What is a Primary Artist?

  • The main performing artist must be listed as Primary on all content. At least one Primary Artist must be listed on all content.


  • If there are 4 or more Primary Artists on a release the release must be tagged as Various Artists with each Primary Artist listed on the appropriate tracks. For more information on Various Artists please click here


  • Full, standard artist name spellings must be used for all main performing artists. The spelling of an artist’s name must be correct and remain consistent across all content for that artist. Western artists names must not be formatted as “Last name, First name” (for example, “Smith, Fred”).


  • Performance Credits such as "Prod. by Artist XX" can not be the artist name. The artist name owuld simply be "Artist XX"


  • If your artist name is a "Compound Artist" name such as Simon & Garfunkel please review HERE to confirm that this is not a false compound artist.


SEO terms such as Sleep Music, Music for Concentration, Chill, Chillout, etc., must not be used as artist names. Products with artist names that appear to be intended to mislead or confuse users may be rejected and / or removed from Digital Service Providers. Violation of this rule could result in content being removed and / or your account disabled.


As it pertains to Classical:

Primary Artist Designation. All performing artists must be marked as Primary for western classical music albums and ringtones. This includes any soloists, ensembles, accompanists, and conductors. Individual members of an ensemble should not be marked as Primary, unless they are featured as a soloist or serve as the director or conductor.

Primary Artists at the Album Level.

The main artists highlighted for western classical music should be marked as Primary at the album level. For example, for a recording of:

  • Beethoven symphonies performed by a single orchestra and conductor, mark both the orchestra and conductor as Primary
  • Beethoven symphonies performed by several orchestras but with the same conductor, mark only the conductor as Primary
  • Beethoven symphonies performed by several orchestras and several conductors, mark Various Artists as Primary
  • Concertos performed by the same orchestra and conductor but featuring several soloists, mark the orchestra and the conductor as Primary
  • A collection of Schubert Art Songs (Lieder) performed by several vocalists and pianists, mark Various Artists as Primary
  • A complete opera, mark the principal vocal soloists, the orchestra, and the conductor all as Primary. For example, for the opera Falstaff mark the principal baritone soloist, the orchestra, and the conductor as Primary. For the opera Tosca, mark the principal soprano, tenor, and baritone soloists, along with the orchestra and the conductor, as Primary.

Primary Artists at the Track Level.

All artists performing on a track must be marked as Primary. Do not enter Various Artists as an artist name at the track level. Artists must be marked as Primary. For example, if a track features:

  • A violin sonata with piano accompaniment, mark both the violinist and the pianist as Primary
  • A concerto, mark the soloists, the orchestra, and the conductor all as Primary
  • An orchestra but a prominent solo appears during the track, mark the orchestra, the soloists, and the conductor all as Primary
  • A choir accompanied by piano or orchestra, mark the choir, the accompanists or orchestra, and the conductor all as Primary
  • An ensemble that doesn’t perform with a conductor, do not enter conductor information
  • An artist whose complete information isn’t available, as may occur with vintage recordings, provide as much artist information as possible. Only use Unknown Artist at the track level and with the Performer role. Do not mark Unknown Artist as Primary.
  • An opera, mark all artists present on that track as Primary

Primary Artists for Ensembles.

If a named ensemble is performing, the full name of the ensemble must be used for chamber music works (for example, “Emerson String Quartet”). Individual members of a named ensemble should not also be listed as primary but can be listed as a non-primary performer. If the album contains a collection of artists assembled only for the purposes of one particular album, each individual artist must be credited at the album and track level with the Performer role and marked Primary.

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