Eponymous bands (jazz quartets, quintets or particular cases such as this one) are being kept separated from the artist page.
While I can understand the reason why MB first separated them, it currently is a mess to find its way through some discographies.
Let’s take Miles Davis example.
He released albums under his name, under “Miles Davis Quintet”, “Miles Davis +19”, “Miles Davis Quartet”, “Miles Davis All Stars”, “Miles Davis All Star Sextet”, “The New Miles Davis Quintet”, “Miles Davis Sextet”, " The Miles Davis/Tadd Dameron Quintet" and countless others.
The data is not centralized and Miles Davis’ discography is completely unintelligible.
Of course you still can open 10+ tabs and compare them manually but let’s be honest, it’s a nightmare to browse.
Miles Davis was never alone on his albums. On “Bitches Brew”, an album under just “Miles Davis”, there is Chick Corea, John McLaughlin, etc.
The only difference between “Bitches Brew” and let’s say “Miles Smiles” is the name on the cover (Miles Davis Quintet on the latter). But it still is a Miles Davis record that should appear on the same page somehow.
The legendary “Kind of Blue” is the work of a quintet (Davis / Evans / Chambers / Coltrane / Cobb) but is on Miles Davis’ “solo page”. Etc, etc.
The quintets, quartets or in the case mentioned earlier with “Yngwie Malmstreen’s Rising Force”, are backing bands. Their line-ups are not stable and constantly changing over the releases (just look at this). So the argument of saying that a band page is beneficial by determining a line-up is not valable, as one-time musicians can be credited in release’s relationships.
Of course there is this ticket but consolidation is not a solution, merely a patch on an open wound imo.
MusicBrainz is a database whose objective is to be as exhaustive as intelligible.
Please imagine a new user, no matter how experienced they are in music. They stumble unto Miles Davis’ page or Yngwie Malmsteen’s and they don’t find some major works. They instead need to go on a whole different page to find the album. A complete discography as we conceive it for every bands is nowhere to be found (RYM has a way to display them all).
The actual complexity of jazz discographies verges on absurdity.
Another important thing is that this separation greatly impacts softwares and databases that rely on MB. Of course, as I work with them, I can speak of SensCritique but in this edit we can see that the problem is also on Plex, Kodi or MusicBee.
I can’t even tell you the number of feedbacks we had on SC on this subject. Even if I was not convinced at first too, when an issue is brought back so many times by different users, I think there’s a reason.
So what I propose is the following:
We could merge them, have “Miles Davis Quintet” in “Artist as credited” so that we could see the difference directly on the artist’s page. All of the relationships would be transferred to releases. This way, we are keeping all of the data (if I’m forgetting something please let me know) but we are centralizing it and we offer a clear and understandable database for jazz discographies (and other exceptions).
Because while “A person can’t have members” (quote from this interesting edit again), a release can. And I don’t see what data would we lose while the clarity of Miles Davis discography would be cleary improved.
This is already the case with bands that change their name really often, such as Thee Oh Sees/Osees.
Again, no data is lost and the readability is tremendously improved.
I am looking forward to read your feedbacks and I hope that we will find a solution for the clarity of MB and all of the websites that depend on it.
Have a nice day