Artist: Gerhard Narholz - IPIs, works and aliases

Seeking for your help and opinions about how to treat works for the following artist:

As for now in MB most (if not all) of his aliases made through “perform as” relationship linked to separate artist entities. But i would like to ask - if we are speaking about works - is it correct to do so? I mean if he is a composer and doesnt, lets say, “perform” his works (play or sing) - is it correct to spread his aliases onto different artists instead consolidating under one entity?

Again regarding works - if we open his profile in BMI (6k+ works) then we can see that all his aliases consolidated under single artist. Different aliases have different IPIs for example:

SIEBEN OTTO 00028621687
XYCO 00278933219
PRINDY MAC 00046356575

Lets say i want to add a new release. For example this one, where he is under “Otto Sieben” alias. Should i…

  1. Use his Otto Sieben “perform as” alias both on track list (recs) and works level?
  2. Use his Otto Sieben “perform as” alias only on track list (recs) and use his “main” (legal name) composer artist “Gerhard Narholz” on works level?
  3. Use his “main” (legal name) composer artist “Gerhard Narholz” on both levels, but on track list use “credited as” Otto Sieben.

Honestly, you can laugh at me, but after several years i still dont get how to operate with this “perform as” especially when most of the time i work at “work” level relationships, PROs and IPI numbers. Should we store all IPIs under legal composer name (his “main” entity) or should we create a new alias for new IPI…

They literally list him as “COMPOSER: Otto Sieben” so I’d certainly use that for works.

But spotify publishes album under his real name. The reverse cases are also true - labels show one name, digital stores other - usually only PROs show legal name (while also could publish under alias like the case above).

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It does have both the real name and the performance name. I’ve seen Spotify entries do weird stuff like that before. For example, there’s a Spanish rap duo which gets credited for stuff even if only one member of the duo is involved (and the cover and other sources list the member only), because that makes it so more people see it and it gets into their “new music by your favourite artist” playlists. I think this is kind of like that - they want to make sure people see this whether they follow the legal name or the performance name. So quite often I do not follow Spotify artist credits if they feel strange.

That said, even for Spotify, if you check their “written by” credits on the first track for example, it says “Written by: Adam Saunders, Mark Stephen Cousins, Otto Sieben” (rather than using the legal name).


Hm, I was hasty in my conclusion about spotify - its a “Gregor Narholz”, his son, not himself. But anyway the thesis itself is true.

My next question - may be there is some logic in linking writers IPIs with their existing aliases (taken from PROs) and make them in a “master-detail” relationship? So we would have one “main” (or “root”) artist and link all recs/works to the the same person and in the same time use aliases on the tracklist if needed?

I am so interested in this subject, coz i dont like the idea that linking works to different MB artist entities - in such case in music player i would see tracks as they were created by different persons while de facto they created one person.

I totally get this point of view, but at the same time, there’s clearly some sort of artist intent on using different names for different music. I wonder how hard would it be to have a plugin to always follow legal name relationships when tagging in Picard for example for people who prefer that consistency. @outsidecontext, how doable does that sound? :slight_smile:

Basically the main question here is “are the aliases different projects”, as usual :slight_smile: In general, if the IPI is linked everywhere to the alias I’d add it to the alias, if it’s used for both I’d add it to both (we’re supposed to document reality, so even if IPIs should only apply to one artist, if in reality it’s more confusing than that, we can have it on both artists).

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Yeah, it would be a good solution too. If Picard could use MB linking to virtually “merge” different artist alias in one entity (basically the “root” one) for the music player - it would be good. In that case i suppose it would be ok to link IPIs with separate artist entities and then link it to the “root” artist.

It’s very hard to talk about “projects” at all when you work only with PRO data and when production music composers dont have any official sites, social nets, wiki pages and etc, so basically you only know them by legal name/aliases + IPI number in databases. :smile:

That would be doable. Only limitation would be in order for this to also work for artists in advanced relationships the plugin would need to perform an additional lookup per artist in order to fetch the aliases. That can significantly slow down loading releases with many artists listed (adding 1 second per artist to the loading time).

Essentially it’s the same issues as with Picard’s existing artist name translation feature.

May be it would be possible to create some “cache” of such aliases and relationships for preloading into Picard? So you download it one time and following release queries use it as database for such relationships. You can ofc update this “cache” with some interval.