Welcome to the Research Guide for Music!
This guide is designed to help you find and use music resources and information at Weeks Music Library and beyond.

Weeks Music Library
Your Music Librarians

Amy Strickland

Nancy Zavac

What kind of research are you doing?
Before you begin your research, you need to determine what your topic is.
  • Are you researching a piece of music that you will be performing?
  • Are you studying the history of a musical instrument, or style or genre of music?
  • Are you trying to find out how a particular composer influenced those who followed?
  • Are you looking into the social aspects of a type of music?
  • Are you examining how music affects the brain?
  • Are you preparing a method or guide to playing an instrument or performing a specific type of music?
Knowing what you're researching will help you look in the right places.
What sorts of resources will you need?
Music research involves a wide variety of sources:
  • Books
  • Scores and sheet music
  • Journals and articles
  • Audio recordings
  • Video recordings
  • Databases
  • Websites
  • Live performances and performance reviews
  • Interviews with musicians
  • Lessons and methods
Ask yourself which sources will work best for your topic. Some of these may be available online, while others will be available at the library.

If we do not have something you need, ask! We can try to get it for you.
Evaluating Resources - the CRAAP Method
There are millions of information sources out there, from books and journals to websites and multimedia. Trying to find the most useful information for your research can be daunting. When you're doing academic research, it's especially important to make sure that the sources you find are helpful and not harmful to your work.

One way to determine if a resource is useful to you or not is to apply the CRAAP Method (sometimes called the CRAAP Test):

Currency: When was the information published? Is it up-to-date? Does your topic require current information, or would older sources work?

Relevance: Does this information relate to your topic? Who is the intended audience? Is the information at an appropriate level for your purposes?

Authority: Who is the author or source of the information? What are the author's credentials? Is he or she qualified to write on this topic?

Accuracy: Is the information accurate and supported by evidence? Does the language or tone seem unbiased? Are there spelling, grammar, or typographical errors?

Purpose: What is the purpose of the information? Is it to inform, teach, sell, entertain, or pursuade? Does the author make his or her intentions or purpose clear? Is the point-of-view objective and impartial, or are there biases?

For more information about the CRAAP Method, visit the links below:

Evaluating Information for Academic Quality (video by NYIT Libraries)

How to Evaluate Resources using the CRAAP Test (Gettysburg College)

How to Identify a Scholarly Resource
What is at the Music Library?
If it has to do with music, it's probably at Weeks Music Library! Below you can find a list of what types of materials are in the Music Library and where you can find them.

For more help navigating the Music Library, you can view or download our floor plans.

  • Music scores
    • 2nd floor, in the wing facing Lake Osceola.
    • "Oversize Scores" are near the north-east end of the wing.
    • "Miniature Scores" are near the center of the wing.
  • Books about music
    • 2nd floor, in the wing facing the new Patricia Louise Frost Music Studios.
    • "Reference" books, theses, and dissertations are shelved near the stairs.
  • Music journals and magazines
    • 2nd floor, in the wing facing Lake Osceola.
    • Current issues are shelved along the wall closest to the doorway.
    • Past issues are bound together by volume and shelved between current issues and scores.
  • Audio and video
    • 1st floor, behind the circulation desk.
    • Ask a staff member for help.
    • DVDs are also available on the 1st floor of Richter Library.
  • Special music collections
    • The Larry Taylor-Billy Matthews Musical Theater Archive
    • The Frank Cooper Music Facsimile Collection
    • 1st floor, behind the circulation desk.
    • Ask a staff member for help.
How is the Music Library organized?
In the Weeks Music Library, music scores and books are organized according to the Library of Congress Classification System. Below is a list of general classification numbers for some popular categories of scores and books.

Audio and video recordings in the Weeks Music Library are arranged in the order that the library received them.

For a more complete list of class numbers for the Weeks Music Library's score collection, please visit our Score Browsing Guide.

For more information about this classification system, check out the full Library of Congress Classification Outline.

M - Music Scores

M1-M3: Miscellaneous collections and collected works of composers

M6-M175: Music for one performer (includes method books)

M177-M999: Chamber Music for two to twenty performers

M1000-M1365: Music for large ensembles

M1430-M1440: Jazz methods and music

M1470-M1480: Avant-garde, electronic, and other experimental music

M1500-M1998: Secular vocal and choral music

M1999-M2198: Sacred vocal and choral music

ML - Literature on Music

ML1-ML5: Journals and magazines

ML47-ML54: Librettos and texts used in music

ML100-ML109: Dictionaries and encyclopedias

ML112.8-ML158.8 :Music bibliographies

ML385-ML429: Biographies of individual musicians and musical groups

ML459-ML1380: Books about musical instruments and instrumental music

ML1400-ML3275: Books about vocal music

ML3469-ML3541: Books about popular music (jazz, rap, rock, etc.)

ML3544-ML3776: Books about folk, national, and ethnic music

MT - Music Instruction and Study (How to...)

MT5.5-MT7: Music theory

MT40-MT67: Composition

MT68: Improvisation

MT70-MT74: Instrumentation and orchestration

MT85: Conducting

MT90-MT146: Music analysis and music appreciation

MT170-MT810: Instrumental techniques

MT820-MT915: Singing and vocal techniques

MT918-MT948: School music (Kindergarten through high school)

MT955-MT956: Musical theater

Search the Library Catalog
How do I use the Library Catalog?
Using the catalog to find music scores and recordings can often be tricky. Here are some quick tips:
  1. If you use the "Keyword" search, put phrases in quotation marks.
  2. If you use the "Author" search (which you can use to search for any person, not just an author), make sure you enter the person's name last name first.
  3. If you use the "Title" search, make sure you enter the title as it is from left to right (leaving off "A, An, and The"): eg. "Phantom of the Opera" not "Phantom Opera."
  4. If your search doesn't get any results, please Ask a Librarian! We may be able to tweak your search for success.

For more information about using the library catalog to find music materials, take a look at our Search Tips.

Beyond UM Libraries: WorldCat
Article Databases - the Basics
Which database is right for you?
The best database depends on what kind of information you want to find:
  • Are you looking for articles about popular music?
          Music Periodicals Database and Music Index have historically included more coverage of popular, folk, and world music.
  • Do you want to read contemporary reports about 19th-century works and/or performers?
          RIPM is focused on periodicals from 1800-1950.
  • Would you like to find not only articles, but also books, dissertations, and other kinds of resources?
          RILM indexes all types of publications about music.
          Proquest Dissertations & Theses includes disserations and similar documents about all kinds of subjects.
  • Are you interested in music education, music therapy, music engineering, or music business?
         Try databases in these subjects to get a broader view of your topic.

Visit our "Database List by Subject" for more databases.
RILM, RIPM, Music Index, and EBSCOHost Databases
EBSCOhost is the platform that hosts RILM, RIPM, and Music Index:

RILM Abstracts of Music Literature features content from the early 1800s through the present, and includes coverage of relevant articles from thousands of journals, many of which are not specifically devoted to music. In addition, it covers a variety of publication and media types including essay collections, conference proceedings, critical editions of music, digital media, dissertations, monographs, online resources, reference materials, reviews, and technical drawings of instruments. Sound recordings and motion pictures that present the results of scholarly research or fieldwork are also included.   

RIPM Retrospective Index to Music Periodicals with Online Archive   indexes the contents of music periodicals published between 1800 and 1950, including articles, reviews, illustrations, music examples, advertisements, and press reviews. In addition, RIPM offers English-language translations of articles from journals in other languages.

Music Index provides citations to scholarly and popular music journals and magazines, indexing more than 690 international music periodicals. Book reviews, reviews of music recordings, tapes, and performances are indexed.

Here are some tutorial YouTube videos about using EBSCOhost databases:

Introduction to EBSCOhost

EBSCOhost Basic Search

EBSCOhost Advanced Searching

Using the EBSCOhost Results List
Music Periodicals Database, Dissertations & Theses and ProQuest Databases
Library Subscribed Web Resources
Free Websites
Score Browsing Guide
Weeks Music Library uses a modified version of the Library of Congress Classification System to organize its music scores. You can browse a guide to this system at the link below.

Score Browsing Guide
Digital Music Collections
Below is a selected list of collections of digitized scores. Many of these collections also include audio, images, and other primary resources.
  • Open Music Library
    "The Open Music Library is an initiative from Alexander Street to build the world’s largest free index of digital resources for the study of music." Includes 202,000+ scores, 86,000+ albums, 4,000+ videos, and over 1 million articles.
  • Digital Music Collections at the Library of Congress
    Sheet music, recordings, images, and more, spanning the history of music in the United States, including folk, jazz, blues, marches and military music, and music from various American composers.
  • Iberoamérica Digital
    (Biblioteca Digital del Patrimonio Iberoamericano) A portal which provides access through a single search to digitized materials from the national libraries of Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Spain, Panama and Portugal.
  • IMSLP Petrucci Music Library
    The Petrucci Music Library was begun in 2006 by IMSLP (International Music Score Library Project) in order to gathering all public domain music scores and the music scores of any contemporary composers who wish to release them to the public free of charge. IMSLP is governed primarily by Canadian copyright law and, therefore, some works may not be public domain in other countries.
  • Music Treasures Consortium
    The Library of Congress's Music Treasures Consortium provides access to highly valued music manuscripts and print materials held in some of the world's most renowned music archives, including the British Library, Harvard University, and the Morgan Library & Museum.
  • Performing Arts Encyclopedia
    The Performing Arts Encyclopedia is a guide to performing arts resources at the Library of Congress. The Encyclopedia provides access to digitized scores, sheet music, audio reordings, films, photographs, and other materials.
  • Sheet Music Consortium
    The Sheet Music Consortium, hosted by the UCLA Digital Library Program, is a cooperative project to build an open collection of digitized sheet music through harvesting metadata from collections around the world.
  • Sibley Music Library Music Scores
    The digitized collection of music scores from Eastman School of Music's Sibley Music Library includes over 14,000 digitized manuscripts and scores in the public domain, many of which are unique to Sibley's collection.
Audio & Video in the Library
You can find a variety of audio and video formats at Weeks Music Library:
  • CDs
  • DVDs
  • LPs (vinyl records)
  • VHS tapes
  • Audio cassette tapes
All of these are kept behind the circulation desk. If you give us the call number of an item, we will get it for you.

Richter Library also has a collection of DVDs; these are shelved in the Information Commons past the public computers.

You can use UDVD to browse our DVDs!
Subscription Streaming Audio & Video
The following is a list of selected audio and video resources to which the library subscribes. These will require login with your 'Cane ID and password if you are off campus.
  • DRAM: Database of Recorded American Music
    DRAM is a scholarly resource providing educational communities with on-demand streaming access to CD-quality audio (192kbps Mp4), complete original liner notes and essays from independent record labels and sound archives. The collection contains over 4,000 albums' worth of recordings from a distinctive set of 42 independent labels and archives. In addition, it contains a diverse catalogue of American music represented by the New World Records and CRI labels.
  • Music and Performing Arts from Alexander Street
    Music and Performing Arts consists of multiple music and performing arts databases, including American Song, Classical Music Library, Classical Scores Library, Dance in Video, Jazz Music Library, Popular Music Library, Contemporary World Music, and Smithsonian Global Sound for Libraries.
  • Open Music Library
    "The Open Music Library is an initiative from Alexander Street to build the world’s largest free index of digital resources for the study of music." Includes 202,000+ scores, 86,000+ albums, 4,000+ videos, and over 1 million articles.
  • Naxos Music Library
    Naxos Music Library has over 327,000 tracks of music and is continually adding music from the Naxos label as well as other leading independent labels.
  • Naxos Music Library Jazz
    Naxos Music Library Jazz comprises Naxos Jazz and the 22 labels of Fantasy Jazz. There are close to 20,000 tracks of jazz, more than 1,850 albums, and over 500 jazz artists.
Additional Sources for Audio and Video
Historical Audio and Video
These free streaming audio and video sites have been created by libraries and other organizations. They include historical recordings in a wide variety of styles and genres.
  • Library of Congress Recorded Sound Reference Center
    The Recorded Sound Reference Center provides access to a portion of the Library of Congress's audio collections through the Recorded Sound Reference Center's web page, the American Memory site, The Performing Arts Encyclopedia and the American Folklife Center pages.
  • Association for Cultural Equity Online Archive
    Audio, video, photographs and other digitized material from the Association for Cultural Equity's Alan Lomax Archive.
  • Cylinder Preservation and Digitization Project
    The Cylinder Preservation and Digitization Project provides online access to over 8,000 cylinder recordings held by the University of Santa Barbara's Donald C. Davidson Library. These recordings feature musical and spoken selections from the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
Lyrics and Libretti in the Library
Lyrics and libretti are shelved under the call numbers ML47-ML54.8. Many of these are housed in Music Reference.

The most frequently used of these books are the ones published by Leyerle Publications. These include
  • French opera libretti (ML48 .F74 1999)
  • German miscellaneous opera libretti (ML48 .G373 2005)
  • Gluck & Monteverdi opera libretti (ML48 .G57 2008)
  • Italian belcanto opera libretti (ML48 .I83 2000)
  • Italian verismo opera libretti (ML48 .I89 2000)
  • Libretti of Russian operas. Vol. 1 (ML48 .L637 2004)
  • Handel opera libretti (ML49 .H236 2005)
  • The libretti of Mozart's completed operas (ML49 .M83 C315 1997)
  • The complete Puccini libretti (ML49 .P977 1993)
  • The complete Verdi libretti (ML49 .V484 1994)
  • Three Wagner opera libretti (ML49 .W134 2006)
  • Four Strauss opera libretti (ML49 .S76 O62 2002)
  • Der Ring des Nibelungen (ML50 .W14 R32 2003)
  • Selected song texts of great German lieder (ML54.6 .G53 2004)
  • Italian song texts from the 17th through the 20th centuries (ML54.6 .I83)
  • Italian song texts from the 18th century (ML54.6 .I83 v.2)
  • Schumann's complete song texts (ML54.6 .S387 G52 2002)
  • Schubert's complete song texts (ML54.6 .S39 G515 1996)
  • Richard Strauss' complete song texts (ML54.6 .S77 2004)
  • Hugo Wolf's complete song texts (ML54.6 .W6 G55 2000)

Some of the other notable books of lyrics and libretti include
  • The complete annotated Gilbert and Sullivan / introduced and edited by Ian Bradley (ML49 .S9 A1 1996)
  • The complete lyrics of Irving Berlin / edited by Robert Kimball and Linda Emmet (ML54.6 .B464 K55 2001)
  • The new American musical : an anthology from the end of the century / edited and introduced by Wiley Hausam (ML48 .N485 2003)
  • The ring of words; an anthology of song texts / selected and translated by Philip L. Miller (ML54.6 .M5 R5 1973)
Classical Lyrics and Opera Libretti Online
  • The Aria Database
    The Aria Database is a collection of information about opera and operatic arias, including translations for many arias and aria texts for those that are not affected by copyright restrictions.
  • The LiederNet Archive
    "The world's largest reference archive of texts and translations of art songs and choral works."
  • Opera Glass
    Standford's opera web directory contains libretti, source texts, synopses, discographies, and information about composers, librettists, and opera companies.
  • Libretto Index
    An index of known libretto pages, arranged by composer and name of the opera.
Hymn Lyrics Online
Lyrics Searches Online
  • Lyrics and Music
    "A lyric and music search engine for music people by music people" -- lets you search by artist, title, or words in the lyrics. Results lists include lyrics, Youtube videos, Wikipedia results, and more.
Folk and Popular Lyrics Online
Writing a Thesis or Dissertation at UM
The University of Miami requires its graduate students to submit Electronic Theses and Dissertations (ETDs). Below are some links that will help you with this process
Help with Research, Writing, and Citation
Using Turabian for Music Research
This is a guide compiled by our music librarian that includes templates for citing common resources used in music research.

 Citing Music Resources with Turabian pdf 
RefWorks - Citation Management System

RefWorks - Legacy Restricted Resource
Refworks is a web based bibliography and database manager that allows users to create their own personal database by importing references from text files or online databases.

For more information about how to use RefWorks, visit ProQuest's Guide to RefWorks.
How to Avoid Plagiarism