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Adriaan van Nijendaal
2006-12-22, 04:12
The first slimserver I have used, about 3 years ago, would show all
albums with the same name in 'browse albums' ONCE. It would also have
artists called 'Various Artists' - which I hated. The fix (then) was
to store ALL CDs like /genre/artist/album/song.mp3. Which is what I
did, with all 1000 of them.

It makes sense to be able to navigate to a song following a consistent
pathname. 'We', linux users, can do 'ls /pop/*/Merry\ Christmas/*.mp3'
to find all songs in a compilation. I like that. I *do not* want to
move my mp3 files around.

The last and the previous releases of Slimserver have an option called
'variousArtistAutoIdentification' which is called "List albums by all
artists for that album". It doesn't work for me. That's because I
split multi-artist albums into several directories.

The description doesn't say that, it just says: "List albums by all
artists for that album". No if's, no but's about where my files are.
We have numerous "Various Artists' threads that show it's confusing.

My opinion is that variousArtistAutoIdentification is broken.

Browsing for albums, I get "20 Great Songs of Christmas" 20 times. I
know that "Merry Christmas" is an not-so-original name used for both a
compilation and some artist, and I understand why the whole directory
issue is there.

But: I have quite a few compilation albums and they mess up the 'Browse
Albums' function. Also, I cannot play a whole compilation without
clicking on '+' 20 times.

I've tried to go through the *.pm scripts trying to find where this
connection between variousArtistAutoIdentification and the file
location is made. My knowledge of Perl to too limited - I cannot find
it. (I wanted to ditch that file-location piece of code.)

So, this is my request:

Can we please have an 'variousArtistAreSplit' option that tells
slimserver that it should group albums regardless of their location
when 'variousArtistAutoIdentification' is on?

We could have a warning saying that if two albums are called "Merry
Christmas" they will be mentioned ONCE only. I'd prefer that error
over the broken 'browse albums' function I've been coping with in the
last releases.

I think that this proposal might end the "Various Artists" debate.


------------------------------------------------------------------------
Adriaan van Nijendaal adriaan @ choam.com +32 (0)80 319 913
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adamslim
2006-12-22, 05:36
I'm so glad I have only two compilation albums ;)

Patrick Dixon
2006-12-22, 07:15
I seem to have 227 ;-)

slimpy
2006-12-22, 07:28
103 here.
I never understood what the advantage of splitting compilation albums into artist directories was. I just keep them in their own directories, no problems there. On the other hand I don't want to see each and every artist that only appears on compilation albums in the artist list anyway.

-s.

JJZolx
2006-12-22, 11:33
I think that this proposal might end the "Various Artists" debate.

SlimServer's behavior with respect to compilations, multidisc albums and common album titles tends to change on a monthly basis.

If you fiddle with the organization of your library - namely, placing all tracks of compilation albums within a single folder, and perhaps also using the compilation tag (iTunes' TCMP for mp3's) then you may be able to have today's version of SlimServer recognize them correctly.

But realize that for many people Browse Albums is broken with respect to compilations in many of the sort orderings. So even if you get SlimServer to _recognize_ your albums correctly, they may not be presented correctly in the interface.

radish
2006-12-22, 17:16
I don't think anything will ever end the debate, the problem seems to be that everyone wants it to work a different way. I've never had any problems with compilations (and I have 472 right now) just by setting the track artist tag to the individual artists and keeping to one directory per album. I see the compilations listed as individual albums under Browse Albums and under Various Artists in Browse Artists. But others seem to go to extreme lengths to have it work in some other way...

snarlydwarf
2006-12-22, 18:54
I don't think anything will ever end the debate, the problem seems to be that everyone wants it to work a different way. I've never had any problems with compilations (and I have 472 right now) just by setting the track artist tag to the individual artists and keeping to one directory per album. I see the compilations listed as individual albums under Browse Albums and under Various Artists in Browse Artists. But others seem to go to extreme lengths to have it work in some other way...

Well I didnt go to extreme lengths to have it work the way I want, with each artist showing up in Artists, and the albums (as you have) in albums.

The difference between my setup and yours is, I think, just a matter of taste. I like being able to see the artists in the artist list... so they show up there.

If I click on, say, The Band, I want to see Last Waltz (which is technically a VA album), as well as a couple Dylan-cover albums. (Doin' Dylan and Tangled up in Blues).

But, then, that's why there are server-settings that allow both of us to be happy...

slimpy
2006-12-22, 19:05
Well I didnt go to extreme lengths to have it work the way I want, with each artist showing up in Artists, and the albums (as you have) in albums.

The difference between my setup and yours is, I think, just a matter of taste. I like being able to see the artists in the artist list... so they show up there.

If I click on, say, The Band, I want to see Last Waltz (which is technically a VA album), as well as a couple Dylan-cover albums. (Doin' Dylan and Tangled up in Blues).

But, then, that's why there are server-settings that allow both of us to be happy...
Even with radish's/my setup you would see the same behaviour in your example. If you have at least one regular (=non-VA) album by an artist you will see the artist in the artist list. Under that artist you will also see all albums the artist appears on (VA and non-VA).
Only artists who exclusively appear on VA albums in your collection will not be shown in the artist list.

-s.

snarlydwarf
2006-12-22, 19:07
ah, and the difference between me and the OP, who I think wants it the way I have it....


The fix (then) was
to store ALL CDs like /genre/artist/album/song.mp3. Which is what I
did, with all 1000 of them.

Ick.

That was never my fix: my music is stored as:

%n %t.ext

Ie, "03 This song sucks.flac" or something.

That is in a directory named for the album, sometimes including the artist name, sometimes not. Both of the following are valid subtrees in my setup:

Sinatra/Greatest Hits/03 Frosty the snowman.mp3
Someone Else - Christmas Stuff/04 Frosty the snowman.mp3

The depth and granularity I make up as I go: artists with several albums get their own directory. Those with one or two, can be lumped into a Genre directory with the artist name making part of the directory name.

Yes, the varying depth means I cant use ls to find stuff: but I can use find to, um, find stuff just as well:

find . -name \*Christmas\* -ls

This allows me to keep albums together (important for VA things: I would rather not make a ton of directories for Last Waltz, for example and I would hate trying to find them on my hd... assuming my server had speakers, I can do:
cd "The Band/Last Waltz" ; mpg123 *mp3
or something and play the whole album).

I dont really see a reason to have consistent directory depth. There are two many variables: artists with one album can be tossed into a OneHitWonders directory, while those with more works can be given their own directory. Sometimes I feel like a Genre, sometimes artists are just too difficult to classify and I put them in a directory with related artists. (ie Parliament and Funkadelic can share a directory.)

As long as you keep "one album per directory" and tag things correctly (as much as I like guesstags, it really isnt as good as just fixing the tags), you can order your filesystem as you like.

snarlydwarf
2006-12-22, 19:23
Even with radish's/my setup you would see the same behaviour in your example. If you have at least one regular (=non-VA) album by an artist you will see the artist in the artist list. Under that artist you will also see all albums the artist appears on (VA and non-VA).
Only artists who exclusively appear on VA albums in your collection will not be shown in the artist list.

-s.

Hrrm? Then why:


You can choose to have compilation albums appear together under "Various Artists" or have them appear under each artist in the compilation.
|List compilation albums under each artist|


"Jessica Hagedorn & The Gangster Choir" is exclusively on a single VA album in my collection, and she shows up on the artist list.

This is the setting you and radish set differently than I do. But then, that is a matter of taste. Neither of us is right....

The question is why does it not work for the OP? Well he seems to be splitting VA albums up based on artist... which would be downright painful for some of the stuff in my library (State of the Union, for example, a VA album with a LOT of tracks... 76 on each CD of the two-cd set) and would create a ton of seperate albums.

A path like "<something>/artist/album/song.ext" should -not- be used on various artist albums unless "artist" is replaced with a constant "Various" type string in the path name. Not just for slimserver, but also the case of certain extremely annoying-to-tag albums like State of the Union: I would not like the concept of creating 152 directories to store a 2-cd set.

JJZolx
2006-12-22, 20:28
So, this is my request:

Can we please have an 'variousArtistAreSplit' option that tells
slimserver that it should group albums regardless of their location
when 'variousArtistAutoIdentification' is on?

We could have a warning saying that if two albums are called "Merry
Christmas" they will be mentioned ONCE only. I'd prefer that error
over the broken 'browse albums' function I've been coping with in the
last releases.

I think that this proposal might end the "Various Artists" debate.
I agree that changing this behavior in SlimServer 6.5, without giving an option for the previous behavior, was a mistake. I don't think there _is_ a debate. SlimServer 6.5 makes a mess of many libraries that worked perfectly well with previous versions of the server. You can't make a change like this just because it makes some other task simpler.

I don't store my albums except within single folders (actually not 100% true, as I store multidisc albums with each disc in a separate folder), so the current cataloging behavior works well and avoids problems with same-name albums. But you should not _force_ people to use one and only one type of file & folder organization. Giving an option to revert to the old scanning behavior is the only way to address this.

radish
2006-12-22, 21:29
Sorry - I didn't mean to imply that the way I organize things is the "one true way" - I was just responding to the comment regarding slimserver breaking this functionality on each release. I've been doing it this way for a long time and it's always worked the same.

snarlydwarf
2006-12-22, 21:46
nah don't think you meant that at all, Radish.

I can't see the logic of splitting as the OP did for VA albums. Scattering each track into a seperate folder like:

/John Duncan/1 Hymn.mp3
/Tricia Worden/2 Dear Friend.mp3
/Ui/3 Life Is Shorter.mp3

etc..

Makes no sense to me. It breaks Album Art unless you embed them in tags (which I hate doing, it only makes it more difficult to work with them that way) and makes it hard to find anything. Much better to do:

Misc/State of the Union/1-01 John Duncan- Hymn.mp3
Misc/State of the Union/1-02 Tricia Worden- Dear Friend.mp3
Misc/State of the Union/1-03 Ui- Life Is Shorter.mp3

Then everything is close, easy to work with and behaves correctly with Slimserver as a bonus, either grouping VA into one or not, depending on preference... but most importantly it won't do what the original poster is seeing: making a new album for each track.

Personally, I like the change in 6.5: it meant that I didn't have to keep teaching Slimserver about new common names: Best of, Acoustic, Acústico, Greatest Hits, Perfil, Amazing Grace, Exposure, etc. (I have at least one of each of those: heck, 3 copies of Exposure... all by Robert Fripp, all unique...)

Logically grouping files together so that all tracks from the same album (or "disc" if you prefer to not combine discs... I vary depending on the work) works fine, and is the best way to organize things without getting into really annoying lists for common names.

But then I'm speaking to the choir for that since you already do that.

I am bothered that the OP said that the "right way" he was told here was to do: artist/album/track, which is only true if "artist" is really "albumartist" Using track artist there makes for a mess not only in slimserver, but also the filesystem.

Adriaan van Nijendaal
2006-12-28, 03:52
Dear snarlydwarf and Radish, and all others:

I did not mean to start another *sigh* debate on the pros and cons of
organizing a library in any particular way. Why can't you respect that
my library is broken (in your view)?

I DO NOT want to change the way my library is set-up. I feel I have
good reasons, but that is beside the point here.

I WOULD like to have an option 'variousArtistAreSplit' that stops the
server from taking the physical location of a track into account. YOU
would set it to 0 and keep your lib as it is; I would set it to 1 and
be happy as well.

Adriaan

slimpy
2006-12-28, 04:34
file an enhancement request at http://bugs.slimdevices.com

-s.

snarlydwarf
2006-12-28, 08:57
I did not mean to start another *sigh* debate on the pros and cons of
organizing a library in any particular way. Why can't you respect that
my library is broken (in your view)?

You can have your library as messed up and chaotic as you want. I pity the day you decide to fix album art or years on albums, though. Just which directory should cover.jpg be in?



I WOULD like to have an option 'variousArtistAreSplit' that stops the
server from taking the physical location of a track into account. YOU
would set it to 0 and keep your lib as it is; I would set it to 1 and
be happy as well.


You would also need the Common Titles flag back, unless you really like seeing albums called "Greatest Hits" or whatever with a hundred tracks by different artists...

Adriaan van Nijendaal
2006-12-28, 11:45
On Thu, 28 Dec 2006, snarlydwarf wrote:

> You can have your library as messed up and chaotic as you want. I pity
> the day you decide to fix album art or years on albums, though. Just
> which directory should cover.jpg be in?

OK. I'm getting drawn into this pitfall as well.

Years on albums I fixed a while ago. I wrote a script that 'exports' a
playlist to an MP3 CD. I did 'ls /music/pop/*joe_jackson*/*/*.mp3 > jj.m3u'
and fed this list to my script. It then makes a CD for an MP3
car-radio with the album names in the root directory, prepended by the
year. This way, I can listen to the whole discography of Joe Jackson
*chronologically* while driving. It includes the one or two songs that
are on albums with other performers.

Of course, I found some albums (for other artists and classical music)
that had no year.

Fixing (under linux) is easy:

.. /u/bin/mp3_functions

for file in `find /music/ -name "*.mp3" -print`
do
year=`mp3_prttag "TYER" $file`

if [ $year = "(unknown)" ]
then
echo -n " : $file "
echo -n `mp3_prttag "TALB" $file`
echo " does NOT have a year tag"
fi
done

In other words, dear snarlydwarf, if one has the right tools there's
really no objection to having music stored in a 'chaotic' but
orthogonal way.

I know by now that your 'solution' works (for you) - you've made that
clear. I'm looking for other solutions that would help more people -
appearantly not you. The recurring 'Various Artists' debates show
there are a few more like me.

Cover.jpg? I don't know - I don't have any. Now, start bashing me for
not having cover art. I'd opt for having it as a tag anyways.

Fact remains: I asked for a solution and some people keep on beating a
dead horse. That includes you.

This will be my last post on the subject of library organization -
this thread is about something else: the addition of an
'variousArtistAreSplit' option.

> You would also need the Common Titles flag back, unless you really like
> seeing albums called "Greatest Hits" or whatever with a hundred tracks
> by different artists...

I already wrote in my first post that such behavior would be
acceptable to me.

Adriaan

timrfletcher
2006-12-29, 19:44
I really don't want to get into a the debate about the "right" way to organize your library, but I also had a problem with this change. I too have my VA albums split into multiple directories. I did this because it simplified the process of ripping and tagging. If had known it was going to cause problems down the road I could have done it differently, but I didn't.

Although I've found work arounds to all the problems mentioned above (including album art), I thought I would re-organize my library to put all the VA tracks into one directory per album, just in case some change down the road breaks my work arounds. After 2 days of renaming and re-tagging I was probably less than 10% done. Faced with the prospect of spending my whole vacation on this project I said the hell with it and restored everything back to the way it was.

So add me to the list of people who would like to see an option to go back to the previous behaviour.

snarlydwarf
2006-12-29, 20:32
IAfter 2 days of renaming and re-tagging I was probably less than 10% done.

Why retag? Isn't the album name the same?

I would think any of the usual taggers would let you move stuff easily based on tags...

(Nope, I am not trying to convince you to do it the easy way: just trying to figure out why it would take 20 days to handle your VA albums.... I could do it in 2 minutes if eyeD3's rename function actually created missing directories... but I've seen Windows based taggers that handle creating missing directories just fine. Nor was I telling Adrjaan that he was wrong: I used the words "Personally" and gave a concrete example of why it would totally suck for some pieces as well as making Album Art annoying as sin.... if you insist on doing it your way, vote for the bug. I am just trying to figure out why it is so complicated to do it with an individual album per directory.

And yes, I realize this is an excessive disclaimer, but some people wear their undies too tight it seems and unless I explain repeatedly that I don't actually give a crap how you organize your music -- I won't ever have to navigate your setup -- they seem to think I care... For some stupid reason I actually like helping people get the most out of their music listening and if a simple macro in the tagger-of-your-choice lets you do that, then why not?

Again, feel free to organize your music in whatever way you want: if you believe it should be sorted based on the third letter of the track name and wonder why it is hard to find things, I will tell you how to go to something SlimServer would be more comfy with.)

timrfletcher
2006-12-29, 21:19
Why retag? Isn't the album name the same?

I would think any of the usual taggers would let you move stuff easily based on tags...

(Nope, I am not trying to convince you to do it the easy way: just trying to figure out why it would take 20 days to handle your VA albums.... I could do it in 2 minutes if eyeD3's rename function actually created missing directories... but I've seen Windows based taggers that handle creating missing directories just fine. Nor was I telling Adrjaan that he was wrong: I used the words "Personally" and gave a concrete example of why it would totally suck for some pieces as well as making Album Art annoying as sin.... if you insist on doing it your way, vote for the bug. I am just trying to figure out why it is so complicated to do it with an individual album per directory.

And yes, I realize this is an excessive disclaimer, but some people wear their undies too tight it seems and unless I explain repeatedly that I don't actually give a crap how you organize your music -- I won't ever have to navigate your setup -- they seem to think I care... For some stupid reason I actually like helping people get the most out of their music listening and if a simple macro in the tagger-of-your-choice lets you do that, then why not?

Again, feel free to organize your music in whatever way you want: if you believe it should be sorted based on the third letter of the track name and wonder why it is hard to find things, I will tell you how to go to something SlimServer would be more comfy with.)

I knew I was going to regret getting involved with this. On one hand you're right, I wouldn't have to retag, but it would involve considerable changes to my existing scripts and configurations.

On the other hand, why are you being such a pain in the ass about this? Why can't somebody express an opinion without you posting a condescending reply?

Adriaan van Nijendaal
2006-12-30, 10:51
On Fri, 29 Dec 2006, snarlydwarf wrote:

> For some stupid reason I actually like helping people get the most
> out of their music listening and if a simple macro in the
> tagger-of-your-choice lets you do that, then why not?

Because, dear SnarlyDwarf, you're confusing 'helping' with
'pressuring people to adopt YOUR solution'.

Loosen or undo your undies and then go help someone else. Or, even
better: come up with a solution that does NOT require me to
re-organize my library.

Adriaan

snarlydwarf
2006-12-30, 11:02
Because, dear SnarlyDwarf, you're confusing 'helping' with
'pressuring people to adopt YOUR solution'.


Pressure? Oh, lord. Words on the screen are coercion? Saying "Personally, I think" is pressuring you?

"Doctor, why does it hurt when I swallow tortilla chips whole?"

"Try chewing them first, it will reduce chances of snagging your throat."

"But I like eating them whole!"

...

Whatever, enjoy your setup as you have it.



Loosen or undo your undies and then go help someone else. Or, even
better: come up with a solution that does NOT require me to
re-organize my library.


Since I have no interest in that: make it worth my while.

snarlydwarf
2006-12-30, 11:13
I knew I was going to regret getting involved with this. On one hand you're right, I wouldn't have to retag, but it would involve considerable changes to my existing scripts and configurations.

On the other hand, why are you being such a pain in the ass about this? Why can't somebody express an opinion without you posting a condescending reply?

Why is my reply condescending?

Skip the disclaimer part if you wish: you said you had to retag and I was trying to figure out why. It didnt make any sense to me at all why you would. And then you agreed you didn't... okay, that answered that.

But since you didn't seem to have a moral "I shall not rearrange tracks" thing going on, just a "this is a real pain in the ass" thing... I figured it could be helpful to figure out where the pain in the ass is coming from and fix that?

How on earth is that condescending: when someone says "this doesn't work the way I want, and I tried changing it but that sucked completely" ... isn't "well, lets figure out why it was so hard to rearrange stuff" a good answer? Odds are you have the tools on your system already to do that, showing you how to use them to do what you want would be a good thing.

The disclaimer is because for some unknown reason, Adriaan thinks I care about how he organizes his music (as you can see, he replied...). I don't.

And since you seem to want a disclaimer: I Do Not Care How You Organize Your Music. If you have no moral bias against rearranging stuff (which you don't seem to have: you said you started the process), but a "this is a pain in the ass, why can I not make this stupid computer do what rote work" problem, I am quite willing to help you make the stupid computer do rote work....

If the subtext is "i refuse to change my ways, make slimserver change" then go vote for the bug... But don't confuse the issue with "I tried to reorganize but it was a pain in the ass to change tags and rename things" sorts of comments. That is asking for help in tagging and renaming...

jeffmeh
2006-12-30, 11:52
If the tags are correct, it should be fairly simple to reorganize the files to be in a single directory per album. For example, MP3Tag will rename/reorganize the files based upon the tags.

I use these strings to reorganize after I have cleaned up tags. All of my flac files are under \\Nas-00-94-94\media\Music\flac\.

This is the MP3TAG string for regular (not various artists) albums:

"\\Nas-00-94-94\media\Music\flac\%artist%\%album%\$num(%track%, 2) - %artist% - %title%

This is the MP3TAG string for various artists albums:

"\\Nas-00-94-94\media\Music\flac\Various Artists\%album%\$num(%track%,2) - %artist% - %title%

Adriaan van Nijendaal
2006-12-30, 15:39
On Sat, 30 Dec 2006, snarlydwarf wrote:

> Pressure? Oh, lord. Words on the screen are coercion? Saying
> "Personally, I think" is pressuring you?

Oh - I'm sorry. You aren't the one calling my work messed up and
chaotic? And painful if you'd do the same? And you aren't the one that
pities the day I have to do some maintenance on it? Where exactly did
you say "Personally, I think"?


Dear SNARLY Dwarf,

If you'd been around long enough to remember the older releases of
Slimserver, you'd know that my (bad? overly structured? transparent?)
way to organize my music library was rewarded with a representation in
both 'browse albums' and 'browse artists' that looked great. Your way
of setting a library up caused some problems.

If I do remember correctly, it is the default behavior of rippers to
put VA ablums in one directory. The people who used the defaults were
the ones asking for a 'better' solution. The ones that figured out a
way to get it right were left out. Too bad for me. I guess I'm part of
a minority.

All I wanted is the 'old' behavior back, without breaking the way
others do things. I certainly did not want a close-to-religion debate
- no one is helped by that.

Please stop repeating the answer that I (and some others) don't want
to hear, for reasons that have been explained to you.

I hoped that my request would help sort it out but you are making the
signal-to-noise ratio unacceptably high.

This will be my last post on this thread - we're going nowhere fast
(with you on this thread).

Thanks so much for your constructive effort!

Adriaan

vandermerwe
2006-12-30, 16:36
Use Mp3Tag to change the "Album Artist" Field to "Albumartist".. This field is recognised by slimserver, whereas "Album Artist" is not. Set ss to display albums by band and all artists when viewing by artist. Then set ss enable album and band in album browse view

lemmy999
2007-01-11, 08:16
Use Mp3Tag to change the "Album Artist" Field to "Albumartist".. This field is recognised by slimserver, whereas "Album Artist" is not. Set ss to display albums by band and all artists when viewing by artist. Then set ss enable album and band in album browse view

I have just been ripping the compilation CD into \genre\various\albumname\xx-artist-songtitle.flac. and then manually opening in mp3tag and adding the appropriate artist name with the filename->tag function (in addition to the "Various Artist" artist tag that is already on every track). Then in slimserver if I want to see the entire album, I got to the "Various Artist" artist. If I want just the one song by a certain band, I go to that artist and the album shows up there, but with just their 1 track on the comp album. I have never heard of the "albumartist" tag. I thought these were the only tags supported by slimserver http://wiki.slimdevices.com/index.cgi?SlimServerSupportedTags

Also, what is the purpose of using the "compilation" tag? If I set this would it allow me to leave out the "various artist" tag and then in SS I could select to have the album show up as individual artists OR as various artists? I do not think I like this because I prefer having both like I do now.