Filename to Tag


I had all my mp3 files in the same format. It looked like this:

Beatles, The.White Album.Disc 03.06.Helter Skelter

Every piece was separated with a period. None of the tagging software I tried would populate the tag when I chose to create tag from filename. One program renamed all my files in this format:

Beatles, The.White Album.Disc 03.06.Helter Skelter - - 06 - Beatles, The.White Album.Disc 03.06.Helter Skelter

Notice the hyphens and duplicated information. How can I tag my files when the filenames look like the example above? I think I can find the files before they were altered but I already know the software doesn’t like my original format of filenames.

Please advise.


You could tag your files with Picard and this file naming string: %artistsort%.%album%.Disc %discnumber%.%tracknumber%.%title%

But please make a backup with files to test this with first. I haven’t tested this myself, but it should do what you want (though “White Album” is not an official name, so that release will be tagged with its official name “The Beatles” instead).


Thank you for the prompt response. I’m not quite clear, could you explain it with a little more step by step instruction? I think you’re telling me how to get them tagged correctly, but I’ve tried a bunch of apps and it doesn’t like my filename format with periods between the details. Is there something I can do to uncorrupt the filenames? Does your example take the filenames into consideration? If I have to, I can copy my library back to my laptop from my phone and they haven’t been affected and kept my format in the original condition, before all the hyphens and spaces and duplicating data came up.



Hey @thefonebug, I’m assuming you have all the files sorted and named correctly, but no existing (or bad) tags, or similar? Now you are looking to just populate the tags?

Picard works best if you simply re-match/re-tag everything using its functions like ‘scan’ and ‘lookup’, as it’s been created to work with the MusicBrainz database, not really as a tool for the kind of workarounds you’re trying to do. If you use your music a lot, are interested in precise and flexible tags and data, or just have the time, I’d recommend using Picards inbuilt functions to simply retag everything.
If you want a hand with that, let us know!
The only reason I would see not to do is if you have a huge amount of music and just don’t care that much/want the quickest fix.

I think @mfmeulenbelt meant for you to retag/match everything using Picard, and then overwrite the file names using that string - once things are matched with Picard you can very easily rename all of your music with one click (pretty much!)

Anyway, let us know what exactly you’re after and why you’re choosing this method. Maybe someone can help you with tagging from filenames as well, or recommend a different tagger.

ps. Just to reiterate, back up your files first. If you’re trying out different programs and settings this is really important!! We can offer you a shoulder to cry on later if you don’t, but our shoulders are starting to get salty and crusty :stuck_out_tongue:


If you retag your files with Picard and use the file naming string I posted in Options > File Names you should get correct tags and the file names you want. Here is a short guide to using Picard.

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