Bad composition merger "Ma Mère L'Oye" (Maurice Ravel)

I have a an identified jazz album (“Mare Nostrum” by Paolo Fresu et al) with a 4:30m track “Ma Mère L’Oye” with composer Maurice Ravel. Obviously, this is a jazz track based on the Ravel multipart work. I’ve just been ripping an unidentified box set that has the full work, with the same name, of course, 27:21m long. Unfortunately, Roon decided to merge the two, and I can’t find a way to unmerge them, even though the lengths are so much different. Is there some way to undo this mistake?

Can you precisely say what the tags are in both cases, and what exactly is displayed? With screen shots?

There are two versions, and the canonical titles for both are different and rather specific, so you shouldn’t get an accidental merge unless the jazz title is really wrong.

In my case:

You can see the two canonical titles at the bottom. The top ones are “ungroomed” metadata. (I’ll need to check which versions they are and merge them or correct the tags.)

Can you from your side post what you see as screen shots? If the work you have which is merged wrongly does NOT have a canonical title, I know a way you can fix this…

I have only one composition, with two performances. The problem seems to be that the first one, which is the track in the jazz album, was “identified” first, and then the new one, which is the correct work, was merged to it:

@Fernando_Pereira. Unless I’ve missed something, Roon appears to be doing exactly what it’s designed to do: that is, group different performances of the same composition. Some might consider a Jazz interpretation of the Ravel work as an interesting discovery (which is the whole point of the feature), but clearly this is not what you want in this case.

At this time, there is no editing do to exactly what you want. Removing Ravel from the identified Jazz track probably won’t help, because the composition is determined “in the Cloud”. You could change the composition name (slightly) for the instance in the unidentified album, but this clearly isn’t ideal.

At some point, we will probably introduce Track --> Performance–> Composition editing, which is actually what you need, but this isn’t coming until we’ve thoroughly evaluated the implications.

@Fernando_Pereira In this case you’re in a good position to fix the problem, and improve your metadata along the way.

You’re in luck in that the title “Ma mère l’oye” as used by the jazz album is not really a full title for the work. As there are two distinct versions of the Ravel original (one is more than twice the length as the other) you should anyway distinguish between the two in the unidentified album. This will have the side-effect that the jazz work will become separated from it.

What you need to do to fix this is the following:

Change the tags in the unidentified album (Boulez) to make it more specific. I strongly suggest you use the canonical Roon name for the work (i.e. that with a description attached). To use something a bit different would be perverse at this stage. So you want tags that look like this:

Should this not be reflected in the stacking of the jazz performance with the Boulez, you may need to “temp out” the Boulez album and clear the database. Work attributions are pretty sticky in this way (by design - it means you can change track details without destroying work connections).

What you’ve done is then allowed the jazz work to “float free”. It will still appear in Ravel’s work list but as a separate entry. The Boulez item will have the correct title and will be stacked with any other performances of that version you have.

Do you in fact have more performances of the ballet version? If not you should consider adding one from Tidal in order to get the Roon description, as described above.

This whole thing works out simply because the jazz title is insufficient (according to my demands, simply “incorrect”…). What @joel says would have meant you were SOL if the jazz title was the full, correct, unambiguous title of the work. Then you couldn’t have corrected the Boulez album with the same effect, and you’d need the Performance-Composition editing of which he speaks.

As for the jazz title, you might want to tickle it. You could remove the Ravel Composition credit, and move that to the text of the track name. Or you could change it to an Arranger credit. This is in fact wrong (it’s a hack, basically), but will usually have the effect that Ravel will be listed in the track listing as a composer, but the work will not appear in his work list. Not very wise seeing as better handling of the “arranger” tag has been requested, and it might all change. I wonder whether there’s actually a special sort of “Source-Composer” kind of tag which could be used for jazz works like this? (@joel or @brian would know.)

(Aside: Rovi really dropped the ball not using Ravel’s catalogue numbers.)

I think this is a really good point. There aren’t a bazillion instances of this, but there are quite a few, and many of them have titles that don’t connect to the original work in any obvious way (e.g., “Stranger in Paradise,” “I’m Always Chasing Rainbows”). Those are different from @Fernando_Pereira’s example and, say, Deodato’s infamous “Zarathustra,” but they all have that “Source-Composer” attribute in common. (And it doesn’t by any means happen only within the jazz genre.)

Been super-busy and I won’t get back to this until the weekend, but I think the issue is a bit different. Ravel’s original composition has multiple parts, while the jazz track is a short improvisation on that much longer, multipart original. I think that the “Source-Composer” approach that @Ludwig and @orgel suggest is ultimately the right one, but when I get to it this weekend, I’ll try @Ludwig’s procedure. I need to tweak a lot more metadata on the Boulez box set anyway…

@joel @Ludwig @orgel Thanks all for your help, the problem was fixed when I added the catalog number “M. 62” to the WORK field for the full work.

That’s great. Just be aware that if you buy further performances of it which are identified, they won’t match up.

@joel would be great to ask Rovi to use the M catalogue for Ravel.


@joel Yes, it would be great if Rovi added the M catalog numbers for Ravel. Just caught a couple of composition merger errors that resulted from the canonical Roon compositions not having the M numbers, while my WORK fields did. The use of opus and catalog numbers for some other composers is a great help in merging the metadata from multiple classical albums, especially box sets.

I think you can add the catalogue numbers to your canonical work titles in Roon, no? (Although there is currently a bug with sorting some catalogue numbers.) That might cause your matches to all work…

@Ludwig @Fernando_Pereira

would be great to ask Rovi to use the M catalogue for Ravel


Not sure how to do this. I thought the canonical work titles came from Rovi.

FYI, Rovi are going to add the Ravel M catalogue numbers.


Excellent, much appreciated by this Ravel fan with multiple recordings of many of his compositions. – F