Tag Archives: Music Library

Library Hours for Spring Break

library hoursA reminder that Library hours will change for the Spring break period 3/19 – 28.
Please check hours here.

Main Library
Friday 3/19 7:30 am – 8 pm
Saturday – Sunday 3/20 – 21 9 am – 5 pm
Mon – Fri 3/22 – 26 9 am – 5 pm
Saturday 3/27 9 am – 5 pm
Sunday 3/28 – resume regular hours 9 am – 1 am

Music Library
Friday 3/19 9 am – 5 pm
Saturday – Sunday 3/20 – 21 CLOSED
Mon – Fri 3/22 – 26 9 am – 5 pm
Saturday 3/27 CLOSED
Sunday 3/28 CLOSED

Armstrong Library
Friday 3/19 7:45 am – 5 pm
Saturday – Sunday 3/20 – 21 CLOSED
Mon – Fri 3/22 – 26 9 am – 5 pm
Saturday 3/27 CLOSED
Sunday 3/28 4 pm – 12 midnight

Special Collections
Friday 3/19 1 pm-5 pm
Saturday – Sunday 3/20 – 21 CLOSED
Mon – Fri 3/22 – 26 CLOSED
Saturday 3/27 CLOSED
Sunday 3/28 7 pm-10pm

Library Ending CD Borrowing through ILL

Due to staffing and budget reductions in LIS, we are no longer able to continue traditional ILL services for CD requests.  As of Feb. 1st we will no longer be borrowing or lending CDs through ILL.

The average cost to borrow an item through ILL is about $30.00.  When we include the costs of Mailing and ILL fees, requesting a CD through ILL was at times costing more than purchasing the CDs. Other options for acquiring CDs still include:

Borrow from NExpress: Middlebury will continue to both borrow and lend CDs via NExpress.  There are negligible shipping costs for CD borrowing and lending for NExpress requests because all NExpress items are shipped together.  Middlebury patrons may search the NExpress Catalog at http://go/nexpress.  You can specifically search for CDs and other sound recordings by selecting “Sound Recordings” from the “View Entire Collection” drop down box on the NExpress search page.

Request a purchase: If a CD is not available via NExpress, the CD title can be submitted for purchase to the Music Library, by using the on-line form:   http://www.middlebury.edu/academics/lib/libcollections/libraries/musiclib/suggestapurchase/node/39001

While the Music Library is unable to purchase everything, it is our hope to be able to increase patron driven purchasing as a way to help ease this reduction in ILL services.

Any requests for CDs submitted to ILL after February 1st will be forwarded to Music for purchase consideration and the ILL request will be cancelled.

For questions contact mdyill@middlebury.edu

Staff Picks #2 – selected by Philippe Bronchtein

For this installment of Staff Picks, please welcome today’s guest blogger, Philippe Bronchtein, ’10. Philippe works at the circulation desk in the Music Library, and is a Dance and Music joint major at Middlebury.

If you’re interested in this disc, or would like to see what student and full-time music library staff are listening to these days, stop by the Music Library in the CFA and take a gander at our staff picks rack near the Reference Desk!
Jim O’rourke – Insignificance
Jim O’rourke is a composer and producer whose worked with a huge variety of artists in several different genres. He was in Sonic Youth for a few albums in the early 90’s, He was in Loose Fur with Jeff Tweedy and Glenn Kotche, and has produced albums for bands and artists like Stereolab, Joanna Newsom and most notably Wilco.

So needless to say, the guy has an ear for good music and how to make it. I was first introduced to Jim O’rourke through the Sonic Youth album Murray Street which while incredibly melodic at times, still holds on to the invasive timbres Sonic Youth pioneered. I was surprised to find such a different sound on O’rourke’s solo efforts. The first O’rourke solo album that i heard was Eureka, a shiny pop album with receptive lyrics and wonderfully catchy hooks. It’s stood the test of a few years and different phases of genre interests as one of my favorite albums. It’s well conceived and well executed.

Jim O\'rourke\'s Insignificance

Insignificance taps into O’rourke’s alt-country tendencies with appearances from both Jeff Tweedy and Glenn Kotche.

The songs are pop songs at heart with a spacious production palette. The rock tendencies of Tweedy are heavily present with the guitar licks sprinkled over every song. Glen Kotche’s unique drumming sensibilities keep the tracks moving without ever allowing you to ignore the grooves he sinks into.

O’rourke’s voice is all over this album. While his voice isn’t the most incredible sounding thing around, his witty lyrics make up for it: “Those holes on your face could be used in better ways / breathings a distraction when your chattering away.” Lyrics like that coupled up with some impressive guitar work and clean production make for a really interesting recording.

Here is a youtube video with Jim O’rourke talking about his philosophy and technique concerning electronic music. He’s kind of a weirdo as you can tell from his interview, but he really knows his stuff.

Standout tracks:
4) Memory Lane
6) Get A Room
7) Life Goess Off

Other Great Albums by Jim O’rourke:
I’m Happy and I’m Singing and A 1,2,3,4
Halfway to a Threeway

Report from MLA (music library) Conference

Submitted by Joy Pile

The 78th Annual conference of the Music Library Association was held February 18-22, 2009 in Chicago. Below are brief highlights from the Sessions I attended.

Music in Chicago

Blues and Gospel music:

Horace Maxile: The southern migration of blacks to Chicago in the early 1900s helped produce a unique more sophisticated sound than New Orleans Jazz, with and intermingling of Blues and Gospel music. Some of the important figures in that amalgamation were Big Bill Broonzy, Memphis Minnie, Thomas Dorsey and Roberta Martin.

Paul Tyler: Folk music in Chicago – local music making rather than music consumption. The German beer gardens provided a venue in the late 1800s for Sunday afternoon music making and social activities. Tyler pointed out that the Sunday blue laws that prohibited the serving of alcohol and closed many businesses were instituted by the Anglo population and temperance movements against “immigrants”. German marshal music was used in a protest of the closing of these Sunday afternoon venues. In the radio era, Chicago station WLS promoted music through the “National Barndance” – a precursor and model for the Grand Old Oprey. The ethnic population originally from Eastern Europe made Chicago a major source for Polka music, with a distinct style. Chicago was also a center of Irish traditional music as well.

Charles Matlock: Described house music – the sound and synthesizer dance music that evolved in Chicago after the closing of disco clubs.

Consortial Collection Development

Tri-colleges – Haverford, Swarthmore, and Bryn Mawr have instituted a joint online catalog and consortial collection development policy using a joint approval plan from YBP and scores notification through Harrassowitz. They have mostly eliminated duplication, except for reference books. But these three institutions are within a ten mile radius of each other, and have a twice daily currier delivery – student requests are mostly filled the same day an item is ordered.

ILSO – an Illinois based statewide consortium which includes remote borrowing, and grants to smaller institutions to develop specific, mostly digital collections available to all the institutions in the consortium.

American Women (Women in music roundtable) – Described the lives and music of Blythe Owen and Victoria Spivey

Alexander Street breakfast – product update. Talk from Jim Musselman, founder of Appleseed Recordings.

Copyright: Is there a chance for change? This session was upbeat – as the legislative committee of MLA sees movement for change in the policy of pre-1972 recordings, to allow digitization and streaming of historic recordings produced between 1890-1964. Currently only 14% of this oeuvre has been reissued. The other major issue – orphan works also has legislation pending with will ease restrictions and standardize the process for “due diligence” in trying to locate a current owner of a copyright.

NextGen Catalogs and Weeding an LP Collection (Small Academic Libraries Roundtable) Sarah Canino of Vassar presented a list of points to ask vendors when considering the acquisition of a NextGen catalog (or discovery tool). Several librarians whose institutions had moved to this technology also discussed some of the problems with these search interfaces as they are currently configured. I described the LP de-acquisition process here at Midd, and included information about perimeters from a small survey I conducted on MLA-L, information from MLA-L archives, and a forthcoming Notes article by Elizabeth Cox. (Sarah and I are co-chairs of this roundtable)

Search, Hack, Mix, Create, Innovate, Communicate: Technology Solutions for Music Libraries – The session title was the draw. Misti Shaw demonstrated a software tool Camtasia, which she used to create library videos. Tom Pease of LC demonstrated an online collaborative program – Yahoo Orchestra Library. Tim Sestrick of Gettysburg College demonstrated del.icio.us. He mentioned that Pandora is the most popular music site tagged in del.icio.us. Jenny Colvin of Furman Univ. talked about widgets and demonstrated meebo. Jon Haupt , Southern Methodist University showed Twitter. Gerry Szymanski demonstrated Cha-cha a question answering service – that won’t replace our jobs, since the answers given are not always either complete or accurate.

Collections and Digitization. – Northwestern University is the repository of the correspondence and scores that John Cage collected in conjunction with editing his book Notations. Jennifer Ward described the process for preserving the scores – which run the gambit from conventional music notation to objects with directions on how to play the piece. Most of the scores are still under copyright – so they aren’t digitizing that collection yet, but they are in the process of digitizing the correspondence. Sam Brylawski and David Seubert described the Encyclopedic Discography of Victor Recordings (http://victor.library.ucsb.edu/), an online index to the master and published recordings of the Victor Talking Maching Company beginning in 1900.

Joint Projects Kathy Abromeit of Oberlin College, described the project of collaborating with Sing Out! Magazine to create an online index to folk song collections in anthologies (http://www.oberlin.edu/library/con/singout.html)

Darwin Scott (formerly of Brandeis) and Pam Bristah of Wellesley, described some of the music related items that have been scanned for the Internet Archive (http://www.archive.org/details/texts)

What’s Next? The Compact Disc as a Viable Format in the Future of Music Libraries – This topic was discussed from various points of view – a young concert violinist, a former president of the American Orchestra League, a president of a small recording company (Cedille Records) the VP of Digital Product Strategy of Universal Music Group and a music librarian. They all agreed that at least for the near future, the tangible artifact – a CD – will continue to be produced, once broadband is expanded so that music can be streamed in full band with, iTunes and other such services will supplant the CD – a process which will probably take place over the next 10 years or so.

Users and Technology – Kristen Dougan of the University of Illinois, Champaign Urbana described the music content contained in Google Books and the Open Content Alliance – there was some overlap of this session with the one on the OCA the afternoon before. Andrew Justice talked about our users and suggested reading “Born Digital: Understanding the first generation of digital natives” to better understand their use of libraries.

Miscellaneous Bits & Pieces: Traditional and Virtual – Philip Ponella of Indiana University described the software they use to stream music. Terry Simpkins send out an invitation to attend a Webinar on this software.

Hot Topics in Music Librarianship – A lively question and answer discussion on the issues facing us – including current budgetary concerns.

Staff Picks #1

Some of you may have noticed a “staff picks” section near the reference area in the Music Library. These are interesting, noteworthy, or just favorite CDs selected by the full-time and student staff. This irregular series of blog posts will highlight certain individual staff picks, and hopefully I’ll be able to corral some of the other Library staff to contribute their thoughts on why their pick is somehow special.

To kick things off, a few words about my most recent pick, Manhattan Research, Inc. by Raymond Scott.

Manhattan Research, Inc.

Raymond Scott was a pianist, composer, and inventor of electronic instruments, and is perhaps one of the most widely heard yet least known of American musicians of the last 50 years or so. He started out writing tunes for his jazz band (the “Raymond Scott Quintette”), and several of these — Powerhouse, The Penguin, and Dinner Music For A Pack Of Hungry Cannibals being perhaps the best-known — were later used in the Warner Bros.’ Loony Tunes cartoons. I think almost everyone is familiar with the 2nd theme of Powerhouse, even if, as is likely, you never realized who wrote it. (Carl Stalling sometimes gets credit for Scott’s music, because he’s the one who adapted and arranged Scott’s works — and other composers’, as well as writing some of his own themes — for Warner Bros.)

YouTube has a great performance of Powerhouse by the Quintette. Check it out. The famous 2nd theme starts about 1:35 in.

Scott eventually desired more control over the performance of his music than he felt he could get from his Quintette — as a composer, he didn’t seem to care much about his musicians’ need to express their own creativity. So he turned to inventing electronic instruments (some of which he worked on with Bob Moog) and composed music specifically for them. This is where the Manhattan Research, Inc. disc picks up. It has a great assortment of Scott’s electronic bleeps and bloops, many of which were composed for use in television ads in the ’50s and ’60s. Sponsors who used Scott’s music in their advertising included Sprite, Hostess Twinkies, Bufferin, Vicks, and GM. More recently, some of these pieces were recycled in a couple of ads for Tic Tacs:

Scott’s career was fascinating and a bit sad. The Manhattan Research, Inc. disc is bound with a booklet that provides a thorough overview of his life, and has some fabulous photos of his electronic instruments. If you’re looking for something a little off-the-beaten path, stop by the library and pick up both this disc and the other one we have, Reckless Nights and Turkish Twilights, which features his earlier jazz band recordings.

If you want to read more, there’s an extensive page of review excerpts on the Raymond Scott website extolling the virtues of Manhattan Research, Inc. Happy listening!

Most Popular CDs in the Music Library

Ever wonder what the most popular CDs in the Music Library are? Yeah, me too. Below are the most popular discs from the last 3 years or so, since we moved to the new library system.

Hit me, drummer, and pass the envelopes…

5. Sonatas and partitas for solo violin / Bach (CD 15478)
4. Rite of spring / Stravinsky (CD 13021)
3. Spanish guitar favorites / John Williams (CD 16760)
2. Complete works for solo piano / Ravel (CD 2699)
and the winner is…

1. Masters Of The Piano Roll: Debussy Plays Debussy (CD 14359)
Debussy Plays Debussy

This last disc is a fascinating document. It consists of early piano rolls, including several made by Debussy himself, newly re-recorded on a high-tech reproducing piano. It provides a wonderful glimpse into what some of the most highly regarded performers of the early 20th-century actually sounded like, without the poor sonics that mar most recordings from that era.

5. Possibilities / Herbie Hancock (CD 15871)
4. Thelonious Monk Quartet with John Coltrane at Carnegie Hall (CD 15170)
3. The Cellar Door sessions 1970 / Miles Davis (CD 15321)
2. Seven Steps: The complete Columbia recordings, 1963-1964 / Miles Davis (CD 14602)
and the winner is…

1. Kind of Blue / Miles Davis (CD 11741)
Kind Of Blue
Not much to say about this one, really. If you love jazz, you probably already love it. If you don’t know anything about jazz, but want to learn, this is a good place to start, with memorable themes and world-class improvisers. A true desert island disc for a lot of us.

If you want to explore this recording in-depth, check out these 2 books…

5. Garden State: Music from the motion picture (CD 14128)
4. Blonde on blonde / Bob Dylan (CD 7927)
3. Begin to hope / Regina Spektor (CD 16125)
2. Chutes too narrow / The Shins (CD 14177)
and our final number 1…

1. In yo’ face, vol. 1 (CD 11581 v.1)
In Yo' Face, vol. 1
It does my middle-aged heart good to see a slice of old-school funk take the top spot. Great great stuff here – James Brown, Sly, Curtis Mayfield, Parliament, Charles Wright… If you like this, check out the other volumes in the series. Also, the anthology What It Is (CD 16166) is another stellar, maybe even superior, package.

Collection Management Policies for Reference and Music

Submitted by Judy Watts

Carrie MacFarlane, Jean Simmons, Cynthia Watters, and I are currently hard at work pounding out guidelines that describe and define the Reference Collection. This hasn’t been done in some time. Changes in technologies, the shift to digital formats, new curricular developments, and the need to serve students and faculty in the libraries and around the globe, not to mention the budget, are forcing us to examine everything from what should be acquired, to formats, to deselection and retention policies. We expect to have a draft ready soon so that other Reference Librarians can go over it with a fine-tooth comb.

Joy Pile is going through the same process for the Music collection. In each case we must establish the purpose and scope of the collection to guide our acquisition decisions. Then, we must enumerate and define factors to apply to each title under consideration, e.g., anticipated use, authority, audience level, cost, alternative sources for the information, and platform stability for digital sources. Our policies also must inform selectors of the procedures to follow to place requests for new resources. Finally, we’ll look at how we assess the effectiveness of the collections, and describe the process for removing items from the collections.