For what it’s worth, the few time I added events in MusicBrainz, I found it really cumbersome to add things like a set list, because you have to do everything manually in a wiki-like text field. There is nothing like the relationship editor for releases for example.
Another reason is that it has been added quite late, so it lags behind MusicBrainz entities that have existed and been added to for longer.
The main reason we don’t have as many events as dedicated pages (such as setlist.fm) is probably that they don’t directly have a use for people tagging their music, which is probably still the main motivator for contributing to the database.
The solution to this in particular would be to develop tooling that makes importing the data from the relevant sources easier, something similar to the many importer tools we already have for releases. Don’t expect a fully automated batch import though, as an automated tool without human oversight is unlikely to understand the database guidelines.
I’m like @mfmeulenbelt and gave up trying to create and edit events. The editor is so hard and geeky to use, and very unforgiving of making mistakes with many seven day waits.
I add a lot of live bootlegs and usually I don’t have much information about the actual gig. So I just link to the Place and add a date for the performance. That is all I know I can verify. So I lean on the “if in doubt, leave it out” motto.
Glastonbury is the only series of concerts I make an effort on getting the events updated as a lot of ground work has gone in there on many of those concerts. As a multi-stage, multi-band, annual event I see the logic of using events for that. Otherwise I find editing events a waste of effort.
On a side note I also don’t like the fact that once I create an “event” then going to the database page for that concert location (Place) I now can’t see that Band X played there. All I now see is an “event” with no idea who performed there.
As @elomatreb mentions, I think it’s because there’s really no reason for people to add them. I’m not sure what people are using MB events for so far (tagging? any apps/other sites pulling the data?).
I think for events to get big on MB one of the following would have to happen:
the events DB here eventually gets big enough for people to take an interest and add more (bit of a chicken and egg situation)
special/more functionality gets added to events that makes it the go-to place, over any other events site (unlikely to happen fast imo)
an external app/site/plugin pulls the data and has users that end up coming over because they use that app/site
Some plugins to import events from various sources would really help. Though I have a lot of love for my attended list, even if it’s a bit of time to update.
Re. updates I’m still hanging out for event artwork support
event artwork would be huge. festival lineup posters at each stage of the announcement process, tour posters/backs of t-shirts, any decent shots people got with their phones. it would add so much life to the live event pages.
I found a venue (in North Carolina, USA) that has a great web history of their events of local, regional and global artists. I used that information to add obscure local/regional artists with the event attached, its mostly bluegrass artists (I am still working on it).
It’s not hard to add the events, but I find it lacking in its ability to add relationships. You cannot add individual artists in the same way as you do on a release, its artist/group and guest artists. For small local groups on the road there are band members that get filled in for sometimes on a regular basis. Still it does allow me to slowly document the local bluegrass artists that may only have one or two self released CD’s that are hard to come by.
A significant part of the problem, I think, is that relatively few people know that Musicbrainz even has event support. Even among Musicbrainz users, I suspect, awareness is on the low side.
I’m frustrated by the problem that (mentioned here in the past a few times) Musicbrainz event entries don’t even make it into Google reliably, which means that Musicbrainz event-listing support is not very discoverable by the general public.
That’s not really the Musicbrainz motto… I’d say if you know (confidently, and it sounds like you do) Location, date, and one performer, that’s enough information to create an event listing. It seems to me that Musicbrainz policy/custom is that incomplete information shouldn’t be a reason not to add an entry to the database.
This is helped by making the name of the event something like “Performer1/Performer2/Performer3 @ Venue” Not practical for festivals, maybe, but for concerts it’s a pretty effective hack.
As someone who mainly uses Musicbrainz for upcoming events, I’ve been wanting to write a “show me upcoming events in my city” query (first I have to get a MB database dump installed on my computer).
I suspect that the only events my query would return would be the ones that I myself have entered, but I hope not.
If it wasn’t such a buggy messy trying to work with them, then maybe I would look at Events more. For now I avoid them. The whole section of Event Editing is clearly lagging behind the rest of the MB database.
I have tried adding events before, but the current editor is really not up for the task. It is hard to link back into the rest of the database from the track list. Make one mistake and you are stuck on a 7 day wait which also does not help.
My MB editing is based around my musical collection and the artists I am interested in. So I know the music based on my CDs or downloaded bootlegs. Or discographies I can access online\via books. This means I don’t have the actual set list of gigs, only what was transferred to the recording. I’d have to follow the “if in doubt, leave it out” rule.
My sources better fit in the Release side of the MB database. If I know the musicians involved I will add as many relationships as possible. I have spent time watching videos before with notepad in hand just so I can add in which instrument was used on which track.
Events just don’t fit my editing pattern. They don’t bring anything more to the table for me. If I could add flyers, artwork, etc maybe they would make more sense. If I could properly link them to the recordings, maybe one day I’ll look again.
That’s the problem. Too many hacks are still needed to make it fit the purpose. It feels very “alpha feature” in its current state.
I look forward to when Events get those outstanding tickets completed to make it more usable, and then I’ll spend more time on it. For now I have many hours of work on my TODO list in other parts of the database.
We all add to this database in different ways - it is a big database
They can be–a relationship type exists for Work-Event relationship – “Premiered At”. For many uses, I’d think Recording-Event or Release-Event relationships make more sense though.
In all three cases, while the relationships can be created, they haven’t been, much.
It wouldn’t have occurred to me to want to use an event (part of a) database for digital-audio tagging. Do you have an idea of how you would like to be able to use it for that?
My personal interest is in using it for future events, and to that end, I’d like to see it used more often (either within Musicbrainz or by external sites) to generate local concert-calendar listings.
This has been a pet peeve of mine for a long time. It’s especially a problem when an artist plays a song live that has never been recorded in any form and songwriting/publishing information is nowhere to be found. In at least one such case I had to use a bogus “writer” relationship for the band that performed the song, because I needed it for a setlist and if I didn’t add a relationship ModBot would automatically delete the work entity.
Their main use, in my experience, is for linking live recordings/videos to the shows at which they were recorded. Some editors, such as myself, add the performance histories of artists they like regardless of whether or not any recordings exist of the shows.
Hiving this off and commercialising it for the whole planet would get lots of data, make tourists happy, make tourism promoters very happy, make local performers happy, make some local punters happy and spread a benefit of globalisation. Carbon offsets could be purchased with the lucre. Rob could look for an angel and then become the CEO till Zuck or Google/YT or some live event streaming service buys him out - but the sale contract would still have the Event data coming to MB, with huge penalties for failure to provide accurate data to specs.