Monday, January 10, 2005

Music: Song Meta-Data or Tracks vs. Albums

So I've been thinking about song meta-data (I think has popups, but I wouldn't know because I use firefox).

Meta-data is going to be important to the song searching/recommendation process. In order to know whether we should recommend a song to someone, we'll need to know enough about it to classify it in relationship to other songs.

I spent some time looking at the list of fields in theCDDB

It seems like their database is designed for albums primarily, while I'm inclined to make tracks the primary piece of data in the system. Albums can definitely be defined on the system, however they are used as a device of the artist to build a collection of songs. Since the system isn't tied to the typical album model, it seems like we should take advantage of that. And along with throwing out the baby, we can throw out some bathwater... for example: Artists will no longer be encouraged to produce "filler" tracks to bring their "album" up to 50 minutes. If you have 3 really good songs, put them up on the system. Group them up as an EP if you like, but those three popular songs could bring you as much income as 4 full albums worth of material that isn't as appealing.

But at the same time, we need to make sure to support artists that already have an "albums" worth of material put together that they want to classify as a "unit".

What do y'all think. In an idea world, with no legacy system to support, how should your music be organized?

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