A-Z Guide to Library Databases & Reference Sources

Off campus access to most of these databases is restricted to NEC college students, faculty and staff.

Academic OneFile: full-text articles from journals and reference sources, including coverage of the physical sciences, technology, medicine, social sciences, the arts, theology, and literature.

Alan Lomax Collection: includes online access to thousands of songs and interviews recorded by Lomax, folklorist, ethnomusicologist, and renowned collector of folk music in the 20th Century.

Bagaduce Music Lending Library: A non-profit library in Maine, holding printed music in all genres. Members may borrow single scores, multiple copies, and ensemble parts.

Baker's Biographical Dictionary of Musicians: Access made possible by funding from the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners.

Biography in Context: Quick reference information on over 900,000 people.

BMS Online (Bibliographie des Musikschrifttums): German index to music literature published from 1950-1975 and 1986 to the present. Earlier coverage from 1936-1939 and 1976-1985 only available in print; these volumes can be found on the Reference Shelf (call number: Ref. ML113.B5)

Boosey & Hawkes Online Scores: Full scores from the Boosey & Hawkes catalog available for viewing (not printing or downloading). Create your own account for free.

Boston Business Journal: Provides access to 40 business journals published throughout the U.S.

Boston Globe, 1980: Access made possible by funding from the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners

Britannica Online: The Encyclopedia Britannica, with links to over 130,000 web sites.

Credo Reference: Major collection of encyclopedias and dictionaries which support research in the humanities and sciences.

Daniel's Orchestral Music Online: Index to information on more than 6,700 orchestral works, including instrumentation, duration and availability.

Dissertations and Theses (through Proquest): Full text for Humanities and Social Sciences Collection

Doctoral Dissertations in Musicology: Database of completed and in-progress dissertations.

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EBRARY: Collection of 44,000 electronic books, including several hundred on music subjects.

EBL: Electronic book collection of 75,000 titles, several hundred on music subjects.

Elliott Carter Collection: An extensive collection of holograph scores and sketches during Carter's formative period: 1932-1971. Curated by the Library of Congress; read online only.

Expanded Academic ASAP : Indexes primarily non-music journals; includes many with full text.

Folk Song Society of Greater Boston (FSSGB)

Grove Dictionary of American Music, 2nd ed.

Grove Music Online

Harvard Biographical Dictionary of Music

Harvard Dictionary of Music

IMSLP Petrucci Music Library: digitized collection of over 47,000 works in public domain.

Internet Archive: Includes digitized collection of over 4 million books in public doman.

IPASource: Includes over 5000 International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) transcriptions and literal translations of opera arias and art song texts.

The Jazz Discography: Covers all categories of recorded jazz, from 1896 to today, including Traditional, Swing, Bop, Modern, Avant-Garde, Fusion, Third Stream etc. Access only available ON CAMPUS.

JSTOR: Archival collection of 33 full text music journals

LiederNet: A very useful archive of Art song and Lieder texts in approximately 20 languages. May be searched by composer, poet, titles, and first lines. Many, but not all, also have English translations. Created and maintained by Emily Ezust.

Medici.tv: The largest online collection of classical music, operas and ballets in the world. Discover live broadcasts from prestigious venues and archived concerts, artist portraits, documentaries, and education programs.

Merriam-Webster's WWWebster Dictionary and Thesaurus

MLA Copyright Page: American copyright laws for music.

Music Index Online: International index to 850 music periodicals, currently covering the period 1970-2010. Note: Citations from the period 1949-1969 are in print only; these volumes are to be found on the table in the Reading Room (call number: Ref. ML118 .M86).

Musical America Worldwide Directory of the Performing Arts

Musical Theater Songs: draws from 150 years of musical theater repertoire, ranging from well-known standards to rare finds to help you find the right songs quickly and easily. As an added feature, once you get your list of titles, we link you to various sites to make it simple to buy, rent, trade or download the sheet music and recordings. (Subject to availability)

National Jukebox: About 10,000 historical recordings offered by the Library of Congress, free of charge.

Naxos Jazz Collection

Naxos Music Library: Includes approximately 36,000 recordings in all genres which can be listened to on Macs, PCs, or mobile devices with Naxos app.

Naxos Music Library World: Offers a wide range of world music, from legendary historical musical performances to contemporary world music. Recordings of over 32,000 artists are represented.

Naxos Video Library: Over 1400 full-length videos featuring opera, ballet and theater.

New York Times, 1985:  Access made possible by funding from the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners.

Online Resources for Music Scholars: Comprehensive list of digital score sources

The Opera Platform: Free online access to first class European opera productions

Oxford Art Online

Oxford English Dictionary

Oxford Handbooks Online: Music subject area only.

Oxford Music Online: Includes Grove Music Online, The Oxford Companion to Music, and The Oxford Dictionary of Music.

Percussion Orchestrations: Over 7700 works from the orchestral, operatic and contemporary repertoire.

Proquest Dissertations & Theses Full Text: Humanities and Social Sciences Collection

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RIPM: Retrospective index to music periodicals, 1800-1950; includes links to full-text journals in the RIPM Online Archive.

RISM: International inventory of music manuscripts after 1600.

Rock's Back Pages: Includes live interviews and several thousand articles on rock artists written during the last 50 years.

Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra Amsterdam: Video platform of RCO concerts

The Spirituals Database: this resource offers searchable access to recorded track information for over 2,000 Negro Spiritual settings performed by solo Classical vocalists


WorldCat: World's largest network of library content and services.

Websites of Interest to Musicologists: Contains links regarding job listings, dissertations, ethnomusicology, funding agencies, etc. Collected by the American Musicological Society.