• Libr 200: What I’ve Learned About Music Librarianship

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    Until I took Libr 200, I never realized the scope and complexity of the world of music librarianship. I knew I was interested in it, but I didn’t realize how many things it encompasses. But now I know all the different types of music librarianship that exist: academic, performance, HIP, etc. I know the multitude of responsibilities that a music librarian has: preserving scores and recordings, distributing them to scholars and musicians, researching period music styles to ensure that performances are “accurate,” interacting with conductors, music publishers, etc, and staying abreast of the latest technology and the community’s ever-changing information needs. I know the legal and ethical issues librarians need to grapple with and the stereotypes they need to combat. I know the type of experience and education needed for a career in the field. And I know how technology and digitization are changing not only the nature of music librarianship, but the music industry as a whole.


    I realize now that if I want to be a music librarian, I’ll need much more education. As a non-musician, I’ll need to find the necessary training from people who do have instrument-playing experience. I’ll also need to decide which type of music library is the best environment for me, learn what openings are available in that category, and try to become more technologically savvy, so I can work effortlessly with the software and digital files that are becoming so important to the world of music. I’ll research courses that are specifically in music librarianship, to see where they’re offered and what the requirements are. I’ll follow all the most recent surveys of the music information-seeking community to make sure I fully understand their needs, both present and future. Music librarianship is a fascinating field, more so than I ever dreamed it would be, and I’m looking forward to exploring it more deeply.

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