Music Research Guide

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  • Databases
  • Reference
  • Digitized Scores
  • Media
  • Web
  • Archives
  • Music
  • New Titles
Try these databases first to find journal articles in this discipline.
  • Music database (1874 to present)
    Provides indexing and abstracts for more that 425 international music periodicals, plus full text for around 140 journals.
  • Music Index Online (1974 to present)
    Featuring digitized content from 1970 to the present, the Music Index contains cover-to-cover indexing and abstracts of articles about music, musicians and the music industry for more than 480 periodicals. It also provides selective coverage for more than 200 periodicals.
  • Arts & Humanities Database
    Full-text publications that focus on art, architecture, design, history, philosophy, music, literature, theatre and cultural studies.
  • Performing arts database (1864 to present)
    Covers a broad spectrum of the arts and entertainment industry - including dance, drama, theater, opera, film, television and more.
  • Jazz Discography - TJD Online (1896-2008)
    Comprehensive discography of all categories of recorded jazz compiled from existing general and individual jazz discographies as well as international jazz periodicals.
  • RIPM: Retrospective Index to Music Periodicals (1800-1950)
    RIPM was established to provide access to eighteenth-, nineteenth- and twentieth-century periodical literature dealing with music.
  • Folk Music Index
    Index to recorded and print resources.
  • RILM Abstracts of Music Literature (1967 to present)
    Covers literature on music from all over the world.
Use these encyclopedias and reference works to get started on a topic.
  • Oxford Music Online
    Oxford Music online is the access point for Grove Music Online and Oxford Dictionary of Music, Oxford Companion to Music, and the Encyclopedia of Popular Music.
  • Classical Music Reference Library
    Classical Music Reference Library brings together more than 40,000 pages of essential reference materials, spanning the entire history of Western classical music, in a unified online database. Included are the authoritative reference titles Baker's Dictionary of Music, Baker's Biographical Dictionary of Musicians, and Baker's Student Encyclopedia of Music.
  • African American Music Reference
    Essays and images for study of all forms of black music: blues, spirituals, jazz, rap, and more.
  • Garland Encyclopedia of World Music Online
    Comprehensive online resource devoted to music research of all the world's peoples.
  • Oxford History of Western Music
    An account of the evolution of western music by Richard Taruskin.
  • LiederNet Archive
    The LiederNet Archive is the world's largest reference archive of texts and translations of art songs and choral works. 133,778 vocal pieces have been cataloged. 24,579 translations are available.
Also see the Primary Sources research guide.
Find images and streaming audio and video in these collections (also see the Images Research Guide).
  • Classical Music Library
    Classical music recordings (14,000+ albums) including vocal, choral, chamber, orchestral, solo instrumental music and opera.
  • Naxos Music Library
    Streaming music; listen to songs or the complete CD. Most extensive collection of classical music available, but also includes jazz, world music, spoken word, and more. Adobe Flash Player 10 is required for streaming.
  • Naxos Music Library Jazz
    Over 100,000 tracks of top jazz music from 260 labels including Fantasy, Blue Note, ACT, Effendi, Atlantic and Elektra.
  • Smithsonian Global Sound
    In partnership with Smithsonian Folkways Recordings, a virtual encyclopedia of the world's musical and aural traditions.
  • Database of Recorded American Music
    Scholarly resource of recordings including New World, Composers Recordings (CRI), Albany Records, Mode, Frog Peak and BMOP.
  • Met Opera on Demand (1936 to present)
    More than 450 extraordinary Met performances, video and audio streaming.
  • American Song
    Nearly 7,000 albums of music from America's past, including civil rights, political campaigns, Prohibition, wars, and more.
  • Contemporary World Music
    Contemporary World Music delivers the sounds of all regions from every continent. The database will contain important genres such as reggae, worldbeat, neo-traditional, world fusion, Balkanic jazz, African film, Bollywood, Arab swing and jazz, and other genres such as traditional music - Indian classical, fado, flamenco, klezmer, zydeco, gospel, gagaku, and more.
  • Naxos Video Library
    Streaming video library of classical music performances, opera, ballet, live concerts and documentaries.
  • Kanopy Streaming Video
    Kanopy offers a broad selection of thousands of streaming films, documentaries, and theatrical releases covering a wide variety of subject areas, with additional new releases launched monthly. If close-captioning is not included, it can be requested. Interactive transcripts are included. Note that US feature films are not typically part of the Kanopy offerings.
Start with these recommended freely available resources in this discipline.
  • Harvard Library Online Resources for Music Scholars
    The following guide provides a basis for beginning electronic research on a wide variety of topics in music, including historical musicology, ethnomusicology, music theory, composition, and performance practice. It collects links to archival collections, online scores and sound recordings; article indexes, discographies and bibliographies; scholarly societies; musical reference works; and a miscellany of useful websites.
  • Ira F. Brilliant Center for Beethoven Studies
    Maintained at San José State University. Includes Beethoven Gateway.
  • New Music USA
    New Music USA was formed by the merger of the American Music Center and Meet The Composer. We provide over $1 million each year in grant support for the creation and performance of new work and community building throughout the country. We amplify the voice of the new music community through NewMusicBox, profiling the people and ideas that energize and challenge music makers today. We stream a wide-ranging catalog of new music around the clock on Counterstream Radio and provide an online home for composers to feature their own music.
  • OperaGlass
    Information on many operas including libretti, source texts, performance histories, synopses, discographies and role creators.
  • Operabase
    Information on opera performances, artists, managers, companies, statistics and obituaries.
  • Ethnomusicology Musical Instrument Collection
    The University of Washington Ethnomusicology Division houses over 400 musical instruments from around the world. Each year since the founding of the Ethnomusicology program in 1962, one or more international artists have been invited to the campus to share their musical traditions through teaching and performance. The musical instrument collection has grown over the years as the result of these residencies, and its make-up reflects the instrumental traditions of the artists who have been our guests. Additional donations have expanded the collection to its present size. The digitized images in the musical instrument database are intended for educational and instructional use. If you cite or download images, please acknowledge the University of Washington Ethnomusicology Archives. Downloading of audio or video examples is prohibited.
  • Library of Congress American Memory
    Performing Arts sites.
  • American Folklife Center
    The collections in the Center's Archive of Folk Culture include folk cultural material from all fifty states.
  • New York Philharmonic Leon Levy Digital Archives
    Current material available in the Digital Archives includes: 1,781 scores marked by Leonard Bernstein, Andre Kostelanetz, and others, 15,896 music parts marked by Philharmonic musicians, 3,235 printed programs, 1943—70, 4,069 business and planning folders, and 16,339 photographs and images.
  • Metropolitan Opera Archives Metopera Database
    Performance archive.
  • Virtual Instrument Museum
    Online museum (established fall 2003) of the World Music Musical Instrument Collection of the Music Department of Wesleyan University.
  • Monterey Jazz Festival Collection
    Each fall since 1958, the seaside city of Monterey, California, has been the site of performances by the world's finest jazz and blues performers. The festival's archive - preserved by the Stanford University Archive of Recorded Sound - contains recordings of live festival performances throughout the history of this enduring American cultural institution.

Paris symphonies : nos. 82-87 in full score (Haydn, Joseph, 1732-1809, composer.) Music Library; M1001 .H4 H.I, 82-87 2016

La forza del destino : opera in four acts, revised version (1869) Frost Library; M1500.V4 F6793

Unsung Weill : 22 songs cut from Broadway shows and Hollywood films (Weill, Kurt, 1900-1950.) Music Library; M1507.W455 J83 2002 x

Adam's passion : the world premiere Frost Library; M1520.P26 A43

Swan lake Frost Library; M1520.T33 L49

Swan Lake : ballet in 4 acts Frost Library; M1520.T33 L495

Matthew Bourne's Swan lake Frost Library; M1520.T33 L498

Acis und Galatea : Pastoral (Handel, George Frideric, 1685-1759.) Music Library; M1523.H155 A36

Cuban hip hop all stars Frost Library; M1681.C9 C83

Morgen marschieren wir : liederbuch der deutschen soldaten Archives and Special Collections; M1734.B3 M6 1939

Mittelrheinische volkslieder mit bildern und weisen (Becker, Karl, 1853-1928, editor.) Archives and Special Collections; M1736 .B43 1926

Deutsche Weihnachtslieder (Walcha, Helmut, 1907-1991.) Archives and Special Collections; M2085.W3 D4 1937

Neues Musikalisches Seelenparadies Alten Testaments (1660) (Rist, Johann, 1607-1667, author.) Frost Library; M2138.S38 R58 2016

Nocturnes (Chopin, Frédéric, 1810-1849, composer.) Music Library; M22.C545 N7 2014 x

The complete works (Bach, Carl Philipp Emanuel, 1714-1788.) Music Library; M3 .B103 2005 x

[Opere] (Vivaldi, Antonio, 1678-1741.) Music Library; M3 .V69 1982

Streichquartett Nr. 1 = String quartet no. 1 : (Métamorphoses nocturnes) : 1953-54 (Ligeti, György, 1923-2006, composer.) Music Library; M452 .L725 no.1 2008 x

The story of the dulcimer (Smith, Ralph Lee, 1927-, author.) Frost Library; ML1015.A6 S65 2016

Banjo : an illustrated history (Carlin, Bob, author.) Frost Library; ML1015.B3 C37 2016 xx

The Cambridge companion to percussion Frost Library; ML1030 .C26 2016

Vinyl records and analog culture in the digital age : pressing matters (Winters, Paul E.) Frost Library; ML1055 .W57 2016

Conversations with the world's leading orchestra and opera librarians Frost Library; ML111 .C636 2016

The Detroit Symphony Orchestra : grace, grit, and glory (Harris, Laurie Lanzen, author.) Frost Library; ML1211.8.D47 H37 2016

Church and worship music in the United States : a research and information guide (Floyd, James Michael, compiler.) Frost Library; ML128.C54 S43 2017

A game of Swanns Frost Library; ML134.5.S98 G35 1975

Environmental sound artists : in their own words (Bianchi, Frederick W., author.) Frost Library; ML1380 .B5 2016

Songs of the second Viennese school : a performer's guide to selected solo vocal works (Songer, Loralee, 1982- author.) Frost Library; ML1406 .S66 2016

Laulan laevatäie (Bürger, Sabine, conceptor, photographer.) Frost Library; ML1551.E86 B87 2016 xx

Experimental affinities in music Frost Library; ML160 .E97 2015

Musik und Text in der Mehrstimmigkeit des 14. und 15. Jahrhunderts Frost Library; ML170 .M895 1984

The singing Turk (Wolff, Larry, author.) Frost Library; ML1720.3 .W65 2016

British musical theatre since 1950 (Gordon, Robert, 1951 November 28-, author.) Frost Library; ML1731 .G67 2016

A sociable moment : opera and festive culture in baroque Siena (Reardon, Colleen, author.) Frost Library; ML1733.2 .R43 2016

Haydn's sunrise, Beethoven's shadow : audiovisual culture and the emergence of musical Romanticism (Loughridge, Deirdre, author.) Frost Library; ML195 .L68 2016

Experimental music since 1970 (Gottschalk, Jennie, author.) Frost Library; ML197 .G6857 2016

Coherence in new music : experience, aesthetics, analysis (Hutchinson, Mark Aled, 1986-, author.) Frost Library; ML197 .H97 2016

Music in Boston : composers, events, and ideas, 1852-1918 (Faucett, Bill F., author.) Frost Library; ML200.8.B7 F37 2016

Melodrama : an aesthetics of impossibility (Goldberg, Jonathan, author.) Frost Library; ML2050 .G65 2016

Situated listening : the sound of absorption in classical cinema (Biancorosso, Giorgio, 1968- author.) Frost Library; ML2075 .B53 2016

Her majestic voice : South Indian female playback singers and stardom, 1945-1955 (Kiranmayi, author.) Frost Library; ML2075 .K57 2016

Margaret Garner : the premiere performances of Toni Morrison's libretto Frost Library; ML2110 .R3 2016

Music in Vienna 1700, 1800, 1900 (Wyn Jones, David, author.) Frost Library; ML246.8.V5 W96 2016

Bamberg Symphony (Gomringer, Nora, 1980-, author.) Frost Library; ML26 .B36 2016 x

The Golden Band from Tigerland : a history of LSU's marching band (Continé, Tom, author.) Frost Library; ML28.B265 T544 2016 x

Russian music at home and abroad : new essays (Taruskin, Richard, author.) Frost Library; ML300 .T385 2016

Singing God's words : the performance of biblical chant in contemporary Judaism (Summit, Jeffrey A.) Frost Library; ML3195 .S97 2016

Consort suites and dance music by town musicians in German-speaking Europe, 1648-1700 (Robertson, Michael, 1949-, author.) Frost Library; ML3420.2 .R62 2016

Studies in the English pantomime, 1712-1733 (Semmens, Richard Templar, author.) Frost Library; ML3460 .S46 2016

The tango machine : musical culture in the age of expediency (Luker, Morgan James, author.) Frost Library; ML3465 .L85 2016

Love for sale : pop music in America (Hajdu, David, author.) Frost Library; ML3477 .H3 2016

What the music said : Black popular music and Black public culture (Neal, Mark Anthony.) Frost Library; ML3479 .N43 1999

Flyboy 2 : the Greg Tate reader (Tate, Greg, author.) Frost Library; ML3479 .T35 2016

What she go do : women in Afro-Trinidadian music (Munro, Hope, author.) Frost Library; ML3486.T7 M86 2016

Globalization, music and cultures of distinction : the rise of pop music criticism in Italy (Varriale, Simone, author.) Frost Library; ML3494 .V37 2016

Manele in Romania : cultural expression and social meaning in Balkan popular music Frost Library; ML3499.R6 M36 2016

Kwaito's promise : music and the aesthetics of freedom in South Africa (Steingo, Gavin, author.) Frost Library; ML3503.S6 S74 2016

How to listen to jazz (Gioia, Ted, author.) Frost Library; ML3506 .G55 2016

Pressed for all time Frost Library; ML3508 .P74 2016

Blue rhythm fantasy : big band jazz arranging in the swing era (Wriggle, John, author.) Frost Library; ML3518 .W75 2016

Songs in the key of black life : a rhythm and blues nation (Neal, Mark Anthony.) Frost Library; ML3521 .N42 2003

Doo-wop acappella : a story of street corners, echoes, and three-part harmonies (Pitilli, Lawrence, author.) Frost Library; ML3527 .P55 2016

Hip-hop headphones : a scholar's critical playlist (Peterson, James Braxton, 1971-, author.) Frost Library; ML3531 .P48 2016

All by myself : essays on the single-artist rock album Frost Library; ML3534 .A446 2016

Just around midnight : rock and roll and the racial imagination (Hamilton, Jack, 1979- author.) Frost Library; ML3534 .H336 2016

Heavy metal, gender and sexuality Frost Library; ML3534 .H423 2016

Krautrock : German music in the seventies (Adelt, Ulrich, 1972-, author.) Frost Library; ML3534.6.G3 A34 2016

Music video games : performance, politics, and play Frost Library; ML3540.7 .M93 2016

A Latin American music reader : views from the south Frost Library; ML3549 .L38 2016

Nothing but love in God's water (Darden, Bob, 1954-, author.) Frost Library; ML3556 .D33 2014

Caribbean currents : Caribbean music from rumba to reggae (Manuel, Peter, 1952-, author.) Frost Library; ML3565 .M36 2016

Chocolate surrealism : music, movement, memory, and history in the circum-Caribbean (Njoroge, Njoroge, author.) Frost Library; ML3565 .N56 2016

Flamenco, regionalism and musical heritage in southern Spain (Machin-Autenrieth, Matthew, author.) Frost Library; ML3712 .M23 2017

Sounding the dance, moving the music : choreomusicology in maritime Southeast Asia Frost Library; ML3740 .S6 2017

Goze : women, musical performance, and visual disability in traditional Japan (Groemer, Gerald, 1957-) Frost Library; ML3750 .G78 2016

Abidjan USA : music, dance, and mobility in the lives of four Ivorian immigrants (Reed, Daniel B. (Daniel Boyce), 1963-, author.) Frost Library; ML3760.6 .R44 2016

A season of singing : creating feminist Jewish music in the United States (Ross, Sarah M., author.) Frost Library; ML3776 .R67 2016

The creative echo chamber : contemporary music production in Kingston, Jamaica (Howard, Dennis Oliver, author.) Frost Library; ML3790 .H693 2016

The music industry handbook (Rutter, Paul, 1960-, author, compiler.) Frost Library; ML3790 .R87 2016

Motown : the sound of young America (White, Adam, 1947 or 1948- author.) Frost Library; ML3792.M67 W45 2016

Instrumentalists and Renaissance culture, 1420-1600 : players of function and fantasy (Coelho, Victor, author.) Frost Library; ML3795 .C635 2016

Just vibrations : the purpose of sounding good (Cheng, William, 1985- author.) Frost Library; ML3797 .C54 2016

Mathemusical conversations : mathematics and computation in music performance and composition Frost Library; ML3800 .M246 2016

Music's immanent future : the Deleuzian turn in music studies Frost Library; ML3800 .M892 2016

The Routledge companion to sounding art Frost Library; ML3800 .R625 2017

Music and embodied cognition : listening, moving, feeling, and thinking (Cox, Arnie, 1963- author.) Frost Library; ML3830 .C69 2016

The expressive moment : how interaction (with music) shapes human empowerment (Leman, Marc, 1958-, author.) Frost Library; ML3830 .L362 2016

Music and mourning Frost Library; ML3830 .M815 2016

Voice leading : the science behind a musical art (Huron, David Brian, author.) Frost Library; ML3836 .H87 2016

Postmodern music, postmodern listening (Kramer, Jonathan D., 1942-2004, author.) Frost Library; ML3845 .K8127 2016

The Oxford handbook of sound and image in Western art Frost Library; ML3849 .O92 2016

The contemporary literature-music relationship (Smith, Hazel, 1950-, author.) Frost Library; ML3849 .S68 2016

Sonic rupture : a practice-led approach to urban soundscape design (Lacey, Jordan, author.) Frost Library; ML3877 .L32 2016

Communities of musical practice (Kenny, Ailbhe.) Frost Library; ML3916 .K46 2016

Jazz and postwar French identity : improvising the nation (McGregor, Elizabeth Vihlen, author.) Frost Library; ML3917.F8 M34 2016

Tonic to the nation : making English music in the Festival of Britain (Lew, Nathaniel Geoffrey, author.) Frost Library; ML3917.G7 L49 2016

Music commodities, markets, and values : music as merchandise (Beaster-Jones, Jayson, author.) Frost Library; ML3917.I4 B37 2016

Playing in the cathedral : music, race, and status in New Spain (Ramos-Kittrell, Jesús A., author.) Frost Library; ML3917.M4 R36 2016

Entertaining Lisbon : music, theater, and modern life in the late 19th century (Silva, João, 1980- author.) Frost Library; ML3917.P6 S55 2016

Music, culture, and the politics of health : ethnography of a South African AIDS choir (Okigbo, Austin C., author.) Frost Library; ML3917.S62 O4 2016

Digital tradition : arrangement and labor in Istanbul's recording studio culture (Bates, Eliot, author.) Frost Library; ML3917.T9 B38 2016