Managing tracks with multiple artists

I’m using multiple apps to read my music library such as Serato and Mixed In Key along with Audirvana being my main library organization tool / casual playback software.

My issue is this: while Audirvana allows for multiple artists to be added to one track, it seems to store them in a strange way in ID3 tags: artists, sorted alphabetically (not in the order in which you add them), separated by spaces… For example:

Disclosure - Magnets (Feat. Lorde) (A-Trak Remix)

Track Name: “Magnets (A-Trak Remix)”
Artists (when added with Audirvana): “A-Trak”, “Disclosure”, “Lorde” (where each artist is clickable, though sorted incorrectly)

Artist as stored in ID3 tag: “A-Trak Disclosure Lorde”

This is obviously an issue for many reasons, but first of which being that when you sort your entire library by artist, this one track on the album gets jumped to the top because of the “A” in “A-Trak”, separating it from the rest of the tracks in the album.

Typically (with software like Roon) you enter an ID3 Artist value of something like “Disclosure; Lorde; A-Trak” and Roon separates the artists into clickable links, sorted in the correct manner, while still leaving the first artist the album artist so sorting your library by artist remains in tact. That way, Serato, Mixed In Key, and any other software only reading ID3 Artist values will show something human readable (and in the correct order), but Audirvana also interprets them as multiple artists. Best of both worlds.

This seems like such a simple thing…what am I missing? Is there a delimiter I can use to enter ID3 values in Mixed In Key (for example) and have Audirvana automatically understand them and parse them out as individual artists?

P.S. I’m not using iTunes. My library is entirely FLAC and WAV.

Thanks y’all!

Hello @beschler,

Can you check the metadata of your track in Audirvana? You can use the track details panel (Icon label :label: after selecting a track). After doing so you can send a screenshot here so we can take a look at it.

Hey @Antoine, thanks for the reply—sure!

1st screenshot: Audirvana—
Showing multiple artists, added using the Audirvana software.

2nd screenshot: Mixed In Key (or any other ID3 tag editor)—
What is saved in the ID3 Artist tag for the track.

3rd screenshot: Audirvana—
If I edit the Artist ID3 tag value for the track in any other ID3 editor (such as Mixed In Key)—or sometimes not the Artist tag, sometimes if I edit just the Track Name tag it still does this—Audirvana will then read the Artist tag contents (what it itself sets, Artist A Artist B Artist C, separated by spaces only, in incorrect alphabetical order) as one artist.

What’s the fix? Is there a delimiter character I can add between artists, such as a semicolon ;?
(Note: I tried semicolon ; and Audirvana does not separate the artists in this way.)

In Mixed in key, are you able to click only on Disclosure for example or it’s grouping it as one artist?

No. Mixed In Key—and all other ID3 tag editors—only see a text/string value of A-Trak Disclosure Lorde, basically like it’s all one long artist name (which is the problem).

In other words, (as far as I can tell) Audirvana is doing 2 actions when I use the Audirvana software to add/edit Artists on a track:

  1. Writes an ID3 Artist value of text string: A-Trak Disclosure Lorde (one string, no delimiter characters such as , or ;)—as I assume Audirvana doesn’t read this value to understand and display which artists are on a track (I’m guessing this is just a side effect).
  2. Adds some proprietary Audirvana database entry for the track (stored locally on my computer), e.g. an array with values A-Trak, Disclosure, and Lorde as distinct entities. This is how I’m guessing Audirvana understands that there are 3 distinct artists on a track.

Therefore, if I’m correct, the only thing that is saved in the ID3 Artist tag is a value of A-Trak Disclosure Lorde, and therefore any app that can read/edit ID3 tags (Serato, Mixed In Key, etc.) only sees the string A-Trak Disclosure Lorde, and not any distinguishing characteristics that separate the artists, or any delimiting characters in the string to distinguish artists.

So this is what I was saying before: if in action #1 as listed above (if I’m correct), I’m asking if the string that’s written into the ID3 Artist tag by Audirvana can include a delimiter character such as ;? For example, instead of: A-Trak Disclosure Lorde, it would be: A-Trak; Disclosure; Lorde. Still only one string of text, but the delimiter characters can be used by other software to parse 1 text string into 3 artists.

OR, alternatively, I’m asking if I can type a delimiter character into the ID3 tag string before I import the track to Audirvana. For example, I used Mixed In Key or any other ID3 tag editor software to write the ID3 tag value to Disclosure; Lorde; A-Trak (sorted in the correct order), and have this be interpreted by Audirvana as 3 distinct artists. This would be best case scenario.

Yes, if you do this you will see the three distinct artist in Audirvana, make sure to have ; and a space before typing another artist.

That sounds nice, and I would love if it did that, but it doesn’t.

(Here’s what the track looks like when I add the artists one at a time the normal way using the Audirvana software—this is what I want it to look like after doing what you describe…)

Then, here’s what happens when I type the artists in the way you describe: in the order I prefer, and separated by delimiter ; (and space) via Audirvana…

That doesn’t work—this just adds one long artist name Disclosure; Lorde; A-Trak (where each artist is not clickable, as you can see).
So I change it back by adding the artists one at a time, so it looks like the first screenshot above again.
Then I use Mixed In Key (or any ID3 tag editor) to and type in that same string: Disclosure; Lorde; A-Trak and save…

As you say, this should work—but it doesn’t. This is what Audirvana interprets this as—it does not detect the delimiter and separate the artists into discrete artists…

Am I doing something wrong? Can you provide screenshots or step-by-step instructions on how to do what you describe?

I meant if you add ; and space in a tag editor, not in Audirvana, you will see it automatically in Audirvana as multiple artist. I tried with a tag editor called Tag Editor -

Here is the file with one artist:

I edited the file in Tag Editor to have multiple artists:

After i save what i have done in Tag Editor here is what i see in Audirvana:

I have now three different artists for the same tracks after I edited it in Tag Editor.

This is a game changer. Thank you so much!!!

For whatever reason, Mixed In Key was not producing this result (which seems odd), but this Tag Editor by Amvida is!

This is a huge huge huge help. I was thinking about switching to Roon, but will definitely be paying for an Audirvana license now. Much appreciated!

1 Like

I’d like to add another question to this topic.

I was trying to achieve the same result on my setup (Audirvana Mac Version 3.5.43 (3573), macOS 11.0.1 with 16384MB RAM). I tried it with Tag Editor and Meta but Audirvana does not recognize multiple artists when separating them with a semicolon.

Has there been any changes since the original post?

Hello @Bastian,

Can you make a screenshot of TagEditor while you edit the track?

Hm, it seems to work properly with Tag Editor now that I tired it again. I e-mailed the developers of Meta. Maybe they can fix the bug in their app.

What Audirvana could make better is to keep the order of the artists. For example:

Artist field “Queen; David Bowie” will result in “David Bowie, Queen”. It looks like Audirvana is ordering multiple artists alphabetically.

Thank you for clearing that. Does that also work with the ID3 tag “Album artist”?
Unfortunately A doesn´t show the “Album artist” tag in its info window.

@Antoine, could you add this ID3 Tag also in the info window? That would solve alot of problems for me.
As @Bastian I would prefer, that A keeps the order, that is given by the user.

Based on the current Audirvana version, it is writing “;;;” (3 semicolons), and not "; " (semicolon space) between artists. Is this a bug?

This topic was automatically closed 375 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.