Function to pull musicbrainz_albumartistid from standardized name available?

I prefer to consolidate my album artists. For example, I routinely change a lead jazz artist with his umpteen band variations from ‘jazz artist name & band’ to simply ‘jazz artist name’ for the album artist. The artist field, OTOH, stays per the album credit.

This approach has caused me an issue of late with my stereo player’s server software. That software now recognizes MB IDs, and they take priority over the legacy text values for album artist. So recently I’ve discovered my player is showing album artist duplicates. So I’d like to back through these duplicates and change all the MB album artist IDs to the ID that matches my preference for album artist.

Is there a function available where I can do this in a script? Ideally, I would type the standardized artist name in the album artist field, then call a script to fill the MB album artist ID tag with the proper ID. My only work then is to make sure I’m using the MB’s standardized artist name.

In short, no.

  1. Picard is not manual tagging software.

  2. You cannot get a unique MBID based on what will often be a non-unique artist name.

It would, however be possible to have a script (or plugin) that sees whether album artist name starts with the first artist name, and if so replaces both the album artist name with the first track artist name and the albumartist MBID with the first track artist MBID.

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Not to be a contrarian, but if I’m properly understanding the question, this is how I handle it with scripting:


Note that you will likely need the “Additional Artists Variables” plugin for this to work.


I’m already running that plugin, but I only looked at the album variables - not the tracks - so you gave me some hope. Alas, it didn’t work for the two artists I’ve looked at so far. For Count Basie & His Orchestra or Miles Davis All Stars or Miles Davis Quintet, the tracks’ primary id is still the band name.

I also looked at ‘_artists_track_all_sort_primary’ to make sure I wasn’t missing it, but no joy.

It may still work for other bands. I’ll have to see.

Thanks for the suggestion!

Gotcha - it sounds like you are hoping to canonicalize an MBID down to a “core” entity such as a person or primary leader of a band/group.

I’d personally try to steer away from this route as it would require a relationship to exist between the “larger” entity (band) and a “smaller” entity (individual). If such a link exists, you’d likely find that the reliability at the scale of your library is spotty given that someone would need to create this link for each band. Multiple people can also be associated with bands, so I can see this becoming hairy trying to untangle or assign one person.

Navigating around all of these constraints, it sounds like this may be a newer issue of your mentioned music server (I presume Roon, given the context?). If you’re not using the Album Artist MBID for anything else, you could try removing this ID and see if it falls back to the plaintext Album Artist field.

If that works and doesn’t create any headaches for you down the road, you could roll this into a script using something like $delete.


This will unset and mark the field for deletion upon save.

Checking for the ‘eponymous member of…’ relationship seems to be perfect for the situation mentioned in the OP. I don’t know enough about the existing scripts and plugins to advise on how to use that to change the artist tag based on that though, sorry.

As mentioned by @rhetticent it’s going to rely on the relationship being in MB… but there’s often nothing wrong with yet another excuse to go through and fix things while tagging :wink:


Eponymous member would be perfect - that and the member’s MBID.

I’ve thought about this but I worry that I’d regret down the road for whatever reason. My software (Logitech Media Server) must have a reason to have added it.

But the existing MB system for album artist to too cumbersome for me. I much prefer the album artist be the ‘eponymous’ member - it’s how I’ve always done it. It’s really only a major issue in Jazz where musicians often had a much looser relationship with each other. If I want to listen to an album artist on my player, I don’t want to have to flip through all the different band entities he/she may have been a part of.

For many media centres the main use of Album Artist is to keep an album in one artist’s discography. If an album is full of “artist feat other artist” in the artist fields it all gets split up and messy otherwise.

So changing this field is going to do exactly what you want in most media centres.

If I was trying to put all of the “Charlie Parker” albums together, then I’d get hold of MP3Tag and do a bulk edit on that exact Album Artist field on all tracks at the same time.

I’d load up one Charlie Parker album so I can see what the value of the MBID should be (or read it from the MusicBrainz page).

Next I’d the load up ALL the quartets, quintets, etc. Select all, and use the < Extended Tags > toolbar button to set ALL the Album Artists at the same time.


Using a script to read Eponymous Member is great… but it is not always set and sometimes it can be a faff to setup.

MP3TAG is superb at being able to change just one tag in bulk like this. Especially if you already have all your Charlie Parker and variants in one folder called Charlie Parker as you can just right click and pick MP3TAG from the context menu.


Thanks, but I can already do this in Foobar2000. I’m hoping for the script function, tho, to make it automatic for tagging new albums. If the eponymous relationship doesn’t exist, I can still manually correct it.