Help with editing, noob

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I’m new to editing, and have submitted a few titles, one of which is this one (an Australian release of a record already in the database). It seems to have “gone through” automatically because if I search by artist and title, it comes up (and it says in my list “automatically applied”). It says the format is CD, however it’s a cassette (I did enter packaging “cassette case”) and that’s there, I don’t remember another field for “format” when I entered it. Can you please tell me what I did wrong, and more importantly, how to fix it?

Also, on my cassette, a couple of the song titles are slightly different to the titles on the other release. I typed them exactly, and now my edit list has entries to “edit recording”. Does that mean it wants to also change the titles from the other release, because I don’t think that’s necessary? I’m a bit confused, any explanation/help appreciated.

EDIT Also, the “recordings” that seem to be up for editing, are highlighted, but on another release group, one of the artists (Georges Bizet) is also highlighted. Why is that? That’s his name (isn’t it?), and I think I just selected it from a dropdown box… I haven’t put it in for editing somehow, have I?

FURTHER EDIT: Also, how do you find the release date? The guides say it isn’t the copyright date, so I’ve been leaving it blank…


If you based your copy on an already existing it will use the same medium type as the original entry.
To change this go to the release and click edit.
On the second tab “track list” you can change the format to cassette.

So your version is different from the other version and has more tracks or tracks in a different order?
Recordings is an entry in our database and these can be shared across multiple releases.
When you added your release there is the option to update the recording entry to match how you entered it.
The track is marked as orange as there is a pending edit such as where you are renaming the recording to “Girl Beautiful Girl (Barbara’s Theme)” instead of “Girl Beautiful Girl” as it was originally written.

The release date is entered on the first edit tab where you can specify the release date country and label.


ah, that makes sense, thanks, I’ll fix it.

No, the versions are exactly the same, same songs. One song on the other is called “Run with you”. On mine, it’s called (Till I) Run with you and then that added “Barbara’s Theme” on mine. Minor title differences, obviously exactly the same song. I must have ticked that box, thinking it would change the data entry text for the listing I was entering and not for the existing entry on the database (which I really don’t want changed, it is probably right for the other release, just not mine.

For the release date, I meant where on the actual media is it? There’s a copyright date printed, but no actual release date that I can find and the guide says the copyright date(s) aren’t the release date. Does it matter if you don’t enter any date?

Thanks for the help.


If you have some information it is better than none.
If you know the year that would be useful to tell an original issue vs a re-issue for example.


Like dns_server says, more is better.

But even not very much at is OK if that is all you have that you are confident of.
Better no data than a good guess however.

The absolute minimum data required to enter a release is:

  1. Good evidence it exists.
  2. Its name.
    (Have I got that right? Not even an artist?)

Like Paul Kelly sings, “From little things, big things grow”.


Actual release dates are not printed on the media, since the media can be prepared for publication one year but not necessarily be published until next year (or even several years later!), so no dates printed on the medium itself are reliable for release date.

If you don’t have any source for the release date, it’s better to leave it blank than to guess (as @mmirG also said). Missing data is better than wrong data. :slight_smile:


Well, on one hand, you technically need both an artist and a release title, on the other hand you can put [unknown] as the release artist and (if you take the liberty of applying “Special purpose track title” style to release titles) put [unknown] as the release title.

So somewhere between needing only your point 1, and needing a point 3 as well… :stuck_out_tongue:


If you don’t have any source for the release date

If it’s not on the case/sleeve, I’ll never have any source for it, I expect

Thanks for the replies.


Me again. If I exit out of a new edit without sending it through, will it be saved, or is there a way to save it? I keep coming across things that I need to figure out/ask about, but I don’t want to lose all the time I’ve spent already.

I’m trying to upload a release and it’s got all these old songs on the compilation. If I look at other recordings (millions of them for the same songs, they are popular songs) to link it up to, they’ve got different song lengths. Do I just pick one to link it up to, or just add a new recording if there isn’t one with exactly the same song length already there?


No save feature known.

(Will be interested to hear what standards are for re-using recordings.)


Thanks. I left the page open when I went off to do other things, it’s probably logged me out and dumped it all. sigh. :smiley:


If you’re not sure, just make a new recording. I don’t link that many recordings because it can be tricky and time consuming :slight_smile:

edit: to clarify, we want the exact same ‘recording’ grouped together. Guessing can do more harm then good. No stress though! Just add what you can with confidence and you can always come back later.


When editing musicbrainz it is usually best to have multiple browser windows and do a search.
For most commercial releases you should reuse the existing recordings as long as the time matches for example.
So the same recoring is usually reused on the album, on singles, on compilations etc.
If you add a new recording it can be merged later.

There are times where you do have a unique recording such as a dj mix where the recording may have some of the previous and next song mixed in making this a unique recording.


Thanks, it seems very confused/confusing, I’ll just add them as new. I can’t know whether they are exactly the same without listening to them, although I strongly suspect they are the same recording all over the place.


Sometimes it’s easy, for instance you’re adding a reissue of an existing album, or a digital version of a CD etc. In that case it’s the same recordings, unless you spot something.
Compilations are harder, especially popular/older songs that have a lot of recordings… those I usually just leave. If you enjoy sleuthing you can often link things up using track times, listening to tracks, and using AcoustID as your tools. But that’s probably a rabbit hole for later :wink:


Thanks, I don’t feel like sleuthing. Quick and easy, that’s what suits me :smiley:


I sympathise. In Musicbrainz, getting it really, really right is often neither quick nor easy.

One workaround I rely on is to do the best I can within my time budget, then make notes in the annotation. Think that your new Release might share recordings with some older Release? Make a note in the annotation, with a link to the older Release. Have a list of recording engineers etc. that you can’t be bothered to enter as Relationships? List their names and credits in the annotation. It gives someone a fighting chance to complete the work later.

Another workaround is to place a higher priority on scanning and uploading more of the cover art. The back cover, and a couple of pages of the liner not book, often list a lot of detail about the Release. Once the scanned images are up as cover art, someone else can read them and finish the job.

A workaround for when I want to take my time getting it right, and don’t want MusicBrainz or my browser throwing away work, is to do my research and make notes in a text file of the URLs of the Recordings and Artists to which I want to link. Then I can turn the editing task into quick data entry guided by research notes, rather than have it be slow research.

In many search boxes, you can paste a MusicBrainz URL to reliably get a certain result. For instance, paste in “” instead of typing in “Mozart”. You will get your intended result, quickly and certainly. That’s why I make a point of putting URLs in my research notes.

We appreciate your contributions. Every nugget you add is something MusicbBrainz has, which it otherwise might have lacked.


Yes, thanks. The question is really whether anyone anywhere will ever care that some crappy old budget cassette release is in there and whether entering it at all (let alone finding who did what and what it’s linked to and all that sort of stuff) is warranted. I’m probably the only person left on the planet with all their old records and tapes. Everyone else (and especially the clever types on here) seem to have gone all itunes and digital.

Anyway, I made the decision to give it a go and upload the info from the tapes/records/cd I am putting into my computer but I’m really not prepared to spend too much time doing it. I have enough trouble finding the motivation to do anything at all…


Not even close!! :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

The rule of thumb is - if you would find it useful, then other people like you will too.


It isn’t really that useful even to me, it’s just that I like to learn new things and putting my records into the computer is something new to learn about.

Can I ask another question? With these cassettes, I can scan the cover/insert, but it’s not a nice square picture like you get on a cd cover. Should I still upload it and, if so, as the cassette cover looks or should I crop out the picture only (or do that as well)?