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Music Research

Other Music Reference Sources


** Kuhn, Laura. Music Since 1900. 6th ed. New York : Schirmer Reference, 2001. Also available online as part of Classical Music Reference Library at
Largely a chronology of performances and other significant events during the twentieth century. Includes an index of composers and performers. The appended source documents range from a Moto Proprio by Pope Pius X, to Soviet Musical Policy from 1948, to testimony before Congress about record labeling (including that by Frank Zappa and Dee Snider, of Twisted Sister).

Loewenberg, Alfred. Annals of Opera: 1597-1940. 2nd ed. 2 vols. Geneva: Societas Bibliographica, 1955.
Operas listed chronologically with information on premieres, subsequent productions, sources of libretti, alternate versions. Performers are not listed.

Norton, Richard C. Chronology of American Musical Theater. 3 vols. Oxford ; New York : Oxford University Press, 2002.
Details on musical theater and other productions in New York from 1850 to 2001, with indexes of shows, songs, and persons.


Bull, Storm. Index to Biographies of Contemporary Composers. 3 vols. New York, Scarecrow Press, 1964-1987.
Jones has only the first two volumes of this index to biographical material on composers active during the second half of the twentieth century. Symbols under each composer’s listing will lead you to a variety of sources. Can be a good way to find information about composers on whom little has been written.

** Diamond, Harold J. Music Analyses: An Annotated Guide to the Literature. New York: Schirmer Books, 1991.
Over 4,500 citations (with annotations) to books, periodicals, and dissertations of an analytical nature (under a broad interpretation of analysis). Arranged by composer and title.

** Duckles,  Vincent H. and Ida Reed. Music Reference and Research Materials: An Annotated Bibliography. 5th ed. New York: Schirmer Books, 1997
The music researcher’s bible, a sort of bibliography of bibliographies with annotated citations to thousands of reference works, and thorough indexes.

Filler, Susan M. Gustav and Alma Mahler: A Research and Information Guide. 2nd ed. New York: Routledge, 2008.
Listed here as the latest example of a type of source: bio-bibliographies or guides to research. Generally focused on a single composer, these may provide a brief bio, a list of works, a discography, and a bibliography of writings on the topic. If there is one of these for your topic, it can save you a lot of time.

** Hoek, D. J. Analyses of Nineteenth- and Twentieth-Century Music, 1940-2000. Music Library Association Index and Bibliography Series, no. 34. Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press, 2007.
Includes over 9,000 citations to writings on the work of 1,000 composers.

Horn, David. The Literature of American Music in Books and Folk Music Collections: A Fully Annotated Bibliography. Metuchen, NJ: Scarecrow Press, 1977.
A very helpful guide to the literature of American music, though much of the material cited deals with folk and popular music.  Includes annotations. See also Guy Marco’s work in this section.

Marco, Guy A. Literature of American Music III, 1983-1992. Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press, 1996.
A continuation of David Horn’s work by a similar title, covering ten years. Citations and annotations.

Steib, Murray, ed. Reader’s Guide to Music: History, Theory, Criticism. Chicago: Fitzroy Dearborn, 1999.
Very selective, annotated lists of sources on persons and other subjects. Can be helpful to get an overview of literature on a topic, but remember that this will exclude some good sources.


Classical Music Reference Library.
A collection of fourteen works on music (some reference works, some monographs) of varying quality. Most notable for including Baker’s Biographical Dictionary (see above).

** indicates a particularly basic or important resource