We've created a handy TuneCore Style Guide to help you make sure your release meets the requirements of the digital stores, and goes live as fast as possible.
TuneCore wants to make sure your releases go live as fast as possible. It is very important that you follow these formatting rules, as failing to do so can result in a a store blocking your release until the issue is fixed, and we would hate to see that occur!
iTunes has the right to make any adjustments to releases in order to meet their formatting requirements. This is out of TuneCore's control.
Common Formatting Requirements for Release Titles and Track Titles
We automatically set auto cap formatting in our system for album titles, track titles and artist names, as this complies with formatting rules set by iTunes and other stores:
“The” must be capitalized when it is the start of an Artist's name. If it is the last word in the title then it must also be capitalized (this applies to the words in the following list). In all other cases, the following words must be lowercase for English:
Artist Name Formatting : If you think you have an exception that goes against our system's cap formatting, such as an artist name like "MGMT" "TLC" or "TuNe-YaRdS," please contact us from the email address registered to your TuneCore account noting the change you'd like to make. If the exception can be made, we will process the request for you. Be sure to include your UPC.
IMPORTANT: Your artist name formatting must be exactly the same across every release you distribute.
In order to meet Apple's requirements, an album will automatically be identified as an "EP" in iTunes and show as " - EP" after the release title if it meets the following criteria:
- 1-3 tracks, one or more tracks with a running time of 10 minutes or more, total running time less than 30 minutes
- 4-6 tracks, with a running time of less than 30 minutes
Albums that do not meet the above criteria will not be identified as an EP.
In order to meet Apple's requirements, an album that contains 1-3 tracks, with each track being less than 10 minutes, will automatically be identified as a single. The term “- Single” will automatically appear in iTunes after the album title.
Albums that do not meet the above criteria will not be identified as a single.
Cover songs CANNOT include the original performing artist in the track title or artist field.
My Way (Originally Performed by Frank Sinatra)
My Way (Cover of Frank Sinatra)
My Way (Tribute to Frank Sinatra)
My Way (Acoustic Cover)
For more important information on cover songs, please go here .
Karaoke and Tribute Albums
- Original performing artists should NEVER be in the artist field of your release
- The only artist that can be listed in the artist field is the karaoke or tribute band performing the song
- "Karaoke" cannot be the sole name of an artist. You can incorporate the word "Karaoke" into the artist name, such as, "The All Star Karaoke Group"
- Track titles must indicate that this is a karaoke song. Acceptable formatting would be: “Title (Karaoke Version)” or “Title (Instrumental Version)”
- There must be no leading vocals in the song
- You can include the original performing artist in the track title. Acceptable formatting would be: “Title (Originally Performed By…) [Karaoke Version]” or “Title (In the Style of…) [Instrumental Version]"
Common Formatting Requirements for Artist Names
Multiple Artists and References
Each separate artist name appearing on your release must be entered in a SEPARATE artist name field on the album level or on the track level. You can do this in our system simply by clicking the 'Add Multiple Artists' link when you are creating a release.
Note: if you need to add multiple artists to an album title (not a single or ringtone), you must contact Customer Care here before you distribute. This will ensure that your formatting is submitted to iTunes correctly.
IMPORTANT: Only the artist name alone must appear. This means you cannot add extra information. Below are some examples of unacceptable artist names with extra information.
|Incorrect Formatting||Issue||Correct Formatting|
|John Doe (Guitarist)||Shows instrument||John Doe|
|Cunningham, John||First name must precede last name||John Cunningham|
|JohnJohn||Incorrect spelling||John John or John-John|
|Slash (of Guns N' Roses)||Includes band name||Slash|
|Elvis Presley (1935-1977)||Includes birth and death dates||Elvis Presley|
Use of Parenthesis and Brackets for Multiple References
For albums that are deluxe versions, remastered versions, re-releases, radio-edits, volumes, etc, and you are referencing this within parenthesis or brackets, the first reference must always be in (parenthesis) and anything referenced after the parenthesis must be in [brackets]. For examples:
Colorful [Deluxe Version]
Love Letter (Live Version) (Radio Edit)
Colorful (Deluxe Version)
Love Letter (Live Version) [Radio Edit]
If any song is a live version, you must reference the song as a live version as such: "Song Name (Live)"
The following abbreviations are acceptable. These are all case-sensitive:
- a.k.a. (This can only be used in titles and is NOT allowed in artist names)
- Vol. (Albums that have 'Vol.' in the title must not be written as 'Volume')