Why are genres so disappointing?

As a new user mostly interested in Roon’s potential to explore music I hope somebody could set me straight on how Roon actually works in regards to genres. I use Tidal and a local collection from which I’ve been estranged as a Tidal user for 5 years.

As an example I’d like to explore popular German music. Roon has “German” as a genre but the content is disappointing: 4 local albums, one new release , 15 album recommendations (including The Chieftains, Gypsy Kings and Hanne Boel) and 15 artist recommendations.

Where is the extensive list of German artists? Does Roon have editors working on tying things together in this genre, but they just haven’t gotten to this yet?

Did I overlook something, can you point me in a better direction? I’ve spent my fair share of time editing mp3 tags in my local collection in the past, and I don’t really want to continue the work for Roon. Still, is there something I can do as a user to help tag certain artists with certain genres?

A few years back I asked Tidal support if there was a way to explore music from a certain country. The answer was NO. As a Danish user I know they have the data or some of it, because they offer content with Danish artists directed at me.

I had hopes that Roon would enable this type of musical exploration.

Maybe AI is doing it :slight_smile:

I suspect that the Genres you are seeing are triggered primarily by the content of your Library. With mine, I can start with the Genre “International”, and then I see “Western European Traditions” as one of the subgenres. Choosing that will give me the following subgenres (this is only the start of the list):

I don’t have any (non-classical) German music in my Library, so I don’t see this as a subgenre

Hi Geoff

Genres are not lacking in my view. The content in the genres is not what I had hoped for. It’s practically empty.

I’m looking for THE roadmap of contemporary popular German music based on what Tidal has to offer. Apologies if I was unclear.

Genres in Roon is for navigating your library only so it will only show you what you have added via your own music or as favorites from Tidal. Roons advanced search focus are only available for material that’s in your library they don’t help search Tidal or Qobuz for material.

You can’t search for such specifics via Roons search across Tidal unfortunately it’s artists, albums and tracks only. If you use the Tidal section it gives you genres in the Explore section but this is limited to what they show here and not the entire catalogue it has to offer. Many have asked for more specific search filters to aid in finding material outside what you have added to your library. So far it’s been ignored and all the in depth search tools are for your library only sadly.

Roon doesn’t edit anything either it relies on the streaming services data and 3rd party metadata services. They have more recently starting to curate playlists but that’s as far as Roon goes. It leaves recommendations up to the Ai of Valence. So if you start to play more German music then it will start to play more in Radio and offer suggestions off from those albums as you look at them. But they don’t do editorial content Roon is not a streaming service.

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My understanding is that Roon collates metadata, it doesn’t create it, so you’d need to take this up with the metadata providers rather than Roon.

One thing you could try, with reference to your local library (I don’t know if it works with Tidal): rather than attempting to find German music through genres, use Focus instead. Again, this depends on the quality of the metadata provided to Roon, but it’s another avenue to explore.

Focus doesn’t help for anything outside of your library, the OP is wanting to discover more. This is where Roon falls flat, but it’s not all down to it as the services themselves don’t offer it either and most German music is likely labelled as international or World as an Id tag which doesn’t help at all to narrow it down. I am sure though that Roon could do more to open up search to genres, labels, country etc if they wanted to, all that must be available in the first place.

Hi Dave,

Thanks for shedding some light on this topic. And thanks for your tip which I will try out. My life is too short to take something up with metadata providers, whoever they are. Yours and other replies indicate that this data simply does not exist or may not be accessible to Roon. As I mentioned - Tidal does not offer this functionality to its users. Event though Tidal subscribers in Germany, Spain, Italy … get offered suggestions based on their nationality.

I’m confident that some work on my own part with the tagging functionality in Roon and the wikis of the web could give me some of what I want. That’s not the kind of exploration I had in mind though. Plus it would be almost a crime not to be able to share that work with the rest of the user base.

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Hi @CrystalGipsy,

Especially now that the genre is listed there, and there are some recommendations it beckons questions such as mine I think. I have used German as an example, but I am interested in music from several other countries. I think it’s a great way of getting off of the anglophile highway of popular music culture and listen to somebody copying it :slight_smile: No, really it’s a wonderful way of exploring music.

Hi @CrystalGipsy

Great answer, thanks! I’m not happy with it, but I needed some clarification.

For your own music you can tag them in Roon for curation. If you already have tags on your files that indicate this then maybe you didn’t set Roon to use these, it will default to its own metadata to start with but you can set it globally or on specific albums to use your own Genre tags and you can set up mappings to.

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@CrystalGipsy

Thanks, to be honest - out of the 4500 albums and 55000 tracks in my local library, only a wee little part is not available in Tidal. And not all of my local collection is FLAC. I consider shutting it off and going Tidal exclusively. I had until I met Roon, then it seemed like a way to get complete but actually I feel the local collection is rather in the way. My Tidal tracks are way more recent.

Fair enough. Then you likely better adding Roon tags to their content then. As long as it’s been added to your Roon library you can add tags and edit genres on any Tidal content. This will help you curate it more to your tastes then rather than its standard metadata from Tidal which as your finding isn’t doing what you want.

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@CrystalGipsy

Wait a second, I can edit metadata for entries in my library. I wasn’t aware. I just tried and it seems that I’ve learned something. No, I won’t be spending a lot of time editing metadata. I’d rather just browse and listen to music. There’s another path: Find one album that you like, hope for suggestions. Read a little, look up something else on Tidal. Roon is not going to assist me the way I hoped, oh well…

Roon should lead you down a rabbit hole of other similar artists. When viewing an album you will get suggestions from it of others to listen to by that artist or similar. Also Roons ai radio may well lead you to more but not sure how well it works for county of origin as it’s mostly genre of music styles or other links.

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