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The song I tried sharing is/was Burn Card by The Barr Brothers. Can this be a substitute for, "The song, that I tried sharing, is Burn Card.."? If so, is the use of 'is' incorrect instead of 'was'?

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  • "that" in this sentence should be "which" ; or else, no commas.
    – Xanne
    May 27, 2017 at 8:00
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    @Xanne There is absolutely nothing wrong with either "that" or "which".
    – WS2
    May 27, 2017 at 8:55
  • "The song I tried sharing is/was Burn Card by The Barr Brothers" is fine, and "is" is not incorrect. // English Language Learners is a good site for basics like this. May 29, 2017 at 3:34

1 Answer 1

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Both "is" and "was" are correct; you would select one of them based on the context of the conversation. You could check by leaving out the adjective clause ("that I tried sharing"): The song was Burn Card. The song is Burn Card.

The commas, however, are grammatically unnecessary.

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  • The commas change the meaning and they are either necessary or wrong. With the commas, the sentence is about identifying the name of the song and incidentally adds that they tried to share it. Without the commas the sentence provides the name of the song that they tried to share.
    – Jim
    May 27, 2017 at 14:38
  • Just to clarify, did you mean to say "unnecessary or wrong" in the first line?
    – Sayani
    May 27, 2017 at 19:57
  • Apologies for not being clear in my answer. I meant to say that while the commas don't make the sentence outright grammatically incorrect, they do change the meaning, as Jim pointed out. They are necessary if you were using "that I tried sharing" for adding extra information, but wrong if your intention is what it seems to be – which is to specify the song. May 28, 2017 at 13:20

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