Translations of works

I really like that wording, and I think it’s a very good fit for the intent of the attribute (not too literal but not unrelated either) so I made the change.


It’s more clear.
Thank you. :slight_smile:

Translated fan covers are common. There can even be multiple into the same language

FWIW, the translator relationship guideline has this:

A literal translation is not required in order to use the attribute, but the translated lyrics should still be distinctly and detectably derived from the original lyrics.

But back to OP’s question:
When should translated covers use the "translator relationship type?
So far I’ve often seen the credits saying either “lyrics”, “translyrics” or “translation” but what if the translator and lyricist are different?

So far I used “translator” until I stumbled upon above cover, since then I use “lyricist”.

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I expect every time, if they are translations (with the original lyricist credited as lyricist), but not if they are entirely different lyrics :slight_smile:

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There are two "an"s in that paragraph.


Whoops :laughing: Fixed now! Good catch.

Double whoops. I’m so embarrassed!

So both of these are translators, even though they decided to distinguish their roles?

Translation (JAP→ENG) : azuma_tou
ENG Lyrics: Sayri

Or this:

English Translyrics: Nerissa Ravencroft
Original Translation: chocoyouchuu

It’s an English version based on another English version

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Well, if they’re credited with lyrics on top of a translator, I guess they are lyricists, but I’d expect those are new lyrics rather than translated ones?

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I think this is better but, personally, I think the translator relationship should be retired.

The issue is that you can have an almost direct translation (possible in closely related languages, like Spanish and Portuguese), adapted translations that are still very close in meaning, adaptions that you can argue translate the “general meaning”, and completely unrelated lyrics. Which is which is not generally noted on the credits and not recorded on any database (such as author society’s DBs) because it’s not relevant for copyright. Which means the MB editor has to make a decision that requires a high level of understanding of both languages, and even then may still have doubts, so the data on MB depends on one editor’s opinion—we don’t have a translatometer to test it.

I don’t think we should have that requirement for the editor—that he understands well all the languages involved, and we should avoid data that depends on a person’s opinion.

The way I see it you should just have a lyricist relationship with “later version” and “original version” attributes (because the original lyricist is generally also credited, even in version that aren’t arguably a translation). Anyone who writes the lyrics for a work is a lyricist, there is no need to decide if they are also translators. They are the lyricists of this later version in a different language. That’s all we need to know. Why argue forever on how to define a translator, whether the lyrics are translated or not, or how close the translation has to be?

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Normally I’d just say “use the credits you have” and not argue at all - if it says translator use that, if it says lyricist use that. Only if you know that the lyricist credit just translated (because the lyrics are a translation) would it make sense to use “translator” instead and justify it in the edit notes, I’d say :slight_smile:

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I understand this, but translated lyrics generally don’t have a translator credit, just the usual music/lyrics songwriting credits. If you only use it for the cases where it actually says translator, this relationship would see almost no use. Also, you will have the same relationship for the original lyricist (that didn’t actually write these lyrics) and the person that actually wrote the lyrics being sung.

I didn’t understand this post (I’m not English) but I do have seen translator credits in some releases.

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I’m not saying no releases have translator credits. But in popular music, where translated versions are (or were) very common, it’s very rare that the word “translator” or “translation” appears. Usually it’s just one more name after the original songwriters. I’m not really a fan of translated pop music, but this was very common. When trying to add the complete discography of an artist I like, I added dozens of translated songs, but I don’t think I ever saw anyone credited as a “translator”.

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It’s common in Japanese music for distinct terminology to be used, which VGMdb separates like this:

I can’t really open those links, but I also think I’ve seen translator credits in Japanese releases. It seems what I wrote sounded like I meant translator credits don’t exist at all, but that’s not what I meant. Another genre where I think translator credits were common is musicals, where all the songs will be translated/adapted by the same person, and that person should be credited.

I was thinking on mainstream popular music, think, e.g., for Eurovision artists, it was very common for them to record translated versions of their songs. It is (was? — I don’t listen to modern pop music, have no idea is that’s still the case) also very common for popular French, German, Italian, Spanish, etc. artists to release translated versions of popular songs. I would also include here pop/jazz standards. Of course some may credit a translator, but generally they don’t, they just add an extra name to the songwriters, and this is likely to be the most common kind of translated song. So that’s what I meant by the translator relationship not seeing much use.

Screenshots for those who don’t have an account:


This is interesting because “Japanese lyrics” can be or not be a translation, which would be up to the MB editor to decide if he were to add the album to MB, and which would again depend on his opinion and knowledge of both languages. And there’s almost as many lyrics translation credits as Japanese lyrics (200/300).

I still think that, ideally, we want to avoid this choice. You can even have a “translated” attribute for works for which there is no doubt are translations. But I don’t think lyricist/translator should be different relationships.