Your guide Alex Cox says…

“Mu­sicBee is your go-to app for man­ag­ing a mu­sic li­brary on your PC”

Windows Help & Advice - - EXPLORE -

1 Down­load it

There are two ver­sions of Mu­sicBee: the one we’re cov­er­ing here can be down­loaded from the Mi­crosoft Store by search­ing for ‘Mu­sicbee’ and click­ing the Get but­ton; the other is avail­able from https://get­mu­sicbee.com. They don’t dif­fer hugely, so you can fol­low along with ei­ther. Once you’ve in­stalled the Mi­crosoft Store ver­sion, click Launch to run it, or find it in your Start menu.

2 Set­ting up

Set your lan­guage, and click Next. Mu­sicBee im­me­di­ately of­fers to seek out your col­lec­tion. By de­fault it’ll look in likely fold­ers – in this case, the Mu­sic fold­ers un­der both the logged-in user and your PC’s pub­lic li­brary – but you can also spec­ify a folder if you keep your tunes else­where. If you’re an iTunes or Win­dows Me­dia Player user, check the ap­pro­pri­ate boxes.

3 Li­brary ba­sics

With your mu­sic im­ported, you’ll see Mu­sicBee’s All Artists view, which lists ev­ery track in your col­lec­tion. Click­ing in­di­vid­ual artists on the left will drill down to just their tracks, or you can click the Al­bum Artist text above that column and se­lect Al­bums if you’re look­ing for more de­tail. Dou­ble-click any track in the main list to play it, then use the con­trols in the bot­tom bar.

4 Grab art­work

If you have al­bums which don’t have the proper art­work, click Mu­sicBee on the ti­tle bar, go to Tools, and se­lect Art­work Down­loader. Se­lect ‘al­bum cov­ers’ in the up­per sec­tion of the win­dow, which will high­light any al­bums for which you’re miss­ing art­work, then click Pre­view. Pick an im­age that fits, then se­lect the next al­bum in the list and re­peat. Click ‘Save All’ when done.

5 Tag them up

Mu­sicBee’s tag­ging sys­tem pulls rel­e­vant in­for­ma­tion about your tracks from the In­ter­net and adds it to their meta tags. Start by go­ing to Mu­sicBee > Tools > Tag­ging Tools > Show Files With Miss­ing Tags, then se­lect your de­fi­cient files us­ing [Ctrl] + [A]. Right-click one of the se­lected tracks, and hit [Ctrl] + [L] to start fill­ing in the miss­ing tags.

6 Add lyrics

Mu­sicBee can do more than just tag your tracks. Right-click a song, go to ‘Auto-Tag by Track’, and you can use Up­date Miss­ing Lyrics to pull in the words and help you sing along. Once you’ve done this, get your track go­ing by dou­ble-click­ing it, and click ‘Now play­ing’ at the top of the Mu­sicBee win­dow – you’ll see some artist art­work, the al­bum cover, and the song’s lyrics.

Re­name your tracks 7

Even if you’re not plan­ning to use MuscBee as your pri­mary player, it’s in­tel­li­gent enough that it makes sense to let it loose on your mu­sic files and use its tags to re­name them prop­erly – that way you’ll be able to find things later, and other play­ers will play nicer with your tunes. Se­lect all your tracks with [Ctrl] + [A], then press [Ctrl] + [R] to ac­cess Mu­sicBee’s file or­gan­i­sa­tion screen.

8 Cus­tomise nam­ing

Leave ev­ery­thing as it is for now – Mu­sicBee’s de­fault is to take your li­brary and make a clean copy in its own folder, leav­ing your orig­i­nal files as they are. The one thing we’d rec­om­mend tweak­ing is the nam­ing tem­plate box. Du­pli­cate ‘<Al­bum Artist> - <Al­bum> - ‘ af­ter <Disc-Track#> to add that in­for­ma­tion to your file­names, then hit Pro­ceed to fill up your new folder.

9 Stream it

Af­ter some­thing new to lis­ten to? Head to Mu­sicBee’s ra­dio tab. You’ll first need to se­lect a stream­ing method – Ice­cast, Soma FM or SHOUT­cast, for ex­am­ple – then pick your cho­sen genre in the left-hand box. Look for a sta­tion in the list with the high­est ‘kbps’ num­ber pos­si­ble, and dou­ble-click it to start stream­ing. If you like it, click ‘Add to Li­brary’ to save it as a pre­set for later.

10 Skin it

Mu­sicBee’s iTunes-es­que look isn’t the only op­tion, so if it’s earned its way into your de­fault player spot you might want to tweak it to your lik­ing. Head to Mu­sicBee > View > Skins and pick a look that suits you. If you want more de­sign op­tions, check out https://get­mu­sicbee.com. There’s a wide se­lec­tion on of­fer in the add-ons sec­tion, as well as more visual ex­tras. ■

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