How to avoid having transcriptions/arrangements shown with the original composition?

In classical music, many composers have made transcriptions of original works by other composers, oftentimes of compositions of J.S. Bach. I, for one, do not want to see these transcriptions along the original composition in the Roon Composition browser. Rather, I want to have this transcription listed as separate composition.

Is there a way to dissociate a recording of a transcription which the Roon Composition browser shows under the original composition, so that the recording of the transcription is shown as a separate composition (using the file tags)?

I am tagging @Tony_Casey, @bbrip, @Hans_Valeton, @Klaus_Kammerer1 because this is a classical music issue for me and I have learned a lot from your posts on this forum. I seem to recall that in particular @bbrip has expressed frustration here because he hates seeing the Liszt transcriptions shown along with the original Schubert works. Any solution?

Many thanks in advance for all your replies.


Hi @Martin_F

welcome to the club :sunglasses:

There isn’t really a good solution. But I use the following “work-around”:

In the composition browser, lets say for Schubert, select all those dodgy piano-transcriptions by Mr. Liszt that you dont want to see under Schubert and then click “Edit”, in the “Composition Editor” that pops up, remove Composer Schubert, add Composer Liszt. Save. Done.

These compositions have now disappeared from the Schubert composition listing and show up under Liszt (where I dont care too much about them…).

My Schubert compostion listing looks already a lot cleaner now. Here and there Mr. Liszt still pops up and gets eradicated on the spot. :laughing:

Hope this helps.

Thank you, @bbrip!

I believe you have a large local library, but not sure if you also use streaming. In your example, has Roon “identified” the Schubert composition in question and added “rich information” (info-blurp, year of composition etc.) which Roon adds in my experience as soon as I add a performance of the composition from Tidal or Qubuz? If so, does your Schubert composition keep that “rich information” (including the ability to list other performances of said composition on Tidal/Qobuz) after you have edited the Liszt transcription performances?

Many thanks!

You can do the same with Streaming tracks in your library. The changes you do in the Roon interface do not get stored in the “tags” of the audio files, but in the Roon library. Give it a try.

Not sure I understand. Taking my example above, all those compositions were you changed the composer, they would of course disappear form the list of Schubert compositions. But all the “original” Schubert Lieder will of course not be impacted by this change.

Example:; You have three interpretations of the Lied “Der Lindenbaum”. Two original Schubert with voice and piano, one a Liszt piano arrangement. You select that piano arrangement, change the composer to Liszt and all that is left under Schubert are the original compositions for voice and piano.

I haven’t found a solution either.

In general though I don’t have quite the same issue. I don’t find much consistency but often I do want to group the compositions with the original composer, particularly Bach but also a lot of Spanish composers. I have a lot of classical guitar and a very large part of the repertoire is transcriptions. In general roon will give the composer credit to the original composer and the arranger credit to the transcriber, which is what I want. But there is often no means of editing the work title to reflect the change in instrumentation. I have a lot now were the title does not reflect the instrumentation.

Sorry for not being more clear. Here is an example: The Scherzo from Mendelssohns Midsummernight’s Dream, as transcribed by Rachmaninov (famous recording by Moiseiwich).

As I’m building my Roon libary, I recently added the Bertrand Chamayou Mendelssohn disc which contains the Rachmaninov-transcription. The FLACs are fully file-tagged, with Mendelssohn tagged as Composer and Rachmaninov as Arranger. The title and work tags read: “Mendelssohn-Bartholdy/Rachmaninov: Scherzo from ‘Midsummernight’s Dream Op. 61’”. Roon identified the CD, and added what I call the “rich information”: An info text on the album, and the ability to see the available streaming versions of this album.

Until then, I had neither performances of Mendelssohn’s Midsummernight’s Dream nor of Rachmaninov’s transcription of the Scherzo in my Roon library. Roon, having identified the Chamayou album, added the following entry to my Compositions browser:

So now I have a composition entry for Mendelssohn’s Midsummernight’s Dream, which I am fine with, because I allows me to check what other 599 versions of that work are on Tidal (I know that this figure includes also excerpts and transcriptions).

What I am not fine with is that the Chamayou album is listed there, because Chamayou does not play the original Mendelssohn music, but the Rachmaninov transcription. Getting the Chamayou album out of this composition page is what I am trying to achieve.

I have tried to edit the track of the Rachmaninov transcription by removing the Mendelssohn composer credit, but that does not help. I can save that change, but Roon - probably because it has identified the album - insists that Mendelssohn is the composer: When I reopen the edit page for this track, Mendelssohn is credited again as “composer”.

It would be great to have a way to tell Roon (manually, and on a track-by-track basis) that a given track does not belong to the composition under which Roon has filed it.

Poor Liszt, to be so abused so many years after his death… :smirk:
I suppose he should have kept himself to playing the piano and being a brilliant virtuoso, instead of branching out into “composing” which in his case consists of “enriching” the works of real composers, such as Schubert, with an almost endless string of notes that supposedly have the function of embellishing the original meloy, but nevertheless leave me with the hollow feeling of having eaten a lot yet not being satisfied. Still, to defend him just a little, he did show great taste in choosing so many Lieder by Schubert for his “treatment”.
History tells us that Liszt was a great interpreter of Chopin. Not the other way around. Wonder why that is…

On a more serious note (sorry for my earlier digression), I can live with the way this Liszt transcription of Schubert’s “Auf dem Wasser zu singen” is shown:

A number of Liszt’s transcriptions have their own catalogue number (in this case Searle 558) and when the TiVo database is aware of them they will get their own place within the Liszt oeuvre in Roon.
I will look into this matter further when I find the time. I’m still really very busy trying to make my collection Roon-ready in all sorts of cunning ways…

To add to the Liszt story: Chopin loathed his music. They met in Paris and Liszt was proudly presenting one of his Chopin “arrangements”. Chopin apparently telling him to stay clear of his music and compose stuff of his own (which of course he never really could do because he had little sense of melodic invention…). I am sure Schubert would have told him the same.

Anyway, the way you show the example above is the correct way it should be. It should also be possible to get that with the Mendelssohn Mittsommernachtstraum-arrangement. I’ll play around with that one a bit later to see whether I get anywhere. I quite like Bertrand Chamayou anyway :slightly_smiling_face:


I looked at this one and indeed I would leave Mendelssohn as composer here as it is a dedicated Mendelssohn Album.

Its a slightly different situation to what I was describing above where I had entire albums of Liszt Schubert Lieder-Arrangements showing up as “all tracks composed by Franz Schubert”

But in case you want to change, the arrangement does have its own composition-entry.

NB: But despite typing this composition title for that track and changing the composer to Rachmaninov, Roon does not link to this composition-entry. Despite rescan and everything. Looks like one of the examples where the workaround doesnt work.

Thanks, @bbrip.

This composition-entry is not yet in my Roon library. So how do I assign my Chamayou track to this composition entry? Do I need to first add to my Roon library e.g. the Trpceski album in which the Rachmaninov transcription is associated with this composition-entry? Or is there a different way to get this composition-entry into my Roon library?

What does help in many situations is to add an album that is correctly linked to this composition to your collection (you can later delete it again), so Roon has a reference point, then change the composer and title for this track in the Chamayou Album exactly as seen above.

If it then still does not merge to the correct (Rachmaninov) one, you could try to get there in the composition browser, highlighting the newly added track and this one and then select Edit -> Merge compositions.

If it doesnt do that either - I am out of here :laughing:

This is all pretty messy and Roon really needs to make this much easier.

Not sure if I’m barking up the correct tree here, but I thought this way I’d at least reach the right audience!

I’ve got a pressing matter that’s been gnawing at my nerves for quite a while now and it’s this:
Roon often has two instances of a song in its composition database:

  1. An individual song that is part of a collection or cycle that carries both an opus number as well as an order number
  2. The collection of songs or the cycle, carrying only an opus number

Here’s an example of the first case, the Brahms song Wiegenlied:

And here’s the complete Opus 49:

Now I’d like to make an informed choice when I adapt my own file tags. Up until now, I’ve always tagged songs such as Wiegenlied when it’s recorded on a cd without its brethren from the same main composition, in this case opus 49:
Title-tag: Op.49: 4 Wiegenlied ‘Guten Abend, gut’ Nacht’ (1ste strofe: Aus: ‘Des Knaben Wunderhorn’ / 2de strofe: Georg Scherer)
Album-tag: Brahms - Fünf Lieder, Op.49 (sel) (Renée Fleming, Hartmut Höll 24-48 2017)
Composition-tag: Fünf Lieder, Op.49 (sel)
Movement-tag: 4 Wiegenlied ‘Guten Abend, gut’ Nacht’ (1ste strofe: Aus: ‘Des Knaben Wunderhorn’ / 2de strofe: Georg Scherer)
Composer-tag: Johannes Brahms
Note: The Composition and Movement tags actually are the Custom1 and Custom2 tags that MediaMonkey does support where it fails to support the WORK or PART/MOVEMENT tags that Roon reads and uses. But that’s beside the point for the moment. I have found a way to make MediaMonkey write WORK/MOVEMENT tags programmatically using a script. And I’m very slowly working my way through my collection exchanging my previous Dutch language compositions for the canonical, English ones that Roon uses, simply because I want my library to be consistent within itself AND congruent with Roon.
By the way: the rather awkward way in which I filled Album tags was my original way to have the composition written out in full in the Album title while the movement could het its due within the Title tag. These two unfortunately are the only tags that Sonos showed (besides the Artist tag that Roon has now made entirely unusable for me) giving me composition-related information and I wanted to be able to use Sonos next to my Linn, for which I could use BubbleDS in conjunction with MinimServer. For those in the know this might begin to explain why I used to tag my files in such a strange way…
I am almost totally ‘converted’ to the Roon way of doing things which means, among many other things, that I’m now slowly replacing the many Album titles I used for one album, with just the one Album title which is the one on the cd cover. This helps having Roon recognize and identify more of my albums.
I still use my three Sonoses (in the bedroom, bathroom and kitchen) a lot but I really dislike its controller app. So in the end I will just use Roon to stream music from my library to the Sonos endpoints.
There are many many things wrong about Sonos’s software! To name just two more: there’s a limit to the number of tracks that it can hold in its database (ca. 64,000 but in practice much less when the tag values contain a lot of characters) and it doesn’t know about Composers, except when in search mode. And search mode only works when you keep your library under the 64k limit which I crossed quite early on forcing me to trick Sonos with the aid of .m3u playlists, one for every classical album (actual issues, not the type of album that only holds one composition…), so I could make Sonos count only these playlist files and not the actual number of tracks. A complex and difficult story that I won’t bore you with any further…

Right now I’m completely at a loss as to which composition I should use for a seperate song such as Wiegenlied.
The description of the complete Opus 49 Roon gives is:

while the description of the individual Wiegenlied look like this:

As one can see, the descriptions are quite different and sort of complement each other.
I think that I would prefer if Roon found a way to merge these two sources of information into one. But that’s probably not going to happen anytime soon…

What’s your perspective on this matter, @bbrip, @Tony_Casey, @Martin_F, @dylan and others?

Hi, @Hans_Valeton

phew, took me a while to read thru this :laughing:

TBH, there is probably no real good solution. It depends on your priorities.

I just stumbled across the recording of Mahler’s 3rd with Rattle and the CBSO which looked "odd " in my collection.

Upon investigation, I found that this recording is filled up with “Des Knaben Wunderhonr” by Mahler. But not all 12 songs but only 7. The disc was filled after that…

So the question for me: Do I leave each of these 7 songs showing up individually or do I link them under the “Des Knaben Wunderhorn” collection, knowing its only an excerpt. I decided for the latter. Looks tidier and when looking at the composition listing, I can see on the timings that this one is an incomplete collection.

On song collections, I usually leave them under the collection heading, even if they are not absolutely complete. Just individual songs I list under their individual name.

It’s the same problem with say, Rachmaninov preludes op. 23. I have several complete collections, which I list under the collection name. And then of course there are many individual preludes on piano recitals here and there, which I keep with their individual listing.

Same thing with Chopin, Bach choral preludes you name it. Its a constant challenge where to put it / how to link it.

Thanks for reading through my ramblings! I admit it could have been put much clearer, but from one thing thing came another, etcetra etcetera…

I agree. I think I would do the same thing in your Wunderhorn case. I don’t like it when a series of tracks that belong to the same composition do not share a common heading.

I’m leaning towards your approach here as well, although I still think it’s a bit messy.

Anyway, only time will tell what my Roon library will look like in the long run. I am still going through a transition period and seeing that a number of my principles have already fallen by the wayside, there might be more to follow…

What I did is to keep my „pre-roon“ files seperate and pretty much untouched earlyon when I saw this is not going to be easy. in case I decide later that it doesnt work for me.

On the „Roon copy“ of my music I can now fiddle around to make things fit (or maybe not)

Sounds like a sensible plan.
But where would I find room for an additional 5 TB library. Plus two backups…?

I had some spinning drives laying around from upgrading my Nas’s capacity from 8GB disks to 12GB disks :sunglasses:

This thing is great to copy to “raw” drives:

This is a good example, where roon has this generally “unfinished” feel. There are often a lot of use cases involved depending on Classical “form” and I don’t know what criteria roon is using to decide which ones to implement and which not. It just feels arbitrary. I have a very similar experience with other Classical “forms” and other genres, especially those built around mixes and covers.

This is not a complete list. I’m almost certainly instinctively using other rules for other cases, as I am sure we all do.

  1. If there is a complete set on the CD and roon can identify the complete set, I identify the complete set.
  2. If there is a complete set on the CD and roon cannot identify the complete set but can identify one or more individual songs, I identify the individual songs.
  3. If there is a complete set on the CD and roon cannot identify the complete set and cannot identify one or more individual songs, then,
    1. If one or more songs are famous I keep the songs separate
    1. Otherwise I group with WORK/PART.
  1. If there is not a complete set but the incomplete set is grouped together then I use the rules for complete sets.
  2. If there is not a complete set and they are scattered around the disk (or even alternating with some other composition), and roon can identify the individual songs, I identify the individual songs.
  3. If there is not a complete set and they are scattered around the disk (or even alternating with some other composition), and roon cannot identify the individual songs, I do nothing.
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Thanks for sharing your methodical approach with us. My own systematics might very well grow to be just like yours!