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Library Research Guides

Musicology 139 - World Music

This guide is designed to give you a brief overview of some of the basic resources available from the Music Library to help you with your Musicology 139 world music assignment.

Checking It Out

Once you find a CD you would like to hear, please note two things in Mirlyn:

  • Availability - make sure the CD is not already checked out
  • Call number - write down the call number (beginning with CDISC or CDS) and someone at the circulation desk will retrieve the recording for you

You can check out up to 5 CDs at a time from the Music Library. Most CDs circulate for 3 days with one renewal.

Search Strategies

The music library holds recordings of many types of music from around the world. Searching the library's catalog, Mirlyn, will help you locate these recordings.

There are an array of strategies you can use to find the recordings you need. One approach is to search for music from specific countries or regions. For example, if you would like to locate recordings of music related to Cuba, you can conduct a very simple keyword search, such as: music AND CubaUsing AND (in all caps) between terms will retrieve items that include both of those terms in their description.


You can use the Refine Search option on the left side of the page to pare down and refocus your search results in many ways. Limiting the results by CD format, you will see:


An additional way to refine your results is by limiting items by their assigned subject. The subjects that have been assigned to your results are at the top of the Refine Search list options.


Using subject terms in a search can help you locate more specific and appropriate items. By looking at the list of assigned subjects, you can get a sense of how subjects are constructed. For example, if you wanted to find Hebrew folk songs, you can conduct a subject search on this subject phrase: "Folk songs, Hebrew". Using quotes when searching phrases will retrieve items containing that exact phrase. Searching phrases without quotes will retrieve items containing any term within the phrase and, consequently, will retrieve more and less relevant results.


In addition to subject searching for music from certain cultural groups, you can also search by country or geographical region as well. For example, if you wanted to locate some Mexican popular music, you can conduct a subject search on this subject heading and subdivision: "Popular music -- Mexico". [This can also be typed as "Popular music Mexico".]


If you decide that mariachi is the specific genre you would like to explore, you can click Mariachi in the list of subjects under Refine Search to retrieve items from within your current results list or you can also conduct a new subject search on mariachi.