And thanks to technology and the internet it’s getting smaller all the time.
During President Obama’s Inauguration, a stunningly talented quartet performed a composition by John Williams called “Air and Simple Gifts”. Actually, to be precise, an audio recording of the piece was made before the inauguration by violinist Itzhak Perlman, cellist Yo-Yo Ma, clarinetist Anthony McGill and pianist Gabriella Montero. With the below freezing temperatures, there was no way their instruments would be able to stay in tune. So the musicians played, but were not amplified and the audio recording was broadcast. Well, the piece was lovely. Chuck was able to find a good recording of the piece in video format over on YouTube. But we couldn’t find a strictly audio version - CD to purchase or otherwise. Chuck and I even briefly tried to figure out how to download the YouTube video to his computer, but no dice.
Enter serendipity and the ever shrinking world. Over on Twitter, a 15 year old blogger from Singapore named Xavier Lur, whose Twitter name is KidTechGuru, began following my Twitter posts. I went to see who he was and also checked out his blog. He keeps up with everything new and nifty in the tech world and writes very clear, concise posts about them, including why something might be a good thing to check out. The posts are about technology gadgets and gizmos, but are not so heavy with geek speak that a 50 year old like me feels lost. One of his posts was about how to easily download a YouTube video to your computer. So we followed KidTechGuru’s links and his instructions and Poof! the “Air and Simple Gifts” video was on Chuck’s computer. We dragged it into the movies folder in iTunes and we were all set.
Well, almost. We have a non-video playing iPod and Chuck wanted to be able to just listen to the music. So I opened Garage Band ‘08. I chose Create a New Podcast Episode from the opening menu. Then, from the Media Browser, I chose the recently downloaded video of the inauguration day performance. I dragged it over to the Tracks area. It loaded as a Movie Track and a Movie Sound Track. After playing around for awhile, I decided to delete the Movie Track. That left the Movie Sound Track. I then chose Share > Send Song To iTunes. The song arrived in iTunes and we easily renamed it and added all the relevant information.
And that’s how a 15 year old kid in Singapore, helped my 65 year old husband in Massachusetts, listen to an exquisitely beautiful piece of music, from the Presidential Inauguration of Barack Obama in Washington D.C.!
Please Note: Despite all the fun we had making this work, as soon as a real physical CD or downloadable MP3 becomes available for purchase, purchase it we shall!