ONLY way to get new music. I’ve waited weeks until Amazon or Google Play have something I want …

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  • Phil

    100% AGREE.

    I miss Winamp.

  • jesse lopez

    I’m so tired of Apple dictating how I can listen to music. I paid for that music and as soon as I get use to another of their bazaar changes they do it again. You have some geek in isolation, drapes drawn, no one can connect with them and then they hallucinate into thinking this is how everybody should think and do what I do. It’s the revenge of the nerds. And NO Apple I will not join your f..king radio station.

  • WhyDoINeedAnAccountToComment

    I only use iTunes and other Apple products to manage the music synced to my iPod. All of the actual files are stored locally on a removable hard drive, not some streaming service that may or may not be accessible based on Apple’s mood today.

    • skoobydoodardey

      Yes, I once made the mistake of buying the piece of junk the time capsule. Nothing but problems. I’ve now purchased a big external drive and back up myself.

      Apple is now as bad as Windows ever was and I think I may reluctantly go back to that.

      It’s a shame because their machines are OK. They are let down by about the worst suite of software on the planet.

  • Harry Balsagna

    Apple kills your music, you rebuy it from Apple. Wait, what’s their incentive again to fix it? Talk about an abusive relationship. Seriously, they steal it then you pay them to give it back, and they still tell you when and how you can listen to it. You are the reason why things are so messed up in our economy. We can’t get quality products or services anymore because religious zealots reward mediocrity and flat out poor quality at every turn. Hey guess what we get more of after that? Thanks a pantload buddy, thanks a pantload.

  • Darren Allen

    So agree…..What a piece of shit!! I will be telling everyone to NOT use it Apple Music. Subscribed and un-subscribed after stuffing around for 4 hours to get it to work and waiting for iCloud to do some bullshit thing. After, it still didn’t work. Gone!! Also, every update of iTunes gets worse and worse…….5 years ago it used to be good. Now it’s just unstable, slow and hard to use.

  • Marcus Ruggiero

    im selling all three of my iphones and going back to samsung. itunes is garbage.

  • skoobydoodardey

    iTunes is a dreadful system, I’ve never been able to get things working properly. The latest problem is that it keeps syncing 686 tracks which have not been changed. I’ve tried selecting them all, deselecting them all deleting them. It means a simple change results in having to wait for the others to be synced. I simply hate iTunes and it is likely to be the parting of the ways for me and Apple.

  • intrr

    Do yourself a favor and do it like myself and in stone age: Just rip / buy your songs as regular MP3s, store them in a folder/subfolder structure (Albums -> ArtistName -> 01 – Songname.mp3), and get some File manager app on each device you want to listen to them, and then just throw the folder structure into it. 100% bulletproof, 100% compatible, 100% yours, works every time. Doing this since 1999 (or so).

  • Jim Youtz

    I have had a healthy paranoia about large entities, Apple, microsoft, HP,- power corrupts & absolute power corrupts absolutely.. My wife AND an apple store teased me because I wouldn’t move over 5 GB of music & recordings from my ancient ‘droid to an iphone 6s, I didn’t pay for them & KNEW! they’d disappear. And now, some Rolling Stones albums my wife bought, will Not play some songs “due to content”, some new bulls#^>€t after ios update. You put a lot into your complaint, Jim D., and I greatly appreciate it, and will take your advice. It’s a bitch that you wasted so much time trying to get apple to do ‘the right thing’ .

  • apple music is very interested usually apple look for future and all updates before any company i like apple and i will use it for ever

  • joedelgado1

    I have the same issues with Google play and albums, also have the same issues with my own compilations that I create. What initially got me to this thread was I have these same types of issues with many different music apps. A compilation album will get chopped up into many different sets with varying amounts of songs. I don’t understand because I use a program to rename the album on every single song, same cover art, artist becomes various artist and so on. I also want to find an MP3 player that will recognize files on the network, such as thumb drives on the Wi-Fi device. This is very frustrating. Good luck people.

  • Crewlaw

    I just cancelled my 3-month trial early because I couldn’t figure out how to access all this ‘free streaming of our entire catalogue”. Went to itunes, made sure I was signed in, some of the time when searching for music I was taken to the ‘play samples and purchase’ screen. Just not as user friendly as Spotify, to me.

  • Bangelica

    If ever you would decide to transfer your music playlist from one library to another like apple to spotify, google music, amazon music, I would recommend using musconv it allows you to copy your music playlist to another service. – Bangelica

  • Bangelica

    I would recommend using musconv tool for transferring your music playlist from one service to another – Bangelica

  • Joshua Crip

    Transfer your tracks and playlists to Apple Music, Spotify, Google Music and more for free with MusConv :>>

  • Audrey Clarke

    Actually, Spotify is more brilliant than Apple Music because it has Free mode. Plus TuneFab Spotify Music Converter, you can listen to Spotify offline without limitation. Check this: