Preparing Metadata

What is a compound artist?

When an album is submitted to iTunes with multiple artists listed in one artist field, this is called a “compound artist.” Only one person or band/group name can occupy each artist field. Compound artists prevent the iTunes Store from identifying individual artists. This prevents an album from appearing on the correct artist page.

If more than one artist performs on a song, album or video, each artist must be entered individually.

Correct:

Track Title Artists
Ebony & Ivory Paul McCartney (Primary)
Stevie Wonder (Primary)

Incorrect:

Track Title Artists
Ebony & Ivory Paul McCartney & Stevie Wonder (Primary)

What if the genre for my music is not listed?

The genres listed in the drop down menu in both iTunes Producer and when you file a metadata ticket in iTunes Connect, reflect the genres supported in the iTunes Store. Please select the genre that best matches your content. iTunes reserves the right to organize your content in the genre determined most appropriate and accurate for our customers.

What are the album’s C and P lines?

The C line is for the album copyright information. It usually includes the year the album was released followed by the recording company’s name.

The P line is the copyright for that particular performance (for example, the sound recording for the album). It usually includes the original release year of the album followed by the recording company releasing the album. The P line is shown in the iTunes Store for albums.

You can specify the P and C lines for your album when you set up your album in iTunes Producer. P and C lines can be edited by opening a metadata ticket on iTunes Connect or redelivery with the correct data.

What is a title version?

A title version is a word or phrase such as Live, Bonus Track, or Remix added to the title of a song, album, or music video. The title version helps customers distinguish between different versions of that music content.

For more information, see the iTunes Connect Music Data Standards and Style Guide available in Resources and Help.

Where do I enter information about composers, lyricists and publishers?

You can add composers, lyricists and other artist roles to your album on the Album/Playlist tab in iTunes Producer by selecting "Add Artist". Only check the “Primary Artist” check-box next to the artist(s) who are the major contributors on the album. You can select specific roles for your artists in iTunes Producer.

How do I set a sub-genre for my content?

You cannot specify or change sub-genres. You only have the ability to set a primary and secondary genre when you deliver your content through iTunes Producer or make changes to your content in iTunes Connect.

What is the "Label" field used for and can you search for this label name in the iTunes Store?

The "Label" field in iTunes Producer is used for copyright information and for organization of your content on certain reports such as financial reports. This field is not currently searchable by customers in the iTunes Store.

How do I indicate that an artist is featured on a track in the most effective way?

To create an album in iTunes Producer comprised of a primary artist featuring another artist, there are two steps you will need to take. First, add the featured artist by clicking the "Add Artist" button next to the artist field on the Album tab in iTunes Producer.

  • Add an artist by clicking "Add Artist"
  • Enter the artist name or Artist ID
  • Select "Featuring" from the Role menu
  • Click OK to close the Artists window

Since "Featuring" role artists do not display in the artist column in the iTunes Store and exist to maximize your album's search capabilities, the featuring artists will be added to the track title (if the artist is just featured on that track) or the album title (if the artist is featured on ALL tracks on the album) when the featuring artist was set with the role Featuring.

Here are examples of how your track titles should look to reflect a featuring artist(s):

  • If I Get Locked Up (feat. Eminem & Dr. Dre)
  • Ayo Technology (feat. Justin Timberlake)

For detailed examples of this title formatting and more information about artist roles, please refer to the iTunes Store Style Guide.

Remember, you must follow these steps to format your metadata correctly when you file a metadata ticket to make changes to your content in My Music .

How do I create an album that is comprised of two discs?

To submit an album comprised of multiple discs, create one album and import all discs into the same album. Indicate the disc number and total discs at the album or track level as volumes.

How do I set up an album that is a compilation of Various Artists?

If there are 4 or more primary artists on the album, the primary album-level artist should be Various Artists.

To create an album of a compilation of artists, type "Various Artists" into the Artist field in the Album/Playlist section of iTunes Producer. When you add details to each individual track, you will need to enter an artist name or the artist ID for each individual track. "Various Artists" must not be a track-level artist, unless it is a continuous mix track performed by various artists.

When and where do I need to list a composer?

All music content with a primary or secondary genre of Classical must list at least one composer at the album level. Composers may never be listed as the Primary Artist unless they are actually performing on the recording as a conductor, accompanist or featured soloist.

Which genre should I use for classical content?

The primary genre for classical content should always be Classical. The only exceptions to this rule are Classical Crossover and Classical Electronic works, which should use Classical Crossover or Classical Electronic as the primary genre.

You can also include secondary-genres to help customers find exactly what they're looking for. When adding a secondary-genre, always make sure that it correctly applies to the music content. For example, any secondary-genre ending with the word "Era" is specific to a certain time period in music history, so make sure that the era you choose is appropriate for the works on the album.

Do I need to include catalog numbers for Classical works?

If a classical work has a catalog number, it must be included as part of the track title. To check if a Classical work has a catalog number, search for the work title or composer at imslp.org.

If one exists, the table at the bottom of the page will display the catalog number for the specific work.

What are Work Title Fields used for?

If multiple tracks contain sections or movements of a larger Classical work, these tracks can be grouped together using the Work Title field. When using this field, make sure that the work title you enter is identical across all related fields.

When the work is displayed on the store, the section or movement titles will appear below the work title.

Do I need to enter Audio Locales for Classical content?

If the music on your content includes sung or spoken text, make sure to list the language in the Audio Locale field. If there are no sung or spoken texts, enter "No Linguistic Content" as the Audio Locale.