Special Collections at the Wilson Music Library: Simon Collier Collection

An overview of the special collections available for students, faculty, and researchers held by the Anne Potter Wilson Music Library.

About Simon Collier:

Simon Collier was a distinguished professor and expert in Chilean political history and Latin American popular music, particularly the Argentinian tango. Collier was on the faculty of the University of Essex from in England from 1965 until 1991. Collier came to Vanderbilt in 1991 as the Director of the Center for Latin American Studies, and he served as the chair of the Department of History from 1996 until 2000. Collier was a prolific author of monographs and articles, including The Life, the Music, and Times of Carlos Gardel (1986) and Le Grande Tango: The Life and Music of Astor Piazzolla (co-authored with María Susana Azzi, 2000). Collier died in 2003 after a brief battle with pancreatic cancer.

Overview of the Collier Collection:

Size and Scope of the Collection:
  • Special Collections and University Archives house Simon Collier's papers (36.04 linear feet), including correspondence, publication drafts, and research. More information on the Simon Collier Collection, MSS.0219 can be found on the finding aid.
  • Collier also donated more than one thousand books, CDs, LPs, and cassettes to the Wilson Music Library.
Collection Strengths:
  • 865 audiovisual recordings, two-thirds of which are tango, dating from the 1950s to 2002.
  • 199 books about tango and Latin American popular music.
  • In addition to tango, Collier collected Latin American art music recordings.
Accessing the Collection:
  • Collier materials donated to the Wilson Music Library have been added to the normal circulating collection. They can be located in the library catalog by doing a search on the phrase "from the simon collier collection."