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 Periodicals 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 Periodical 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 (DRAM)
    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 Music
    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.

Sensemayá (Revueltas, Silvestre, 1899-1940.) Music Library; M1045.R373 S46 1949 x

Moana : music from the motion picture soundtrack Music Library; M1508.M57 M63 2016 x

Pinery boys : songs and songcatching in the lumberjack era Music Library; M1628 .P64 2017

The Rupert Holmes songbook (Holmes, Rupert, composer.) Music Library; M1630.18.H65 R86 2017 x

Gaudete : traditional, [mixed voices], SATTBB, a cappella Music Library; M2072.G38 K39 1986

The United Methodist hymnal Music Library; M2127 .U55 1989

Balladen = Ballades (Chopin, Frédéric, 1810-1849, composer.) Music Library; M22.C545 B43 2008 x

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

Werke (Beethoven, Ludwig van, 1770-1827.) Music Library; M3 .B44 x

A perfectly good guitar : musicians on their favorite instruments (Holley, Chuck, author.) Frost Library; ML1015.G9 H67 2017

Popular music : the key concepts (Shuker, Roy, author.) Frost Library; ML102.P66 S58 2017

Upbeat : the story of the National Youth Orchestra of Iraq (MacAlindin, Paul, author.) Frost Library; ML1251.I72 M33 2016

The romantic overture and musical form from Rossini to Wagner (Vande Moortele, Steven.) Frost Library; ML1261 .V36 2017

Electri_city : the Düsseldorf school of electronic music (Esch, Rüdiger, 1966- author.) Frost Library; ML1380 .E8313 2016

A history of vocal pedagogy : intuition and science (Talia, Joseph, author.) Frost Library; ML1460 .T35 2017

Music in medieval Europe (Yudkin, Jeremy, author.) Frost Library; ML171 .Y8 2016

Music, theater, and society in the comedies of Luiz Carlos Martins Penna (1833-1846) (Costa-Lima Neto, Luiz, 1964-, author.) Frost Library; ML1717.B84 C67 2017

Composing the world : harmony in the Medieval Platonic cosmos (Hicks, Andrew J. (Andrew James), 1978-, author.) Frost Library; ML172 .H53 2017

The women of quyi : liminal voices and androgynous bodies (Lawson, Francesca R. Sborgi, author.) Frost Library; ML1751.C58 T53 2017

Machine music : a media archaeological excavation (Riis, Morten, 1980-, author.) Frost Library; ML197 .R42 2016

The Palgrave handbook of musical theatre producers Frost Library; ML2054 .P35 2017

Experiencing film music : a listener's companion (LaFave, Kenneth, author.) Frost Library; ML2075 .L32 2017

Music in comedy television : notes on laughs Frost Library; ML2080 .M79 2017

Music, dance, affect, and emotions in Latin America Frost Library; ML231 .M87 2017

Musique et geste en France de Lully à la Révolution Frost Library; ML270 .M86 2009

On Raglan Road : great Irish love songs and the women who inspired them (Hanberry, Gerard, author.) Frost Library; ML2832 .H36 2016

O sing unto the Lord : a history of English church music (Gant, Andrew, 1963-, author.) Frost Library; ML2931 .G36 2017

Exploring Christian song Frost Library; ML3000 .E96 2017

The polyphonic mass in France, 1600-1780 : the evidence of the printed choirbooks (Montagnier, Jean-Paul.) Frost Library; ML3088 .M65 2017

The great Maltese composers : historical context, lives, and works (Vella Bondin, Joseph, 1934-, author.) Frost Library; ML325.M3 V4 2016

Talking machine west : a history and catalogue of Tin Pan Alley's western recordings, 1902-1918 (Amundson, Michael A., 1965-, author.) Frost Library; ML3477 .A49 2017

America's songs III : rock! (Pollock, Bruce, author.) Frost Library; ML3477 .P65 2017

Live from Aggieland : legendary performances in the Brazos Valley (Clark, Rob, 1973- author.) Frost Library; ML3477.7.T35 C53 2017

The Broken Spoke : Austin's legendary honky-tonk (Miller, Donna Marie, 1956- author.) Frost Library; ML3477.8.A97 M55 2017

Blackface nation : race, reform, and identity in American popular music, 1812-1925 (Roberts, Brian, 1957-, author.) Frost Library; ML3479 .R63 2017

Buena Vista Social Club Frost Library; ML3486.C8 B8a

Jazz Italian style : from its origins in New Orleans to fascist Italy and Sinatra (Celenza, Anna Harwell, author.) Frost Library; ML3509.I85 C44 2017

The Americana revolution (Cain, Michael Scott, author.) Frost Library; ML3512 .C35 2017

The original blues : the emergence of the blues in African American vaudeville (Abbott, Lynn, 1946-, author.) Frost Library; ML3521 .A23 2017

Hip-hop authenticity and the London scene : living out authenticity in popular music (Speers, Laura, author.) Frost Library; ML3531 .S72 2017

On becoming a rock musician (Bennett, H. Stith, 1946-, author.) Frost Library; ML3534 .B46 2017

Metal music manual : producing, engineering, mixing, and mastering contemporary heavy music (Mynett, Mark, author.) Frost Library; ML3534 .M99 2017

Complicated fun : the birth of Minneapolis punk and indie rock, 1974-1984 : an oral history Frost Library; ML3534.3 .C66 2017

Magic city nights : Birmingham's rock 'n' roll years (Millard, A. J., author.) Frost Library; ML3534.3 .M586 2017

The transformation of black music : the rhythms, the songs, and the ships of the African diaspora (Floyd, Samuel A., Jr., 1937-2016, author.) Frost Library; ML3545 .F598 2017

Song loves the masses : Herder on music and nationalism (Herder, Johann Gottfried, 1744-1803, author.) Frost Library; ML3545 .H47 2017

Roots music in America : collected writings of Joe Wilson (Wilson, Joe, 1938-2015, author.) Frost Library; ML3550 .W55 2017

African American music : an introduction Frost Library; ML3556 .A34 2015

Narcocorrido : a journey into the music of drugs, guns, and guerrillas (Wald, Elijah.) Frost Library; ML3570 .W35 2001

It's just the normal noises : Marcus, Guralnick, No Depression, and the mystery of Americana music (Gray, Timothy, 1964-, author.) Frost Library; ML3785 .G73 2017

Mixing music Frost Library; ML3790 .H492 2017

American epic : when music gave America her voice (MacMahon, Bernard, 1970- author.) Frost Library; ML3790 .M15 2017

Theorizing sound writing Frost Library; ML3797 .T46 2017

Modeling ethnomusicology (Rice, Timothy, 1945-, author.) Frost Library; ML3798 .R55 2017

Current directions in ecomusicology : music, culture, nature Frost Library; ML3799.3 .C87 2016

Changing the tune : the Kansas City Women's Jazz Festival, 1978-1985 (Brewer, Carolyn Glenn, author.) Frost Library; ML38.K18 K364 2017

Music, evolution, and the harmony of souls (Harvey, Alan, author.) Frost Library; ML3800 .H28 2017

Treatise on musical objects : essays across disciplines (Schaeffer, Pierre, 1910-1995, author.) Frost Library; ML3800.S252 T713 2017

Handbook of musical identities Frost Library; ML3830 .H36 2017

The new analog : listening and reconnecting in a digital world (Krukowski, Damon, author.) Frost Library; ML3830 .K756 2017

Music, passion, and cognitive function (Perlovsky, Leonid I., author.) Frost Library; ML3830 .P374 2017

Music and empathy Frost Library; ML3838 .M948 2017

A musicology for landscape (Buck, David N., author.) Frost Library; ML3877 .B83 2017

Sound system : the political power of music (Randall, Dave, author.) Frost Library; ML3916 .R36 2017

Music in the world : selected essays (Taylor, Timothy Dean, author.) Frost Library; ML3916 .T4 2017

The southern rock revival : the old south in a new world (Eastman, Jason, author.) Frost Library; ML3917.U6 E27 2016

Performing Nashville : music tourism and country music's main street (Fry, Robert W. (Robert Webb), author.) Frost Library; ML3917.U6 F79 2017

The jazz republic : music, race, and American culture in Weimar Germany (Wipplinger, Jonathan O., author.) Frost Library; ML3918.G3 W57 2017

The Bloomsbury handbook of religion and popular music Frost Library; ML3921.8.P67 B6 2017

Insights in sound : visually impaired musicians' lives and learning (Baker, David C. (David Christopher), 1971- author.) Music Library; MT17 .B35 2017

College music curricula for a new century Music Library; MT18 .C64 2017

Phrase rhythm in tonal music (Rothstein, William Nathan.) Music Library; MT42 .R84 1989

The unorthodox guitar : a guide to alternative performance practice (Frengel, Mike, author.) Music Library; MT580 .F74 2017

A gun show : Sō Percussion and Emily Johnson in performance (Sliwinski, Adam, 1979-, author.) Music Library; MT736 .S65 2016

How to be a successful choir director (Bertalot, John.) Music Library; MT85 .B47 2002

The modern conductor (Green, Elizabeth A. H.) Music Library; MT85 .G785 1997

Singing in Brazilian Portuguese : a guide to lyric diction and vocal repertoire (Porter, Marcía, author.) Music Library; MT883 .P67 2017

Norton anthology of western music Music Library; MT91 .N67 2014

The very best of Oscar Peterson (Peterson, Oscar, 1925-2007.) Music Library; $hM21.P48 V4 2005

Novoe sobranie sochineniĭ (Shostakovich, Dmitriĭ Dmitrievich, 1906-1975.) Music Library; $hM3 .S537 2000