Monday, August 23, 2010

Yeah… We’ve Got a MusicMaster Report For That

By Aaron Taylor

We get calls and emails fairly often from clients asking us how to create a specific type of report. Perhaps it’s a report that the General Manager or consultant has asked for, or maybe it’s a report you need for reporting purposes to a record label, regulatory agencies, or just internal programming department research or verification.

Our intention in this article is to give a brief “roadmap” as to where in MusicMaster you can locate many of these frequently requested reports, and a brief overview of the options available.

-Most Frequently Played Report/Specific spins by criteria

Use the History Browser to create a Most Frequently Played Report, select Database, Analysis, History Browser.  Alternately, you can select the graph icon from the toolbar.

When the History Browser Options box appears, you’ll have five tabs.

Time Period – Select the one week period you would like for your first report. We’ll assume you want to include all hours in the report, so no other changes are necessary.

Categories – Make sure there is a check mark on each category you wish to include in the report. We would suggest that you uncheck any non-music categories to keep the report simple.

Filters – If you want the weekly spins for your entire library, you do not need to configure anything here.  However, if your intention is to create say a report that includes only a specific artist or only a specific record label’s artists, this will be the tab you’ll want to tweak.

Display – This is where you’ll set up the report. In the Display Mode, we suggest selecting Individual Songs. You can choose to include any of the other Properties listed. We would suggest at least “Show Rank.” Notice there are also Extra Fields so you can include other fields that you may want to see, for instance record label or automation number.

Here is an example of the resulting report.  Note the printer icon.  It is also worth noting that this information can be copied and pasted from the screen below into a Word or Excel document if desired.

-Artist/Title Analysis

This is an excellent way to get a report of all specific plays by artist and the active titles from that artist in your database.  Go to Dataset-Analysis-Special Library REPORTS and select Artist/Title Analysis.

Note the printer choice at the top of this example.

-BMI/ASCAP/(other country specific reports)

Far and away, the biggest question we get about reports is the “how to I generate the licensing report for..."  While we are highlighting the BMI/ASCAP report template in this article, you will find all of the country licensing and trade report specific reports in this same location.  Most important to note on these is the fact that all of the difficult work has already been done for you here with regard to formatting of the report, field specifications, etc. but you MUST configure the fields in the OPTIONS tab, most importantly the ARTIST and SONG TITLE fields, or you will be submitting a blank report to your reporting agency…and we all know how embarrassing that can be!

Go to Dataset-Analysis-Special History Reports and select the report you wish to generate. In this case as noted, we’ve selected the BMI/ASCAP report.

As shown below, remember to assign (AT LEAST) the title and artist fields before generating this report.

Once you’ve done that, go back to the REPORT SETUP tab and PRINT.  If you have any questions about these reports, or find that your specific country designated report is missing, please let us know!

-Affidavit Report

Perfect if you need a report for the sales department to show how often a sales related non music element has aired over a specified time.  Go to Dataset-Analysis-Special Library Reports and select the


You’ll get a report for each sponsored element and the dates/hours they aired in.  Note a value can also be assigned in the database to each as needed.  There is also a print box icon that can be selected in the upper left hand corner.

-Attribute report

Trying to find out the percentage of “pop” coded songs in your active library or a specific category, or maybe the number of “slow” coded songs?  Here’s a quick way to view that (and print it, if desired)
Bring up your category or query of songs in library maintenance and select the field you want to get more details about. In the example below, we’ve chosen the sound code.  Right click over the grey field header and from the menu that pops up chose LIBRARY ANALYSIS.

This will give you a report that looks similar to this:

Note the printer icon if you wish to do so.

Here are a few other reports that you might find helpful from time to time:

-Move History (of a specific title and/or an entire category)

For a specific song title, go to the song itself in library maintenance (make sure the blue “pointer” arrow on the left is pointing at the song you’d like to review) and from the menu up top, select LIBRARY-

If needed, you can do a print screen of this individual titles move history.  Another option would be to go the context menu of the program itself and select Dataset-Analysis-Special Library Reports and choose CATEGORY MOVE HISTORY for a list of the entire categories move history over the life of the database. Note the printer choice icon here as well.

-Format Clock Category Usage

This report is great if you want to get a quick print out of the clock calls for each category on your currently active grid.  Go to Dataset-Analysis-Analysis and select the blue musical note in the lower portion of the split screen.  (format clock category usage)

Note the printer box in the lower right hand corner.

-List of Log notes

Go to Dataset-Clocks-Lognote Text, here you will see a list of all the log notes that currently exist in the specific database.  Note the printer icon, if you want to look at the entire list of log notes outside of the application, select this option.

-List of artist trivia notes/list of song trivia

From the menu at the top, select Dataset-Library-Trivia this takes you to the trivia editor for artist and Title.  This is the global trivia editor. It allows you to look at song trivia or keyword trivia. The Lookup button will show you what songs or keywords use the line of trivia. The Tools Option contains options to show usage counts for the trivia lines, print the trivia, removed expired trivia and purge unused trivia.

-Who’s in the database right now?

Helpful if your database resides on the network and there are many instances of MusicMaster in multiple locations throughout your facility.  Go to Tools-User List.

As you can imagine, we’ve just scratched the surface on this topic, and there are a multitude of ways to customize and tweak each report to your specific needs.  Experiment, and have fun with this!

There is a more in depth video webinar that covers this topic available on the MusicMaster website at   View the topic that is titled “History Browser.”

If there is a specific report that we’ve mentioned today that you have more questions about, or you have an idea about one you’d like to create in the program (or perhaps have our developers consider creating for you if it doesn’t already exist) please get In touch, we’d love to talk with you about it!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Do you know about the Library Analysis feature?

By Aaron Taylor

Need to get a quick overview of the number of  "5" tempo songs in your active categories, or the percentage of  "Pop" coded songs you have in a selected category?
Use the Library Analysis feature.  Here's how to do it:.

Open Library Maintenance and click into the field you wish to analyze. Right-click on the field and select Library Analysis. A box will pop up with the Analysis. For instance, if you wanted to review the gender codes in your data, you could right-click on that field and after selecting Library Analysis, a data box will appear.

The drop-down box on the left-hand side of the display allows you to pick a different field from the one you are currently looking at. A drop-down on the right-side allows you to determine the way the information is displayed. The number of unique values for the field currently being viewed will be listed at the bottom of the box.

Depending upon what field you are in, you may not get the option for Individual Codes and Code Groups. For instance, this option is not available when analyzing the Artist field.  The first option in the drop-down box is List Statistics. This can be useful to determine how many songs are included, are the songs from music or non-music categories, what is the total running time of the songs included on the list, and what is the average run time of the songs on the list.

If you would like a printed report of the analysis, you can use the toolbar option to do so or if you'd like to copy this list to a spreadsheet, select the copy option.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Why am I getting unscheduled positions after auto scheduling?

By Aaron Taylor

We get calls/emails on a regular basis from clients who report they are getting more unscheduled positions than they'd like.  Perhaps they've just updated the library, changed format clocks (or programming formats completely),  have created the database from scratch, or (frequently) they've "inherited" the database from a PD or MD that is no longer part of the organization.  Here is a checklist of sorts to help you attempt to figure out why you are getting these unscheduled positions and what you may be able to do to reduce their numbers.

1.  Try to fill the unscheduled position. Make sure your replacement window is set up with the triple flag to show all available replacement songs. As you arrow down the list, you'll start to see the songs that violate your unbreakable rules in the Test Results panel. Note which rules occur most often.  You'll then want to circle back to your Rule Tree to see if any of the properties in the problem areas can be loosened up or eliminated.

2.  Visit your Rule Tree and selected Related, Recap Report. This will give you a summary from the last scheduling session of the rules, and how they performed in each category. You can sort by any column to review this. The full report is called THINKING.TXT and can also be reviewed. That is more comprehensive file located in the directory where your data is located (typically c:\mmwin on a  stand alone machine) and named in the form of “database name_Thinking.txt”.  It shows the results for the entire schedule run for all songs considered. You may want to visit with your scheduling consultant and have them help you interpret and "digest" what you are seeing here.

3.  Determine if all songs from the categories in question aren’t scheduling, or just some songs. This is important. If it’s only a few, it’s more likely to be a rule issue. If it is all songs, make sure the category has a check in the Automatic Scheduler setup window.  You may also want to check the scheduling properties of the category and make sure that the search depth and pass orders are set as you intend.

4.  This might sound obvious, but make certain there are songs in the category. MusicMaster can’t schedule what it doesn’t have.

5.  Confirm the clock position isn't a Manual position.  This position type is never automatically scheduled by MusicMaster.

6.  Another good option is to turn on Manual-Assist scheduling. This is available in the Automatic Schedule, Options tab. When enabled, the Scheduler will stop at any position it cannot fill so you can see what is happening as the log schedules.

If you are still having trouble figuring out why MMWIN is "doing what it's doing...", get in touch with your MusicMaster Scheduling Consultant for a personal phone/on line session.  We love to work on these "puzzles" with you!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Perfect for daily/nightly top 8 @ 8, etc or request positions...Use a MANUAL clock element type.

By Aaron Taylor

If you run daily countdown programs or all request programming, that might span different categories daily you may want to consider building or revising your clocks with the MANUAL clock element type.   This will leave the position unscheduled in the autoscheduling process, allowing the programmer to hand fill that slot after the auto scheduling process completes.  It doesn't matter what category postion you put there, as you can override that designation with a wild card insertion while you are manually editing the schedule.

I sometimes like to suggest that clients create a "dummy" category designation for these positons and call that category REQUEST, so there is no confusion if another programming person (or your consultant reviews your clock structure).

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Quick reminder about generating Special History Reports in MusicMaster

By Aaron Taylor

Remember if you are setting up to run a BMI report (or many other special history reports for that matter) for the first time, it is CRITICAL that you point the Artist Name and Song Title fields in the report template to the fields in your database that contain this data.  Otherwise, you will generate a completely blank report.

To generate the report, go to Dataset - Analysis - Special History Reports and select the BMI/ASCAP report from the drop down REPORT TYPE list.  Set the date range you need to report for and also the categories you want included.

Then click on the OPTIONS tab, and on the Song Fields sub section click into the blank section to the right of the Artist Name and Song Title fields.  Typically, you would point these (use the drop down arrow in the corner of each field) to point to the Artist and Title fields respectively.   Then go back to the Report Setup tab and select PRINT.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

I've lost my "Results" and/or my "Hour Selection" bars...How do I get them back?

By Aaron Taylor

From time to time, we'll get a call or email from a user who indicates they think that they've "lost" one or both of these tool bars in the schedule editor.

How do you get these to reappear?  Look for the icon at the top of the schedule editor that looks like a red martini glass (we've heard it called many other things, but this is the best description I've found).  This is the "Show/Hide Elements".  Click on this icon, and on the Schedule Editor Options box that pops up, select the "Toolbars" tab.  You will see the "Hour Selection" and "Results" bar options here.  Make sure your desired options are checked.  Click OK...Voila!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Print the contents of the Rule Tree

By Aaron Taylor

Here's a great way to "get a handle" on the content and set up of a Rule Tree in MusicMaster.  Print it!  Click on the printer icon in the center section of the split screen (it is right above the bold MusicMaster Rule Tree header).

You have a number of options you can select when you print your Rule Tree, including whether you would like to print only folders currently opened, folders with no rules in them, or rule tree graphics.

The resulting printed version can then be viewed offline, compared to other Rule Tree set ups if you wish (on line) or perhaps emailed to your consultant for further review and comment.  Depending on the rule type that is set, you'll see either a summary of the rules set and/or a graphic that details what is in place.

If you have any questions about what you're seeing here or would like a "second set of eyes" to look over things with you, get in touch with your MusicMaster Scheduling Consultant!