Linking different releases and resources

Releases and resources such as sound recordings do not exist in isolation. Increasingly recordings make use of other recordings and multiple releases are created from a single recording project or studio session.

The NewReleaseMessage has always been able to express some of these relationships, but ERN 4.2 adds further links. 

In the various resource composites (e.g. SoundRecording), the following links can be expressed:

To link a resource to a release other than the resource-release expressed though the NewReleaseMessage, can be expressed with the RelatedRelease composite, whereas the RelatedResource composite is able to allow communicating relationships between different sound recordings, e.g. whether one is a sample of the other, whether one is a cover version of the other etc.

For example, when describing The Beatles’ Get Back as part of a “best of album”, a record company may wish include the information that the same recording is also part of the album “Let it Be” and that there is cover version of the same recording with the ISRC US-UMG-000016-2:

  <DisplayTitleText>Get Back</DisplayTitleText>
    <TitleText>Get Back</TitleText>
  <DisplayArtistName>The Beatles</DisplayArtistName>

    <!-- This recording also appeared on the album "Let it Be" -->                
      <TitleText>Let it Be</TitleText>

      <!-- A cover version of "Get Back" was recorded by Billy Preston -->                                


In addition, it is possible to split a SoundRecording into several chapters, something particularly useful for audio books. This can be done using the AudioChapterReference element; it points to a Chapter composite in the same NewReleaseMessage.

The RelatedRelease and RelatedResource composites can also be used, in the same way for Releases and TrackReleases, especially useful for stating that a Release is an extended version of another Release, that a Release is a digital equivalent to a physical release, or that a release – typically a TrackRelease -- contains content from a specific sound recording.

Arguably the most important element for a Release or Track Release is the one that lists the sound recordings (or other resources) that the release or Track Release contains. This is implemented using the following ID/IDREF pointers the ReleaseResourceReference (for Track Releases) and ReleaseResourceReference within the ResourceGroup/ResourceGroupContentItem (for album releases).

The Release composites also allow these links to be communicated:

  • The ExternalResourceLink allows a record company to provide, as part of a NewReleaseMessage, marketing material such as promotional images that the record company wishes the DSP to have access to;

  • ResourceGroup/ResourceGroupReleaseReference is particularly useful when communicating boxed sets that are compilations of existing releases. Each of the boxed set’s release can be pointed out with this element. These releases would need to be communicated in the same NewReleaseMessage;

  • ResourceGroup/ResourceGroupContentItem/LinkedReleaseResourceReference allows to associate a “secondary Resource” (e.g. an image or a lyrics file) to a “primary Resource” such as a sound recording that is part of a Release; and

  • ResourceGroup/LinkedResourceReference is similar as the previous element. This, however links secondary resources to a grouping and thereby allows associating different images to, for examples the two “sides” of a multi-side album.