Is it possible to accept only some tag changes when importing?

Sorry I’m super new to beets and certainly haven’t discovered every single option/tutorial/resource. I’m trying to take my mostly organized music library and import it into beets mostly for the purposes of getting everything tagged properly*. One problem I’m having is that when importing, beets finds a match but when showing the changes it will make (I’m using timid mode), they’re either not correct or go against the formatting I like. This comes up mostly when the musicbrainz album data doesn’t perfectly fit my local files. So I have to make the right changes manually, which will get tedious. Is there a way to tell it to ignore only specific corrections?


The version of Low End Theory I have contains a bonus track which none of the musicbrainz entries have. beets tried to make a fix but it’s not right. Can I tell it to ignore that one track but keep the rest of the data and changes?


Another question: What does this mean here where it looks like (media) is not a match?

As far as I know the release-type of the album isn’t stored…so how can CD/Digital Release/etc. be a (mis)match?
Same deal with (label). and (mediums).

Here’s another. The track lengths are apparently wonky, but what would this correction do??? I didn’t know track length was modifiable…A mismatched track length to the music file seems like a bad thing. What am I to do here? (Again, I do want to import it and get things like album art, lyrics, genre tags, etc.)

What is (id) changing?

  • I’m not sure it applies in your setting, but the edit plugin might help with manually modifying matches.
  • There are metadata tags that record media.
  • Length mismatches are just mismatches for your information; the tagger won’t change anything.
  • (id) refers to the MusicBrainz ID in the files’ metadata.

I find if I need to customize things beyond what the importer provides, like letting it update certain fields but not others, or the like, I use MusicBrainz Picard to tag them externally and import with as-is. At a certain point it’s just hard to do everything you need to do in an interactive import prompt :slight_smile:

That said, maybe there’d be value in some sort of apply-and-edit operation. That is, edit the metadata being applied in this match, not directly editing the current metadata.

In this particular case, I’m not sure that’d help anyway, though, as I don’t know if there’s a way to keep unmatched tracks in the album while still applying the match metadata, I think if you match with unmatched tracks, it’ll just not import the unmatched tracks. @Adrian mind filling in there?

I actually think the edit plugin has a kind of version of that. The “edit Candidates” interactive prompt option lets you change the to-be-appllied metadata instead of the current metadata:

Is that close to the intended use case here?

@adrian @kergoth Thanks for the info and help! Edit candidates is pretty close to what I’m looking for. (though I’m getting this error when trying to use edit during import)

I can make a separate thread if this error is unusual. The temp file is getting deleted immediate after being created, quicker than vscode can even open it. I’m on Mac. Perhaps edit expects the terminal to hang until the editor is closed but it doesn’t.