I use iTunes and my iPod for my trials, but you can use any portable music player.
Here are the ground rules:
- Make a new playlist for your trial. The music may sit in iTunes (or equivalent) but you can't add the new music into your main music playlist(s) until you try it out on the Trial Playlist first!
- New music should be the priority. This can be up-and-coming bands, or just music which is new to you, or completely different to your usual style. Give them a quick preview on iTunes or YouTube - however you like. Then buy the album and add to your playlist!
- You must listen to the Trial Playlist when you are on your own. I always listen to the Trial when I am driving on my own.
- Playlists have to be made up of full albums, not just a handful of tracks from each band/artist.
- You can set the order of the albums however you like - but it must be played in order (not on shuffle).
- No skipping tracks. This is VERY important. Don't go bailing out in the middle of the trial! You have to listen to every track, of every album, in full. Even if it feels like torture.
- Once you have finished the trial, it is time to give the verdict for every artist/band and decide what to do with the music:
- Promote/Pass - definately worth the space in your main playlist(s).
- Relegate/Fail - doesn't make the cut for your main playlist(s), but happy to keep it on your computer
- Re-try/Probation: after listening to the album once, you're not sure what the verdict is, so you promote it to your main playlist(s) for a "probation period".
- Hell No - so rubbish, that you don't even want to keep it on your computer!