History:Object Model/Artist Thoughts
This is a future sketch of how linking artists to "releases"/"tracks" (I use paranthesis as I mean the words in the current sense) could work in the future. It is just a dump of thoughts and later will be worked into other pages. Aim is to solve multiple artist problems and alias problems. Though we still need an interim solution for SG5.
First we'll define some vocabulary.
- ArtistEntity is exactly what currently is one actual artist. This can be either a person or a group of persons (band, orchestra, collaboration, ...) - later we also should take into account: fictional characters, projects, ... The ArtistEntity is defined through a unique ID.
- Artists have a main ArtistName and some more ArtistAliases - the main name is a consensus of the users for displaying the ArtistEntity.
- Tracks and releases have PrimaryArtists (called TrackArtist and ReleaseArtist), SecondaryArtists and other contributors - they are all ArtistEntities and have certain roles on the release, though the borderline is not clear defined.
- We will only look at the PrimaryArtists now that are mentioned as those on the cover of a release and call them ReleaseArtists. The exact label that is printed on the cover therefore is the ReleaseArtistLabel. This is the most exact artist name you can give for a release and it always refers to one or more ArtistEntities we called PrimaryArtists or as said ReleaseArtists.
When selecting the artists for a issued release and its tracks (however defined) you want to do three things:
- Relate every artist that took part in the release with a description of their role on it
- Have a label describing the PrimaryArtist(s) how they are written on the release (ReleaseArtistLabel)
- Relating the ReleaseArtistLabel directly to the according ArtistEntities of the ReleaseArtists
The third step is not quite obvious first and might look redundant concerning you also have linked them with their role. Though it has advantages. First if you include TrackGrouping then most contributors are linked to the super groups of the released objects and not the released objects themselves (indeed that leads to not allowing performance ARs and other AdvancedRelationshipTypes to be used for releases any more but only for TrackGroups). Second you also can combine 3. with 1. to solve a redundancy problem of 1.: several releases might have the same ReleaseArtistLabel. Also we want to have some consistency in the ReleaseArtistLabels and keep them easy to maintain. So it might come handy to share them between the releases.
A solution might look like this:
- Relate all artists/contributors via AdvancedRelationships to the place they belong (that is a super group of a track mostly)
- Relate ReleaseArtists with core database links to the releases/tracks and give the user the possibility to select a name from the artist: either the ArtistName itself or one of the ArtistAliases. This is then used as the ReleaseArtistLabel for the released release/track.
- Though: if there are several ReleaseArtists, let the user relate them all to the release and select an ArtistName/ArtistAlias for all of them. Also let the user enter join phrases which are used to combine the selected names to the final ReleaseArtistLabel (LukasLalinsky proposal).
Also note that we have a nice side effect: this is 100% compatible with ID3v2, so good for tagging MP3s. A user with a player that does not differentiate artists by MusicBrainzID but by the main artist field (I think that's the case for every player) might chose to always tag his files with the main ArtistName(s) and not with the ReleaseArtistLabel as this might split one artist into several in the player display.
Then again we have discussed about the VA release problem. It is a difference if a release really is performed by various artists or if it is mostly performed by one artist (who is credited on the front cover) and only one or two tracks are performed by others (contributing with the main artist). So we might want to allow releases that contain songs from different artists to be credited to one single artist (or one or more ReleaseArtists to be correct) as ReleaseArtist and still display all TrackArtists.
Let us now define a bit clearer when we have one PrimaryArtist, when several PrimaryArtists and when we have a collaboration (which again is one PrimaryArtist). Therefore we consider the simple case that there are two artists, artist A and artist B. Then:
- A song performed by both together only appears on releases of artist A -> Add artist B with (feat.) and add a AdvancedRelationship from the PerformanceRelationshipClass.
- A song appears on releases of both and there are no other songs they performed together
- 1st case: ReleaseArtistLabel can be expressed as a combination of ArtistName/ArtistAlias of both -> several ReleaseArtists, combine names with join phrases
- 2nd case: ReleaseArtistLabel has no (separable) reference to the ArtistNames/ArtistAliases of the both PrimaryArtists -> having such a styled name you can consider this a joint "project" anyways and therefore -> create a collaboration
- The artists are working together over a longer period / have done several songs together / have done songs together which were mostly released under a (steady or similar) common ReleaseArtistLabel and do not so much appear on releases of the artists alone -> create a collaboration