Mpd is a music player daemon and ncmpcpp is a music client. The client ncmpcpp runs in a terminal and connects to the daemon or server side to get the music.

We start with reading the arch wiki of MPD and the arch wiki of NCMPCPP to get a general overview of what these applications are and how they can function.

Google “ncmpcpp” and ask for images if you want to see what you can achieve in regards to the theming.

Then we install them via a script located on one of our ArchMergeD githubs :

Inside the AUR folder you will find the script to install mpd and ncmpcpp.

We take a look at the installation script as well in atom.

The script assumes you have a “Music” folder. You can put your music in there or you can make a symbolic link (ln -s) in there to point to your external harddrive where the bulk of your music is.

If ArchMerge(D) is installed in another language than English, you will need to change the settings of mpd and ncmpcpp to point to the music folder in your language.

Yes I know there are indeed 6 fingers on the hand in the wallpaper … lol – some video fun

Partial list of views within ncmpcpp:

  • 1 – Current playlist
  • 2 – Filesystem browser
  • 3 – DB search
  • 4 – Library
  • 5 – Playlist editor
  • 6 – Tag editor (very powerful!)
  • 7 – Output selector
  • 8 – Music visualizer
  • = – Clock
  • F1 – Help

Other UI keys

  • q – Quit
  • f – Seek forward
  • b – Seek backward
  • \ – Switch between classic and alternative views
  • # – Display bitrate of file
  • i – Show song info
  • I – Show artist info (saved in ~/.ncmpcpp/artists/ARTIST.txt)
  • L – Shuffle between available lyric databases
  • l – Retrieve song lyrics for current song Show/hide lyrics
  • > – Next track
  • < – Previous track
  • p – Play/Pause
  • + – Increase volume 2%
  • - – Decrease volume 2%

Test it out. Learn and have fun.

Tip : press space to change the music visualizer

Cava is just an extra treat

Once you get to know ncmpcpp you can also install cava, which is an “Console-based Audio Visualizer for Alsa (MPD and Pulseaudio)“.

Read more about it on this github.

Install it with this code

Launch it via terminal by typing ‘cava‘. Everything should work out of the box IF mpd and ncmpcpp work. Check out the ~/.config/cava configuration file and see what you can change there.

In the picture beneath I used gradient colors to display the bars.

TIP : use F1 to learn the necessary shortcuts