Getting Album Artwork automatically

Q: When I go onto iTunes and click Get Album Artwork for a new album, it constantly says the artwork can’t be found. When I first added my files the artwork feature was fine and the old artwork is still there, but anything new that I’ve added to my library won’t appear.

– Simon

A: Firstly, you will need an iTunes Store account to get album artwork, and you may need to ensure that you are signed in to the iTunes Store when you do this. You can sign in to the iTunes Store by selecting Store, Sign In from the iTunes menu and entering your userid and password when prompted.

Keep in mind as well that since iTunes gets its album artwork from the iTunes Store, only those tracks that are normally sold on the iTunes Store will have artwork available for them. Therefore, if you rip a Beatles CD into your iTunes library, you’re not going to find any artwork for that, since iTunes doesn’t carry Beatles albums. In this case, you will simply have to find and add the artwork manually.

Further, iTunes looks for album artwork based on the artist and album information in your existing tracks, which must therefore match the corresponding album on the iTunes Store. Even subtle differences, such as a suffix on the album name (ie, “Greatest Hits (Remastered)” ) can be enough to prevent iTunes from finding the matching artwork.

The bottom line is that you’re best to try looking for the album directly on the iTunes Store. If the album cannot be found at all, then iTunes doesn’t carry it in their catalog and cannot provide artwork for it—you’ll have to find your own artwork and add it manually (Amazon.com and Walmart.com are good places to look for artwork). If the album is found on the iTunes Store, make sure that the spelling of the artist and album name for the iTunes Store version matches the tracks in your library, otherwise iTunes may not be able to match them up when searching for album artwork. In this case, simply editing the properties of your existing tracks so that they match what is listed on the iTunes Store will often be enough for iTunes to find the album artwork during the next search.

 

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