Q: What is SecondHandSongs?
A: SecondHandSongs is the largest and most accurate database of cover songs. Find out who performed the original version of a particular song, or who else around the world covered that song. We try to be as complete and accurate as possible by also indexing the songwriters of the songs and the releases that feature these originals and covers. We order the data in a reusable and maintainable way and we're highly cross-referenced with other databases, among which Discogs, RateYourMusic, Echonest, Spotify, iTunes, ...
Q: How do you define originals and covers?
A: Check out our introduction to the database.
Q: Why is song X not listed in your database?
A: Millions of cover songs have been performed and released by artists worldwide and our database will never list all of them. Rather than focusing on quantity, we try to keep quality high by providing accurate and complete information. We do add new songs continuously, so don't hesitate to contact us if you know a song that's not listed.
Q: Why is song X by artist A listed as a cover, knowing this artist actually wrote the song?
A: Probably because artist A wrote it for another artist, who recorded or released it first. Check out our introduction to the database. Example: Both Sides, Now by Joni Mitchell is listed as a cover. She released it in 1969, while Judy Collins released her version in 1967.
Q: Why are a lot of track listings of albums incomplete?
A: Because we only add songs to our database if they have been covered, or if they are a cover. It's not our purpose to create full discographies.
Q: Why is the order of songs on track listings incorrect?
A: Because we do not try to reproduce the order of the original track listings; the songs are simply ordered alphabetically.
Q: How can I add songs to the database?
A: You can submit them in the participation section. Please provide us with as much information as possible and name the sources where you got your information from.
Q: Do you also accept covers in other languages than English?
A: Of course. We add covers in any language. Check out our statistics page to get an idea.
Q: Why does it take forever until my suggestion has been processed?
A: Since we started we have been literally flooded with cover song suggestions, which are still stacking up. As we are a small team of volunteers, we're unable to keep up with submitted suggestions. We will however check and add all your submissions, which can currently take up to 5 years or longer. So please be patient or ... become an editor yourself!
Q: Where can I report errors and incomplete information?
A: Please read our introduction to the database before reporting an error. In many cases mistakenly reported errors are based on misinterpretations. You can report errors by clicking on "Report error" available on most pages. Please provide us with as much information as possible and name the sources where you got your information from. This can speed up processing a lot.
Q: Where can I find reliable sources of information?
A: You can find some in our bookmarks list. Note that websites like wikipedia, answers.com, music.com, and many others are not to be trusted! If you prefer real books, check out out the reference books our editors use.
Q: Are your statistics reliable?
A: They are evidence but not proof. Despite over 900.000 cover songs indexed, our site is far from comprehensive and doesn't claim to be. Also, the entries are biased by the preferences of our editors and contributing visitors.
Conclusion: With almost 3.000 cover versions listed, Stille Nacht! Heilige Nacht! , is not 100% certain the most covered song, but it likely is.
Q: Are you selling any of the songs, singles or albums listed?
A: No, we only provide information. However, you might find links to Amazon on some of these pages, and these will lead you to a page where you can buy them. By doing so you support SecondHandSongs.
Q: How do I add a cover of which the original is missing?
A: Go to PARTICIPATE, and then ADD COVER. Choose the option "I can't find it in the database. It must be missing but I have information about it.".
Q: How can I add YouTube videos to songs?
A: It's very easy. Have a look at the Tutorial.
Q: Why does it say work XYZ is written by artist ABC when many other sources claim it was written by artist DEF?
A: Sometimes there are conflicting sources regarding the credits of works: The Publishing Rights Organizations (PRO), the releases, books and interviews, don't necessarily agree. When available, SecondHandSongs will follow the PROs, which list the legal composers and authors. If the song credits are disputed, and the actual composers and authors potentially differ, we will discuss this in the comment section of the work in question.
Q: Do you sell sheet music?
A: No, we don't. But we do get a lot of requests for them, so we're interested in building a partnership with another project who does.