I would dump WMP entirely and get VLC from videolan.org a top open source popular FREEWARE unobtrusive loveable beast. VideoLAN - Official page for VLC media player, the Open Source video framework!
It's top flight caz it has codecs for most everything built in, no installing codecs at all for most people.
Also, I use and recommend foobar2000 and 1by1 for audio playing, and not bloatware like winamp. foobar2000
^slick searches even on a big collection mpesch3.de - Homepage of mp3DirectCut and 1by1 - free mp3 editor+recorder and audio directory player
^has a Mp3 cutting app too, worth a look, all free!