How to tag mix compilations?

How should mix (DJ compilation) albums be tagged? See this album as an example:

Currently below the title it has the artists Paul Oakenfold and Mike Cosford. Going into “edit album”, it has them both separately as “primary artist links”. The “album artist” is listed as “Paul Oakenfold & Mike Cosford”.

Now, what is the correct way to tag this? Instinctively I would set the album artist as “various artists”. I would change the title to “The House Collection - Mixed by Paul Oakenfold & Mike Cosford”, as that is what it says on the cover. And I would leave primary artist links as it is, I guess.


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No thoughts from anyone on this one?

This one is entirely up to your preferences. Personally I only use Various Artists for multi-artist albums, not for collaborations by two artists. For this album, I wouldn’t change anything.

Of course, this means that it will be sorted into Paul Oakenfold in album sort order. You may or may not want this

Thanks for your input @Suedkiez

However, this is a multi-artist album, not a collaboration between 2 artists.

Ah, so Oakenfold and Cosford only did the compilation? In that case, I am with you

I don’t see an issue with Roon’s (the music label’s) default. If I check on DJ-Kicks by Andrea Parker in my library, each track is showing “performed by” credits for the original track artist like I see on VA-albums and when I look into the album credits, Andrea Parker is listed there as Mix-DJ for all tracks (only). This seems to me pretty much what the label had in mind, looking at the album cover.

I would tag the first disk as album artist Paul Oakenfold and the second disk as album artist Mike Cosfold.
Disk 1 is mixed by Paul, Disk 2 is mixed by Mike.

@BlackJack , I think you’re misunderstanding the issue. It’s not the individual tracks that I’m talking about - they show fine. It’s the album title, the album artist and the “contributing artists” for the album itself that is being discussed.

@goat , the album artist is “various artists”, as neither Paul Oakenfold nor Mike Cosford performed on any of the tracks. Also, if I set them as having separate album artists, then wouldn’t they show as 2 separate albums in Roon?

As someone who listens to compilations a lot, I think this is indeed a bit a problem within Roon, also since I would want to have the tracks “scrobbled” the right way on Default in Roon is that every track on a compilation is by the compilation producer too, not only the actual artist, which of course is wrong.

So normally I just use “Various Artists” for the album as a whole, and edit the single tracks.

What I dislike too is that mix compilations don’t appear on the Artist overview page, instead you have to open the Discography tab to see the appearances in compilations … Roon doesn’t seem to differ between “Mix-DJ” / “Compilation Producer” who is the main artist behind a compilation and a “Primary Artist” that appears with one single track on a compilation.

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Yeah - compilations, anthologies, mix albums, compendiums, box sets, album series, collections/collective works, etc are badly managed in Roon at the moment!

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I don’t agree there
They did perform the mixing
That’s why I always label mixes as such

When I want to search for a DJ, I want the results of the DJ performing the mix
And this way it works everywhere

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Interesting approach. They did do the mixing, yes, but the tracks themselves are by other artists. So the overall album artist should be “various”. They might qualify as a “contributing artist” though. I suppose a specific field for DJ would be useful.

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I have done this for years because this way it works everywhere as I want it to work…

I agree that is a bit of misuse of the field, but this way it works in roon, in traktor,in upnp players, in my car (before ARC :upside_down_face:)

I only use various when it’s a real compilation of tracks. But when is mixed i want the album to appear under the mixing dj…

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That’s what DJs do and the popular ones made millions out of it (some maybe still do). It is an art of its own, to select a set a tracks and mix and match them together seamlessly. There is a reason why the studio puts DJ names on covers (as main artist) and not the original track’s performers.
If you don’t like that, then it is a matter of personal taste IMO and I don’t see the point in discussing personal tastes. Just do as you wish.
The studio made it perfectly clear on the cover who the primary artist(s) is/are for the DJ-albums shown in this thread as examples. Metadata providers, and Roon in the end, just follow the lead given by he studios and artists here.

@BlackJack , you’re preaching to converted with your little monologue there. I’m well aware of what DJs do, doing a little mixing myself. Yes, of course the DJ’s name goes on the album cover - but not as the album artist, it’s as the DJ. The original track’s performers wouldn’t all fit on the front cover :joy: But they do appear to the back cover of course.

Roon allows you to define more than 6,000 roles. I have the impression it is not a widely used feature. I don’t believe there is a DJ role but there are dozens of album “compiler” roles which roon considers a “production” rather than a “performing” role.

So for example, if you are using a 3rd party editor you can set the DJ in the “Performer” tag to a production “Compiled By”, instead of a performer “Album Artist” role. You then need to set the Primary Artist also if you want the DJ to appear under the album title. It’s exactly the same issue with compilation type soundtrack albums. I did this a few times but usually don’t bother except with albums I play a lot or are important to me as it’s several additional manual steps. Most of the time I just set the DJ/Album Compiler to Album Artist as it works predictably with other players.

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Useful extra information @Tony_Casey

Would be useful if someone from the Roon team could chip in and suggest the best way to do this - the way that fits in best with the Roon ecosystem. @danny ?

Isn’t that exactly what Roon does when an album can be identified?

An interesting discussion. Surely all that matters is that you can find the music you want to play in the manner you normally search for it in Roon? Additional considerations may be using the same music collection with other players (inc those used by DJs) and getting the same search results.