How do I say to beet not to overwrite certain fields


I have a lot of files where I tag the year manually, because I want to use the original_year or there is no info at all or the mb tags are wrong.

How can I say beet not to overwrite the year tag?

When I do a “beet up” I see a lot of changes like “1945 --> 0000” meaning that the year tag is changed. These changes are not written to the file as far as I can see. And I can list files with queries like year:1945 but I fear that beet sometimes changes the metadata from the file internally.

1 Like

We don’t currently have a way to avoid updating certain fields. In your case, you might be interested in the original_date config option, which puts the original release year in the year field.

I am not quite sure whether I want to set this option, because I do not trust the data in musicbrainz when it comes to old Tango shellacs. Often there is no info at all in mb. Usually, I grab the year or date of recording out of special databases or books.

Is it somehow possible to block the “write” command completely?

I know that one day I will type “beet write” and press the enter key. :wink:

1 Like

No, there’s no way to disable commands.

1 Like

This is bad. I use the disc field to number my cds. After some tests I discovered that beet changes this field although it was not displayed before. :frowning:

To be more precise: beet sometimes changes a disc number like 288 to 288/01 but sometimes the disc number gets lost.

1 Like

If you have something that the developers can reproduce in isolation, please file a bug!

I have to sort this out. Maybe it is due to a mix of the tags DISC and DISCNUMBER in my library. See DISCNUMBER vs. DISC

Thanks a lot!

MusicBrainz is collaboratively edited and maintained. If some information in the MB database is wrong or missing, we would be very happy for knowledgeable music fans, such as yourself, to fix the wrong data and add the missing data! That way the next person coming along wanting to tag old Tango shellacs won’t have to do all the data input again (and the data can now also be used for a lot of other interesting things).

1 Like

Yes, I would love to do this, but MB wants too much personal data during registration.

A username, a password, and an e-mail address is too much personal data?

Yeah, I was confused by the account page where you can include all kind of personal data.

I made an account, but I am lost now.

mbcollection imports only a part of my library to a collection on MB. And the plugin does not use queries and tries to upload everything to mb. I don’t want to upload all info to MB.

And I don’t know how to use mbsubmit. I don’t understand what it does.

The doc says.

As MusicBrainz currently does not support submitting albums programmatically, the recommended workflow is to copy the output of the Print tracks choice and paste it into the parser that can be found by clicking on the “Track Parser” button on MusicBrainz “Tracklist” tab.

And if my understanding is correct you can only use submit when you import files. But my files are imported. So what can I do?

You can enter things manually, or you can craft a beet ls -f command to get a pasteable listing.

1 Like

Is this still true in current beets versions? (not possible to configure certain tags not to be overwritten on import) Funnily enough I’d like to skip the track “title” field on my files since they have additional information provided by another tool and usualy are accurate already.

There is an open issue for that already: discogs: Add a configuration option to avoid providing the genre field · Issue #4087 · beetbox/beets · GitHub