Beets for Audiobooks and assorted spoken word audio

Hi there

New to beets and wondering whether it could be useful for me:

I have lots of spoken word audio files like books, downloaded podcast episodes (which are not in my podcast player), randomly downloaded interviews, etc.

I usually copy them and then listen to in Bound, an iOS audio player. But in order to show up nicely grouped in Bound’s interface the id3 tags need to be set properly.

At the moment I do this with eyeD3, a simple id3 CLI. But it is tedious to do so, therefore I look for an easier/more automatic tool. So, can beets help me? I have to questions:

  1. I understand I can tag the audio files, but are the tags then embedded as id3 tags in the files? (That’s a must for Bound and other players)
  2. I read that beets has an autotagger - does it work for audiobooks?

Thanks for any pointers!

Yep, beets does indeed write id3 tags! Unless you turn off the write config option. :smiley:

The autotagger probably will not work for audiobooks, unless the audiobooks are in MusicBrainz (which would be surprising).

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Might it be possible for someone to code a new autotagger source for audiobooks, similar to the beets-discogs plugin? Audible seems like a good choice. I found some code that looks close:

From what I can tell, you start with the book title and author, and it finds matches and enriches the metadata. A motivated Python hacker could probably graft something together by adapting beets-discogs plus the above, no? Would that be at all helpful for your use case, @halloleo? I.e. are your audiobooks available on Audible? Or is there some other website(s) that would make sense to potentially scrape for metadata? (NB: I’m not volunteering to code this—I’ve got my hands full­ right now—just throwing ideas out there!)

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Thanks @ctrueden. Some of myAudiobooks are on Audible - but they are normally pretty well tagged already.

I tried a few audiobooks which exist as CDs as well - and MusicBrainz wasn’ too bad. :slight_smile:

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