set the itunes explicit tag

itunes explicit track flag have you ever wondered, how some of the tracks you purchased on the iTunes Store get this ‘Explicit’ flag next to their titles? well i have. i wanted it too, for some of the tracks i converted from my CDs. i can’t even explain why, but i know other people have already asked for the same (MacRumors Forums.) anyway, they had no real solution to this, so i went ahead and tried to figure it out myself. i did a little researching and found out, the tag is saved in several locations. now i had to find out which of these positions actually mattered to itunes. the tag is in the “iTunes Music Library.xml” and as it turns out: in the audio file itself. I quickly realized i couldn’t edit the XML file and just add the Clean to the track info. iTunes wrote it back to normal as soon as i restarted. and still no explicit flag. this means the important flag had to be in the audio file. i figured somebody must have wanted to do the same or a similar thing already, and i was right: AtomicParsley does it perfectly. only it was a command line application, and i am not that big on the OSX terminal. i had to find some kind of GUI. and there is: “Parsley is Atomically Delicious.” but still no luck: the programmers obviously only had TV shows and movies in mind and didn’t add an audio track mode at all. what a setback. still, reluctant to give up, i thought of the good old Automator. after all, it could run bash scripts, right? and this time i was right: i downloaded AtomicParsley and put it in my Applications folder. then i went ahead and put together this little bash script: for f in "$@" do Applications/AtomicParsley "$f" --advisory explicit done i wrapped it in an Automator workflow and saved. it does nothing but set the explicit flag. sadly, the whole concept only works on AAC (mp4, m4a, m4b, m4p) audio files, NOT mp3 since it is so different. but iTunes default converts to AAC anway, so this did not really matter. if you like it, feel free to download my Automator script and don’t forget to put AtomicParsley in your Applications folder, otherwise it won’t do anything. note: my solution applies to OSX only of course. Get things here: “set m4a explicit flag” Automator workflow AtomicParsley iTunes