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MUSI2180: Music History & Literature II: Finding Books, Scores, & Media

Search Books & Media


Search the Cheng Library online catalog for books and media. If you need journal articles, go to our Databases page.

eBooks & Streaming Video

While searching the catalog, you'll find a number of books and videos with a location of Internet Resource, and a link in place of the call number.

Simply follow the link ('Click here for full text', 'View Streaming Video', etc.) to access the online version of these books and videos.

You will need to log in to view these items from off campus (and on campus, for videos).  If you are having trouble, contact the reference desk for assistance (973-720-2116;

Music at the Cheng Library

The Cheng Library has a wide range of books and media on music, as well as sheet music resources that include facsimiles of original works, orchestral mini-scores, piano-vocal arrangements, and more!

  1. Select the Books & Media tab on our homepage.
  2. Search for one or more terms that describe what you're looking for (Schubert and songs, French Art Songs, Alma del core, Duke Ellington, etc.)
  3. To limit your search, use the Refine Your Results section on the left to focus on scores, recordings, video, or books.
  4. You can also limit to Available Online to just see eBooks and online content.

Getting too many results, or not seeing what you're after? Add another term to focus your search.



Keywords define your topic (use instead of full sentences), such as a composer's name or the name of a musical work.

You can also use short phrases (piano concerto, Samuel Barber, etc.) to help clarify any ambiguous concepts.

When using short phrases (but not single words), enclose the words in quotation marks ("") to keep the words next to each other ("piano concerto", "Songs of Travel", etc.). Otherwise, you may not get the results you're expecting!

Combine keywords to focus your search: Bernstein AND Composer or "Eroica symphony" AND Beethoven.

Other things to consider:

  • Some compositions have a variety of names (Heroic Symphony, Beethoven's Symphony No. 3 in E♭) or are named in multiple languages (Cantata, Cantate, Kantate). Try using more than one.
  • Opus numbers (op. 55) and thematic catalog numbers (K.545, BWV 232, etc.) can help to find the correct piece.
  • Avoid using musical symbols as search terms (♭,♮,♯, etc.)!  Databases have a hard time understanding them.

Your Results

Once you've narrowed your results, take a closer look to find the right one for you!  Clicking on the title of the item, you can often learn more about it. 

Some things to consider, especially when finding scores, are:

  • Multiple Languages: 
    Music is great because of its international presence, but that means that some works may be listed in different languages!
  • Voicing/Instrumentation:
    If you're looking for a particular voice part (soprano, high/medium/low, etc.) or instrument, make it is sometimes useful to include it in your search. Sometimes, you just need to get the score to know for sure!
  • Arrangement: 
    Works might be arranged for individual parts, piano/vocal, orchestral scores, etc. Depending on how you plan to use it (study, performance, etc.), this might be important.
  • Collections:
    Unless you're looking for an aria or solo in a larger work (opera, symphony, etc.), you may find what you're looking for in a collection.  These may be organized by composer, instrumentation, country of origin, or some other criteria.  Check the Table of Contents section of the catalog record to see what is included.

Overview Sources

Encyclopedias and handbooks are great resources for finding quick content about a topic or individual.  Some of these books are available electronically and can be a good way to explore new topics or ideas.

Where is the Music???

Have you gone upstairs looking for music books or scores, only to find that our collection jumps from L to P?

Because of the specialized nature of our Art (N) and Music (M) collections, these resources have been separated from the rest of our books, and are available along the front of the building, on the second floor.

Music Classification

The Library of Congress system classifies music using the M call number range.

  •  Music (Scores/Sheet Music)
  • ML  Literature on Music
  • MT  Instruction & Study (Theory/Technique)

The Library has a small collection of CD and DVD recordings available at the Lending Services desk, which can be searched through our Books & Media tab on the homepage.

Streaming audio and video content is also available through our Naxos music databases and a number of streaming video resources.  See the Find Articles tab for more information.