Extract part of a file name into artists column

Hi all,

i was hoping you would be able to help. i have approx 4k files that i need to change the artists column, however rather than typing it out is there a way i can extract part of the information from the filename?

for example

  1. Rihanna - Don't Stop The Music ( this is the file name)

also how does it work with secondary names like - 01.The Fray - how to save a life

but all i want to have is the artist part not the 01 or the last bit, is this possible if so please could someone assist in a simply way for me please

Try the Action (Quick) type Guess Values.
Source: %_filename%
Pattern: %dummy%. %artist% - %dummy%


thank you, it gave me the second part however at the beginning it gives me this ?

  • Whitney Houston (Its got the line at the front?)

This is a different example. What does that filename look like? The “Pattern” needs to match exactly what the source has. Modify this as required to get the results you need.

I would like to add that a similar function is available with Covert>Filename-Tag.
The syntax for the pattern that @MotleyG proposed stays the same.
The benefit of that function is that it has a preview which may ease the application of the corresponding pattern.


it gives me this - whitney houston

how do i get rid of the line before?

Please show us a real filename.
If you get more data than you want, then you have not defined the pattern according to the source data.

not sure what data you want ?

1. Rihanna - Don't Stop The Music That is the file name to start
I put in %dummy% %artist% - %dummy% under the alt-2 and i end of up

- Rihanna in the artists field, however i dont want the Line in front of the artist name?

not a dot its a - Rihanna


will never lead to - Rihanna

This is, what I get - please note the filename as "Format string" at the top of the dialogue which is an exact copy of the filename that you showed here.
So, please show us the real filename. As for the purpose to get simply the artist name the pattern that @MotleyG suggested will lead to the exact result..

this is what it gives me?

Of course it does - as this filename is
01 - Duran Duran - The Reflex (Dance Mix)
The example that you gave before had a dot instead of the hyphen as separator.

For those you need
%dummy% - %artist% - %dummy%

1 Like

also how would i extract the song name to the title part ?

again the file name has all the info so how do you extract the song , same as the artists in title but getting the next portion of the filename to be added into the title

Which filename do you want to treat?

I would suggest that you try:
%track%. %artist% - %title%
and the other pattern:
%track% - %artist% - %title%
You get a feedback with the preview.

You have to use the EXACT matching parts/placeholders and characters to split your information from the filename into the tags.

If you don't want to save the number 1 before the dot into a tag like %track% then use %dummy% and a dot instead:
then a space and then %artist% (if "Rihanna" should be saved in the ARTIST tag)
then a space, a minus and a space
then %title% (if "Don't Stop The Music" should be saved in the TITLE tag)

Combined it should look like
%dummy%. %artist% - %title%

If you do that with Convert Filename -> Tag you can immediately see if the format string matches your filename:

Thank you very much everyone that has worked and i also gained knowledge from you, thank you once again

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