Writing on Macworld:
iTunes has always been designed for “songs,” and, for the most part, classical music isn’t a song-based genre. Because of this, organizing classical music in iTunes can be a bit complicated. But with a few workarounds, it’s possible to maintain a large classical music library in iTunes. Here’s how.
I’ve long since developed a system for tagging my classical music, but McElhearn’s got some good pointers if your collection is as muddled as it will inevitably be if you don’t apply your own tags.
One other suggestion I’d add: iOS devices don’t like long track names, and some classical music tracks can have very long titles, depending on how you’re sorting them. I have some useful space savers:
- ♯ and ♭ signs rather than writing out “Sharp” and “Flat”
- Upper-case letters for Major-key pieces, and lower-case for minor
- Omit words like “Sonata” if they’re obvious from the album title or somewhere else
- Sensible punctuation: A colon looks better and is much more efficient than the weird space-hyphen-space that everyone seems to use
So the first movement of Beethoven’s Moonlight sonata is:
- No. 14 in c♯, ‘Moonlight’: Adagio sostenuto
rather than the more cumbersome
- Sonata No. 14 in C Sharp Minor, ‘Moonlight’ – Adagio sostenuto
That’s worked reasonably well for me, but it hasn’t been without problems.
- Unlike McElhearn, I could never go LastName, FirstName for composers as I find it looks horrible, so I go the long way round. That’s Composer name: Johann Sebastian Bach; sort as: Bach, Johann Sebastian. ↩