Deriving a List of Albums by a Music Artist

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated September 5, 2023)
This tip applies to Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, Excel in Microsoft 365, and 2021

Steve has a worksheet containing a list of music artists, albums, and the year of album release. (These are for his music collection.) Steve goes to a lot of music festivals, and he is trying to work out how to return, from a full music list, a list of albums by the artists that he is going to see at the festival. He has tried various array formulas, but to no avail.

For the purposes of this tip, I'm going to assume that your data is quite simple: Column A contains the artist, column B the album name, and column C the year that the album was released. Given this data, there are a few different approaches you can use.

First, you can select a cell in the data, display the Data tab of the ribbon, and then click the Filter tool. Excel displays drop-down arrows next to columns A, B, and C. Click the down-arrow for column A (the artist) and then, from the options presented, make sure that only the artists you want are selected. Those, then, are displayed and you can print your list for the festival.

Another approach is to use the FILTER function. (This will work if you are using Excel 2021 or Microsoft 365.) If you, for instance, want to search your list for any artists named "Enya" or "Eagles" (I'm obviously showing my age), then you could use the following formula to display just the desired artists and their albums:

```=FILTER(A:B,(A:A="Enya")+(A:A="Eagles"))
```

This works great if your original list is already sorted, but you could also encase the entire formula in the SORT function:

```=SORT(FILTER(A:B,(A:A="Enya")+(A:A="Eagles")))
```

A third approach is to create a very simple PivotTable based on your music collection. You can easily add the artist column to the Rows of the PivotTable, which will then show you all your artists in alphabetic order. If you then want to see the albums of a particular artist, double-click on the artist name and then choose Album from the resulting Show Detail dialog box.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (13910) applies to Microsoft Excel 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, Excel in Microsoft 365, and 2021.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

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What is two more than 7?

2023-09-05 02:23:43

Enno

In my Office 2019 there isn't any FILTER-Function.

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