I no longer own any LPs and my CDs are ripped upon arrival then
go to storage however I still face many of the same issues devising a digital
archive. I have about 53,000 songs from
about 4,000 CDs. I add about 400 CDs each year to my
archive. I have spent considerable time
and effort working out my rules so I pray this may be useful to others.
CDs are first sorted by genre. As noted this can cause issues with performers
who cross genre often. I use Allmusic as
the authority, what ever Allmusic.com lists as the first/top genre for an
artist that settles the issue. If for example Willie Nelson is a Country artist
than even his gospel CDs are Country genre.
I want all of an Artist’s work in one genre where I can find it by
I see no benefit sorting by micro genre or decade and I often
combine major genre which helps categorize many performers. So Jazz and Blues are combined into Jazz-Blues. As is Rock-Pop, Stage-Screen and
I have a genre for Christmas which includes all holiday
music, another for Classical of course.
Audiophile genre is sorted by record Label such as Chesky, Telarc, Works
of Art (AudioQuest).
Almost every genre has a “Various” directory for
Recording artists are alphabetical by first name with in
genre so Jazz-Blues starts with Al diMeola then Al Jarreau and Al Jolson.
I discard any “The” preface.
And any second billing isn’t. So I also discard “Quartet” for
example. Arthur Fiedler gets all the
credit and the Boston Pops is ignored. Cannonball
Adderley was a solo act by my rules because that is how I want to look it up
and I want all the Cannonball Adderley in one directory no matter the billing.
Within an artist’s directory CD’s are prefaced by (yyyy) four
digit date so the artist’s work is always sorted chronologically. The exception is within Stage and Screen which
are not by artist but in the format Title (yyyy) so I can look up the movie by
name. Example: West Side
I have a genre “Easy Listening” which includes many
difficult to file CDs. London Symphony
Orchestra has numerous symphonic rock-pop CDs. Is it Classical or Rock or Pop? It is all easy listening.
One can created play lists by copying file into a directory. So I have Demo directory for music to
evaluate or show of systems. A few artists
have a directory titled BIN so I can listen to their entire repertoire with out
jumping from CD to CD.
I hope this helps.
What works well for a digital archive may not work for LPs.
When I had LPs I had all those sticky color coded end tabs
that one uses to file physical office files I would two tabs per LP so I could look across
the room and see where a where on a shelf a LP belonged from 15 feet away. I can’t find any now on Amazon but any good
office supply place will have them and I highly recommend them.