Need Help with MP3 File Tagging


I'm throwing this out to the podcast audience in the hope that someone might be able to point me in the right direction.

I am currently in the process of fixing all the tags on my giant MP3 collection. I've gotten all the full albums fixed, and now I'm onto the singles. However, I have a huge number of loose singles, and close to half of them appear to be without tags. Going through and tagging files individually will take a very, very long time.

So what I'm looking for is a program that will read the name of a file, every one of which is named Artist – Title.mp3, take the artist and title info from the filename and put that into each file's ID3 tag. I've found tons of programs that do the opposite — take the ID3 tag and change the name of the file — but I haven't found one that will read the filename and parse that name into an ID3 tag.

If anyone out there knows of such a program, post a comment here. My MP3 collection is about 76 gigabytes right now, and the singles take up somewhere between 20 and 30 GB, so anything that will help me avoid going through all those old files individually would be a big help.

Thanks, everyone.


Need Help with MP3 File Tagging — 13 Comments

  1. On the windows platform, mp3tag ( does this very well, you can setup patterns and have it write tags based on the filename (or the other way around too)

    I haven’t found an equivalent for mac yet..

    hope that helps

  2. Hey Dave, I love a challenge. Just knocked up an app to do just that. Will need to test later at home. Will then send you a copy.


  3. Hi Dave,
    I think iTunes does that if you drop such files on a new playlist, if it is named like that and does not contain ID3 tags.
    BTW, thanks for the music.

  4. Dave,

    The program you want is this small but powerful application called “Renamer”

    You can download it here:

    Install and open. From there, navigate to the appropriate directory (you can include subfolders too). Under the “List” command verify that “work on all items” is selected (assuming all the files in the folder are what you want to work on).

    Go to Id3v1 tags > “Get tags from filename”. For the file name format, put in “%a – %b.mp3” and then let it run. Viola!

    Don’t forget to hit the rename button (the big button with the A -> B on it) to save the changes. It does not rename the files instantly, just incase you make a mistake.

    The only downside to this program is that it only works with ID3v1 tags, not v2. However, if you’re mp3s have NO tags at all .. that will not matter. The only time this will be a problem is if there is information in the ID3v2 fields. This will override the v1 tags in most players.

    But, if you tags have NO data at all, this is a non-issue.

    If you’re an organization nut like me, I recommend you play around with the program a bit more. It’s very functional even if it doesn’t look spectacular. My favorite feature is the “multi-change”. This is great way to change mp3s that come like “(Artist) – Album – Track – Song.mp3” to “Artist – Song.mp3” or something similar.

    Hope this helps. ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. If I remember right “the godfather” does this on the pc. will check later at home and maybe post a link. Thanks for these great shows.

  6. Tag and Rename is very very good for that purpose. Not only can you mark entire folders and tag things like Album, CD etc for all files at once, you can also search online Databases and amazon for the cds and copy titleinformation aswell as cover and backgroundinfos automatically.

    Very useful tool for tagging.

  7. Hi, maybe this tool will work for you: ID3renamer, it will use filename parts for ID3 fields of you choice.
    You can find it here

    Cheers and please visit our myspace url oneday for we are making triphop.. ๐Ÿ™‚


  8. Hi, the program “ID3 renamer” can help you (Windows) I guess.

    Please visit our myspace site if you have the time as we making triphop



  9. Hi Dave,

    Did you solve this yet?
    If not, check out Atelio’s Ultra Tag Editor:

    It’ll do exactly what you want – all you need to do is tell it which parameters (artist, song, etc) are in the filename, which order they’re in, and what separators you have between them.


  10. If nobody’s solved this one for you yet, write me and I’ll send you a program written in Perl. If I haven’t written the program already (since this is a problem I’ve wanted to resolve on my own collection) I’ve already written other programs that do the rest of the steps, it’s just a matter of putting the lines together.

    You will need a Perl interpreter to run the result, of course…

    Best wishes

  11. A good tag editor and music organizer is Mp3 Tag Pro, it is easy to use, can search for id tags in internet, create playlists, download lyrics.