Guideline for when a bandmember is credited as "featured"

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We’ve got some debate going on in these edits (1) (2), and could use more input.

The studio album for Ummagumma is comprised of tracks where each member went off and wrote and recorded something on their own. Some issues show the member’s name next to the track; some list it as “featuring [member]”, and some omit the names and just give the standard writers credit. The question is whether the artist’s intent was to credit the tracks to band or to the bandmember alone. Is it a Pink Floyd song featuring X, or is an X song that happens to be on a Pink Floyd album, or should it be credited to some variation of “Pink Floyd feat. [a member of Pink Floyd]”, though I can’t think of any other examples where that would occur outside jazz.

The tracks are all registered at ASCAP as being written by the individual members, but performed by Pink Floyd. Some of the tracks had also been performed live by the band before being recorded.

The edits are to issues that use the “featuring” text, just to strip away the solo artist credits and revert them back to album artist credits, so we can discuss and vote on how they should appear.


Now that at ASCAP the rightholders (writers) of the works are registered as the individual band members that composed the songs, I think you best add to each track the Composer (writer) there.

Now that at ASCAP the performing rights apparently are credited to the band as a whole, next to the track you best mention Pink Floyd (the band) as the Artist, not the composer as the artist.

Hope this info helps! :slight_smile:

(oh I tried to put my notes at your edits, but cannot because I am not a member yet for 2 weeks, so that’s why I reply here)


Track list artist credits are for denoting how artists are credited on the track list. If the track on that specific release says “[Group Name] feat. [Name of Individual Member]”, then that’s what the track artist credit should reflect.

I would say that the corresponding Recording should just be by the individual though, so don’t push artist credit changes to recordings when editing the release. :wink:


We usually do the following if the band is the performing the track, but one of the band members also is credited as a separate artist:

“[Pink Floyd] credited as [Pink Floyd feat. Nick Mason]”.

This is for example used on many releases by T-Rex (Marc Bolan & T-Rex, etc) and Wings (Paul McCartney & Wings).

You can correct it to “[Pink Floyd] credited as [Pink Floyd]”, if it’s an error or if it’s not artist intent.


I don’t really agree with that. Why not simply normal artist credit?

Pink Floyd feat. Nick Mason


“If the track on that specific release says “[Group Name] feat. [Name of Individual Member]”, then that’s what the track artist credit should reflect.”

I agree completely, but I should have requested that people look at the artwork (the back cover and LP labels) to see if they think that’s the case here. If most people do, I’ll cancel the edits and submit it that way. I just honestly think that the intent was just informational, but I do understand why people would disagree.


If it says “feat.”, I have to assume that the band is implicitly credited for the track. “Feat. {band member}” doesn’t make sense unless some other artist is also being credited.


Because it’s still one entity, not two. The Feature Artist style guideline points to separate “feat.” artist credits as being for when somebody other than the original artist. Since the “featured” artist is part of the band, the style guideline doesn’t apply here, and we have kind of a vacuum.

I thought of a few more examples that illustrate the problem:
Starship featuring Mickey Thomas is still just the band Starship; Mickey Thomas is part of the band. (Originally they went out as “Mickey Thomas’s Starship”)
Jeff Lynne’s ELO is (correctly, IMO) used as a as-credited name for ELO – we don’t link Jeff Lynne’s name separately. Would it be any different if it was “ELO featuring Jeff Lynne”?


I don’t really understand this conversation tbh… Why would we not credit the band member as on release?
Clearly the band has gone out of their way to credit the band member specifically on the back page, and MB is just a reflection of their intent, so we should do the same.
[band] feat. [band member]

edit: this is from looking at the back of the release and the text on the mediums here:
Which both say ‘featuring …’, prominently enough in my opinion

[quote=“Torc, post:8, topic:161248”]
Jeff Lynne’s ELO is (correctly, IMO) used as a as-credited name for ELO – we don’t link Jeff Lynne’s name separately. Would it be any different if it was “ELO featuring Jeff Lynne”?
[/quote]I don’t think groups where a member is always, in every release, prominently featured, or it seems like some kind of marketing decision because a band member got famous, is a good comparison at all. That doesn’t seem like a specific stylistic or informative choice by the artist, like in this case.

edit: also, in that example would it really hurt to have Jeff Lyne linked separately? Tags would end up the same. And his discography would get a little longer, but not necessarily become wrong? Or is that another can of worms…


I agree that it’s a different kind of case, and it would be nice to have a consistent guideline for it. I ran into that here:

My reasoning was the same as @Torc’s, that it was just a different way of crediting the same artist. But ultimately I agree with the idea of using separate artist credits; it only adds to the available info, and we can choose later what to do with it.


It’d be false information, implying that ELO and Jeff Lynne are separate entities. The How to Split Artists guideline covers this:

The split artists edit type can only be used on artists that have no relationships, other than “collaboration” relationships. […] Please make sure the artist should be split before entering the edit! Established bands (like Emerson, Lake and Palmer) shouldn’t be split; this is intended for short term collaborations that don’t merit their own artist page.

Each of these called-out names have a relationship other than “collaboration” – they’re “members of”.


We should change this (if people are going to follow the letter and not the spirit), because from what I can tell in this case the band members individually went off and worked on songs, and then collaborated with the band entity (that they are members of) to create the song. I’m a bit tired though, if I’ve misread, this doesn’t apply.
Why we don’t allow them to exist and contribute as individuals, just because they’re part of the group as well, seems mean :wink:

I do understand what you mean regarding ELO but I still don’t really see the practical point regarding tagging and browsing MB.


How so? The writing and performance credits covered by relationships, and our job isn’t to second-guess the motivation for how the track is credited. We also don’t know exactly how much input other bandmembers had on the track creation – whether they made suggestions in mixing, producing, editing, sequencing, contributed a line or musical idea, or played a part they weren’t credited with. If we want to change what’s written on the release, we need to prove that it was a mistake, otherwise we’re violating artist intent.


[quote=“Torc, post:13, topic:161248”]
If we want to change what’s written on the release, we need to prove that it was a mistake, otherwise we’re violating artist intent.[/quote]
Those specific tracks explicitly credit specific members as ‘featured’ on the back of the release, and on the medium.
What I am proposing is to follow what’s written on the release, which isn’t Pink Floyd (featuring Pink Floyd), and it’s not Pink Floyd, it’s Pink Floyd (featuring a person). How that’s violating artist intent I can’t imagine :S

edit: I think we’re arguing at cross-purposes about something because I feel like we’re saying the same thing and arriving at different conclusions?


Is that page a style guide? Check out the history of it:

@reosarevok edited it into its current form in 2011. Perhaps he can clarify, but I take the statement about not splitting artists with relationships as a technical rather than style barrier. (The artist which was split can’t be removed by Modbot if it has any relationships.) The comments about not splitting some artists in which the artist name is part of the band name are not directly related to the previous paragraph.

Is there actually a style guideline that covers these cases? The featured artist section doesn’t really seem to.


I think you’re mis-reading that How_To.

The idea is that e.g. Simon & Garfunkel can’t be split because they—as a unit—have relationships that apply only to the collaboration and not to the individuals. That could be an official website or other group members or whatever. The need to store those relationship compels us to maintain the collaboration artist.


[quote=“psychoadept, post:15, topic:161248”]
Is that page a style guide?[/quote]
It’s not marked as such, but the last paragraph, plus the fact that the Featured Artist style page says it applies to guest spots only, makes it clear that it’s not just a technical concern.

But that’s true with any band, is it not? There’s a reason we don’t subdivide Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young into four separate artists, or split Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, and it’s a conscious choice, not a technical one. The band is a singular unit, regardless of how the name is formatted or one member being elevated in status above the others, it’s still one band.

Just because we can split artists names doesn’t mean it makes any sense for us to make them as granular as possible. The collaborations don’t appear in artist searches, and it’s impossible to generate a list of albums that don’t include solo work. Plus there’s really no substantive difference between a band called Eurythmics and one called Lennox and Stewart. I think we’ve already been too aggressive in splitting artists in some cases, and should probably have a rule that says something like two or more releases with the same name means it’s not a short-term collaboration.


Yes, exactly. It’s true for bands. It’s not true for Jeff Lynne and ELO. That pairing does not have any relationships that would make it indivisible (that I know of).


Yeah, the point seems to be that you don’t split actual band names. When extra info is added to the band name, even if it’s the name of a band member, there’s no reason not to split it. There are always going to be edge cases, but this is usually not hard to distinguish. In fact, if someone makes a point to call out a specific band member (even if it’s just because “they’re more famous”) it seems like we would want to record that.


Jeff Lynne (founder, writer, producer, and only performer on their last album) and ELO have no relationships that make them indivisible? What relationship would be required to make them indivisible?

We do, by changing the AC to match what’s on the release. The reason that you don’t break a mentioned member off into a solo artist credit is because it makes the crediting system ambiguous. “If it’s one band, it’s one credit” is logical, definable, consistent, and how we already handle most of these cases. If you start weaseling in and using different standards depending on the wording, it falls apart. ABBA, John Spencer Blues Explosion Ben Folds Five, Emerson Lake and Palmer, Manfred Mann’s Earth Band, Tony Orlando and Dawn, Asia Featuring John Payne, Les Paul & Mary Ford – there are an endless number of ways to incorporate individual’s into a band’s name, so where do you draw the line on when to split an identifiable component of a name into a separate artist? How would it not be a completely arbitrary decision?