Answered By: Joanna Wilson
Last Updated: Feb 15, 2019     Views: 99

Library Search is the best starting point for information on a particular music topic. 

However, you may also also wish to explore one of the Library’s specialist databases.  These bring together journal articles or other sources, in a particular discipline.

All our databases can be reached via the Library’s resources page at

The following databases are recommended for music topics.

Box of Broadcasts - a huge collection of TV and radio programmes broadcast in the UK.  It’s a great resource for documentaries on all aspects of music, as well as recordings of performances, reviews and critical opinion.  

Grove Music Online - a definitive resource for music research, it has comprehensive coverage of classical music and music theory, but it’s useful for all genres including popular music and jazz. 

Performing Arts Periodicals database articles on all aspects of performance, including music.

JSTOR – full text academic journal resource; very good for music.

Rock’s Backpages – gives full text access to classic rock and pop magazine articles going back to the 1960s.


Other Library sources that may be helpful -

Academic Search Premier – general full text journal article resource.

Arts & Humanities Full Text - titles include both scholarly peer-reviewed journals and selected trade and consumer titles relevant to cultural topics. Subject strengths include music, theatre, film and cultural studies.

British Library Sounds –some classical, jazz, world and traditional music, within a huge archive of sound recordings of all kinds.

Business Source Premier – general full text journal article resources, very good for articles on the Music business.

IEEE Xplore – electronics database, useful for full text articles on music technology.

LexisLibrary – full text press articles from regional and national newspapers. Very useful for performance reviews. (Because this is primarily a law resource, you will need to select the news section.  See our quick guide.)

Newsstand -  provides articles from major British and American national newspapers, as well as many local and regional newspapers from both countries. It also contains an extensive collection of other international news sources. For help with searching, see our short guide.

Useful free sources –

There is wealth of information on the internet, just remember to evaluate what you find carefully.  These are just a starting point -

Google Scholargood for academic information in almost all subject areas

AllMusic - the latest news and views, covering a wide range of music genres

Sound & Music – a charity supporting those making new music in the UK, especially young people. The website contains some useful information and resources.

ITMA and The Full English provide access to all kinds of material relating to folk and traditional music in Ireland and England.