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Assign multiple genres to one song in iTunes Apps
In iTunes, it's possible to put audio files in multiple genres by separating the genres with commas. For example, for genre-transcending music, use "Ambient, Electronic." You don't need a space after the comma. You don't have to stop at two genres, either.

[robg adds: I had no idea this was possible! You can't, of course, use the pop-up to set the additional genres (it will replace everything in the field), but if you just type into the genre box, you can add as many as you like. I tested searching on the multi-genre entries, and it worked as expected.]
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Assign multiple genres to one song in iTunes
Authored by: leenoble_uk on Apr 10, '03 11:24:30AM

Unfortunately it doesn't work as well as it should. I've been assigning multiple genres like this for some time only I just used spaces with no commas. I though for a minute that the commas might be the holy grail and finally allow the addition of multiple genres but this is not the case. All it gives you is lots of new genres...
Alternative, Rock
Alternative, Pop
Alternative, Rock, Guitar
Alternative, Rock, Melodic
etc etc.

Now when you throw an iPod into the mix and try to browse by genre you just get a zillion genre lists when what you really want is just a genre containing all songs with Rock WITHIN the genre not just those that have been given the sole genre of Rock. This is of course where smart playlists come in handy so you can have your list of alternative, your list of rock and your list of mongolian throat singing and some songs will cross the boundaries of all three. (proabably Captain Beefheart in that case). It would be nice if the genre listing was smart enough to accept delimited genres but it isn't.
Oh one more thing I accidentally found out last night. I have no idea if this is documented or not (who the hell reads the manual anyway) but if you have an iPod, hoding down the menu button for a few seconds turns the backlight on temporarily so you don't have to go hunting through the settings menu in the dark.

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Assign multiple genres to one song in iTunes
Authored by: Chris Haynes on Apr 10, '03 06:54:09PM

Yes, that backlight function is documented :) Very handy too :)


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Assign multiple genres to one song in iTunes
Authored by: notmatt on Apr 10, '03 12:50:23PM

The previous poster is right, all you're doing is creating a whole bunch of genres, which is fine if you're going to make a bunch of smart playlists.

Though, if you're going to make a whole bunch of smart playlists *anyway*, you should probably just use the comments field for the extra information. It's just as easy to do "comment contains" as it "genre contains". This has the advantage of preserving the usefulness of the 'browse by genre' function in the library and (presumably) the iPod.

And why stop at genres? I've recorded all sorts of metadata about my music, whether it's a live track, where it was recorded, primary instruments, instrumental/choral/operatic, etc.

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Assign multiple genres to one song in iTunes
Authored by: karfus on Nov 04, '05 10:53:17PM

The solution is simple: use Windows Media Player instead of iTunes. It lets you assign multiple genres, separated by a simple semicolon. You can also do the same with artists (multiple artists on one track) or even Album Artists, a concept entirely missing from iTunes/iPod (and the reason it handles compilations so poorly).

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Assign multiple genres to one song in iTunes
Authored by: DanFrakes on Apr 10, '03 01:57:21PM

When I first saw this hint, I was pretty excited: multiple genre support has been on my iTunes Wish List for about a year now. Unfortunately, as the previous posters have said, this doesn't really assign multiple genres; it simply creates new genres that have names that include the names of multiple genres.

What would be great is if iTunes supported multiple genres like Entourage supports multiple categories!

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How I do it
Authored by: Quantum Panda on Apr 10, '03 02:41:11PM

As other posters have said, all this does is create a zillion combo-genres. What I'd like to have is a subgenre tag.

See, how I do it is by giving everything a broad main genre, then a colon and subgenres delimited by forward slashes. Main genres are strictly by musical style: Rock, Jazz, World, Folk, Orchestral, Spoken, etc. Subgenres have the details. For instance, Weird Al's "The Brady Bunch" is tagged as "Rock: New Wave/Novelty/Parody" (with a note in the comments that it's a parody of "The Safety Dance" by Men Without Hats and the TV theme song of "The Brady Bunch"). This lets me set up smart playlists better than just tagging the song "Novelty" or "Comedy".

(I use Orchestral rather than Classical because for my listening purposes, I usually don't want to differentiate between film scores and "traditional" classical music, but I do want to differentiate between music for orchestra and music for other instrumental ensembles. So I have things tagged as "Orchestral: Film Score" or "Orchestral: Modern/Ballet" or "Instrumental: Baroque/Chamber" or whatever is appropriate. (I'm still not satisfied with how I'm classifying that last type and similar types; "Instrumental" is broader than I'd like to use for it, especially because I also use "Instrumental" as a subgenre (like "Rock: Instrumental" for Joe Satriani), but I haven't come up with a good equivalent term for "classical" music that's not orchestral.))

This method still results in many combo-genres in the pop-up, but since everything gets a main genre (and some tracks get no subgenre), related combinations are still grouped together.

What iTunes *really* needs is user-definable tags. IIRC, the current ID3 spec allows for many more tags than iTunes makes use of. If they would allow the user to add tag categories, we could ease the overburdening of the genre and comments fields. For instance, I'd love to be able to set a specific field for Lead Vocalist, so I could readily mix songs by, for instance, Eric Clapton, Cream, and Blind Faith. Right now, I have several of this kind of datum that I'm tagging in comments with various key tags that I can set up Smart Playlists to parse, and so my Comments fields look like novels.

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Assign multiple genres to one song in iTunes
Authored by: eduo on Apr 10, '03 05:34:28PM

This is something I have been using for a while now but never thought it'd be enough for a hint.

The comma is completely unnecessary, AFAICT. What I did was to have several genres in the genre field separated by spaces.

So, I could have
latin pop
world pop
latin rock
world rock
latin ballad
world ballad

And then I could do a smart playlist (or search in the field) to either get all rock songs, all latin songs, all latin pop songs, etc, giving you enough flexibility to either select all genres of the same kind (all pop, latin or otherwise) or specific subgenres and to also see what hadn't been "subgenreified" (since it would have either a blank genre field or "pop" "rock" etc in its genre field.

Also, once you type it once it gets stored in the popup, so make sure you use the autocomplete after the first time you capture the genre, so as to not have "latin pop" and "pop latin" as different genres.



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Assign multiple genres to one song in iTunes
Authored by: stillm on Apr 13, '03 07:18:11PM

As previous posters have said, what a completely useless hint! I was excited, thinking that for instance, I could put songs from sountracks in both the Soundtrack genre and the Rock genre, but this hint is just what a lot of people have been doing already. I have an Alternative category, along with Alternative Pop, Alternative Rock, and Alternative Punk. But this hint implies that we can actually place a song in two genres, when in actuality all we are doing is creating a million more combo genres.


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Assign multiple genres to one song in iTunes
Authored by: RayCon on Apr 13, '03 10:55:03PM

While we're on this subject, does anyone know how to get rid of
extraneous genres?

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Assign multiple genres to one song in iTunes
Authored by: garbanzito on Apr 23, '03 02:22:57AM

most tunes fit in multiple categories in ways not supported by
iTunes or ID3 tags.. to handle this, i use a tagging system, sort
of a bastardized XML, to encode information in the comments
field, structured so it can become methodically extracted when i
have time to create the tool

to take the genre example, i use one or more "kind" tags to add
to the main genre.. for example, a track of Electronic music
might also have a "<kind beep & squawk>" tag in the
comment.. i have a defined set of tag types and everything in
any comment field is within a tag (regular comments are in a
"<note blah blah blah>" tag)

eventually the comment field will just have an id value which
will be a key into a database with this same information.. in the
mean time, everything is still searchable by normal text

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Assign multiple genres to one song in iTunes
Authored by: dkelter on Aug 22, '03 12:53:55PM

Oh the Humanity.... This needs to be fixed, please Apple, you can add info to ID3 tags, just do it for us. Instead of the current single choice in genre we need to be able to elect an unlimited (within reason, say no more than some constraint in the 100s) number of Genre Attributes... think of the "+ - " in Smart Playlist. A Song could be classified and Pop, Rock, and Alternative.
The browsing function would need to be changed slightly to reflect your now unlimited number of options and combination for browsing Genres... i.e. Smart Browsing. Otherwise Smart Playlist currently does allow for this kind of sorting. It's in the subtle difference of "Genre is" vs. "Genre Contains".
This method allows as well for backward compatibilty... i.e. people can continue to list with only one Genre (attribute)
I disagree with the Genre / Subgenre method because it creates two different values... and potentially alot more headaches.
I would personally like to add attributes that describe the inevitalbe crossover sound of my library, but also attributes like "Live, Acoustic, Cover, Instrumental, Karaoke"
Again, it's not as if we can't do this now via some of the earlier described tricks... it's the convenience, speed, efficency, and practicality that we desire, right? Sounds like Apple Hallmarks to me!

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Smartlist by location, please!
Authored by: tcurtin on Aug 26, '03 11:08:20AM

This would be horrifically handy to have - it would remove the need for all the scripts and hacks people have for switching libraries for home and portable, imac and ipod... just add 'em all to the library, and have smartlists for each location. (Location matches /Volumes/External... matches /Library/Music... you get the idea.)

I wish someone would hammer this into apple's head somehow! :)

"They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."
- Benjamin Franklin, Historical Review of Pe

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