Archive for September, 2014

Baila! A Bibliographic Guide to Afro-Latin Dance Musics from Mambo to Salsa

bailaThis bibliography is an extensive guide to available resources on Latin dance music. Prepared by John Gray, it assists researchers and students in identifying books, dissertations, articles, and other information related to Latin dance music.

The Author includes sources of information about the Latin dance music that could be verified, either physically or through a library catalog, and that he deems to have potential use for researchers. These include books, book sections, dissertations, articles in journals, scores, newspaper articles, video recordings, and other resources. The works cited range from 1930 to 2011. Coverage is global and includes works in several languages, with an emphasis on materials in English, Spanish, and French.

The book is organized into five sections: General Works, Musical Instruments, Genre Studies, Regional Studies, and Biographical and Critical Studies. The entries in each of these sections are grouped according to resource type (book, book section, article, etc.) and listed alphabetically by name. Each entry is numbered and includes a full citation based on a modified MARC format. Gray also provides annotations for some entries.A list of sources consulted and a survey of important libraries and archives follows the main bibliography.

Two appendixes follow these lists. The first shows artists alphabetically by idiom/occupation. The second is organized alphabetically by country name, and lists individuals and ensembles alphabetically within each country subheading. The book concludes with subject and author indexes.

Abraham Myler, research assistant, and Chris Downard

Arias, Ensembles, and Choruses: An Excerpt Finder for Orchestras

arias ensembles and chorusesJohn Yaffé and David Daniels’ cooperative installment in The Scarecrow Press’ Music Finders series assists orchestras, opera companies, conductors, and orchestral librarians in locating specific editions of vocal-orchestral excerpts from operas and musicals for programming purposes. It includes more than 1,750 vocal-orchestral excerpts from more than 450 operas, operettas, musicals, and oratorios written in the western hemisphere from the Baroque through the Modern eras. The editors indicate that the criteria for inclusion in this source was based on the most commonly-performed excerpts from operas and musicals.

The main body of the work is an integrated listing of arias, ensembles, and choruses, organized alphabetically by composer’s last name. Each entry includes basic historical details about the entire work, titles of the excerpts, subtitles, voice types, keys, durations, page numbers of location within the full score and piano-vocal score, score publisher information, and instrumentation. There are four appendixes. The first and second organize the excerpts by ensemble type, while the third lists major works by language, and the fourth provides contact information for all publishers cited in the main body. It is indexed by title, and the front matter provides basic guidelines for programming a performance of operatic excerpts.

Entries include a listing of any publishers that provide the orchestral material for the specific excerpt alone, allowing conductors and companies to purchase the materials to program an excerpt from a parent work without the expense of purchasing the work as a whole.

Abraham Myler, research assistant, and Hannah Christensen

Clár amhrán Mhaigh Cuilinn – Irish Traditional Songs

9780956562814aThis catalogue of Irish traditional songs, written in the Irish language by Ciarán Ó Con Cheanainn, assists researchers or performers in finding specific Irish songs in the Irish National Folklore Collection. It includes 450 Irish songs, without including arrangements or variants of the songs.

The catalogue is divided into 14 chapters by topic: Love Songs, Funeral, Recommended Songs, Songs of Censure, Songs of the People, Songs of Animals & Birds, Fun Songs, Songs for Children, Workers’ Songs, Sailor Songs, Songs of Faith, Moral Songs, Songs about Politics, and Songs of Strife. Each chapter has categorical subsections (further dividing song topics) in which the songs are alphabetized by title and are numbered. Each entry provides song title, the first lines of each verse, the collection it is found in, the collector and the composer. There are six indexes: First Lines and Verses, Song Title, Indicated Names in Songs, Collectors, Composers, and Place of Collection.

Abraham Myler, research assistant

Orchestral Pops Music: A Handbook

orchestral popsDavid Daniel’s popular reference volume Orchestral Music: A Handbook served as the parent book for the Music Finders Series from The Scarecrow Press. This installment in the series, Orchestral Pops Music: A Handbook by Lucy Manning, is also designed as a programming resource for music directors and orchestra conductors. Currently in its second edition, it is a helpful source of repertoire information for orchestral librarians, too.

Manning includes orchestral “pops” compositions and arrangements that are currently available for purchase or hire. Organized alphabetically by composer name, entries provide composer birth and death dates, title of selection, approximate performance duration, instrumentation, different versions available, themes (dance, travel, films, Christmas, etc.), publisher, and “rental” designation. In the appendixes, works are listed by instrumentation, duration, theme, title, and publishers/sources. These extensive appendices provide valuable information for concert programming.

Abraham Myler, research assistant

Historical Dictionary of Russian Music

russian music dictionaryThis reference from The Scarecrow Press by Daniel Jaffé provides basic information concerning composers, influential historic moments, music academies, famous performance halls, and other events, figures, and items in the Russian music tradition.

Entries span the origins of Russian music until 2011 and were selected based on popularity and influence. They are arranged alphabetically, and each one provides a brief explanation or biography with essential historical information. Front matter contains a guide to acronyms and abbreviations, a chronology to provide historical context, and a bibliography. The chronology outlines major landmarks in the Russian music tradition, including political movements that factored into the style and the circumstances in which composers worked.

Abraham Myler, research assistant, and Kiersten Favero