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Music Reference Skills for Every Librarian: Subscription Databases for Music

This guide contains information on resources covered during the ALA Editions e-course.

Online Reference Sources:

Oxford Music Online - Do you need to look up a musical term? Looking for information on a composer, genre, or music topic? Oxford Music Online is the best reference source for these questions and more. This platform allows you to search three Oxford products simultaneously: The New Grove Encyclopedia of Music (including the New Grove Encyclopedia of American Music, New Grove Encyclopedia of Jazz, and New Grove Encyclopedia of Opera), The Oxford Dictionary of Music, and The Oxford Companion to Music. The database is fully searchable, and the content is regularly updated.

Oxford Bibliographies: Music - Music Bibliographies are a subset of the larger Oxford Bibliographies series. It features annotated bibliographies on a variety of different topics, including individual composers, genres, and national music traditions. It functions as a reader's guide to the essential literature on a topic, making them an excellent resource for reference queries.

The Garland Encyclopedia of Music Online - This is the online equivalent of the 10-volume print resource of the same name. A crucial scholarly reference work focusing on the various Classical and ethnic musical traditions across the globe, the Garland Encyclopedia consists of over 1200 essays and hundreds of sound recordings and images.

Article Databases:

Music Periodicals Database - Formerly known as the International Index to Music Periodicals (IIMP), this database provides indexing and abstracts 500 + music periodicals and journals. The Music Periodicals database includes citations to both scholarly and popular music journals and magazines, and covers topics such as music education, performance, music theory and composition, musical theatre, ethnomusicology, and popular music. Almost all records in the Music Periodicals Database come from English language periodicals. Many of the articles are available in full-text. ProQuest is the vendor for this product; pricing varies based on the number of simultaneous users purchased.

RILM Abstracts of Music LiteratureRépertoire International de Littérature Musicale is "a comprehensive music bibliography featuring citations, abstracts, and indexes. Publications originate from 178 countries and are in 143 languages. There are currently over 875,000 records in RILM abstracts of music literature on traditional music, popular music, and classical music. Coverage extends from 1853 to the present." RILM's international office is housed at the CUNY Graduate Center at NYU. Subscriptions to RILM are available from EBSCO. There is also the option to subscribe to a full-text version of the product.

Music Index - Formerly Music Index Online, this database features complete coverage of 500 music journals, and selective coverage of 200 more. The original product is abstract only, but a full-text product is now available. Subscriptions are available via EBSCO.