Numbers on CDs (and other Music Media)

Okay… here’s a question which has always puzzled me. Is there a universal system by which recorded-music albums are identified, like ISBNs for books?

For instance, the Emerson Lake and Palmer CD in fromt of me is labeled on its spine, “R2 72223”. The UPC barcode on the back is “8122-72223-2”, which appears to be related.
The Forest for the Trees CD has the number “DRMSD-50002” and the barcode “00445-00022”.

An indie CD I have (“Povus esti simple” by Persone) has no such code. A later CD by the same group, “Sed estas ne”, is on the Vinilkosmo label from Europe and has the code VKKD 20 006. There is no barcode.

So… is there some music-industry organization that issues ID codes or numbers to labels, who then number their releases? And is there a standard code for the type of media (CD, MD, cassette, LP, etc)?

“Kiu frenezas? Cxu la mondo aux mi?” -Persone

An addendum… whadda you know! I just found a [A HREF=“”]music cassette[/A] bearing an ISBN. I suspect that it is not on a major label though…

“Kiu frenezas? Cxu la mondo aux mi?” -Persone

[mutter mutter] The codes didn’t work again. SIGH

“Kiu frenezas…” ahh, you know the rest.

The first five digits in the barcode identify the label, and the last five identify the release. Usually, but not always, the last five match the catalog number. The catalog number is what the label uses to keep track of its releases, and is the one on the spine. The catalog number is assigned by the label, I don’t know who assigns the label identifier numbers.

“That’s entertainment!” —Vlad the Impaler

Wait, wait, I made a mistake somewhere. Okay, make that the last FOUR digits refer to the release. The final digit, which you’ll notice is “2” in both cases, denotes the format, CD. Cassettes usually get the number 4, LPs, if I’m not mistaken, get 1.

Much better.

“That’s entertainment!” —Vlad the Impaler

The next-to-last four digits! The next-to-last four digits! Oh, forget it. This just isn’t my day.

“That’s entertainment!” —Vlad the Impaler

It’s okay, I see what you’re saying. The number you’re referring to would be the number of the barcode, then? And I thought that last number was a check digit.

If the second Persone CD I mentioned ever got a barcode number, it would be “<some code for Vinilkosmo>200062”?

I wonder if it’s the UPC people who are ultimately responsible for the barcode numbers assigned to the record labels? We do barcodes at work; I’ll have to do some digging…

“Kiu frenezas? Cxu la mondo aux mi?” -Persone

No, the check digit, if they bothered to print it in Arabic numeral form, should be in much smaller print to the right of the barcode.

The problem I’m having is that I’m posting from my school’s computer lab, and don’t have access to my CD collection.

“That’s entertainment!” —Vlad the Impaler