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Collaborations and Keywords posted on May 7th, 2018

By Brian Wheeler

Collaborations. It’s all the rage in music these days. Artist A with Artist B featuring Artist C and Artist D with a cameo by Artist X. Sometimes your artist fields are a who’s who of a particular genre of music. Sometimes you’ll span multiple genres with a single song! But how do you keep them all straight when it comes to scheduling? And does it matter?

Yes, most times keeping all your artists separated and governed DOES matter. It’s why the Artist Keyword field and the associated rules are so important and so commonly used. MusicMaster provides as many keywords as you’d need to fulfill even the most challenging of collaborations. Couple that with specific artist keyword separation settings for each artist and you can have complete control over the flow of your station.

But can you have too much of a good thing? Some programmers say YES. It’s possible you don’t really care that Wiz Khalifa has a cameo on a particular recording. His role in the song may be so insignificant that you don’t wish to separate this song from other Wiz tunes. Simply leave the artist keyword off the collaboration. His name can still appear in the artist name field so your jocks are aware of the contribution, but MusicMaster won’t meddle in your rotations on his behalf.

The same goes for other formats, too. As a programmer, you might not care that a Foo Fighters song plays in close proximity to a Nirvana song. Yes, Dave Grohl was in Nirvana. But you don’t care if Nirvana plays near the Foos, and neither do your listeners. So why govern it, then? Keep the Foo/Grohl keyword off the Nirvana songs and vice versa. Just because you CAN govern it, doesn’t mean you HAVE to!

Using A Secondary Artist Keyword Field posted on April 30th, 2018

By Dave Tyler

One of the greatest parts of being a Music Scheduling Consultant for MusicMaster is that I get to work on a daily basis with many of the top programmers in the world. It is an honor to be able to help them. As a 34-year radio vet, I love sharing and learning from them too!
Recently I was speaking with a terrific CHR Programmer who had an interesting question. He said “I have my Artist Keyword Separation set to 1:05. We are a hits/current driven format so a lot of the songs we play have “Featured” artists that are named on the song but do not necessarily play a big role in the song. By listing them as a Secondary Artist on the artist keyword this means that one of the featured artist’s songs will also be restricted from playing for 1:05. Is there a better way to control this or do I just have to decide if I list them on the keywords?”.

What an awesome question! You can see in my example below I have a Brad Paisley song that features Allison Krauss. Although in this particular song Allison plays a substantial role we can use it as an example. For demonstration purposes let’s say she only does background harmonies but is featured in the video and listed on the CD. As you can see in my Library Maintenance view in the Artist Keyword field they are both listed and therefore (per my rule settings which you can also see below) once this song plays BOTH artists will have to sit on the bench for one hour and five minutes.

While it makes complete sense for Brad to have to wait the allotted time it may or may not (depending on your programming philosophy) make sense to have Allison have to wait that long. As mentioned before the programmer I was talking to programmed a CHR station so he faced this constantly in his Currents, Recurrents and even Golds. What can we do?

MusicMaster provides several ways to control artist separation from rules to custom settings on a per artist level. However, let’s go deeper and do something cool. By going to Dataset/Library/Fields I can open my Database Field Editor and sort by “Type” and see if there are any Keyword fields that I am not using. In my case I had a Keyword field for “Theme” that I was not using. I can, within the editor, just type in a new name for this field. I will call this “Secondary Keys”.

I can add this field to my Library Maintenance layout and now I have an option when entering artists. If the song is literally a duet or the featured artists play a big and obvious role in the song, then I will add them as a secondary artist on the regular Artist Keyword field and the full separation will apply to them. If I deduce that they play a very minor role overall in the song then I can list them instead in my “Secondary Keys” field and then apply a shorter time restriction on those keywords.

In my example above my “Secondary Keys” only have to separate by 20 minutes. This keeps this artist from playing back-to-back with a song they are the lead on but also allows it to play a lot sooner than it would otherwise. It is a unique way to use MusicMaster to get even more control over your sound.

For the record (pun intended) I can already hear some of you saying “Great idea Dave BUT I do not have a Keyword field that I am not using so what now????” No problem any of the MusicMaster Music Scheduling Consultants on our Support Team can add the fields you need to your database.

No matter what you format is, if you have a primary and secondary artists, consider this method to assist in your scheduling.
As always if you have any questions just give us a ring. We are always happy to help.

Coming next time, another perspective on this topic.

Spotlight on the Keyword Separation Wizard posted on February 17th, 2014

By Aaron Taylor

As your format evolves, the competitive situation changes or you receive new research data, it often become necessary to make significant changes in your MusicMaster database. Fairly obvious items that need attention in these circumstances include revision of your clocks and assignment grid, adjustments to your Rule Tree and expansion or contraction of the size of your categories.

In this article, we’ll cover the basics of working with the MusicMaster Keyword Separation Wizard. (more…)

Artist Keywords posted on January 24th, 2011

by Paul Ziino

The question has come up, “How do I best use Artist Keywords?” Today we answer that question. (more…)