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Music History Resources

Background reading

Background reading is an essential starting point to any research project.  The purpose of background reading is to get an overview of your topic, and to begin to become acquainted with the key terms, names and events associated with your topic.


A good place to begin your background reading is to find and read an article in a subject-specific reference book.  The Berntsen Library collects reference books in both print and online formats.


*Note: Reference books are considered tertiary sources and are not typically referred to or cited in research papers.

Grove Music Online

Search for articles in the full text of The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, The Oxford Dictionary of Music, and The Oxford Companion to Music.

Music history reference books

Subject Guide

Nathan Farley's picture
Nathan Farley
Contact:
651-631-5384

Music e-reference

Search for articles from reference books in electronic format.