How to get Picard writing the original release date / year of a recording?


Just to keep this short and precise, I’m gonna skip describing what I have already tried and read about this matter.

How can you get Picard to write a tag for the original release date of an album or a single?

Let’s take this Michael Jackson compilation album for an example:

It contains the song ‘Ben’, which was released as a single in 1972.
It seems obvious and logical to me that you want to be able to have this reflected in your tagging scheme.

Ditto for box-sets.

This is a box-set that contains original The Beatles albums:

It contains the album ‘Revolver’, which is from 1966.

But for both examples I wasn’t able to get these release dates written.
How can you achieve that Picard will write these?

Tagging with original album, year

Short answer is you can’t since there is no easy way to query that information from MusicBrainz.

In theory it would be possible to write a plugin to query MusicBrainz for all releases containing a specific recording (or maybe work, depending on what you want) and that way find out the earliest release known to MB. But his would be really slow, since it would take multiple requests per track to get that data.


Thanks for the reply outsidecontext.
What a pity that something that seems so natural and desirable is currently impossible to achieve.
Hopefully some bright mind(s) will find a solution for it.


It seems that’s it possible via more can be found here I still hope this to see integrated in MusicBrainz Picard as a base feature.


Thanks Forssound, that looks nice.
But I am on Windows, so that’s not an option for me.


I’m on Windows to, and experimenting with it



I’m very much looking forward to trying it. GOOD LUCK!!


I signed up just to say that I agree with this 100%. I’m old enough to remember the original albums, and their cover art. I am currently go through my collection, and choosing the original release for any songs that appear on “Greatest Hits” or “Various Artists” type albums. Having the visual cue from seeing the original album cover brings back great memories for me. I will subscribe to this topic in hopes that there is a solution soon.


I just went back to tagging, and I wanted to share the process of what it takes to get the original album information one song at a time.

I am working on the song “What It Takes” by Aerosmith. Using the scan function picard returns the album as “Big Ones” which is a greatest hits type album. Next, I use the “Lookup in browser” which takes me to this page:

The first album listed is “Big Ones” from 1994. All other albums listed are “Greatest Hits” type albums as well. I then turn to Google, and find out that the song “What it Takes” was first released on the album “Pump”. I go back to the Musicbrainz website and do a search for “Pump” using “release” from the drop down menu which takes me to this page:

This last page confirms that “What it takes” was indeed released on the album “Pump” in 1989. Obviously at that point I click on the “Tagger” button to add the release to my collection, manually move “What it takes” from “Big Ones” to “Pump”, and finally click save.

That is quite a process to go through by hand.

At the very least, is there a way for me to add the album Pump to the list of albums that appear when the song is first “Look(ed) up using browser”?

I certainly hope that this is taken as a constructive post. I think that Musicbrainz does a great job identifying individual songs, but could use some improvement on the album side of things.