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Finding New Music

Helping you discover new pieces to perform.

Browsing the Shelf

Sometimes, it is nice to just browse through the music available in the library for a specific instrument. Unfortunately, doing so is not very intuitive.

All the music in the library is arranged using the Library of Congress Classification Outline. Class M is for music.

Over time, you will likely learn where music for your own instrument is shelved just through experience, but in general the arrangement is as follows:

  • ​M5-1480 Instrumental music
    • M5 Collections
    • M6-175.5 One solo instrument
    • M176 Motion picture music
    • M176.5 Radio and television music
    • M177-990 Two or more solo instruments
    • M1000-1075 Orchestra
    • M1100-1160 String orchestra
    • M1200-1270 Band
    • M1350-1366 Other ensembles
    • M1375-1420 Instrumental music for children
    • M1470-1480 Aleatory music. Electronic music. Mixed media
  • M1490 Music printed or copied in manuscript before 1700
  • M1495-2199 Vocal music
    • M1495 Collections
    • M1497-1998 Secular vocal music
      • M1497 Collections
      • M1500-1527.8 Dramatic music
      • M1528-1529.5 Two or more solo voices
      • M1530-1609 Choruses
      • M1611-1624.8 One solo voice
      • M1625-1626 Recitations with music
      • M1627-1853 Folk, national and ethnic music
      • M1900-1985 Songs of specific groups or on specific topics
      • M1990-1998 Secular vocal music for children
    • M1999-2199 Sacred vocal music
      • M1999 Collections
      • M2000-2007 Dramatic music
      • M2010-2017.6 Choral services, etc.
      • M2018-2019.5 Two or more solo voices
      • M2020-2101.5 Choruses
      • M2102-2114.8 One solo voice
      • M2115-2146 Hymnals. Hymn collections
      • M2147-2188 Liturgy and ritual
      • M2190-2196 Sacred vocal music for children
      • M2198-2199 Popular religious and devotional music
  • M5000 Unidentified compositions

How to Browse the Shelf in the Online Catalog

Did you know that there are two different interfaces to search the UMD catalog?

There is this Worldcat interface that you are probably familiar with:

Performing a basic search using Worldcat.

And there is the "Classic Catalog" interface:

Performing a basic search using the Classic Catalog.

In order to search by call number and browse items that are on the shelf electronically you will need to use the Classic Catalog.

By using the Classic Catalog you can immediately narrow your search to call numbers:

Selecting the call number search option on the Classic Catalog.

Here is what the search results look like when searching the call number range M237-238:

The results of a call number search using the Classic Catalog.