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A Guide to Music Materials

The ILLINET Online (IO) or subject card catalogs are used to find books about a particular person or subject. Some general subject headings for music are:

Composers                   Music Analysis Musicals
Dance Music                   Music Biography Opera
Jazz                   Music History and Criticism Popular Music

Subheadings often describe a book's contents in more detail.
Examples include:
Music--Instruction and Study Music--Performance

It's generally best to check all the subdivisions under a heading so that useful materials aren't overlooked.

To find other headings, you can search in the IO catalog using the browse subject command option. Of course, you can still look in the Library of Congress Subject Heading List (on a stand across from the Reference Desk). If a heading is listed there in bold type or with a "sa" (see also) abbreviation preceding it, you may find it in the subject catalog.

To locate books beyond those in the IO catalog, search WorldCat. This online catalog provides citations to books and other materials in nearly 40,000 libraries in 76 countries.

The following online databases cover the field of music:

                                   Journal Databases

*IIMP (Int'l Index to Music Periodicals)                      



Wilson Humanities Abstracts

*Academic Search Elite


                                    Newspaper Databases

*LEXIS-NEXIS  Academic Universe

*National Newspapers (9)

                          Other Recommended Online Sources 

Dissertation Abstracts 

(Ask a librarian to access for you)

*Grove Music Online

*ERIC E-Subscribe

Internet Search  (Google)

* - Includes some full-text articles

The Search by Journal Title search option on the Library's Journal and Newspaper Databases menu screen and the ILLINET Online catalog should be checked to ensure that Lovejoy Library has the particular issue needed. If the library doesn't have the journal you need, articles from the journal can be requested through Interlibrary Loan.

Music journals from 1980 through current issues are shelved on the second floor near the microforms and photocopying areas. Most pre-1980 issues are kept in storage and can be requested from the Circulation Desk for delivery usually within 24 hours. All are shelved alphabetically by title.

Check the Reference Collection materials in the ML-MT call number ranges. Of special note: Grove Music Online, the online version of the New Grove Dictionary of Music & Musicians, 2nd ed., 29 vols. (Music Ref. ML 100 .N48 2001). Other useful indexes are Doctoral Dissertations In Musicology (Ref. ML 128 .M8 A4), and the New York Times Index (Ref. AI 21.N45).

Contact Therese Dickman (618-650-2695) or a Music Listening Room staff member (618-650-2685) if you have questions.

Therese Dickman's homepage: (
Lovejoy Library Homepage (
Library and Information Services
Southern Illinois University Edwardsville
Updated by Muhammad Tak
September 2004