USB Music some albums show separated into multiple entries. How do I fix this?

USB Music some albums show separated into multiple entries. How do I fix this?

I searched through the forum and did not see this issue, I am hoping someone knows how to fix it.

I put all my music on a USB drive and plugged it in. It works great. Some of my various artist and soundtracks get separated into individual "albums" so you cannot play them all together and some show up all as one like you would expect. I looked at the files to see what might be different about but I did not see anything. Does anyone know how to fix this?

Rocky_H | 13 juin 2017

We can't fix this. It's yet another thing they broke about the media player in version 8. I still consider it a giant clusterf%#@ that they haven't fixed these severely broken things.

What's happening is that they are listing albums not just by the "Album" field in the ID3 tags. They are doing:
"Album" AND "Artist"
It's a logical AND function, so if you do actually have an album that has several different artists on it, the media player will take each combination of album title and artist and count each of those as another separate album. It's stupid and wrong and needs to be fixed.

They also need to fix how if you browse by folder, it ignores ordering by either file name or track number and plays them alphabetically by song title. That is also wrong, and they broke it in version 8.

erik.meyers | 13 juin 2017

It is weird because some albums like this are OK and some are not. Going in by folder does at least let me listen to the album, just not in order.

Rocky_H | 13 juin 2017

Yeah, selecting by "Album" does play the tracks in the correct numbered order, but it's painful trying to find the album you want out of one gargantuan list of hundreds. That's WHY we have folder organization!

JayInJapan | 13 juin 2017

I've had some problems recently with my USB drive, so I've been dealing with music files. One problem noted above by @Rocky is when the artist's name is different. If a song is listed with feat., as in featuring, it's going to be listed as another album in your car. Another one is to look in your Compilations folder. I found a ton of albums there because someone clicked that option when they first uploaded the music to the database. | 14 juin 2017

As erik points out, a quick fix is go to Folders, then the artist, and then album name. All the songs for that album should play. The downside is due to a different issue, they will not play in album order, but alpha-order of the song titles. You can set "random" to get a different order, but not original track order.

UnshodBob | 17 juin 2017

If you prefix the song titles with a letter and a dot, wouldn't that force the songs into the proper order? Like A.vocal, B.instrumental would play vocal first, then instrumental, instead of instrumental then vocal without the prefixes. (Limited to 26 songs, but 26 songs is a lot for one album.) | 17 juin 2017

@UnshodBob - Yep that will work. I think a few owners actually did that!

Rocky_H | 19 juin 2017

@Unshod, Yes, that will work. The big thing is that it shouldn't have to. When you rip a CD, the titles are whatever the titles are, as looked up from the music database. You would have to edit the title field in every track to make it something else. With CD ripping programs, you can set up your preferences to add whatever you want at the beginning of the file name to get the order you want, so you can just rip 20, 30, 40 CDs without having to edit the title in every track.

UnshodBob | 19 juin 2017

@Rocky_H - of course you shouldn't have to do any work-around to get your albums to play properly. I can say that my Tesla plays my songs in proper order by album without having to mess with them, but I had already messed about with the metadata to make the songs play properly in my Mustang. :)

For example, I had several dual CD disc albums, and no matter what I tried, in my Mustang (I didn't own my Tesla at the time) the songs got intermingled from the two discs. Song 1, disc 1 was followed by song 1, disc 2, then maybe song 2, disc 2, song 2, disc 1. Just like an incomplete sort in SQL would return data. (Old programmer here.)

I messed with the metadata to make them all into one big album, with all the songs from disc 1 numbered normally, and then I incremented the song numbers on disc 2 by the number of songs on disc 1, and that solved the problem. Instead of 1-12 and 1-10, I ended up with 1-22. With proper sorting, I shouldn't have had to do that. Also, not all vehicles use the same sorting algorithms. It might work in the Tesla, but not in the Mustang, due to differences in the audio software.

The root of the problem is sorting. I don't think much thought goes into that. In the album category, I would sort alphabetically by album, then numerically, by disc number and finally by song number. I wouldn't take artist into account under the album category, to prevent multiple artists on one album from being split up.

In the artist category, I would sort by artist, album, disc number and song number. In the song category, I would sort by alphabetical song name. An additional category could be sorted by artist and song name. I don't know what to call that category. It would be great if there was a standard that you could count on for all cars to predictably use metadata/lack of metadata to play songs on car audio systems consistently. :) | 19 juin 2017

@UnshodBob - Great explanation!

While not this specific issue, it seems metadata is not all that perfect. I still occasionally buy CDs (to rip as lossless content) and I'm still stunned that many CDs made in 2016 and 2017 still have no metadata. Luckily there are tools to fix it, but again it really shouldn't be necessary.

rxlawdude | 19 juin 2017

@ttap, I thought metadata actually comes from an Internet service during ripping. CD audio does not embed metadata in the files, though there is an unrelated "CD-text" that most drives and players ignore.

Easiest way to tell? Rip with no network connection and see what happens. :-)

Rocky_H | 20 juin 2017

Right, the metadata comes from the online databases, not on the CD usually.

@Unshod, I did have to do that same thing with the 2 disc set of the Hamilton Soundtrack. I wanted it all in one folder, but the track numbers were not going to be happy being together like that, so I did have to renumber all of the disc 2 tracks as 14, 15, etc. upward from where the first disc ended. I still wouldn't corrupt the song title fields with that nonsense, though.

sassygirl | 20 juin 2017

i have the same problem)

sudolg | 20 juin 2017

Yes this is highly annoying but not the only device that does this. I have this issue with many different devices that I use.

Rocky_H | 20 juin 2017

@sudolg, Huh, really? I guess I've only dealt with devices that read mp3 files by file name, so they always get the tracks right because of the file names having the number at the front. | 20 juin 2017

Actually for at least 10 years CDs have the ability to have track names, album names, etc. via the CD-Text standards. Luckily we have the internet databases to usually provide the data when it's not included on the CD - a minor hassle.