Printer Friendly



Notes, in its second series, began with the December 1943 issue. The transition from an occasional, mimeographed collection of stapled sheets to a quarterly, printed periodical was accomplished by the first editor Richard S. Hill of the Library of Congress. The professional and scholarly journal of the Music Library Association has been the document of record for much of the activity in music libraries ever since. Here we are seventy-five years later, pondering the life that the journal has led, and wondering about the future in a personal take on the people, ideas, things, and places with which Notes has been concerned.

Notes retains stature due to its community of readers, writers, and editors who wish to continue the tradition of a high quality, peer-reviewed, consistently reliable and regular publication, with an ecumenical outlook. Those virtues are particularly toilsome and challenging to maintain in the face of the many pressures upon the profession, upon scholarly and society publishing, and upon the individuals who read, write for, and edit the journal. One way in which our professional association provides us with agency despite these challenges is through information sharing and debate about the routes our communides of people, ideas, things, and places have taken and wish to be taken. Notes may not be perfect, and she certainly requires constant attention in order to flourish, but she is a beacon of hope for what promises to be a tumultuous second seventy-five years.


Notes, in its second series, began with the December 1943 issue edited by Richard S. Hill (1901-1961). The opening "Proem" praises the first series, edited by Eva Judd O'Meara (1884-1979), for having "consistently striven to publish materials which will be of assistance and value to music librarians, and by doing so help them solve their problems and to serve more ably and readily the growing number of readers who come to music libraries for information and relaxation." (1) Proudly proclaiming that in its new typeset dress, Notes would be "even more useful" than in its previous guise of "long, unwieldy, seemingly less permanent mimeographed sheets," the author says that the journal will attract better quality articles, advertisements, and allow a greater number of pages to be produced, thus enabling the inclusion of the columns of reviews, for example, on a regular basis. The "Proem" claims that Notes came of age in 1943, and the author "devoutly hope[s] that when readers come to look back upon this step in future years it will appear to be no idle gesture."

And here we are seventy-five years later, pondering the life that the journal has led, and wondering about the future. What follows is a personal take on the people, ideas, things, and places with which Notes has been concerned. (2) Its source is the journal itself. In other words, the voluminous files relating to Notes in the Music Library Association archives have not been consulted, nor have the MLA board of directors' deliberations been taken into account. (3) My qualifications are that I have lived with Notes for half its life, and it has actively participated in more than half of mine, that I discussed it in board meetings, that I have written articles and reviews for it, that I have refereed papers submitted for consideration, that I have served on an editor search committee (2003-4), and that I edited the "Book Reviews" column from December 1994 (51/2) to June 1998 (54/4). (4)


Were it not for Hill's vision of what Notes could and should be, his unswerving pursuit and moulding of appropriate material, his absolute dedication to the cause, and his adherence to the highest standards of editorial judgment and scholarly practice, the journal would not have made the mark that it did. He edited the first sixty-nine issues, a feat unlikely to be surpassed. (5) (See table 1 for the succession of editors 19432018.) All the main features and structures of the journal were evident by the completion of the second volume: articles (1/1), "Notes for Notes," in which the editor du jour can expound (or not) as he or she sees fit (1/1), advertisements (1/2), reports on MLA business or activities or a list of members (1/2), book reviews (1/2), serial publication, that is, the publication of an article that extends over more than one issue (1/3), reviews of scores (2/3), musical examples in articles (2/3), illustrations and advertisements on coated stock (2/4), and an index (mailed with 3/1). The journal grew from twenty-eight pages per issue to one hundred, and snagged articles and reviews from many eminent persons. Authors of the first score reviews (2/3) were Erich Leinsdorf, Virgil Thomson, Harrison Kerr, Lou Harrison, Nicolas Nabokov, and Charles Seeger, as well as Charles Warren Fox and Hill himself. Writing in his Sunday column for the New York Herald Tribune 6 May 1945, Virgil Thomson stated that after The Musical Quarterly and Modern Music in prestige comes Notes, "[a] new quarterly of high distinction (in learned vein) [... which is] definitely a magazine to watch." (6) To have accomplished all this during wartime restrictions is little short of astonishing.

As Carroll D. Wade and Frank C. Campbell remark in their list of Hill's published writings, Hill's "Notes for Notes" whether "scolding, wheedling, or filled with pride ... was a voice rich in personality, and full of information and common sense" (18/3, p. 380). Already in the first two volumes he had issued a call for papers from members, arguing that Notes "can be constructively developed into a positive aid for music librarians everywhere," thus making it "an indispensable implement of your work" (1/1, p. 27). He encouraged debate about editorial policy concerning content; "Obviously, not all articles, simply because they are on musical subjects, would be appropriate" (1/3, p. 54). He pointed out, to actual or potential critics, that the inclusion of advertisements was necessary as "the extremely modest dues paid" by MLA members covered under half the cost of printing and mailing the journal (1/3, p. 55). He bemoaned growing pains (2/1, p. 53), concluding that "With a little help from everyone [to increase subscribers], Notes can easily be made the magazine it ought to be."

Hill was by all accounts a remarkable person as well as librarian. Interested in music since early childhood, Hill came into music librarianship via a circuitous route. Born and brought up in Chicago, Hill went to Cornell University to study mechanical engineering. Halfway through his undergraduate degree he switched to the arts. He then went to the University of Oxford where he spent two years researching and writing on the legend of Thais. Following that he became the research fellow of Kurt Koffka, the well-known Gestalt psychologist, at Smith College, Northampton, Massachusetts, who had recently emigrated from Germany. Newly married, Hill moved to Cornell University where he studied with Otto Kinkeldey, who was both a professor of musicology and, from 1930, head of the university libraries. During his time there Hill taught a class on modern music, and had an article published in Musical Quarterly on Schoenberg's tone rows. (7) In 1939 he was recruited by Harold Spivake of the Library of Congress to join the reference staff in the Music Division.

An example of Hill's fertile mind can be found in the article that he published in 1/3 (June 1944) on "Concert Life in Berlin: Season 194344," a tide so innocuous that readers would not discern until they delved into it the relevance to the Allied war effort. (8) This was the period when bombing of Berlin and other German cities was destroying the material culture that had nurtured the musical tradition held so dearly in Germany and across much of the western world. Hill, who had spent time in Berlin during his scholarly travels, was able to obtain copies of the Berlin newspaper the Deutsche allgemeine Zeitung not long after publication. From advertisements and announcements about concert and other performances and their locations, Hill deduced the extent of the damage caused by the bombing. His accuracy was such that the Pentagon "ordered numerous copies" of the issue. (9)

Hill parlayed the connections he had with the music trades and published an article (15/4) originally intended for High Fidelity, the author-paying, general interest, record collectors' magazine. Francis F. Clough and G. J. Cuming were the discographers par excellence of their day (The World's Encyclopaedia of Recorded Music), and their article "Phonographic Periodicals: A Survey of Some Issued Outside the United States," was deemed too detailed by High Fidelity's editor. Hill was more than happy to take it, particularly as the authors agreed to revise the entire piece. He remarked in the first footnote that "Notes therefore has the pleasure of publishing for the first time in its history a contribution that has been paid for--and what probably makes the event wholly unprecedented, paid for by another magazine." (10)

With the December issue of the previous volume (14/1), Hill achieved a far more significant accomplishment, "the first American periodical to issue a supplementary phonodisc," in the words of Krummel. (11) The seven-inch disc was produced by Folkways Records, and its chief, Moses Asch, was the author of the article "Folk Music" that the disc accompanied. Of course, librarians quickly came to dislike all such supplementary materials, finding it impossible to keep them together with the print materials, particularly journals, having no easy way to transition the format when technology advanced, and, with the advent of online access to journals, being unable to make the sound available through such services as JSTOR (see the note there preceding the Asch article) or Project Muse. The label on the disc's B side probably gave Hill heartburn. The title of one of the songs was given as "Sinking of the Louistania," which was not just a misspelling but also the wrong ship. Leadbelly's song is about the Titanic. The disc itself was titled Folk Music Lecture, and thus was somewhat misleading as it did not contain a recording of Asch's text (which was indeed the printed article), nor was there any indication on the disc that it was issued in conjunction with Notes. The multiple ironies would have been evident to, if not enjoyed by, Hill.

One point crucial to Notes' development is that those most concerned with it from volume 4 onward worked at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. On the one hand a cohesive group of individuals led by Hill could put in all the hours necessary to create such a journal. Edward N. Waters (1906-1991), the Music Library Association president 1941-46, was, in the 1940s, assistant chief of the Music Division. Hill was the reference librarian, and he had the help of William Lichtenwanger, E. Lee Fairley, and Frank C. Campbell. The secretary of the division, Mary Rogers, was also involved, gradually taking on all the financial aspects of the journal and becoming the treasurer of MLA. Initially Notes was obtainable through the secretary/treasurer of MLA, Catherine V. Nimitz, who was music supervisor for the D.C. Public Libraries. (12) Though Notes was not an official library publication, Music Division staff devoted time and effort to it that was funded by taxpayers. Without those resources it would not have appeared. On the other hand, the attitudes of those individuals were shaped by their common education, their work experience, and the pressures they felt running a library that was not typical in terms of the richness and depth of its collections, and the public programming that it put on. The academic (both university and conservatory) libraries and public libraries across the country faced different problems of funding, staffing, purpose, acquisitions, and provision of materials. Achieving a balance between the competing information needs and attitudes of the librarians it sought to serve, let alone the other segments of its readership, would be a continuing issue.

The herculean labors of Hill and his crew are the more evident when we realize that Hill was the first president of the newly formed International Association of Music Libraries (IAML), a position he held from 1951 to 1955. In their reminiscence of Hill, Wade (assistant treasurer of MLA from 1959, and also an employee in the Music Division of the Library of Congress), and Campbell (for ten years prior to Hill's death one of the two associate editors) wrote: "Only those who know the gruelling work that went into the making of Notes ... can fully appreciate why [several long-term projects of Hill's] remained unpublished. The ads that he designed for Notes; the articles he revised; the countless ways in which he improved and added to the material submitted--these things must remain ... 'an editor's secret.' Yet it is a pity they cannot be listed [in his bibliography], for in some respects they represent Mr. Hill's most distinctive and most substantial contribution to the world of music and of scholarship." (13)

Vincent Duckies, MLA president at the time of Hill's death in 1961, emphasized that Hill held "a unique concept of music librarianship, far more comprehensive than the view of those who regard the librarian as the custodian of a collection, as a technician, as an administrator, as an archivist. All such activities play their part, but the whole as he saw it was something infinitely more rich, more complex and creative." (14) Hill "was prodigal of his energies ... no job was too demanding, no life too short to accomplish what he set out to do. He was one of the great generating personalities in the field of musical scholarship and librarianship." (15) Charles Warren Fox--his close friend and MLA president 1954-56--said in his reminiscence, Notes "became larger and larger ... [and] constantly reflected Dick's interest.... At the present time [1961], the magazine can be truly considered as one of the most important of all magazines in the field of music." (16)


During its first eighteen years Notes quickly expanded to run 650-770 pages per volume. (See table 2 for the list of volumes, their length, and number of copies distributed.) The effort to maintain that output faltered over the college years (as it were), as illness and other responsibilities made it impossible for Lichtenwanger and Waters to devote sufficient attention to the journal. Criticism directed at MLA in the 15 October 1963 issue of Library Journal by Gordon Stevenson, head of the Art and Music Department of the Kansas City, Missouri, Public Library, did not help. (17) He believed that MLA was not doing anything for persons who worked with music materials in the small and medium-sized libraries because it was too focused on large research libraries. Lichtenwanger responded in "Notes for Notes" (20/3) that the concerns of librarians in smaller units had long been of interest to the editors of Notes. (18) "The Record Index and the quarterly recommendations of current sheet music are only two of Dick Hill's ideas aimed primarily at smaller libraries and their users. The policy of more numerous though shorter reviews, intended ... to be descriptive and evaluative rather than dissective as in the musicological journals, the policy of trying to list comprehensively the European and American output of writings about music; the repeated attempts ... to produce an 'American Hofmeister' or at least to review or list all worthwhile current music publications; ... the refusal of countless scholarly articles that were offered and the hunting--often fruitlessly--for readable articles of broader scope that would be useful far beyond the large academic library--these and many other aspects of policy have been aimed at all librarians and at musicians and musical laymen in general, not just at university music librarians. ... In a nutshell, we have tried to make Notes a magazine for all those who use music libraries, large or small, public or university; not merely a technical house-organ for full-time music librarians of whatever kind.... The Library of Congress, whose Music Division staff has supplied most-though not all--of the labor of love that has gone into Notes these past twenty years, is not a university-oriented research library but a public library."


With the journal's existence in doubt in the early 1960s, two factors were essential to its continuation; a willingness by the MLA board to find the necessary funding, and the agreement of Harold Samuel to become editor starting with 22/3 (March 1966). "Sam" as he was known, set about ensuring that the journal met deadlines, moved its production from Washington, D.C., to Geneva, New York, only a few miles from his base at Cornell University, and ensured that column editors could concentrate on their specialities. (19) Ever since, the journal has traveled up and down the east coast and across the midwest, spending time in big cities and small, enjoying the largess of its hosts while contributing to the student wages budget. The column editors have been more widely dispersed across the continent, adding the work to their day jobs as music librarians or catalogers. One connection with the Library of Congress that has been retained is production of the "Books Recently Published" column, aka the "Book List."


Not all columns begun in the early days (or more recently) have survived. One, dubbed many years later "the Column that Ate Notes," was Hill's initiative, and began in March 1948 (5/2), "Index to Record Reviews." (20) The first iteration was produced by Philip L. Miller and Louise Pratt Howe, but the second and all through the end of volume 43 (June 1987) were produced by Kurtz Myers, an astonishing total of 154 columns. (21) As Myers reported in the first volume of the cumulation (1978), the index "has been produced in private time and as a hobby. The time available has often been inadequate for the task attempted." (22) That second column included an innovation by Myers that remained through the rest of the column's history, an indication of the reviewer's opinion of each recording (excellent, adequate, or inadequate). These make for interesting comparisons. Though the number of publications read increased from the initial eight to twenty-two by 1987, the titles never included popular-music magazines, nor the specialist classical journals that were begun in the 1960s, '70s, and '80s, such as Early Music or Nineteenth-Century Music, which made a point of including record reviews.

Upon Myers's retirement from the column, the baton passed to Richard LeSueur. He and incoming editor Michael Ochs worked hard revamping the column's layout and arrangement so that more material could be included, the onslaught of compact discs threatening to overwhelm collectors and libraries. LeSueur was as indefatigable as Myers, and in some issues the index constituted a third of the content. The journal's budget and readers' patience were being tested. Ochs announced the establishment of an ad hoc committee to study the column's future in the June 1990 issue (46/4), and the report was presented to the MLA board in 1991. There remained sufficient enthusiasm for the board to recommend the continuation of the column at least for the time being. As Ochs archly wrote, "The Board's decision notwithstanding, the index can appear only if a replacement can be found for its editor." (23) LeSueur had suggested a team of indexers, and Ochs asked, "Any reader interested in joining this effort or perhaps even in organizing it is urged to write to the editor of this journal at once." This was in the spirit of the earliest days of Notes. In the event, the dynamic duo of Paul Cauthen and Mark Palkovic accepted the challenge, and the column ran for another five years. Editor Griscom gave it its last rites after "searching deep in our [sic] soul," commenting that "sound recordings have been important to the history of Notes.... We are interested in retaining coverage of sound recordings in the journal." (24) Sure enough, 58/3 saw the commencement of a new column of "Sound Recording Reviews," edited by Rick Anderson, the intent of which was not only to offer "brief reviews of new compact discs [but also to provide] a lengthier discographical essay devoted to a particular topic." (25) That lasted for eleven volumes (last column 68/4) by which time various factors, including direct digital delivery of sound to customers, made the column impossible to sustain.


From its founding Notes has had editors, associate or assistant editors, contributing (column) editors, and copy editors. Such a plethora of editors might call for one to be editor-in-chief, and such there is, but the title has remained the unadorned "editor," as befits a member of our unassuming band of sisters and brothers. The gender breakdown is eleven men and four women. The typical age upon taking up the position is forty-eight, while the span is forty-one to sixty-one. Evidently the board is mindful that the position be occupied by someone with considerable time in the field as well as a specific set of skills. Several editors have been elected president of MLA, either before or after their editorship.26 Many of the assistant, contributing, and copy editors have also had other positions within MLA, some even simultaneously with their editorial duties. The devotion of individuals to their chosen tasks is not only essential but also demonstrative of their commitment to the success of the journal and the profession. The small stipends are but a token of the MLA's immense thanks for what can seem at times a thankless and overwhelming responsibility.

At the start of his editorship in 1997, Richard Griscom (54/2) pondered the question of "How much work goes into editing an issue of Notes?" One answer was provided by the box that the outgoing editor, Dan Zager, had sent him, in which Griscom "found every piece of paper that had passed through ... Zager's hands as he prepared the March 1997 issue" (p. 432). The answer, "about 1,800 pages,...: 850 pages of manuscript, 600 pages of first proofs, and 350 pages of second proofs." Griscom later saw the other eighteen boxes, one for each issue that Zager had edited, in all approximately 33,000 typescript and proof pages (p. 433). These were the evidence of the time freely given to the authors by the editors, to make thoughts more incisive, to clarify phraseology, to allow readers as seamless an experience as possible.

In his last issue as editor (57/1), Griscom provided readers with a list of the places he had edited Notes, including the somewhat cryptic mention of "a poolside table at a Hampton Inn," which can hardly have been during an MLA meeting--national or regional--given their typical dates and locations. He posited that "Editing a journal starts out as a job and ends up a lifestyle [evidently not of the rich and famous if the Hampton Inn is anything to go by]; the rhythm of the publication schedule soon becomes the rhythm of the editor's life. But it can be a pleasing rhythm, richly textured and syncopated." (27)

During Linda Solow Blotner's editorship Notes underwent the massive shift from paper to electronic editorial processes. While this did not lessen the amount of work, it did reduce the number of reams of paper required to prepare each issue. The planning and execution of the conversion was an additional layer of complication to what is already an onerous responsibility. Notwithstanding the huge amount of work involved, the inevitable though unpredictable difficulties, and the personal sacrifices that the editors make in accepting the position, they invariably report it (afterwards) to have been hugely rewarding. As James Cassaro wrote to me, "I would not have traded the experience for anything." (28) Jane Gottlieb wrote that she "found the work of Notes editor to be extremely rewarding, and am enormously grateful to MLA for the privilege of serving in this role." (29)

Every year the editor reports to the MLA board on the number of article manuscripts received, the number rejected, the number returned to authors for revision, and so forth. Manuscripts are sent to referees for review and, when appropriate, comments are forwarded to authors. The peer review process, though criticized in some quarters, has much to recommend it. Our editors, in their gate-keeping function, save us readers from the impertinence of authors who think that grant proposal text makes a suitable article, from the superiority of authors who believe that a few modifications will suffice when more substantial revisions are required, and from longwinded or grammatically-challenged authors so uncaring of readers that they are unwilling to express themselves succinctly or accurately, let alone with flair.

All editors acknowledge the massive efforts of the contributing and other editors that assist them. Without the commissioning of reviews, the follow-up with authors, and the editing of submitted text, none would appear; likewise the lists, the index, and the advertisements. It takes a village, and the residents for the last fifteen years are listed in table 3. Between thirteen and twenty MLA members a year, in addition to the editor, are engaged in bringing out the journal. Most serve four-to-five years, though some have longer tenures due to finding a highly suitable niche, or being able to devote the hours necessary to the task thanks to their regular work schedules or retirement.

Change, being inevitable, is clearly evident from a comparison of Notes volumes. Table 4 has the details by page count (primarily) of various sections of the journal, and how each has waxed and waned. Whatever the reasons might be for the reduction in number of reviews--of both scores and books--between volumes 55 and 65, it can hardly be said that the increase in digital media reviews is adequate compensation. And while the cessations of the sound recording review, video review, and necrology columns are evident, it is not clear that the space available has been put to an equivalent use. Rather, the articles have grown longer. The difficulties that editors face when considering an article for publication includes whether or not they have the time to spend on tightening an author's work so that it will fit in the least amount of space, particularly if a few pages saved by judiciously cutting from one article can be used to run another that would not otherwise appear.


A glance in table 2 at the numbers of copies distributed might suggest that since the high of 3,893 copies in 1970, the steady decline indicates that readership is falling. This may be true to some extent, with other journals and organizations specializing in particular areas such as cataloging, reference work, and sound recordings having been started along the way, and with the burgeoning of academic music journals delineated by period or genre. Maintaining a generalist viewpoint in a specialist world is a challenge. On the other hand, access to Notes, at least in those libraries that subscribe to it electronically, is now easier than ever, and it may well be that Notes now has more readers than ever. Measuring the use made of that access is trickier than counting numbers of copies mailed, dependent as it is upon statistics generated by individual institutions and by providers such as JSTOR and Ebsco. For example, at my institution, over the last five years, use of Notes as measured by full article downloads via several platforms runs about 1,000 a year. This could be an article, a review, or the index. The shepherding of the journal through the electronic world is the responsibility of one of the assistant editors. Jane Gottlieb highlighted Tracey Rudnick's long tenure--for nine volumes (63/2-71/4)--and extraordinary work in this role, for "her leadership and detailed review of contracts has insured a steady stream of income for the association." (30)

Peak Notes in terms of pages produced--1,726--was reached in volume 49 (1992-93). For the last ten years the range has been between 790 and 936. This is comparable with the period when Samuel and Campbell were editors (1966-1974, volumes 22/3-31/2). Whether this quantity will be sustainable in the long run will depend on: the willingness of MLA to maintain the Notes 'budget; companies continuing to advertise; the quality and quantity of articles; the continuance of reviewing; the willingness of members to take on editorial positions; and the need for the journal as expressed by readers. Daniel Zager, in his envoi (54/1), reported that he had "recently read an interview in The American Organist (April 1997, 40-41) with the organist Karel Paukert, curator of musical arts at The Cleveland Museum of Art." Asked how he keeps up with new developments in music, Paukert referred to "the amount he reads, that is, as much as possible, especially in the Music Library Association's Notes." As Zager dryly remarks, "It is good to have confirmation from time to time that the journal is, in fact, functioning in this way." (31)


While the establishment and continuation of Notes owed everything to Hill's drive, he was well aware not only of the help he had from colleagues inside and out of the Library of Congress, but also of the audience (potential and actual) that comprised the rest of the Notes community. Writing in his second summary piece (41/1) about reviews constituting "the heart of the journal," Krummel chose to emphasize the identification of a community and maintenance of its conscience as significant functions. (32) That observation is equally applicable to the rest of the journal. With library materials and ideas as its focus, and library denizens as authors and editors, the journal's articles, buying guides, bibliographies, and indexes, along with the reviews, serve to strengthen the bonds that exist among and between the people who use and run music libraries. They guide not only purchase recommendations but also reputations, not only traditions but also innovations, not only present practice but also future experience. One example is the piece by John Michael Cooper on Mendelssohn (61/1). Cooper is blunt about the "conventional views of the composer and his historical significance [having] been shaped at least as much by specious music-historiographic polemics as by viable historical and aesthetic considerations." (33) Because "music history textbooks, music criticism, and the press in general offer little evidence of any broadened perspective on the composer's life, works, and historical significance," Cooper offers a study based on "the substantial corpus of little-known primary sources that document [Mendelssohn's] life and work." These reside in libraries, of course, but they have to be brought to readers' attention through the combined efforts of librarians and authors, and their cumulative worth en masse must be assessed in a piece such as Cooper's. What other journal would be willing to publish such a review article of sixty-one pages, one that distills the findings of the latest scholarship stimulated by things in places, and provides a nineteen-page appendix listing contributions to Mendelssohn scholarship 1997-2003?


Libraries house a plenitude of things, whether available for loan or only to be examined in situ, or that are available digitally. Ideas that contribute to our understanding of the materials we look after on behalf of our user populations are less plentiful, but they are necessary both in terms of storage, arrangement, and access, and in how we distinguish intellectually between their different manifestations. Access is governed by copyright, and that has been a core concern of Notes. The first article (1/1) was "Copyright in Music" by Richard C. De Wolf, who was then the assistant registrar of copyrights, and a lawyer. Every five years or so an article addresses changes to the laws governing the registering and copying of intellectual works and their performances. Such articles, by design, do not typically make recommendations for implementation of legal changes as institutions will have their own interpretations concerning access to registered and unregistered works, their formats, age, and origin. Librarians are the first responders to queries about copyright, and thus it remains an important part of our knowledge base.

The ways in which we think about materials and their description have undergone a revolution thanks in part to former music cataloger, and now library school professor, priest, and theorist of bibliographical control Richard Smiraglia. At the beginning of his career, Smiraglia wrote about the implementation of new cataloging rules (37/3), but over the years, working in parallel with the efforts of the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions' Study Group on the Functional Requirements for Bibliographic Records, he has developed concepts that transcend material types and particular codes allowing us to see the intellectual relationships between the things that carry the signs of works and the words we use to describe them. (34) His musical background as a flutist enabled him to grasp sooner than most the complexities of distinguishing between ideation and instantiation, which is to say between an idea couched in verbal or musical language and its physical expression on paper, in performance, or as a recording.

The bibliographical relationships in music catalogs have been explored and explained by Sherry Vellucci, former MLA board member, whose book and subsequent article in Notes (57/3) have been seen as ground breaking. (35) Linda Barnhart's review (56/1) points out something that we know but do not articulate sufficiently often or effectively, "that music materials are different, that they are more complex, that they are more difficult to catalog. Vellucci has given us concrete data for describing and substantiating why this is so." In a general collection primarily of books, less than 75 percent exhibit one bibliographical relationship, but for music (scores and recordings) the figure is slightly more than 97 percent, a bibliographic relationship in this context referring to expression of, for example, a whole-part relationship of the item with its work, or to a relation with another item or work. (36) "[T] he combination of ... technological, commercial, and musical factors contributes to the complexity of relationships among musical bibliographic entities, and also to the difficulty of identifying and defining certain relationships," Vellucci states. (37) Music materials really are more difficult than books to handle bibliographically (and in other ways). Or, to put it in specific terms, understanding the bibliographical relationships among musical objects (items) will equip anyone to catalog less complex objects such as books, and also to grasp the principles that modern catalogs need to employ in order to clarify the relationships between works and objects. Ideas about the fundamentals of our bibliographical world can seem abstruse and obscure but they are vitally necessary for the advancement of knowledge. Stuff both is and happens, and how we describe and analyze it bibliographically makes a great deal of difference to the effectiveness of our retrieval systems.


Over the decades editors have corralled a wide range of authors, some internationally famous, others graduate students at the start of their careers. Here again editors tread a fine line. Old grey dogs must be balanced by young pups; male and female likewise. Two mixtures take especial care, librarians and nonlibrarians, MLA members and nonmembers. Unlike some scholarly journals, it is not a requirement for authors to belong to MLA. Similarly, Notes has long encouraged articles and review submissions from nonlibrarians. As it happens, one of the strengths of MLA's members is their capacity and willingness to write. In table 5 I have designated three categories: librarians, other academic faculty, and independent scholars (typically persons not directly employed by or retired from an institution of higher education or a public library). (38) Despite what some have seen as a preponderance of faculty among writers in Notes, for volume 65 (2008-9) there was a decent balance, with more librarians than others writing the articles, while faculty led in the reviews category. The caliber of Notes authors drawn from the profession is indicated by the fact that several have gone on to lead libraries that belong to the Association of Research Libraries: Harriette Hemmasi--Brown University; Michael Keller--Stanford University; Suzanne Thorin, after being deputy to James H. Billington at LC--Indiana and then Syracuse; and Diane Parr Walker--University of Notre Dame.


It would be as foolhardy for me to predict the future for Notes as it would have been for Hill and Kurtz to imagine that the ten-inch or twelve-inch 78 rpm discs of their day would, via several generations of technological change, morph into the virtual reality of digital downloads. That loss of physicality has huge implications for libraries. One of the more significant articles about the effect upon sound recordings was published in Notes (72/3). (39) Physical things will continue to accumulate for a while, and our hard-won skills in accepting, organizing, and making available to our users such materials remain relevant for the time being. But what happens when those collections (whether regular or special) stop being offered? How do we prepare for the almost wholly digital world? I have no wish to play Cassandra, though there are some who predict dire things, especially for large academic libraries. (40)

Notes' primary audience needs guidance on trends that are affecting libraries and their ecologies worldwide, so that we can all be aware of the forces that are causing such rapid change. (41) The following thirteen topics will continue to bedevil librarians for the foreseeable future and require philosophical and practical analysis by insightful authors.


The incorporation of tools for the manipulation of sounds and other music-related effects into the library space will increase. These tools include a recording studio and other technologies (video, lighting, video games, composition) as well as a makerspace. (42)

Look for the design and use of library space to include an area for performances, thereby making manifest in real time the contents of the library.

Architects will recommend the building of collaborative research and study spaces (while retaining ones for students who prefer to study alone), and classrooms that allow for flexible arrangements and high levels of technological and student interactivity. Have we done our homework in terms of what our present users/patrons/clients/members need? (43) The provision of high quality research space is just as necessary as staff and collections of that caliber. As far as I am aware no research has been published in the library literature on the variety of front desks that are available, or have been designed for libraries, and how those desks influence the perception that visitors have of our spaces and services; an opportunity here for literal groundbreaking research.

In order to accommodate these changes we should be determining the optimal size of in-house collections through study of usage patterns. Is the hypothesis that past use predicts future use still valid, and does it apply to sound recordings and scores as well as books? How much does online availability affect use of library hard copies? Is paper still the best medium for books and scores?

As a collection grows, the number of potential intellectual links available within it increases exponentially. It accords with Metcalfe's so-called law of telecommunications networks. But rather than its value being revenue generation, the value of a collection and its networks is intellectual, and thus much more diffuse and some would say impossible to enter on a spreadsheet. This is a problem because many of our institutions face increasingly strident calls for decisions about space occupied by collections to be made on a calculable cost-benefit basis.

Physical spaces are not just containers. They offer opportunities for growth and exploration through use and interaction. In other words, it is not just the collection that is significant, but how and why people use the spaces we inhabit. A human-centered approach to a needs analysis using qualitative and quantitative studies will help guide the inevitable changes. (See below for consideration of assessment measures.) The design and services of every library should be shaped by its community, which includes users, staff, collections, and events, its ethos and creativity.


What balance needs to be maintained between approval/selection plans and the selection of individual items? Given reduced budgets, changing tastes in performance repertory, purchase-on-demand programs, and a de-emphasis on collection building by librarians, can selection still be considered a professional task or is it to be left to vendors and users? The trend, already identified in 2000 as the McDonaldization of libraries, seems only likely to continue. (44) To buck the trend may be impossible, but we should not lose sight of the fact that our work contributes to and facilitates knowledge creation.

David Lankes points out in his warmly encouraging book that we librarians "pick books or cite articles or acquire resources not because of what they are in themselves, but because of how they may benefit our communities' learning." (45) If we cede that responsibility to vendors, how can we tailor collections to meet the needs of the community we know best?

To what extent do terms such as "canon" and "basic" retain their meaning in a world that is simultaneously diversifying and homogenising? (46) For how much longer will it be possible to suggest such as thing as a basic music library? (47)

For the collections and items we have received but are as yet uncataloged, what is to be done with them as resources for original and copy cataloging are reduced? One example, the thousands of LPs that languish in storage areas, was addressed by Imre and Cox (65/3). (48)


To what extent does it make sense for us to encourage authors and editors to participate in open access publication? Given that open access has been proclaimed as the panacea for libraries because it makes journal articles freely available, thereby saving us budgetarily, but may also be so disruptive of the publishing industry that numerous journals are unable to make the transition, the way forward is unclear. (49) Another substantial caveat lies in the forces driving change in the scientific community being different from those in the humanities and arts. We lack the vast levels of public funding for research, the product that results is more likely to be a book rather than articles, the speed of publication is much slower, and the research is far more likely to be undertaken by an individual than a group. Similar issues arise with the development of open educational resources such as textbooks and lesson plans; is OER a realistic goal for music appreciation textbooks, for example, and is active music-librarian participation in their creation feasible? We could benefit from an article or two that lays out the issues for music journals and publications.


All too often audio and video is an afterthought for vendors of course management software packages such as Blackboard and Canvas, and for university IT staff tasked with implementing a system. What began as the Variations project at Indiana University in 1996, and is now named Avalon, does solve many of the problems, but it is not an off-the-shelf product. (50) As open source software it has flexibility, but it also requires considerable configuration and maintenance effort. It can be integrated with the market behemoths, but it will not stream files from subscription companies such as Alexander Street and Naxos. In 72/3 Kirstin Dougan covered an alternative, YouTube! (51)


Full implementation of the recommendations of the ACRL Framework for Information Literacy is already in our hands thanks to Erin Conor (73/1). (52) Prior to that, Paul Cary and Laurie Sampsel (62/3) and Sara Beutter Manus (66/2) had provided us with useful guidance. (53) Course-integrated library assignments are essential. Research into the relationships between course and curricula change and library change would be a welcome addition to the literature.


We all recognize that information is not neutral. To help students and other library users navigate the literature that is available to them, librarians have a duty to point out the ways in which techniques of narrative, framing devices, terminology, and other factors influence readers. ACRL has published a useful guide. (54) This recent trend in librarianship is of a piece with the consciousness-raising that has been roiling the American Musicological Society of late concerning institutional racism and other issues. Musical sounds are manipulative by their very nature, but we are still in the early days of understanding how this happens and in what ways it is important. (55)


Have we incorporated flipped classrooms and use of tablets and other handheld devices into our classes? Can we provide guidance to teachers on that? Of course, the story is not just about connecting us as teachers with students and their regular instructors, but also about connecting them with materials, both physical and virtual. In addition, we can expand the experience of teachers by showing how technology is deployed in pedagogically meaningful ways.

That seeming constant, the introductory graduate research course, has been studied by Jonathan Saucedo (71/3). (56) It continues to warrant a place because "in an academic and performance world where communication and a common base of knowledge are essential, it is important that a useful and transferable lingua franca of research skills be instilled in students during this impressionable phase of the training process." (57)


How discoverable are library holdings of scores and recordings? To what extent are so-called discovery tools layered on top of library catalog and proprietary databases and indexes distorting or impeding the search for music materials? In 2013 (69/3) Notes carried the recommendations of the MLA group that looked into the topic, which were approved by the MLA board and became official doctrine. (58) The last recommendation was a veiled warning: "Consider the pros and cons of a music-specific interface or view in any discovery tool implementation"! (59)

Record retrieval from any bibliographic database is reliant upon content. MLA has had various task forces working over the years to improve metadata through the implementation of standards and the development of thesauri. Thankfully, the leading lights in the field have written informative pieces, and these include Kathryn Glennan (68/3); and Beth Iseminger, Nancy Lorimer, Casey Mullin, and Hermine Vermeij (73/3). (60) By making what can at times seem abstruse and obdurate concepts accessible to those of us who use rather than develop and maintain cataloging and metadata tools, these articles are especially welcome.


We love our libraries, but that is not enough in the present climate to ensure their survival. We have to prove to skeptical funders that our collections, spaces, and services still have value to the persons who visit us in person and online. For people who oppose learning, access to information, betterment of the self and others, and support of these activities by government, it is no longer self-evident that libraries are a social good. (61) To move from simple measures of inputs (money, volumes, staff) and outputs (circulations, foot traffic and page views) to a more nuanced understanding of our activities takes skills that are not frequently exercised. Thankfully, guidance can be obtained from authors such as Megan Oakleaf, Martha Kyrillidou and Damon Jaggars. (62) Assessment is not only valuable for external agents, it can also inform and improve our activities. (63)


MLA recognized years ago that it was possibly the least diverse library association in the U.S. in terms of ethnic origins and racial identity. A pair of articles by Mark Puente and Susannah Cleveland (67/4, 68/1) laid out the comparative detail, and provided documentation of Judy Tsou's proposals to recruit and sustain persons of underrepresented ethnicities in music librarianship. (64) MLA has long had members involved in areas of social justice and social responsibility, but the linkage between those pursuits and the necessity for active recruitment was not made manifest until this decade. That both have a place in our working (as well as private) lives is clear. (65) A summary of the initiatives that MLA has undertaken would be welcome, along with an indication of how those initiatives are to continue.


The scanning of noncopyrighted material and its dissemination via Web sites is well under way; the reformatting of sound and video recordings has hardly begun. How can we advance this activity with our colleagues in ARSC, one of those subspecialty organizations that arose after Notes' founding?


For academic librarians, collaboration with scholars working in the realm of digital humanities such as creating databases and doing data mining has become de rigueur. MLA's Digital Humanities Interest Group is tracking such projects. (66) A fine example of what can be accomplished was described last year (73/3) by Charles Edward McGuire. (67) For an article that illustrates and proclaims the value of digital humanities efforts in libraries see Alison Allstatt's piece (72/4) in which she says that her "identification of thirty-four leaves of the manuscript dismembered by Ege as fragments of the Wilton Processional would not have been possible without the help of two" such projects. (68)


The demands upon staff to maintain excessive workloads are ever-present in libraries, if only because we denizens are regarded with awe because nothing is too big or small for us to undertake. Terms have been bandied about that attempt to reify, belittle, or begrudge the struggle, terms such as "resilience," "snowflake," and "burnout." (69) Workers already in a stressful environment do not welcome being praised for being resilient, and then have even more work put on them. (70) Within the workforce, levels of coping differ as do levels of injury. Deborah Pierce told us (67/1) how she developed and taught a course on health for musicians. (71) We should also be paying attention to ourselves.

Notes will continue to carry articles that lie beyond the immediate concerns of librarians, but fall within its scope such as the history of our fields--music librarianship and the wide world of all kinds of musicking--whether as biographies, analyses of bibliographic genres (e.g., reference sources or textbooks), or categories; music bibliography and discography, both descriptive and analytical; the history of the artifacts of music's dissemination; musical lives and collections; and those collections and where they reside. Notes is, and I hope will remain, capacious.


The fate of Western classical music in the twenty-first century is going to be far different from that of the twentieth. The training pipeline of musicians is already under significant pressure to shrink, and music libraries in academe, being so intimately tied to the fate of music programs, cannot help but be part of the changes in departments, programs, and curricula. (72) Whether the music department's role as a supplier of undergraduate courses necessary to meet a liberal arts or humanities requirement will continue, what those courses will look like, how much research and writing will be required of students, and whether advanced degrees can be supported, all that and more remains to be determined. Even if sufficient alternative employment prospects can be discerned in addition to providing K-12 music teachers and band directors, it is clear that the kinds of music that are going to be taught and the approaches adopted to do so are likely to be radically different.

Profound changes in higher education are impacting libraries in large and small ways that need to be better understood. The forty-year decline in state support for public universities is not going to stop, though some institutions are almost non-state supported already (e.g., the University of Colorado). (73) Krummel presciently remarked in 2004 (61/1), "Few of us expect things twenty years from now to be propitious in quite the same way as they are now." (74) Library budgets, faced with above average inflation costs for journal subscriptions, are squeezed ever tighter. Though open access for journals has been touted as means for reducing costs, it is unlikely to make a significant impact in the short to medium term and, indeed, may result in increased costs for libraries. (75) As money for new campus buildings decreases, so the pressure to repurpose existing facilities becomes greater, and open-stack space is regarded as mere storage rather than as the laboratory for generating new ideas. (76) While the transfer of outmoded media and no- or low-use books to a high-density storage facility makes sense, the selection of what goes and what stays should be a professional and not a mechanical task.

Public libraries have their own struggles with persuading budget writers of their worth despite receiving the highest ratings of all city and county services, and with serving hugely diverse populations in terms of language, ethnicity, reading level, technological preference and skill, disability, income, and shelter, let alone musical taste and knowledge. (77) Choices about whether to retain CDs and DVDs, for example, will depend on local usage and the community will guide the decision. Innovation in services can come in the form of technology start-ups such as MUSICat, which partners with libraries to build online local music collections. (78) The acquisition and curation of special collections relating to local music is often a responsibility shared with a library's local studies or archives department, but it is one that should be supported whenever possible. (79)


While Notes no longer has the prominence that Dick Hill once sought and obtained for her, if only because of the proliferation of music-related journals and societies, it retains stature due to its community of readers, writers, and editors who wish to continue the tradition of a high quality, peer-reviewed, consistently reliable and regular publication, with an ecumenical outlook. (80) Those virtues are particularly toilsome and challenging to maintain in the face of the many pressures upon the profession, upon scholarly and society publishing, and upon the individuals who read, write for, and edit the journal (stagnant salaries, dual-career couples, and child-rearing to list only three). One way in which our professional association provides us with agency despite these challenges is through information sharing and debate about the routes our communities of people, ideas, things, and places have taken and wish to be taken. Notes may not be perfect, and she certainly requires constant attention in order to flourish, but she is a beacon of hope for what promises to be a tumultuous second seventy-five years, at which point readers, writers, and editors not yet born will celebrate her sesquicentennial.

One year ago, David Hunter retired after thirty years as music librarian and curator of the Historical Music Recordings Collection of the University of Texas at Austin. He is the author of The Lives of George Frideric Handel (Boydell Press, 2015). His current projects are a study of music and slavery in the AngloAtlantic during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, and a history of the audience for entertainment in Britain during the first half of the eighteenth century.

URLs cited herein accessed 18 May 2018.

(1.) "Proem," Notes 1, no. 1 (December 1943): [1], Published without attribution but credited to Edward N. Waters by William Lichtenwanger, "When Notes was Young, 1945-1960," Notes 39, no. 1 (September 1982V 7-30, at 10.

(2.) It has become fashionable to write about libraries and archives as if all they contain is dust. Admittedly this usage is generally metaphorical, but elision with the stereotype is harmful. See, e.g., Carolyn Steedman, Dust: The Archive and Cultural History, (New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press, 2002); Niamh Moore, et al., The Archive Project: Archival Research in the Social Sciences (London; New York-Routledge, 2017).

(3.) Access to the Music Library Association's archives is via the "Index of SCPA Collections" page, subheading Professional Organizations Collections, index-of-collections?#proforg. For further information, contact Melissa E. Wertheimer, MLA archivist.

(4.) As per the practice of Donald W. Krummel in his three studies of the output of Notes, second series, I provide volume and issue numbers in the text, separating them with the solidus or virgule (more commonly known as the slash). Donald W. Krummel, "Twenty Years of Notes--A Retrospect," Notes 21, nos. 1-2 (Winter 1963-Spring 1964): 56-82; "The Second Twenty Volumes of Notes: A Retrospective Recast," Notes 41, no. 1 (September 1984): 7-25; "Notes: A Sixtieth Birthday Retrospective," Notes 61, no. 1 (September 2004): 9-23. Additional material on the early years of Notes is to be found in Carol June Bradley, "The Music Library Association: The Founding Generation and its Work," Notes 37, no. 4 (June 1981): 784-98; Lichtenwanger, "When Notes was Young"; and David Hunter, "Dick and Bill and Notes: Three Letters from 1945," Notes 74, no. 3 (March 2018): 394-404.

(5.) That figure is nominal, inasmuch as the March and June issues of 1946 (3/2-3) were edited by Waters, and the December 1960 issue (18/1) by Lichtenwanger.

(6.) Virgil Thomson, "Music Magazines," New York Herald Tribune, 6 May 1945. Thomson had already referenced Hill's article on concert life in Berlin; New York Herald Tribune, 28 January 1945. He mentioned Notes in passing 7 April 1946.

(7.) Richard S. Hill, "Schoenberg's Rows and the Tonal System of the Future," Musical Quarterly 22, no. 1 (January 1936): 14-37.

(8.) Richard S. Hill, "Concert Life in Berlin: Season 1943-44," Notes 1, no. 3 (June 1944): 13-33. Damage estimates from bombing raids were notoriously hard to produce, particularly when bad weather made the taking of photographs impossible.

(9.) Charles Warren Fox, "Richard S. Hill: A Reminiscence," Notes 18, no. 3 (June 1961): 369-80, at 373

(10.) Notes 15, no. 4 (September 1958): 537-58.

(11.) Krummel, "Twenty Years," 66.

(12.) Catherine V. Nimitz (1914-2015) was the daughter of Chester W. Nimitz (1885-1966, born Fredericksburg, Texas), and Catherine Vance Freeman (1892-1979). Admiral Nimitz was the commander in chief of all Allied forces in the Pacific Ocean area from 1942, and accepted the Japanese surrender in 1945.

(13.) Wade was MLA's assistant treasurer 1959-64, and treasurer 1967-69. He was also compiler of the "Book List" 1963-76.

(14.) Vincent Duckies, "Richard S. Hill, 1901-61," Notes 18, no. 2 (March 1961): 193-96, at 193.

(15.) Ibid., 196.

(16.) Fox, "Richard S. Hill," 373.

(17.) Gordon Stevenson, "Dynamic Inaction," Library Journal 88, no.

18 (15 October 1963): 3804. A response from Irving Lowens can be found ibid., no. 21 (1 December 1963): 4502, 4504. Stevenson joined the MLA board in 1966.

(18.) Lichtenwanger, "Notes for Notes," Notes 20, no. 3 (Summer 1963): 391-92.

(19.) W. F. Humphrey Press, Geneva, New York, was founded by William Francis Humphrey (d. 1934) in the 1890s. Among many other items, the company printed the 1918 and 1919 editions of William Strunk's The Elements of Style. Only two companies have subsequently been used to typeset and print Notes, Edwards Brothers, Ann Arbor, Michigan, from 30/1 (1973), and A-R Editions, Madison, Wisconsin (now in Middleton, Wisconsin), from 47/4 (1991).

(20.) "Notes for Notes," Notes 46, no. 4 (June 1990): 938.

(21.) Myers (1913-2004), after training at the University of Michigan Library School, worked at the Detroit Public Library 1936-69, where he was head of the Music and Performing Arts Library 1954-69. From there he went to the Buffalo and Erie County Library, Buffalo, New York, 1968-71, and then Denver Public Library 1971-76. For the obituary by Dena Epstein see "Notes for Notes," Notes 61, no. 1 (September 2004): 99-100.

(22.) Kurtz Myers, Index to Record Reviews: Based on Material Originally Published in Notes ... 1949-1977 (Boston, MA G. K. Hall, 1978-80), 1:ix; quoted in "Notes for Notes," Notes 37, no. 2 (December 1980): 312.

(23.) "Notes for Notes," Notes 48, no. 2 (December 1991): 449.

(24.) "Notes for Notes," Notes 54, no. 2 (December 1997): 433-35, at 435.

(25.) "Notes for Notes," Notes 58, no. 3 (March 2002): 539.

(26.) Michael Ochs went on to be editor for music books at W. W. Norton.

(27.) "Notes for Notes," Notes 57, no. 1 (September 2000): 90.

(28.) Personal communication, e-mail of 26 January 2018.

(29.) "Notes for Notes" Notes 72, no. 1 (September 2015): 134.

(30.) Ibid.

(31.) "Notes for Notes," Notes 54, no. 1 (September 1997): 39.

(32.) Krummel, "Second Twenty Volumes," 10-11.

(33.) John Michael Cooper, "Knowing Mendelssohn: A Challenge from the Primary Sources," Notes 61, no. 1 (September 2004): 35-95, at 36.

(34.) Richard Smiraglia, "AACR2: The First Year at Urbana," Notes 37, no. 3 (March 1981): 712-15; with David H. Thomas, "Beyond the Score," Notes 54, no. 3 (March 1998): 649-66; "Musical Works and Information Retrieval," Notes 58, no. 4 (June 2002): 747-64. For the full expression of his ideas see his The Nature of "a Work": Implications for the Organization of Knowledge (Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press, 2001).

(35.) Sherry L. Vellucci, "Music Metadata and Authority Control in an International Context," Notes 57, no. 3 (March 2001): 541-55; Bibliographic Relationships in Music Catalogs (Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press, 1997). Linda Barnhart, review of Vellucci, Bibliographic Relationships, Notes 56, no. 1 (September 1999): 111-13. For a fascinating biographical exploration, see Smiraglia and Ann M. Graf, "From Music Cataloging to the Organization of Knowledge: An Interview with Richard P. Smiraglia," Cataloging & Classification Quarterly 55, no. 5 (May 2017): 269-88.

(36.) Vellucci, Bibliographical Relationships, 70.

(37.) Ibid., 14.

(38.) Plenty of librarians are faculty, participate in tenure and promotion, vote on faculty council, or teach semester-long classes. The distinction of significance here is whether or not their primary responsibility or job title focuses on library work.

(39.) Judy Tsou and John Vallier, "Ether Today, Gone Tomorrow: 21st Century Sound Recording Collection in Crisis," Notes 72, no. 3 (March 2016): 461-83.

(40.) Jeannette Woodward, The Transformed Library: E-Books, Expertise, and Evolution (Chicago, IL: ALA Editions, 2013), ch. 8, pp. 94-110; Joseph Janes, ed., Library 2020: Today's Leading Visionaries Describe Tomorrow's Library (Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press, 2013), notably "The Annoyed Librarian" and Daniel Chudnov.

(41.) See John Palfrey, BiblioTech: Why Libraries Matter More than Ever in the Age of Google (New York: Basic Books, 2015). See also Don Tapscott and Alex Tapscott, Blockchain Revolution: How the Technology Behind Bitcoin is Changing Money, Business, and the World (New York: Portfolio/Penguin, 2016).

(42.) For recommendations about makerspaces, see Robert K. Logan and Marshall McLuhan, The Future of the Library: From Electric Media to Digital Media (New York: Peter Lang, 2016), 194-95.

(43.) See, for example, Kornelia Tancheva, et al., Ithaka S+R, "A Day in the Life of a (Serious) Researcher: Envisioning the Future of the Research Library," (2016), available /publications/a-day-in-the-life-of-a-serious-researcher/.

(44.) Brian Quinn, "The McDonaldization of Academic Libraries," C&RL 61, no. 3 (2000): 248-61. For a follow-up see Karen Nicholson, "The McDonaldization of Academic Libraries and the Values of Transformational Change," C&RL 76, no. 3 (2015): 328-38.

(45.) R. David Lankes, The New Librarianship Field Guide (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2016), 47.

(46.) Edward Komara, "Culture Wars, Canonicity, and A Basic Music Library," Notes 64, no. 2 (December 2007): 232-47.

(47.) A Basic Music Library: Essential Scores and Sound Recordings, 4th ed., edited by Daniel F. Boomhower, et al., 3 vols. (Chicago, IL: American Library Association, 2017-18).

(48.) Andrea Imre and Elizabeth J. Cox, "Are We on the Right Track? Issues with LP Record Collections in U.S. Academic Libraries," Notes 65, no. 3 (March 2009): 475-86.

(49.) Among the hundreds of articles that have appeared on this topic since the Budapest conference in 2001 I suggest starting with Jonathan P. Tennant, et al., "The Academic, Economic and Societal Impacts of Open Access: An Evidence-Based Review," version 2, F1000Research (9 June 2016),, which itself was produced using open peer review.

(50.) Jonathan Manton, review of "Avalon Media System," Notes 74, no. 2 (December 2017): 296-99.

(51.) Kirstin Dougan, "Music, YouTube, and Academic Libraries," Notes 72, no. 3 (March 2016): 491-508.

(52.) Erin Conor, "Engaging Students in Disciplinary Practices: Music Information Literacy and the ACRL Framework for Information Literacy in Higher Education," Notes 73, no. 1 (September 2016): 9-21.

(53.) Paul Cary and Laurie J. Sampsel, "Information Literacy Instructional Objectives for Undergraduate Music Students," Notes 62, no. 3 (March 2006): 663-79; Sara J. Beutter Manus, "Librarian in the Classroom: An Embedded Approach to Music Information Literacy for First-Year Undergraduates," Notes 66, no. 2 (December 2009): 249-61.

(54.) Critical Library Pedagogy Handbook, ed. Nicole Pagowsky and Kelly McElroy, 2 vols. (Chicago: ACRL, 2016).

(55.) Though the literature on music, war, and violence is already substantial, it is descriptive rather than analytical.

(56.) Jonathan Saucedo, "Administration and Curricula of the Introductory Graduate Music Research Course," Notes 71, no. 3 (March 2015): 448-78.

(57.) Ibid., 456.

(58.) Nara L. Newcomer, et al., "Music Discovery Requirements: A Guide to Optimizing Interfaces," Notes 69, no. 3 (March 2013): 494-524. For the most recent iteration see http://www.musiclibraryassoc .org/mpage/mdr_IA.

(59.) Ibid., 524. Kirstin Dougan has published on the effects of a discovery layer but not in Notes-, "Finding the Right Notes: An Observational Study and Score and Recording Seeking Behaviours of Music Students," Journal of Academic Librarianship 41, no. 1 (January 2015): 61-67.

(60.) Kathryn P. Glennan, "The Development of Resource Description & Access and Its Impact on Music Materials," Notes 68, no. 3 (March 2012): 526-34; Beth Iseminger, et al., "Faceted Vocabularies for Music: A New Era in Resource Discovery," Notes 73, no. 3 (March 2017): 409-31.

(61.) An example of this ideology can be found here: -the-public-library-will-be-obsolete.

(62.) Megan Oakleaf, Academic Library Value: The Impact Starter Kit (Chicago: ALA Editions, 2017); Martha Kyrillidou and Damon Jaggars, "Current Themes in Academic Library Assessment: Select Papers from the 2010 Library Assessment Conference," Evidence Based Library and Information Practice 8, no. 2 (2013): 4-8. See also the assessment issue of The Library Quarterly 81, no. 1 (January 2011).

(63.) Jan McArthur, "Assessment for Social Justice: the Role of Assessment in Achieving Social Justice," Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education 41, no. 7 (2016): 967-81, and more broadly her Rethinking Knowledge within Higher Education: Adumo and Social Justice (London: Bloomsbury Academic, 2012).

(64.) Mark A. Puente and Susannah Cleveland, "Survey of Music-Library Personnel Characteristics, 2009." Note$67, no. 4 (June 2011): 686-715; "Variation on a Traditional Theme: The Question of Racial and Ethnic Diversity in MLA," Notes 68, no. 1 (September 2011): 48-59.

(65.) Katy Mathuews, "Moving Beyond Diversity to Social Justice: A Call to Action for Academic Libraries," Progressive Librarian 44 (Spring 2016): 6-27, /PL_Jnl/contents44.shtml.

(66.) DH/DS-Music-Projects, E7DWyqR_CNFecn0k791dA4/edit?usp=sharing

(67.) Charles Edward McGuire, "Of Programs and Prima Donnas: Investigating British Music with the Music Festivals Database," Notes 73, no. 3 (March 2017): 432-72.

(68.) Alison Allstatt, "Re-Membering the Wilton Processional," Notes 72, no. 4 (June 2016): 690-732, at 730.

(69.) Resilience is often used to refer to the strengthening or alteration of physical structures to cope with the threats of climate change, natural or man-made disasters, or to communities suffering from multiple blights. Those are not unimportant matters but they are not my focus.

(70.) Meredith Farkas, "Less is Not More: Rejecting Resilience Narratives for Library Workers," American Libraries (1 November 2017), -more/.

(71.) Deborah L. Pierce, "Reaching beyond Traditional Boundaries: Librarians and Musicians' Health," Notes 67, no. 1 (September 2010): 50-67.

(72.) Notable guides include Robert Freeman, The Crisis of Classical Music in America: Lessons from a Life in the Education of Musicians (Lanham, MD: Rowman and Littlefield, 2014); Edward W. Sarath, David E. Myers, and Patricia Shehan Campbell. Redefining Music Studies in an Age of Change: Creativity, Diversity, and Integration (New York: Routledge, 2017), which includes the report of the College Music Society Task Force on the Undergraduate Music Major, "Transforming Music Study from its Foundations" (2016); and College Music Curricula for a New Century, ed. Robin Moore (New York: Oxford University Press, 2017), which includes sample curricular models. The CMS report became a lightening rod for critics due to its characterization of undergraduate pedagogy as "isolated, resistant to change, and too frequently regressive," and its negligible consideration of how technology is changing music creation, dissemination, and education. See, for example, the Journal of Music History Pedagogy 5, no. 2 (2015) for consideration of these issues,

(73.) Cathy Davidson lays out the devastation in The New Education: How to Revolutionize the University to Prepare Students for a World in Flux (New York: Basic Books, 2017), 163-92, at 176.

(74.) Krummel, "Notes: A Sixtieth Birthday," 11.

(75.) Chris Muellerleile, "Open Access Panacea: Scarcity, Abundance, and Enclosure in the New Economy of Academic Knowledge Production," in The Routledge Handbook of the Political Economy of Science, ed. David Tyfield, et al. (Abingdon; New York: Routledge, 2017), 132-43; Martin P. Eve, Open Access and the Humanities: Contexts, Controversies and the Future (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2014).

(76.) For a scorching indictment of the current trend, see Andrew Abbott, "Futures for Library Research," Library as Laboratory: A Symposium on Humanities Collections and Research 3 (2015), https://elischolar.library.yale.edU/libraryaslaboratory/3.

(77.) See the reports from Pew Internet and Pew Research Center notably Kathryn Zickuhr, et al., How Americans Value Public Libraries in their Communities (11 December 2013), /2013/12/11/libraries-in-communities/; John Horrigan, Libraries at the Crossroads (15 September 2015),; Lee Rainie, Libraries and Learning (7 April 2016),; and Abigail Geiger, "Most Americans-especially Millennials--say libraries can help them find reliable, trustworthy information," Pew Research Center (30 August 2017), /most-americans-especially-millennials-say-libraries-can-help-them-find-reliable-trustworthy-information/.


(79.) The amazing variety of collections in libraries (and in other institutions such as museums) relating to local music history is documented in Donald W. Krummel, et al., Resources of American Music History, Music in American Life (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1981). Even "history-resistant" genres can be archived: see Joseph M. Turrini, " 'Well I Don't Care about History': Oral History and the Making of Collective Memory in Punk Rock," Notes 70, no. 1 (September 2013): 59-77.

(80.) For one example see Kirstin Dougan, "A View of Music Librarianship as Seen Through its Journals: A Comparison of Notes and Pontes Artis Musicae, 1977-2007," Notes 66, no. 4 (June 2010): 705-25.
Table 1. Editors of Notes, 1943-2018

Name                 Birth   Age      Issues
                     and     when     edited,
                     death   became   dates
                     dates   editor

Richard S. Hill      1901-   42       Dec. 1943-
                     1961             Dec. 1960

William              1915-   46       Mar. 1961-
Lichtenwanger        2000             Autumn 1963 ([double dagger])

Edward N.            1906-   57       Winter 1963/
Waters *             1991             Spring 1964-
                                      Winter 1965-66 ([parallel])

Harold Samuel        1924-   42       Mar. 1966-
                     1999             Dec. 1970

Frank C.             1917-   54       Mar. 1971-
Campbell *           1993             Dec. 1974

James W. Pruett *    1932-   43       Mar. 1975-
                     2014             Sept. 1977

William M.           1934-   43       Dec. 1977-
McClellan *                           Sept. 1982

Susan T. Sommer *    1935-   47       Dec. 1982-
                     2008             June 1987

Michael Ochs *       1937-   50       Sept. 1987-
                                      June 1992

Daniel Zager         1951-   41       Sept. 1992-
                                      Sept. 1997

Richard Griscom      1956-   41       Dec. 1997-
                                      Sept. 2000

Linda S. Blotner     1947-
                             53       Dec. 2000-
                                      Sept. 2004

James P. Cassaro *   1954-   50       Dec. 2004-
                                      Sept. 2010

Jane Gottlieb *      1954-   56       Dec. 2010-
                                      Sept. 2015

Deborah              1954-   61       Dec. 2015-

Name                 Issues edited,          Number   Employer
                     volume and              of
                     issue nos.              issues

Richard S. Hill      1/1-18/1 ([dagger])     69       Library of

William              18/2-20/4 ([section])   11       Library of
Lichtenwanger                                         Congress

Edward N.            21/1-2-                 5        Library of
Waters *             22/2                             Congress

Harold Samuel        39/1-43/4               20       Cornell

Frank C.             27/3-31/2 (#)          16       New York
Campbell *                                            Public Library

James W. Pruett *    31/3 (#)-34/1           10       University of
                                                      Chapel Hill

William M.           34/2-39/1               20       University of
McClellan *                                           Illinois at

Susan T. Sommer *    39/1-43/4               19       New York
                                                      Public Library

Michael Ochs *       44/1-48/4               16       Harvard

Daniel Zager         49/1-54/1               17       Oberlin

Richard Griscom      54/2-57/1               12       University of
                                                      Illinois at

Linda S. Blotner                                      Champaign
                     57/2-61/1               16       University of

James P. Cassaro *   61/2-67/1               24       University of

Jane Gottlieb *      67/2-72/1               20       Juilliard
                                                      School, New
                                                      York City

Deborah              72/2-                            Oberlin
Campana                                               College

* Also president of Music Library Association:
Waters 1941-46; Campbell 1967-69; Praett 1973-75;
McClellan 1971-73; Sommer 1989-91; Ochs 1993-95;
Cassaro 2001-3; Gottlieb 1995-97.

([dagger]) 3/2 and 3/3 were edited
by Waters while Hill was in Europe.

([double dagger]) Volumes 20-22/2 used seasons not
months to identify the quarter of publication.
With 22/3 (March 1966) months returned.

([section]) 20/4 was guest edited by Campbell
due to Lichtenwanger's ill-health.

([parallel]) There are no issues dated Winter 1964-65,
Spring 1965, Summer 1965. The page numbering of
volume 21 is continued through volume 22.

(#) Editorial duties for 31/1 and 31/2 were
shared by Campbell and Pruett.

Table 2: Notes volumes, years, last numbered
pages, and copies distributed

Year span       Volume number          Last numbered page

1943-44         1                      [220] *
1944-45         2                      332
1945-46         3                      426
1946-47         4                      502
1947-48         5                      590
1948-49         6                      656
1949-50         7                      658
1950-51         8                      770
1951-52         9                      684
1952-53         10                     700
1953-54         11                     674
1954-55         12                     676
1955-56         13                     724
1956-57         14                     640 ([dagger])
1957-58         15                     680
1958-59         16                     664
1959-60         17                     684
1960-61         18                     682
1961-62         19                     724
1962-63         20                     692
1963-64         21 ([double dagger])   654
1965-66         22                     1382 [i.e., 728] ([parallel])
1966-67         23                     908
1967-68         24                     892
1968-69         25                     912
1969-70         26                     916
1970-71         27                     878
1971-72         28                     851
1972-73         29                     900
1973-74         30                     992
1974-75         31                     962
1975-76         32                     965
1976-77         33                     1028
1977-78         34                     1057
1978-79         35                     1076
1979-80         36                     1064
1980-81         37                     1048
1981-82         38                     1040
1982-83         39                     1052
1983-84         40                     972
1984-85         41                     888
1985-86         42                     956
1986-87         43                     1012
1987-88         44                     908
1988-89         45                     936
1989-90         46                     1144
1990-91         47                     1396
1991-92         48                     1546
1992-93         49                     1726
1993-94         50                     1672
1994-95         51                     1560
1995-96         52                     1400
1996-97         53                     1408
1997-98         54                     1072
1998-99         55                     1096
1999-2000       56                     1120
2000-2001       57                     1088
2001-2          58                     1016
2002-3          59                     1056
2003-4          60                     1112
2004-5          61                     1176
2005-6          62                     1128
2006-7          63                     1016
2007-8          64                     884
2008-9          65                     913
2009-10         66                     918
2010-11         67                     890
2011-12         68                     936
2012-13         69                     857
2013-14         70                     790
2014-15         71                     791
2015-16         72                     843
2016-17         73                     817
2017-18         74                     737

Year span       Copies distributed
                of September issue

1966-67         2730
1967-68         3008
1968-69         3413
1969-70         3661
1970-71         3893
1971-72         3645
1972-73         3773
1973-74         3854
1974-75         3877
1975-76         3802
1976-77         3855
1977-78         3743
1978-79         3717
1979-80         3467
1980-81         3594
1981-82         3563
1982-83         3260
1983-84         3118
1984-85         3090
1985-86         3064
1986-87         3018
1987-88         2952
1988-89         2821
1989-90         2787
1990-91         2767
1991-92         2714
1992-93         2666
1993-94         2625
1994-95         2558
1995-96         2504
1996-97         2433
1997-98         2315
1998-99         2346
1999-2000       2630
2000-2001       2027
2001-2          2948
2002-3          2428
2003-4          2165
2004-5          1844
2005-6          1844
2006-7          1766
2007-8          1737
2008-9          1706
2009-10         1189
2010-11         1189
2011-12         1349
2012-13         1335
2013-14         1327
2014-15         1430
2015-16         1101
2016-17         1022
2017-18         992

* Each issue separately paginated (28, 52, 68, 72).

([dagger]) 14/1 accompanied by 7" phonodisc.

([double dagger]) Three issues in volume 21.

([section]) No volume carries the date 1964-65.

([paralle]) Pagination of volume 22 continued from volume 21.
The index to volumes 21 and 22 was separately issued and
comprised 22 pages (not included in page count for vol. 22).

Table 3: Notes Editorial Staff, 2004-2018

In additional to their responsibilities as assistant or column
editors, the Notes staff collaborate on editorial policy, stylistic
decisions, and procedural processes. Volume/issue numbers indicate
periods of service. As these periods usually do not coincide with
either whole volumes or with the decade and a half here considered,
the volume and issue numbers of the start of appointments are
given, and duration is left open when it continues beyond the end
of volume 74, issue 4 (June 2018).

To translate volume and issue numbers into years remember that
since 22/3 (March 1966) issues 1 and 2 are published in September
and December, while issues 3 and 4 are published in March and June.
Volume 61, no. 1, was dated September 2004; volume 74, issue 4, was
dated June 2018.


Linda Solow Blotner, 57/2-61/1
James P. Cassaro, 61/2-67/1
Jane Gotdieb, 67/2-72/1
Deborah Campana, 72/2
Assistant Editors:

Keith Cochran, 60/2-69/1
R. Michael Fling, 58/2Martin
D.Jenkins, 61/2-63/1
Tracey Rudnick, 63/2-71/4
Laura Stokes, 69/2-74/4
Anne Shelley, 72/1Richard
Griscom, 75/1
Book Reviews Editors:

David Gilbert, 58/3-61/2
Philip Vandermeer, 61/3-63/2
Robert Follet, 63/3-65/4
Stephen Luttmann, 66/1-69/4
Lisa Vick, 70/1-73/3
Patricia Stroh, 73/4
Books Recendy Published (Book List):

Karen R. Little, 58/2-69/3
Stephen Yusko, 43/1-61/4
Julia Graepel, 62/1-66/1
James Procell, 66/2Matt
Ertz, 69/4
Music Reviews Editors:

Darwin F. Scott, 53/1-65/1
John Wagstaff, 65/2-67/4
David Gilbert, 68/1-69/2
Keith Cochran, 69/3
Music Received (Music List):

David (Jack) Knapp, 57/3-73/4
Kathleen A. Abromeit, 74/1
Music Publishers' Catalogs:

George R. Hill, 40/1-67/2

Music Price Index:

Brad Short, 58/2-61/2
Paula Hickner, 62/2-67/1
Kerri Baunach, 67/2-73/2
Peter Munstedt, 73/3
New (Music) Periodicals:

Tracey Rudnick, 59/2-62/1
Erin Mayhood, 62/2-65/4
Liza Vick, 66/1-69/2
Lindsay Hansen Brown, 69/3
Sound Recording Reviews:

Rick Anderson, 58/3-67/1
Tom Caw, 67/2-69/3

Video Reviews:

Leslie Andersen, 61/2-72/2

Digital/New Media Reviews:

Alec McLane, 59/3-62/3
Paul Cary, 62/4-66/3
Anne Shelley, 66/4-70/1
Stephen Henry, 70/2
Necrology Index:

Paul Hahn, 57/3-65/4


Martin D. Jenkins, 56
Notes Style Sheet

Darwin F. Scott, 65/2-66/4
R. Michael Fling, 67/1

Susan C. Dearborn, 45/1-62/4
Wendy Sistrunk, 63/1-67/4
Anne Shelley, 68/1-71/4
Scott Stone, 72/1-

Table 4: The Changing Content of Notes
Numbers refer to page totals unless otherwise stated

Vol.                         5 *       55 *      65       74

Date                         1947-48   1998-99   2008-9   2017-18
Total                        590       1096      913      737
Articles (count)             14        9         8        10
Articles                     266       211       257      217
Notes for Notes              7         14        20       18
Book reviews (count)         93        150       54       76
Book reviews                 78        271       131      194
Book list                    13        116       100      47
New periodicals             ---        5         12       16
Music reviews (count)        63        39        11       15
Music reviews                51        124       40       64
Music list                   30        58        30       45
Music publishers catalogs   ---        24        14      ---
Music price index           ---        13        8        8
Record reviews index         40       ---       ---      ---
Sound recording reviews     ---       ---        44      ---
Video reviews               ---       ---        39      ---
Digital media reviews       ---        14        25       10
Necrology index             ---        13        17      ---
Volume index                ---        17        10       8
Advertising                  93        165       117      81
Miscellaneous                12        51        50       37

* Figures for volumes 5 and 55 are from Krummel,
"Notes: A Sixtieth Birthday," 11.

Table 5. Author affiliations, volume 65

           Librarians   Faculty   Independent   Totals

Articles   5            3         1             9
Reviews    42           51        4             97
           47           54        5             106
COPYRIGHT 2018 Music Library Association, Inc.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2018 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Author:Hunter, David
Article Type:Essay
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Sep 1, 2018

Terms of use | Privacy policy | Copyright © 2020 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters