Author Topic: Tagging / filtering Issue - Genre  (Read 2478 times)


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I have spent the afternoon learning and configuring MusicBee. I think that I like this even better than my previous music managers. One issue keeps me from potentially switching over. The genre tags. I have a large collection of mp3's that I have tagged with custom genres. For example I use genre tags such as: Rock (Hard Rock), Rock (Heavy Metal), Folk (Norwegien), Folk (Irish), etc. The tags were encoded with the option of ID3v2 then ID3v1 using the programs Tag Tuner or MP3-tag.

Two other music managers (Media Monkey & Helium Music Manager) display my genre tags as I made them. MusicBee is not handling these so well. When I filter my mp3's by genre in the library explorer, MusicBee is displaying the tags in different ways. For example for Rock (Hard Rock) I am seeing two separate genres (Hard Rock), Rock. If I have ACDC tagged as Rock (Hard Rock), MusicBee is showing all my ACDC albums under both tags (Hard Rock) & Rock. It is doubling the genres. Also there are a few (very few) albums that MusicBee will show as Rock (Hard Rock). If I open the tag editor (right clicking on the album art), I will see the genre listed as Rock; (Hard Rock) instead of Rock (Hard Rock).

What can I do to make MusicBee filter the genres as I have them tagged? Is it possible to do without rewriting my tags? I already spent a huge amount of time tagging them this way, and am not going to retag them. It takes forever. Please show me step by step if it is possible. I really would like to use this as my default music manager.

Thank you for your time.


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Hi, welcome to the forum!

I think I recall that MB has special handling for "()" tags in genre, which may be the cause of this problem.  You could use Tools > Tagging Tools > Search and Replace to change "()" to "[]" and it would probably take care of it.  (I just tested, seems to work.)

However, MB also has built-in support for Genre Categories that are automatically determined based on the genre, i.e. genre "Hard Rock" = genre category "Rock".  Take a look in Tags (2) preferences, under "group genres"/"Categorize".  Maybe that would suit your purposes? If you want to take that approach, you can quickly reformat tags using the Additional Tagging & Reporting Tools plugin:
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  • Guest
Thanks for the reply. It seems changing to [ ] might work. Also if I clear the "group genres"/"Categorize" that helps. But the problem is that MusicBee has read most of my tags as split tags. If I look at the tags through MusicBee, I see things like Rock; (Hard Rock). So if I do a search & replace, then I will be doing a lot of work trying to replace both tags. Some of my tags are just single so that would mean I would have to retag all of them due to having replaced the single tag when trying to get rid of the split tags (headache). Also, some of the genre fields are empty in MusicBee even though show up in the genre filter. So search & replace probably wont work on them.Even if the [ ] work, I really do not perfer [ ] instead of ( ). I have used [ ] for other types of visual tagging.

I think the developer has done a lot of work and this program is really good. People with large collections have spent a lot of time (hundreds of hours) organizing them just how they want. And if they have tagged & organized things correctly (I have redone my tags, etc cross referencing several programs to make sure they all match) the last thing they want to do is retag all their files because one nice player has a particular way of handling things that 4 - 5 other programs do not. They simply want the program to display the tags as they were set up or have a way to work around it without having to spend even more time retagging them.

Anyone have additional work arounds?


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It has been mentioned before:

It's unlikely to be accidental, but I'm not sure of (and can't find) the original reason for the genre tag being split this way.   :-\

I can't think of a simple workaround that will let you keep the parentheses in the tag. Even if you can edit the tags and get them to display correctly, if MusicBee ever rescans that file for any reason it will split it again.

Both of psychoadept's suggestions are best for the current version of MusicBee. Genre Categories are well suited for this kind of thing. As MusicBee is already seeing two genre tags for each of your tracks, it may be easier to use mp3Tag to do a search and replace. I just tested a file and it still reads the genre tag as a single string.

If you do decide to use Genre Categories note that mapping is only one-to-many. i.e. You can have category "Rock" with genres "Hard rock", "Soft rock", "Heavy Metal" etc. but you couldn't also have a category "Metal" that lists tracks with the genre "Heavy Metal".

Your last resort is to start a new thread on the Wishlist forum requesting that the automatic genre splitting is removed. With Steven focusing on version 3 now, changes and new features are unlikely to be implemented for a while.
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