Use: Extensive catalog of a collection of composers and compositions worldwide. Intended to serve as a performance catalog for performers.
Coverage: Covers broad spectrum of musical composers and compositions worldwide, from pre-Baroque to Modern. Extensive coverage of extant editions provides good performance catalog.
Organization: Standard dictionary format. Each entry includes composer’s name followed by descriptions of extant performance editions for each composition. Each description includes: full title, instrumentation, duration of work, known editions, and publishers for each edition. No appendices or illustrations.
Pros: Detailed description of extant editions for each composition.
Cons: Only includes selected works for each composer; not exhaustive.
Use: Practical guide to anyone interested in the study or use of plainsong.
Coverage: Restricted to Gregorian chants of general usage. Ambrosian and “Old-Roman” style chants were not included. Also does not include additions to chants such as tropes, proses, versus, etc. Some material from the Post-Gregorian period are included, but restricted to melodies for hymns and for the Ordinary of the Mass. Sources include modern printed chant books, 5 selected manuscripts and certain special studies dealing with specific categories of chant.
Organization: Two volumes include the same materials. Volume 1 lists the material in alphabetical order using the textual incipits. In volume 2 the material is arranged in numerical order, according to the melodic incipit. Chants having more than one verse are listed by the verse as well as the chant and cross-referenced back to the chant. Also in volume 1, the introduction gives information on how to red the melodic notation. Individual entries give the mode of the chant, the category of chant, sources, first note, melodic incipit and a final, if there is one. After the introduction there is information on codes for the sources and categories of chants, and other abbreviations.
Pros: The shortcuts used in notation are easy to understand and use.
Cons: The entries are in columns without headings which would be nice to have.
Review: Randel, Don M. An Index of Gregorian Chant. Notes 27 (1971): 477-78
Use: Useful title listing of composers’ works from approx. Monteverdi to Cage. Provides information on the chronology of composers and their works.
Coverage: Approx. 1490 to mid 20th century. Western music composers. All genres of music. Provides individual works and dates.
Organization: Listed by composer. Each composer is subdivided into genres of works listed by opus number, etc. Each entry provides title, date, and instrumentation. It also includes a bibliography, lists of composers, and abbreviations.
Pros: Organization is clear. Explanatory notes help with identification. For the novice in music research.
Use: For those looking for music appropriate for Protestant services.
Coverage: A catalog of what the author describes as a neglected repertoire of vocal music, the sacred song that is appropriate for the worship service.
Oragnization: The catalog is arranged by composer, with indexes given of occasion and song title. The preface gives an explanation of the cataloging system used.
Pros: Nevertheless, it is a valuable resource for its inclusion of publishers and the fact that it takes into account the needs of the performing church musician.
Cons: It is far from exhaustive, as only a handful of works are presented.