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Artist Reference Database


This document represents version 6.0 of these actions. After updating if there are any actions in the Artist Reference Database folder remaining with a version number less than 6.x they may be deleted.

Way back in 2015 we thought it would be neat to maintain an Artist database which would allow us to lookup various information about artists in our collection.

This file describes a variety of actions which were written to build the databases, manage them as part of your new album workflow and to provide the query functionality.

In order to get full functionality out of this suite of actions you will require an Album Database which describes the albums in your collection. For the purposes of this suite the database only has to have an Album, Folder Path and Yate Album ID field. However, you may as well throw other columns in there, as Album database are really useful. Personally we keep Album and Track databases updated at all times. The supplied builder for the Album database uses an Export Set called ARDB: Album DB. You might want to take a look at it to see if you want to change any of the fields. Note that the column order is irrelevant as this suite determines the column layout at runtime.

A word on Yate Album IDs. A Yate Album ID is simply a unique value. Every database, including iTunes/Music/TV uses unique IDs. We have Yate Album IDs and Yate Track IDs in all of our tracks to maximize the database capability.

If you do not already have an Album database you will have to create one. Further, you have to construct the Artist Reference database. There are three actions provided to do so. The actions must be run through the Batch Processor. Make sure that you enable Auto-Saving of files. Note that starting with version 6.3 of the actions, the build actions can be run from the UI if a root folder has been configured. If you enable the Preferences - Actions -Enable Batch Processor auto start from Stop Action and Run Batch Processor setting, the actions will start immediately.

ARDB: Build Album Database
This action will construct the initial Album Database. Yate Album IDs will be created if required.

ARDB: Build Artist Ref DB
This action will construct the initial Artist Database. Yate Album IDs will be created if required. When building the database fields are decomposed with knowledge of their associated preference list, if any. Any item in a field which is contained in the associated preference list is not decomposed. If you are using separator characters other than the multi value delimiter and you have items which contain the separators, it is a good idea to make sure that name is in the appropriate list. For example, if you are using commas as delimiters for multiple artists, having Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young in the Artist list will ensure that it is not decomposed.

ARDB: Build both Databases
This action will construct the both databases. Yate Album IDs will be created if required.

There are three actions provided which you can call as part of your new album workflow. They are intended to be run from the UI.

Add to Artist Ref DB
This action evaluates the current open tracks and adds or updates their artist information to the Artist database. Yate Album IDs will be created if required. Note that this action effectively calls Remove from Artist Ref DB before adding or updating.

Remove from Artist Ref DB
This action removes the artist information for the open tracks. Note that all information associated with any of the Yate Album Ids present in any of the selected files will be removed.

Update Album DB
This action opens and updates the Album database with information from the currently open tracks. Yate Album IDs will be created if required.

There are helper helper actions which are called in a variety of places. They are not intended to be directly called. These actions all have a name starting with Helper:

All of the above actions validate the configuration settings by calling an action named ARDB: Configure. The action can be directly run at any time. If you want to force the configuration wizard to run when not running it directly, hold down the Options key when starting any of the previous actions.

And now for the fun part. The Query Artist Reference DB action. Some of us have this on a toolbar icon because we use it so often. The action issues a prompt and depending on what text you enter, various result types are displayed. The results can be displayed in the Log Viewer or in the Album database. The action can be configured to repeat until cancelled or to stop after a single function is executed.

The formats of the queries that can be executed are displayed by the help button at the lower left of the displayed panel. You can select artist names from the menu displayed by the disclosure button to the right of the query text field. Artist names selected from the menu are inserted to the text field.

When you enter a query which accepts multiple artist names you separate names with commas. When you insert an artist name from the menu, it will have necessary commas added. Commas as a separator can be problematic as a name in the database can contain commas. The Query action assists with this issue in two ways:

  1. If the query field (without its leading function code) matches an item in the artist reference database, it is never decomposed.
  2. Any query command which contains a multi value delimiter (;;;) ignores commas. You can use the multi value delimiter as a separator instead of commas. If you only have a single name containing a comma you can follow it by a multi value delimiter.

When you first start the action if the selected tracks (if any) have a consistent Album Artist or Artist name, that name will automatically be displayed in the query field.

The Repeat checkbox at the lower left of the UI panel allows the action to repeat until cancelled.

Content List:

Folder: Artist Reference Database

    Action: Query Artist Reference DB

    Action: ARDB: Configure

    Action: Add to Artist Ref DB

    Action: Remove from Artist Ref DB

    Action: Update Album DB

    Action: Helper: Apply Reference Artist List

    Action: Helper: Build Reference Artist List

    Action: Helper: Remove Reference Artist List

    Action: Helper: Verify Config + Open ARDB

    Action: ARDB: Build both Databases

    Action: ARDB: Build Album Database

    Action: ARDB: Build Artist Ref DB

Export set: ARDB: Album DB

Export set: ARDB: Artist DB


Yate v6.9.1


2015-12-16  First release in v3.10 Preview 1.

2015-12-12  Changes for v3.10 Preview 2.

2015-12-16  Changes for v3.10 Preview 3.

2016-02-24  Patch to ensure that list items are treated as separate entities in Helper: Build Reference Artist List when applying case transformation.

2016-08-28  v3.14 optimizations.

2016-09-19  Query Artist Reference DB will test if the Shift key is down. If it is and a consistent Album Artist or Artist can be found, the query will automatically use that data.

2018-04-03  v4: Updated to maintain the Artist Database keys as being case insensitive.

2020-07-16  v5: Updated for Yate v6.0 capabilities.

2020-09-13  v5.1: Added documentation link.

2022-02-21  v5.2: Changes due to updates since v6.0.2.

2022-02-27  v6.0: Changes due to Yate v6.9. Added the ability to add any credit field. Released to the preview list.

2022-03-08  v6.1: General release

2022-06-06  v6.2: The Documentation button always redisplays the main panel.

2022-07-26  v6.3: The build actions can now be called from the UI as opposed to the Batch Processor, if a root folder has been configured.

2022-09-04  v6.4: The ARDB: Configure action was not preserving the set of active files. The Alternate Delimiters configuration panel is now always a multi line edit.


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