Ask the iTunes Guy: Joining tracks, iOS and Apple Lossless

For the first column of 2015, I look at a few interesting questions. I show a couple of ways to have two songs always play together in shuffle mode; look at a question regarding high-resolution files, Apple Lossless, and iOS devices; and I field two questions about adding information to the Lyrics tag of audiobooks files (and how to export text from that tag).

Keep it together

Q: When I play music in shuffle mode, how do I keep two songs together so they always play back to back?

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Ask the iTunes Guy: Of missing genres and artist sorting

In this week’s column, I examine a host of iTunes questions. I look at a bug in iTunes 12, where deleting the genre tag creates a blank genre. I discuss an issue where a reader couldn’t import AAC files into iTunes. I explain how to combine a pre-ordered single with an album. And I show how to sort artists by their last name.

Editing genre tags

Q: I’ve noticed a new behavior with editing the Genre tag in iTunes 12. Previously, when I wanted to remove a Genre tag and not reassign it (keep it blank), deleting the genre tag from the Info window worked just fine—there was no genre assigned. Now, when I delete the genre, the track has a blank genre. Is there any way to fix this?

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Ask the iTunes Guy: Missing ringtones and explicit radio

Another iOS update, another round of bugs. This time, a recent update to iOS 8 deleted ringtones and alert tones. I explain how to get them back. I also look at using multiple Apple IDs in the iTunes Store and App Store, discuss not being able to block iTunes Radio, and look at a question about moving an iTunes library to a new Mac while retaining metadata.

Lost ringtones

Q: All my ringtones are missing from my iPhone and I can’t find any way to re-download them. What can I do?

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Ask the iTunes Guy: Ripping CDs in 2014, streaming music from Mac to stereo

I’ve received lots of interesting questions in the last couple of weeks, and here are four of them. I address the increasingly common problem of ripping a CD when your Mac doesn’t have an optical drive. I discuss two ways of streaming music from a Mac to a stereo. I examine the quirky way iTunes Match won’t let you sync music files from your iTunes library. And I look at an issue with playback options for TV shows in iTunes 12.

No more CD drive

Q: I bought an audio CD that I want to add to my iTunes library, but neither of my Macs have CD drives. I am also an iTunes Match subscriber. My girlfriend has a MacBook Pro with a CD drive, however. Can I log into my iTunes account on her computer and add the CD that way, or will that affect my authorized computers? I really don’t want to buy an external CD drive just for one CD and I can’t use her drive remotely since it is a music CD.

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