Tags for classical music
Tagging Ogg Vorbis or FLAC files (or MP3) for pop music is
fairly straightforward, but there is little consistency between
the proposed conventions for classical music. I'm trying to use
and Amarok, but they don't use the same
Here are the tags I decided to use, while waiting for better
software. (Tags with * can appear multiple times.)
- The composer, e.g., “Antonio Vivaldi
- Usually the same value as ARTIST. It's there to indicate that
the ARTIST is a composer. (Hence, if the artist doesn't appear
in the COMPOSER tag, the artist is a performer.)
- The ensemble, e.g., “Orkestgebouworkest”. (Some
pages on the Web propose ENSEMBLE, but I don't have any
software that uses that tag, while Slimserver at least
- The conductor, e.g., “Leonard Bernstein”.
- A performer that is singled out, e.g., “Vladimir
Ashkenazy (piano)”. (Some proposals use PERFORMER, but
Slimserver doesn't support that tag.)
- Includes the name of the work and the mouvement, e.g.,
“Piano Concerto No. 1 in F sharp minor, Op. 1: 1.
Vivace”. (This is rather long, but I have not found any
support for the PART tag, which would allow separation of the
work and the mouvement, nor the OPUS tag.)
- (Not yet decided what genres to use.)
- Some interpretation of what is on the CD cover or on the
- The year the recording was made.
- Random comments, e.g., the year the work was composed or
- If an album consists of several CDs, the tracks are numbered
consecutively across the CDs, i.e., if the first CD ends with
track 12, the seconds CD starts with track 13.
- The number of the CD if the album consists of several CDs.
Not really necessary, because the tracks are numbered
consecutively anyway, but maybe useful to write the album back
to CD later. (Previously I used VOLUME, but abcde uses
DISCNUMBER, so I decided to use that, too.)
If the title of the work is mentioned in multiple languages on
the CD, I choose preferrably the title that the composer himself
gave to the work.
Created 9 February 2008
Updated 17 March 2013