Yes, consistency which is maintained by authority control (in
library-speak) is absolutely essential and no decent system can function
without it. That is why I prefer to use MARC records created under the
cataloging rules generally accepted by libraries. I believe, though, that
once I find software that enables me to download these records from Library
of Congress, OCLC or wherever, I will still need to tweak them to get the
full depth of access to all (recorded work, all individuals involved in
performing and recording to whatever degree this is discoverable)
information attached to each recorded unit (I hate using the term track,
but that is roughly what I mean here) level.

All this discussion has been very useful so far and I hope to explore as
many of the avenues mentioned as possible.


Peter Hirsch

On Mon, Nov 24, 2014 at 8:24 PM, Tom Fine <[log in to unmask]>

> The downfall of all these database programs is where they're pulling
> information. The more I think about it, the more sense I see in Peter's
> idea of using MARC data. At least MARC aheres to relatively strict
> conventions. They may be klunky, but they're designed to be consistent.
> As one who has filled in tags for 150+ classical CDs, trying both iTunes
> (Gracenote) and dBPowerAmp (which draws on a number of sources including
> freedb, Allmusic and others), there is ZERO consistency out there. The same
> conductor and orchestra may be listed differently for each album, even on
> the same label. Composer names are screwy and sometimes just wrong. A lot
> of data, especially for DGG and EMI CDs, is in German (useless to an
> English speaker who wants an English database). The whole experience was
> infuriating, and in fact convinced me it wasn't worth my time to suck all
> my CDs into a hard drive library. The worst of all this is that Gracenote
> is a FOR PROFIT company and they have never lifted a finger to clean up
> their database from its dark early "crowdsourced" days. You can expect
> crowd-source cluster-you-know-what from freedb, but a real "company" should
> value their brand more. Apparently, customers who pay license fees, like
> Apple, don't pressure them hard enough.
> Even though MARC's naming conventions may not be near what I would think
> of, I assume the same conductor and orchestra show up under the same names
> in every entry. If not, that's terrible!
>  From Day 1, record companies could have kept all of this consistent and
>> uniform by using the CDText
> layer always in Red Book, and getting together on standardized naming
> conventions, perhaps under an ISO standard. This would have required a few
> extra minutes per CD to enter the data, but it should have been standard
> practice all along. Instead, a lazy attitude by everyone who could control
> a standard led to crowd-sourced inconsistent garbage.
> -- Tom Fine
> ----- Original Message ----- From: "L. Hunter Kevil" <[log in to unmask]>
> To: <[log in to unmask]>
> Sent: Monday, November 24, 2014 8:00 PM
> Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Sound recordings cataloging software
>  I wonder if anyone has extensive experience with jRiver, media library
>> software for digital files. It has received wide praise over the years. It
>> can read and process into libraries CDs. It can handle - I believe - all
>> the sundry audio file formats.
>> I have thousands of lps as well.The question is this: will jRiver handle
>> the cataloguing of lps, even if there is no digital file attached? I
>> harbor
>> the hope - optimistic for sure - of digitizing some of my most cherished
>> lps.
>> L. H. Kevil
>> Out to pasture, Univ of Missouri
>> On Mon, Nov 24, 2014 at 1:14 PM, Stephen <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>>  I use Collectorz's Music Collector software for my collection of about
>>> 2800
>>> recordings (CD, vinyl, and digital files), and find it extremely useful.
>>> It's not perfect--it pulls info from sources (Amazon, for example, or
>>> data
>>> uploaded to the Collectorz database by other users) that are not always
>>> 100%
>>> accurate, so I usually have to do some editing.  But it does allow easy
>>> searching of artists, conductors, orchestras, labels, genres, etc.  It
>>> allows for recordings with multiple artists, composers, orchestras, etc.
>>> And you can specify where the recording is stored.
>>> You can catalog recordings in several ways:  1) Place a CD in your
>>> computer's CD drive, and let the program scan it; 2) Use a barcode
>>> scanner
>>> on the back of the CD case; 3) Type in the UPC or title, and let the
>>> program
>>> search for matches; 4) Point the program to digital files on your
>>> computer
>>> or backup device, and let it scan those; or 5) Enter info manually.
>>>  With
>>> #1-4, covers are downloaded automatically from various sources; with #5,
>>> after adding the recording, you use the program to search for a cover,
>>> which
>>> is then downloaded and added to the database.  (This last method can also
>>> be
>>> used with methods 1-4 to get a different cover than the one automatically
>>> downloaded.)
>>> I've been impressed by the constant improvements in the program since I
>>> purchased it several years ago.   My only complaint is that there is yet
>>> no
>>> simple search-and-replace that allows you to replace (for example)
>>> "G-Dur"
>>> with "G major".
>>> Stephen Peithman, Producer/Host, “Connections”
>>> Capital Public Radio | | 7055 Folsom Blvd, Sacramento, CA
>>> 95826
>>> Listener supported Public Radio | Licensed to Sacramento State
>>> -----Original Message-----
>>> From: Association for Recorded Sound Discussion List
>>> [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Marsha Maguire
>>> Sent: Monday, November 24, 2014 9:35 AM
>>> To: [log in to unmask]
>>> Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Sound recordings cataloging software
>>> Hi, Peter,
>>> As discussed earlier, there are some free and inexpensive applications
>>> out
>>> there that should allow you to capture existing MARC or other descriptive
>>> metadata and load it into a database. A good place to start looking for
>>> such
>>> software is the American Library Association's Automating Libraries: A
>>> Selected Annotated Bibliography (ALA Library Fact Sheet 21, 2014),
>>> available
>>> at One
>>> product
>>> mentioned there (although it doesn't seem to work with MARC data) is
>>> Music
>>> Collector at
>>>  I have no idea how complete the Music
>>> Collector database is (from which you can download records into your home
>>> database), but according to one review, Amazon is also searched. There is
>>> an
>>> optional barcode reader add-on.
>>> A similar product is Readerware Music Database, which lets you scan in
>>> the
>>> UPC barcode (or enter other info like Title, etc.). It then "collects
>>> full
>>> information from a number of different sources including reviews, cover
>>> art,
>>> full disk and track listings" for your home database:
>>> Both these products offer free trials, and both are very inexpensive.
>>> Another option is CollectiveAccess, which, although it's intended
>>> primarily
>>> for archival and museum collections, can import MARC and other data (how
>>> simple this process is I'm not sure): You
>>> could download MARC records and export them in various formats with the
>>> wonderful MarcEdit, which is free:
>>> Presumably,
>>> you could then load them into CollectiveAccess.
>>> As far as I know, All Music Guide metadata isn't free, but if that is
>>> inaccurate, I'd love to be corrected.
>>> I hope you find software that works for you, Peter, and if you discover
>>> something fabulous, please let us know!
>>> Marsha Maguire (retired LC cataloger)