On VocaDB, tags are constructed by a hierarchy system: Tags are displayed as a tree structure, with the “parent” at the top and the children and siblings at the bottom.

Tags are free-form metadata that can be added to all entry types (Artists, Albums, Songs, Events, Event Series, Song lists). Tags allow users to link entries together by any properties they can come up with, not being limited to the options provided by the system. Examples of tags are genres, presentation languages and themes. Tags can be edited more freely than other properties and some of them they may even be considered subjective. Therefore tags are based on voting. Any user may add tags to an entry and vote on existing tags.

Most tags should be objective, meaning their validity isn’t based on the listener’s subjective opinion.

Generally, you should avoid tagging with information that is already provided by more specialized fields. For example, albums or songs with artist names is redundant because the artists list already handles this better. Likewise, tagging cover songs with “cover” is useless if the song classification is already cover. Of course, albums have no such classification, so that tag might be relevant for an album (or artist, if that artist is known for making covers).

There’s an exception to this rule though: sometimes tags can be used to augment those specialized fields. The primary category of an album or song is determined by a specialized field, but if the entry fits into multiple categories you can use tags for those secondary categories. For example, original instrumental songs. Original song type overrides instrumental, meaning that if the song is original, that type should be used instead of the instrumental song type, even if the song is an instrumental. Instead, you should tag the song as “instrumental”, to indicate that the song is in fact an instrumental (the instrumental song type should only be used for instrumental versions of originals).

Naming tags

Use common English language rules for casing, meaning only proper nouns start with a capital letter, otherwise the tag name should start with a lowercase letter. For example, Final Fantasy (proper noun) vs. progressive rock. Abbreviations such as “RPG” should also be written in capital letters of course.

Many tags are language neutral, meaning that they’re not tied to any particular language. Examples of such tags are genres (such as rock) and themes (such as summer). For these tags, the non-English name should be translated to Japanese for practical reasons.

It is not required (or recommended) to add romanizations for the tags. Exceptions to this are tags such as sakura, that are simple and more searchable with the romanization. There isn’t a clear line for the rule, and common sense should be used when making a decision on adding the tag romanization.

For more explanation, see the discussion on VocaDB.

Compound tags

Every tag should reflect some well-defined concept. As a general rule, every tag should be useful by itself, and not require to be bundled with some other tag.

For example, “alternative” is a bad genre tag, because “alternative” doesn’t mean anything by itself, and would need to be bundled with another tag (usually “rock”). Instead, the tag should be “alternative rock”. “symphonic” on the other hand can be useful as a tag because it tells something useful about the music - it does not always need to be bundled with another tag.

Tag description

When creating a new tag (by tagging an entry with a tag that doesn’t exist yet), please try to come up with a short description for the new tag, explaining what the tag should be used for, and providing reference links to for example Wikipedia.

Even if it sounds self-explanatory to you, someone else might understand the meaning differently, which will lead to confusion when the tag is misused. In the worst case, a poorly defined tag will be considered useless and must be deleted.

Tag purposes

Tags can be any meaningful things you can identify. They help people to discover and remember songs. If the lyrics and/or the PV is about airplanes, it’s ok to tag the song with “airplane”. If the PV features a house, you can add the “house” tag, although unless the house is in any meaningful role in the PV, it’s probably not very useful.

All tags should have at least one purpose:


Tag is used for discovering related entries (all genre tags for example).

Tag is used for searching or locating something already familiar (animated PV for example).


Tag is used for calculating different statistics (western producer for example).


Tag is used to convey information that doesn’t fit into the entry (entry missing artists for example).

Tag categories

VocaDB has specific tag categories listed and explained below. They are the highest hierarchy in the tag system and every tag must be attached to one.


Tags that represent a musical genre.

  • Obscure genre tags should be avoided.
  • Genre tags that are hard to tell apart and are inconsistently used by artists, should be merged in most cases.


Tags that describe the song video.


Tags related to any sort of intellectual property (IP).

Copyright tags tend to be made for a few reasons:

  • A, because an IP utilizes Vocaloid music within its soundtrack;
  • B, because an IP has commissioned related non-soundtrack Vocaloid songs;
  • C, because others have created original Vocaloid fansongs for IPs; and
  • D, because fans have covered official soundtrack or otherwise IP-related songs with Vocaloids. While the former three options should receive tags, the latter should only receive tags after a requisite number of songs (~5-10) have been archived on the database.


Tags related to the album/song distribution.

Editor notes

(Temporary) tags to convey common meta-information related to the entry.


Tags that better fit as tag entries instead of event entries.


The category is for video games that utilize predominantly “found” soundtracks; that is, pre-existing music that was ported into the game.

Games with new-song soundtracks should be under the Copyrights category instead.


Tags that describe the musical instrument.


Tags to use as secondary artist types. For example, an artist entry tagged with lyricist conveys that the artist collaborated in another song in the lyricist-role.


[Deprecated]. Use the relevant language fields instead.


Tags related to lyrics.


Album media types.


Tags are one way of representing song series.

Song lists may also be used.


Information relating to a song’s origin, for example, that it was produced in FL Studio or that it was an artist’s first work


Subjective theme tags.


Tags that convey the theme of the song/album.

  • Animation “cat” tag: Song video (PV) features a cat.
  • Theme “cat” tag: Song is about cats.


Tags that convey additional information about (synth) vocalists.

Song lists vs Tags

Trusted users are able to create public songlists called pools. Pools can be used for largely the same purpose as tags, grouping songs together based on some common theme. There are a few differences between tags and songlists.

  • Pools are listed on the featured songlists page.
  • Pools are not voted on, unlike tags. All pools are equal.
  • Only trusted users are able to edit pools. Any user can vote on tags. Thus tags are easier to use, but also more unreliable.
  • Pools may contain only songs. Tags can be applied to albums and artists as well.
  • Songs in a pool can be ordered. Songs with a specified tag are unordered.
  • You can add notes to songs in a pool.
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