Artist merge very difficult / impossible with larger libraries

@joel, I might be missing something but merging of artists can be very difficult / impossible in practical terms because it is not possible to filter them on to the same screen on the artist page. This is probably only noticeable in large libraries past a a ‘critical mass’, and It probably requires a ‘smart’ filter with a lot more options, but maybe there are simple workarounds others have found for common use cases?

  1. A lot of the time the names of German/French/Italian/Czeck etc. artists (e.g. orchestras or choirs) are so different from the English that it is impossible to think of a simple filter on the artist page to bring them up together on the same screen to make the merge in the first place. For example:

Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra
Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks

Filtering on “Symphon” or “Orchest” doesn’t help very much if you have thousands of artists.

  1. Even if the equivalents are close e.g. “Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra” and “Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra”, it seems that they can only be filtered on the same screen if they both have at least one ‘primary artist’ or ‘album artist’ instance. Otherwise, the non-primary artist does not show up at all. Unfortunately, I am finding as I am working through my library that this is often the case if 1) there is a lot of box sets or compilations and 2) I have attempted to ‘normalise’ artist name in the past manually (which is exactly what I did with less clever legacy library management systems).

Are there work-arounds for these cases to filter the artists on to the same screen so they can be merged in the first place ? Or is this a feature request for smarter filtering on the artist (or composition etc.) pages?


Are you aware that you can multi-select across screens?

Yes, sometimes that is usable if 3/4 screens result. But I am finding that often the only thing to filter on is something very generic like “orchest” and then there can be literally dozens of screens. Sometimes it is much worse.

What would be ideal would be some simple boolian awareness, even just recognising “+” would be enough in many cases.

As regards the other case, is there anything I can do except to tag an artist that is not showing up in a filter as a primary artist? I am not sure what the logical consequences are as I often seen to end up with duplicate artists and currently my work around for that is to manually remove the primary artist tag.

There are a number of things here.

First, we hope to do better merging IDs of artists which have localized names. There are both metadata (getting the merges correct) and product (“I want this native Swedish band to have it’s name in Swedish, but you don’t”, etc.) issues to resolve. And we are limited by the quality of the metadata itself.

Second, although it doesn’t help your current situation either, it’s possible that the new UI in development will make things easier in terms of selecting multiple artists and then merging them. But I can’t commit to that at this point, so please don’t hold me to it!

Finally, in terms of adding artists as “Primary Artist”, we certainly wouldn’t recommend you do it at the album level (unless the artist/ensemble is a genuine album artist - a main performer on the cover (or spine if you are getting really picky)), because that’s a distortion of what we are trying to achieve. It’s probably less harmful at the track level, but still not ideal, because again, it’s adding “incorrect” metadata within the Roon data model. Perhaps orchestras/ensembles should be considered for inclusion in the artist browser screen? I’m going to confer with my colleagues on this one.

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Sounds promising.

Yes. I don’t want to add ‘dummy’ primary artists either. But I am finding it really common that artist names in my tags do not show in the artist ‘filter’, I assume because they are not ‘album artists’. Is there anything else I can do?

I am manually converting upwards of 8,000 cues and apes. I want to accept roon metatdata as much as possible otherwise I will never finish. But I keep on finding I have to manually re-tag artists in my tags to match roon equivalents. What I really want to do is just merge artists but this is impossible in many cases because my artist equivalents are simply not showing up on a roon artist filter.

Yes please. I have many cases where orchestras as “Performers” cannot be merged with the same orchestras as “Artists.” (Actually, this problem extends beyond orchestras to individual performers/soloists, but I’ll take what I can get. :wink:)

Eh? I thought they already were? Or do you mean something else by this?

Yes. I am confused by this as well. That is the screen I go to attempt a manual artist merge and often cannot.

In order to be included in the artist browser, you need to be the “main performer” on an album.

Yes @mike I worked that out by trial and error which is what started this thread. I can see the logic of limiting the number of artists in this view but the problem is that screen has a dual function for artist merge and it is not only ‘main’ artists that you might want to merge.

I have a lot of classical music instances, particularly where there are large forces of dozens of performers (Opera), where only a few of the performers are categorised as main. This often means I end up with a lot of ‘equivalent’ duplicates that I cannot merge because they do not show up in the artist screen, whatever filter I use, because the artists are not main. My work around is just to re-tag my tags to match roon tags. That’s ok with a few albums but not with the 8,000 or so I am staring at.

It would be better to be able to merge artists whether they are main or not. Is this possible somewhere else in roon?


What I do in this instance is to temporarily add a new genre tag on each artist page.

Just click on the teal coloured button to the side of the genre tags for the artist, then create a new temp tag, such as ‘merge’. Then repeat for the other artist name variation.

Then on the main Artists screen, select the new ‘merge’ tag, and you will only see the artists you tagged. Obviously you will have to delete the temp tag from the remaining artist - just right click on the ‘merge’ tag, and select remove tag.

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Thanks, @SimplicityCompass. Good tip.

No problem.

As far as your second point is concerned, I’m hopeful for, and expect, the team at Roon to come up with a decent solution.