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Using tags to organise your pieces in Newzik

Wednesday, November 10, 2021

Hello all, I am very excited to share my impressions about the new feature of Newzik with you; Tags!

This is a feature that arrived to Newzik in the version 6.4, and I am not excited for no reason, because I believe that from now on you can easily have one of the most well designed music library always with you, even in your pocket. Personally I am experiencing not only great fun while organizing but as a librarian myself, I am feeling great excitement from the fact that I now have a library which is even better organized than our own library of my institution, and Tags are the backbone which made this possible.

Getting started with Tags

Tags in Newzik is basically a filtering system that you can completely personalize as you want. You will create your own Tags and then be able to assign them to any piece and you can assign as many tags as you want to a piece and then search/filter your pieces from the Tags window. With tagging one can create small or large catalog groupings. In version 6.4, you can create a new Tag in 3 different ways:

  • First, you can create it from the Tags window on top left corner, which is in the Pieces section.
  • Or, you can assign Tags while importing.
  • You can also assign tags directly from the piece details.

If you would like to learn the details of how to create tags and assign them, you can check the Newzik Knowledge Base here.

Why are Tags important ?

All these are nice surely but why Tags are important? I believe that they are important because they can really give you not only easy access but also easy information.

Let me explain to you what I mean:

Since Tags are completely unique, you can personalize them as you want, meaning you can organize your library as you want. I want to share with you what I have done, and I think that it can show you what Tags are capable of doing.

I am a violinist, conductor and a composer who had studied and still studying all these fields, therefore my music library used to be a big mess (well, it still is a mess for the printed ones). As you can guess I have too many different things, some are related and some are not related at all. With tags I have found that I can order all my library as if they are in a catalog, and after trying it I was so excited that I decided to first design my Tags structure and then assign all my Tags (I advise you the same, then it really is a game changer).

We have 10 different colors to choose from in Tags, therefore I decided that I will have those colors as main sections, and a few tags in each color. I was able to create 9 main sections and around 40 Tags.

  • For example, I created 4 Tags in Red color: Violin, Conducting, Composition and Ensemble. This way, I am able to see which piece is related to which part of my studies/career.

  • I used the Blue color for the Epochs, meaning I have created many different blue Tags as Baroque, Classic, Romantic, Post War etc. Meaning of this is huge to me, since now I have my library cataloged according to epochs.

I think that you got the idea, therefore I will just give a few more examples here for the other tags that I have created :

  • I used Dark Green color for Tags about musical forms such as Symphony, Opera, Concerto, Sonata etc…

  • Light Green color for separating chamber groups such as Duos, Trios, Quartets etc.

  • I used Dark Blue to differentiate the scores from each other, such as Manuscript, Urtext, First Edition or Second Edition (this is also extremely helpful for me since I always get the manuscripts and urtext editions next to some old second editions).

  • I used Purple color for the Tags which shows me information about the piece I have without the need to enter the piece, such as; part only, partitur only, parts, all parts and partitur etc. This way I can see how much of the piece is in my library without even the need to enter the music.

  • I also added a solo Gray Tag and made its name “Nonmusical”, since I use Newzik for so many things, not only for music.

I am adding below my own design of Tags, so that you can see how much is possible with them, especially if one is obsessed with order (it even gave a much to a messy person like me to order things).


Why so many Tags ?

The answer of why I have created so many Tags and produced a system is that I needed that organisation. My library is only getting bigger and bigger, and it happens every single day. If I continue in this speed, in about a year or two it will be very hard for me to find something in my app. Surely I can always write the name or the composer and Newzik will find it for me and this is wonderful, but what if I forgot the piece and the composer? I might know that its a violin piece or a Trio but I might not remember which one. We musicians sometimes remember specific things about the pieces but not always the main headlines.

Another reason why I love the Tags is that I like to suddenly search things in my library. For example when I suddenly want to play a quartet with my group, now I can instantly list all my quartets. If I am creating a concert program and I need a piece from classical period, I can just filter it with tags and see what I have. I can also check all my manuscripts with a single movement, or vocal scores, or all my symphonies / sonatas / operas etc. Or if I have an ensemble that wants to do some reading, I can easily just choose my Tag called “All Parts and Partitur” so that I can find the ready scores that I have all parts of.

Tags gives the possibility to filter your search but it also gives the possibility to create small library sections. The amazing thing is the fact that even in regular libraries, one can only find a book or a score in a specific place. Now, I can reach my Brahms symphony manuscript from not only directly with its name or composer, but also just by choosing tags such as; Symphony or Romantic or Full Score or Manuscript etc. Even if I choose only “Manuscript” and “Symphony”, it will be very easy to find afterwards. You can always filter your search more with using more Tags.


What can be improved?

Well we all know that everything can be improved towards perfection. I personally had almost no issues while using tags.

At first I thought that maybe it would be nice to have more colours, but after using systematically, I wasn’t even able to create 10 different color groups and I still have 1 color that I don’t even use yet. But still, why not? Maybe we can see even more variety of colors in the future, or maybe people will not want to use colors in groups but each color as an individual. Who knows? This is a very creative and open feature and each individual will personalize for their own need, and this is exactly why I love it.

If I am thinking in terms of pros and cons, I think I have been explaining the pros since the beginning of this writing, but when I think of cons I can’t really find any big one. A small one that I figured out was that sometimes I forgot that I had a Tag already and still tried to create a new one. Most of the time Newzik was smart enough to tell me that I already have a Tag on that name and it asked if I would like to merge them!? I was very happy to see this also, but I advise you to be careful with your upper-case and small-case letters and leaving spaces after your words. I have found that I created the same tag twice, and when I checked it in detail to understand why the app didn’t ask me to merge it, I realized that I had an extra space in one of them, after my Tags name. Therefore yes, maybe a tiny con for this, but easily avoidable if the user is careful.

Now I call you to discover this amazing new feature and organize your library in the best way possible. You now have the chance of creating the best organised, easily searched and the most accessible library everywhere in the world, be creative and use wisely ;)

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