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Monday 7 November 2016

Tagging Classical Music:Part 5 - Classical Classification

Go forward to Part 6 - Works and Movements
Go back to Part 4 - Opus and Ranking

In the previous section we saw how that classical composers in centuries gone by often used the opus and ranking system to classify releases, we also saw they didn't do a very good job of it !

But in the case of the major composers after they died often a good soul came along and tried to catalog their works in a more consistent way. This is called classical classification and is an attempt to classify all of a composers works, it is completely separate from the record label catalogue given to a new CD release by the record company.

Usually catalogues are in chronological order but sometimes they are a thematic catalogue.
For example Johann Sebastian Bach, uses the BWV (Bach-Werke-Verzeichnis).  The BWV catalog is thematic so a lower number does not mean it is an earlier composition, for example his cantatas are numbered BWV 1 to 244 and Violin concertos BWV 1046 to 1051. 

There are no other composers whose work is catalogued using BMV numbers so it quite simple to extract them from the song/work  title into the Classical Catalog  field and that is what SongKong does. But things aren't so simple the following composers all use a H (Haydn uses Hob as well) prefix
  • Haydn
  • Hector Berlioz
  • Bohuslav Martinu
  • Gustav Holst
and of course there are song titles that contain H. without it signifying a classical catalogue no.

Luckily because the MusicBrainz database stores the composer separately SongKong only attempts to find a classical catalog no when it has identified the composer of the piece, and then it will search for the correct classical catalog pattern(s) for that composer. This ensures that when SongKong has extracted a classical catalog no it gets it right 

This field offers another way to organize works by the major composers. 

Go forward to Part 6 - Works and Movements 
Go back to Part 4 - Opus and Ranking

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