Music & Musicians

Start your music research here!

Startin Your Music Research

  • The library's home page (linked below) has a search box that does a broad search across most of our 120 databases. 
    • Do a search then limit to e-books, articles, videos or print books. 
    • Click Advanced Search to overlap another subject. 
    • To borrow a print book, contact a librarian ( to arrange to pick it up. 
  • Depending on your subject and research needs, you can also search individual databases below.  

Find Sheet Music & Music Scores

image of wavy staff of musical notesThe easiest way to find music scores in the SUNY Adirondack Library is to go to the upper floor of the library and browse in the music call number area M 1000 to M 1500. Ask a librarian to direct you if needed. You'll find the scores section easily - most are oversized books in the same section.

Or, click this link below for ideas. That link leads to a search for the word Scores as a subject heading. To limit this search to physical books, click the Circulating Books checkbox in the left column. If you're using this from off-campus, log in with your username password when prompted.

Here are a few examples of sheet music the library has to offer:

New Music Books, Scores, & More

Find Books about Music & Musicians

To find a book about your musician or a music topic:

  • enter a name or term into the Start Your Research Here search box and
  • limit it to Books using the dropdown menu (this limit includes physical books and ebooks, if you just want ebooks limit it to Ebooks)
  • click Search
  • to limit to just physical books, scroll down the page to Library Location in the left column and click on Circulating Books

stack of booksYou may borrow circulating books for four weeks. 

Search tips: 

  • Most of the books that will be useful to you will be in the ML section on the second floor of the Library. 
  • If you do not find an entire book just on your musician, enter the genre of music in which your musician composed or participated: Rock Music, Jazz, Rap Music, etc.
  • To access ebooks off campus, you will need to log in with your username and password.

Below are a few examples of books about music and musicians that the library has to offer. New items added to the library collection are listed at the bottom of this page.

Find Journals, Magazines, & Articles

To find an article about your musician or a music topic:

  • enter a name or term into the Start Your Research Here search box on the library's home page and
  • limit it to Articles using the drop-down menu and click Search.
  • To limit to scholarly articles, select Scholarly (Peer Reviewed) Journals on the left side of the search results.

You can also search specific library databases to find scholarly and popular articles, encyclopedic entries, and more. Most of the library's databases are searched through the Start Your Research Here search box, but some are not. Below are specific databases relevant to music, as well as links to other subject-specific lists of databases and general databases.

Below are lists of online publications dealing with various aspects of music. Each link leads to a list of journals and magazines that are organized alphabetically by the title of the publication. To find a specific journal or magazine, type a title, subject, or ISSN/ISBN into the search box at the top of the page. To find articles within a specific publication, type a search term into the "Search within Publication" box associated with the desired journal or magazine.

image of stack of magazinesThe library subscribes to many print periodicals, including Billboard, Down Beat, Instrumentalist, Journal of Popular Culture, New York Times, People Weekly, and Rolling Stone. They are located on the top floor of the library, near the Reference Desk. Many other publications will also have articles about music and musicians. Our print items are supplemented by thousands of journals and articles in our electronic databases. You can also look at music industry magazine websites for relevant articles and news.

Films on Demand Video Database

Films on Demand offers more than 38,000 educational and documentary videos from the History Channel, BBC, Ken Burns, Modern Marvels, Royal Opera House, much more.

  • Advanced Search lets you search for specific subjects and closed-captioning.
  • Transcripts tab displays the video's script. 
  • This is a subscription database. If using from off-campus, log in with your SUNY Adirondack username and password when prompted.


To set up a playlist and other features, see:

Need Help?

If you have more questions, ask a librarian! We are here to help.​

Stop by the reference desk on the top floor of the Scoville Learning Commons to ask us in-person, or ...

Text us: (518) 203-1073
Call us: (518) 743-2260
Email us:
Tweet us: @SUNYAdkLib
Ask a question online.


Suggested Search Terms

Try some of the following search terms when looking for library materials related to Music & Musicians:

Band AND music

Landfill Harmonic

Below is a link to the 60 Minutes segment about the Landfill Harmonic, the Paraguay town that made musical instruments from its trash.

The library also has the DVD documentary called Landfill Harmonic (DVD ML28.C28 L36 2016). It cannot be checked out, but it can viewed at any of the computers in the library or in a group study room. This DVD is 85 minutes long. 

Public Domain Music Sites

Songs, musical work and sound recordings may be protected by copyright laws. Learn more: 

Cite All Your Sources

Just as with a book or an article, you must cite all sources you use, including things like videos and sound recordings - including YouTube! For help with citations, check with the Center for Reading and Writing (CRW).

You wouldn't like me when I'm angry ... because I always back up my rage with facts and documented sources. - The Credible Hulk

Find Music CDs & DVDs

To find a music CD:

  • enter your search term (a composer or musician, the name of a work, etc) into the Start Your Research Here search box on the library's home page
    • to see all CDs, leave the search box blank
  • leave the dropdown box at All Resources
  • hit Search
  • scroll down the page until you see Library Location in the left column
  • click on Audio CDs

All of the CDs are located on the top shelf of the first full height shelf at the head of the stairs in the library. They are organized by call number. For assistance, ask the librarian at the reference desk.

CDs may be borrowed for two weeks.

To find a music DVD:

  • enter your search term (a composer or musician, the name of a work, etc) into the Start Your Research Here search box on the library's home page
    • to see all DVDs, leave the search box blank
  • limit the search to Videos in the dropdown box
  • hit Search
  • scroll down the page until you see Library Location in the left column
  • click on DVDs
    • the library also has a small collection of VHS tapes, which you can see by clicking on Video Tapes instead of DVDs

DVDs (and VHS tapes) can not be borrowed from the library, but they can be viewed in the library.

The library also offers streaming video through the database Films on Demand. See the Films on Demand box below for more information.

Here are a few examples of music CDs and DVDs the library has to offer:

Finding Audio CDs on the Shelf

Audio CDs in the SUNY Adirondack Library are cataloged based on the ANSCR (Alpha-Numeric System for Classification of Recordings) System. The ANSCR system classifies sound recordings based on 46 different categories.

The ANSCR Classification System for Sound Recordings            
A Music Appreciation: History and Commentary                
B Operas: Complete and Highlights                
C Choral Music                 
D Vocal Music                
(E) Orchestral music                
EA Orchestral music: General Orchestral                
EB Orchestral music: Ballet Music                
EC Orchestral music: Concertos                
ES Orchestral music: Symphonies                
F Chamber Music                
(G) Solo Instrumental Music                 
GG Solo Instrumental Music: Guitar                
GO Solo Instrumental Music: Organ                
GP Solo Instrumental Music: Piano                
GS Solo Instrumental Music: Stringed Instruments                
GV Solo Instrumental Music: Violin                
GW Solo Instrumental Music: Wind Instruments                
GX Solo Instrumental Music: Percussion Instruments                
H Band Music                
J Electronic, Mechanical Music                
K Musical Shows and Operettas: Complete and Excerpts                
L Soundtrack Music: Motion Pictures and Television                
MA Popular Music                
MC Country/Western                
MG Contemporary Christian/Gospel                
MJ Jazz                
MN New Age                
MR Rock, Rhythm and Blues, etc.                
P Folk and Ethnic Music (National)                
Q Folk and Ethnic Music (International)                
R Holiday Music                
RC Christmas Music                
S Varieties and Humor                
SR Varieties and Humor: Radio Transcriptions                
ST Varieties and Humor: Television Transcriptions                
T Plays                
U Poetry                
V Prose (Fiction)                
VN Prose (Nonfiction)                
W Documentary: History and Commentary                
X Instructional or Informational Spoken Recordings                
Y Sounds and Special Effects                
(Z) Children's Recordings                 
ZI Children's Recordings: Instructional                
ZM Children's Recordings: Music                
ZR Children's Recordings: Holiday Music                
ZRC Children's Recordings: Christmas Music                
ZS Children's Recordings: Spoken                
ZU Children's Recordings: Poetry