Subject headings for instrumental music
Music Cataloging at Yale Subject cataloging

Subject headings for instrumental music

In progress

See also: Music subject headings vocal music
Subject subdivisions and qualifiers for music subject headings and Coding for form and topic subdivisions


Musical form/genre headings

Musical form/genre headings are used when the work is in a specific form and that form is found in LCSH. Some forms are found in LCSH: Sonatas, Rondos, Waltzes, etc., and others are not: Fantasies, Preludes.

The most specific form heading should be used when that form is found in LCSH. This means that in most cases, a single subject heading will sufficiently describe the work. For example, a sonata for piano will be assigned the subject heading Sonatas (Piano). To assign a second subject heading for medium of performance, such as Piano music, would be incorrect, since the first subject heading is more specific and sufficient.

Musical form/genre headings are usually qualified by medium of performance. The name of the instrument is enclosed in parentheses. When a parenthesis is the final element of a subject heading, there is no final period.

Examples:
650 0 Suites (Organ)
650 0 Rondos (Piano)
650 0 Sonatas (Cello)
650 0 Variations (Violin)

Sonatas:

The form subject heading "Sonatas" is applied to music for one or two instruments only. When a work for three or more instruments is titled "Sonata," the uniform title may use that term as the initial title element, but the subject heading will be either "Trio sonatas" or a medium of performance heading (trios, quartets, etc.). A work titled "Sonata" for four violins would be assigned the subject heading: String quartets (Violins (4))

Musical form/genre headings that are not qualified by medium of performance

There are two reasons why a form heading would not be qualified by medium of performance:
1. because the medium of performance is implied in the form;
2. for some unknown, mysterious reason, the Library of Congress has decided that a particular form heading should not be qualified by medium of performance.
[» Note: It is not LCSH practice to bring out the medium of performance in the majority of headings assigned to popular music.]

1. Some form headings have an implied medium of performance and will not be qualified. The scope note under the heading in LCSH will indicate when the form heading is usually for a specific instrument and should not be qualified by the name of that instrument. When that same form is for a medium of performance other than the implied medium, that form heading is qualified by the name of the instrument(s):

010    sh 85024709
150    Chorale preludes
550    Chorales
680    Here are entered compositions originally written or arranged for organ. Similar compositions written for media other than organ receive the heading Chorale preludes, followed by specification of medium, e.g. Chorale preludes (Orchestra)

Examples:
Sonatas (Piano)
Symphonies.
Symphonies (String orchestra)
Chorale preludes.
Chorale preludes (Orchestra)
no medium is implied by "sonata"
orchestra is implied
since orchestra is implied by "Symphonies," any other medium must be specified
organ is implied
since organ is the medium implicit in "Chorale preludes," any other medium must be specified

2. Some form headings cannot be qualified by medium of performance. The scope notes in LCSH indicate which form headings are never qualified by medium of performance, regardless of instrumentation:

010    sh 93006216
150    Toccatas
680    Here are entered works composed in the form of the toccata. Works on the toccata as a musical form are entered under Toccata.
680    A second heading for medium of performance is assigned if a specific medium of performance is given in the work.

In these cases, a second heading for medium of performance is assigned. Neither subject heading by itself would completely describe the work. This is one circumstance under which more than one subject heading is assigned to describe one work:

650 0 Toccatas.
650 0 Organ music.

650 0 Pavans.
650 0 Harpsichord music.

650 0 Tarantellas.
650 0 Band music.

form subject headings that at time were qualified by medium of performance (and therefore require an additional heading for medium of performance) form subject headings that were never qualified by medium of performance (and therefore require an additional heading for medium of performance) types of compositions in forms for which there were never corresponding form subject headings (and therefore require medium of performance subject headings)
dance forms such as:
allemandes
bourrées
courantes
fandangos
foxtrots
galliards
gavottes
jigs
mazurkas
minuets
pavans
polkas
polonaises
sarabands
tangos
tarantellas
waltzes
fanfares
toccatas
fantasies
inventions
nocturnes
preludes
ricercars

Works for more than one instrument

When more than one instrument is involved, they are added to the form heading in parentheses in the following order: by instrument family name first, then within each family:

Instrument Family
Comments
Order within family
Keyboard
(includes electronic equivalents)
harpsichord
organ
piano
For a more complete list of keyboard instruments, see Keyboard instruments
accordion and celesta are to be considered keyboard instruments for the purposes of subject headings. (Bandoneon is also being considered a keyboard instrument.)
Continuo is given as the last element of the subject element rather than as a keyboard instrument.
alphabetical order
Winds Woodwinds flute
oboe
clarinet
saxophone
bassoon
For a more complete list of woodwinds, see Woodwind instruments alphabetical order
Alphabetize the names before adding "s" for plural:
use oboes (2), oboe d'amore
not oboe d'amore, oboes (2)
because "oboe" (in the singular) would alphabetize before "oboe d'amore"
Brasses horn
trumpet
trombone
baritone
tuba
For a more complete list of brasses, see Brass instruments alphabetical order
Plucked harp
guitar
lute
mandolin
For a more complete list of plucked instruments, see Plucked instruments alphabetical order
Percussion, electronic,
and other
drum
celeste
gong
marimba
vibraphone
xylophone
"Other" includes bagpipes, bandoneon, carillon, cimbalon, harmonica, hurdy-gurdy, zither, etc. Computer, electronics, synthesizer, and electronic instruments that do not have acoustic equivalents (e.g., ondes Martenot) also fall in this category. Non-musical instruments (e.g., glass music, balloon, etc.) are included here.
For a more complete list, see M145-M175 in Class M.
Note: Accordion and celesta are no longer considered percussion instruments for the purposes of subject headings.
alphabetical order
Bowed strings violin
viola
violoncello
double bass
For a more complete list of strings, see Stringed instruments score order:
violin, viola, cello, double bass

Note: based on LC practice, the order of modern and early bowed string instruments is:
» violin, lyra viol, viol, viola d'amore, viola, viola da gamba, cello, violone, double bass
» pardessus de viole precedes viola d'amore
» viola d'amore precedes viola da gamba
» baryton is placed inconsistently in LC practice
unspecified    
continuo    
Accordion and celesta previously were considered to be a percussion instrument. The Library of Congress Cataloging Policy and Support Office Weekly subject heading list 13 (March 31, 2004) reported the change in order of accordion in sh85-94021 and Weekly subject heading list 17 (April 28, 2004) announced the change in the subject authority record for celesta (sh85-21624) from "classified as a metallophone" to "regarded by New Grove as a keyboard instrument" and "played by the pianist."
Violoncello On 2/21/13, The Library of Congress Policy and Standards Division announced that they will revise subject headings that include the word "violoncello" and "violoncellos" to "cello" and "cellos" and its derivities (e.g., Violoncello makers, Violoncellists) to reflect RDA's preference for the word "cello."

Headings for two instruments use "and" to connect the names of the instruments:
650 0 Suites (Flute and violin)
650 0 Rondos (Violin and cello)

Headings for three or more instruments are given in the correct order, without the word "and":
650 0 Suites (Piano, flute, violin)
650 0 Rondos (Bassoon, clarinet, flute, horn, oboe)
650 0 Canons, fugues, etc. (Violin, viola, cello)

When there are two or more of one instrument, it is given in the plural and qualified by the number in parentheses:
650 0 Suites (Horn, trombone, trumpets (2), tuba)
650 0 Rondos (Cellos (4))
650 0 Canons, fugues, etc. (Bassoons (8))
650 0 Sonatas (Unspecified instruments (2))

Headings for works for two instruments in which the keyboard instrument plays a chordal role (such as sonatas) or functions as the accompaniment, the keyboard instrument is given second, even though it is first on the list of instrumentation:
650 0 Sonatas (Flute and piano)


Medium of performance headings

Medium of performance headings are assigned to works that are not composed in a specific form of composition or in a form of composition not in LCSH (e.g., Polonaises, Fantasies, Preludes) or when the form heading in LCSH (e.g., Toccatas, Pavans, Galliards) is not to be qualified by medium of performance. Medium of performance headings for chamber music will usually include the names of the instruments or name of instrument families.

Form of the name of instruments in subject headings

Use "and" to connect the names of two solo instruments.
Use commas and no connecting word to connect the names of three or more solo instruments.
Use "with" preceding the name of a solo instrument or instrumental ensemble used as accompaniment.

The key of the instrument is not included in the subject heading. Use "clarinet" not "B♭ clarinet"; "trumpet" not "C trumpet," etc.

Instruments with indication of range (alto, tenor, bass, etc.) have different treatment in subject headings.

Subject authority records have been created for many, but not all, medium of performance subject headings. This is does not mean that only those headings with authority records are valid for use. However, the name of the instrument(s) and ensemble must have been established. For example, the following subject headings: "Piccolo and saxophone music" and "Cello with percussion ensemble" have not been established. They are valid subject headings because "piccolo," "saxophone," and "cello" have all been established in subject heading records, as has "percussion ensembles." Note that the latter is in plural form in the subject authority record; it is used in the singular when it is an accompanying ensemble.

Examples of form and medium of performance subject headings

one to two instruments: like instruments || different instruments || one chordal and one other
three to nine instruments in standard chamber combinations || other chamber combinations: number of instruments: three || four || five || six || seven || eight || nine
Ten or more instruments: one to a part || two or more to a part
Large ensembles: Band or orchestra || One or more instruments accompanied by large ensemble

One to Two Instruments (See also Percussion music)
One to two like instruments
Unaccompanied works for solo instruments: the qualifier ", Unaccompanied" is not added to headings for instrumental music. It is added only to certain vocal subject headings
If the work is a specific type for one instrument, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by the name of the instrument: Sonatas (Piano)
Suites (Violin)
If the work is not a specific type for one instrument, use the medium of performance as the subject heading followed by "music": Piano music
Violin music
If the work is a specific type for two of the same instrument, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by the name of the instrument: Sonatas (Pianos (2))
Suites (Violins (2))
If the work is not a specific type for two of the same instrument, use the medium of performance as the subject heading followed by "music" and qualified to indicate two of the instruments: Piano music (Pianos (2))
Violin music (Violins (2))
A work not of a specific type for two pianos being performed by one person is assigned the subject heading: Piano music (Pianos (2), 1 performer)
Two different instruments
If the work is a specific type for two different instruments, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by the names of the instruments. The names of the instruments will be connected by the word "and": Rondos (Flute and oboe)
Suites (Horn and viola)
If the work is not a specific type for two different instruments, use the medium of performance as the subject heading. The names of the instruments will be connected by the word "and" and followed by "music": Flute and oboe music
Horn and viola music
One chordal instrument and one other instrument
If the work is a specific type and the keyboard/plectral instrument plays a chordal role, use the subject heading for that type and name the keyboard/plectral instrument second: Sonatas (Flute and piano)
Suites (Violin and harp)
If the work is not a specific type and the keyboard/plectral instrument plays a chordal role, use the medium of performance as the subject heading. The names of the instruments will be connected by the word "and", with the keyboard/plectral instrument named second: Flute and piano music
Horn and piano music
Three to Nine Instruments
Standard chamber combinations
(For a list of standard chamber combinations, see standard chamber combinations for uniform titles and subject headings)
For the following standard chamber combinations, use the subject headings in the right-hand column when the work is not a specific type of composition. Do not specify instruments when the ensemble is a standard chamber ensemble. Woodwind quartets and Wind quintets do not fall into this category for subject headings as they do for uniform titles.
Piano, violin, cello
Piano, violin, viola, cello
Piano, 2 violins, viola, cello
violin, viola, cello
2 violins, viola, cello
Piano trios
Piano quartets
Piano quintets
String trios
String quartets
When the work is a specific type of composition (with the exception of sonatas), use the subject heading for that type, qualified by the medium of performance, using the terms from the right-hand column above in the singular form: Rondos (Piano trio)
Suites (Piano quartet)
Variations (String trio)
Standard chamber combination functioning as accompanying ensemble
The names of standard chamber combination are not used when the group is an accompanying ensemble. For example, a subject heading with medium of performance for a work with string quartet accompaniment would include "with string ensemble" not "with string quartet." The scope note in the subject authority record for String ensembles (sh 85129012) is:
"When used for an accompanying ensemble in headings with medium of performance, the term "string ensemble" stands for two or more bowed stringed instruments."

Similarly, "with instrumental ensemble" is used in headings with medium of performance when the accompaniment is for two or more solo instruments belonging to different families. A subject heading with medium of performance for a work with piano trio accompaniment would include "with instrumental ensemble" not "with piano trio."
Other chamber combinations
The following combinations of three to nine instruments are not standard chamber combinations. Specify the name and number when applicable of each instrument in the subject heading. The number of percussion instruments is not specified. See also One performer playing one piano, 1 hand with two to eight other instruments
Three instruments
If the work is a specific type (with the exception of sonatas) for three instruments, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by the name(s) and number of the instruments: Rondos (Flutes (3))
Suites (Horns (2), oboe)
If the work is not a specific type for three of the same instruments, use "trios" preceded by the instrument family name as the subject heading. Name the instrument and the number: String trios (Violins (3))
Woodwind trios (Oboes (3))
If the work is not a specific type for three different instruments from the same family, use "trios" preceded by the instrument family name as the subject heading. Name the instruments and the number of each: String trios (Violins (2), viola)
Wind trios (Oboes (2), trumpet)
If the work is not a specific type for three different instruments from different families, use "Trios" as the subject heading. Name the instruments and the number of each: Trios (Flute, violin, viola)
Trios (Piano, horns (2))
Four instruments
If the work is a specific type (with the exception of sonatas) for four instruments, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by the name(s) and number of the instruments: Rondos (Flutes (4))
Suites (Flute, horns (2), violin)
If the work is not a specific type for four of the same instruments, use "quartets" preceded by the instrument family name as the subject heading. Name the instrument and the number: String quartets (Violins (4))
Brass quartets (Horns (4))
If the work is not a specific type for four different instruments from the same family, use "quartets" preceded by the instrument family name as the subject heading. Name the instruments and the number of each: String quartets (Violins (2), violas (2))
Wind quartets (Oboes (3), trumpet)
If the work is not a specific type for four different instruments from different families, use "Quartets" as the subject heading. Name the instruments and the number of each: Quartets (Flute, oboe, violin, viola)
Quartets (Piano, horns (2), violin)
Five instruments
If the work is a specific type (with the exception of sonatas) for five instruments, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by the name(s) and number of the instruments: Rondos (Flutes (5))
Suites (Horns (3), oboes (2))
If the work is not a specific type for five of the same instruments, use "quintets" preceded by the instrument family name as the subject heading. Name the instrument and the number: String quintets (Violins (5))
Woodwind quintets (Oboes (5))
If the work is not a specific type for five different instruments from the same family, use "quintets" preceded by the instrument family name as the subject heading. Name the instruments and the number of each: String quintets (Violins (3), viola, cello)
Woodwind quintets (Bassoons (2), flute, oboes (2))
If the work is not a specific type for five different instruments from different families, use "Quintets" as the subject heading. Name the instruments and the number of each: Quintets (Flute, oboe, trumpet, violin, viola)
Quintets (Piano, horns (2), violas (2))
Six instruments
If the work is a specific type (with the exception of sonatas) for six instruments, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by the name(s) and number of the instruments: Rondos (Flutes (6))
Suites (Horns (4), oboes (2))
If the work is not a specific type for six of the same instruments, use "sextets" preceded by the instrument family name as the subject heading. Name the instrument and the number: String sextets (Violins (6))
Woodwind sextets (Oboes (6))
If the work is not a specific type for six different instruments from the same family, use "sextets" preceded by the instrument family name as the subject heading. Name the instruments and the number of each: String sextets (Violins (3), violas (2), cello)
Brass sextets (Horns (2), trombones (2), trumpet)
If the work is not a specific type for six different instruments from different families, use "Sextets" as the subject heading. Name the instruments and the number of each: Sextets (Bassoon, flute, oboe, trumpet, violin, viola)
Sextets (Piano, flute, horns (2), violas (2))
Seven instruments
If the work is a specific type (with the exception of sonatas) for seven instruments, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by the name(s) and number of the instruments: Rondos (Flutes (7))
Suites (Horns (2), oboes (2), violins (3))
If the work is not a specific type for seven of the same instruments, use "septets" preceded by the instrument family name as the subject heading. Name the instrument and the number: String septets (Violins (7))
Brass septets (Horns (7))
If the work is not a specific type for seven different instruments from the same family, use "septets" preceded by the instrument family name as the subject heading. Name the instruments and the number of each: String septets (Violins (3), viola (2), cellos (2))
Wind septets (Horns (4), oboes (2), trumpets)
If the work is not a specific type for seven different instruments from different families, use "Septets" as the subject heading. Name the instruments and the number of each (except for percussion): Septets (Flute, oboes (2), trumpet, violin, violas (2))
Septets (Piano, clarinet, horns (2), percussion, violas (2))
Eight instruments
If the work is a specific type (with the exception of sonatas) for eight instruments, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by the name(s) and number of the instruments: Rondos (Flutes (8))
Suites (Horns (2), oboes (2), violins (2), violas (2))
If the work is not a specific type for eight of the same instruments, use "octets" preceded by the instrument family name as the subject heading. Name the instrument and the number: String octets (Violins (8))
Plucked instrument octets (Guitars (8))
If the work is not a specific type for eight different instruments from the same family, use "octets" preceded by the instrument family name as the subject heading. Name the instruments and the number of each: String octets (Violins (4), viola (2), cellos (2))
Wind octets (Flutes (2), horns (4), oboes (2))
If the work is not a specific type for eight different instruments from different families, use "Octets" as the subject heading. Name the instruments and the number of each (except for percussion): Octets (Flute, oboes (2), percussion, violins (2), viola)
Octets (Piano, clarinet, flute, oboe, horn, tuba, violin, viola)
Nine instruments
If the work is a specific type (with the exception of sonatas) for nine instruments, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by the name(s) and number of the instruments: Rondos (Flutes (9))
Suites (Flutes (2), horns (2), oboes (2), violins (2), violas (2))
If the work is not a specific type for nine of the same instruments, use "nonets" preceded by the instrument family name as the subject heading. Name the instrument and the number: String nonets (Violins (9))
Woodwind nonets (Oboes (9))
If the work is not a specific type for nine different instruments from the same family, use "nonets" preceded by the instrument family name as the subject heading. Name the instruments and the number of each: String nonets (Violins (3), viola (3), cellos (3))
Brass nonets (Baritones (2), horns (4), trumpets (3))
If the work is not a specific type for nine different instruments from different families, use "Nonets" as the subject heading. Name the instruments and the number of each: Nonets (Flutes (2), oboes (2), trumpet, violins (2), violas (2))
Nonets (Piano, bassoon, clarinet, flute, oboe, horn, tuba, violin, viola)
Ten or More Instruments
One to a part
Ensembles of ten or more solo instruments are given a term to describe the group of instruments, followed by "ensembles." The specific instrumentation is not designated.
If the work is a specific type (with the exception of sonatas) for ten or more of the same solo instrument, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by the descriptive term for the ensemble followed by "ensemble": Rondos (Flute ensemble)
Suites (Violin ensemble)
If the work is a specific type (with the exception of sonatas) for ten or more different solo instruments from the same family, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by the descriptive term for the ensemble followed by "ensemble": Rondos (Brass ensemble)
Suites (Woodwind ensemble)
If the work is not a specific type for ten or more of the same solo instrument, use the descriptive term for the ensemble followed by "ensembles": Flute ensembles
Violin ensembles
If the work is not a specific type for ten or more different solo instruments from the same family, use the descriptive term for the ensemble followed by "ensembles": Wind ensembles
String ensembles
If the work is a specific type (with the exception of sonatas) for ten or more different solo instruments from the different families, use the descriptive term for the ensemble followed by "ensembles": Rondos (Instrumental ensemble)
Suites (Instrumental ensemble)
If the work is not a specific type for ten or more different solo instruments from the different families, use the subject heading "Instrumental ensembles": Instrumental ensembles
Two or more to a part
Ensembles of ten or more of the same instruments, two or more to a part, are given the name of the instrument, followed by "choirs."
For ensembles ten or more different instruments, two or more to a part, follow the instructions for ten or more instruments, one to a part.
If the work is a specific type (with the exception of sonatas) for ten or more of the same non-solo instrument, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by the descriptive term for the ensemble followed by "choir": Rondos (Flute choir)
Suites (Violin choir)
If the work is not a specific type for ten or more of the same non-solo instrument, use the name of the instrument followed by "choir music": Clarinet choir music
Violin choir music
Large ensembles
Band or orchestra
If the work is a specific type for a large ensemble, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by the name of the ensemble. Note that orchestra is the implied medium of performance for "Symphonies"; it is not qualified unless it is for another medium of performance: Rondos (Orchestra)
Suites (Band)
Symphonies
Symphonies (String orchestra)
If the work is not a specific type for a large ensemble, use the medium of performance followed by "music": Brass band music
Orchestral music
String orchestra music
One or more instruments accompanied by large ensemble
Concertos* and concertinos accompanied by orchestra
If the work is a concerto or concertino for one or more solo instruments with accompaniment of orchestra, use "Concertos," qualified by the name(s) and number of the solo instrument(s). Orchestral accompaniment is not indicated: Concertos (Violin)
Concertos (Pianos (2))
Concertos (Violin and viola)
Concertos (Percussion)
(The word "percussion" may stand for any number of percussionists. See Percussion music)
If the work is a concerto or concertino for a standard chamber combination with accompaniment of orchestra, use "Concertos," qualified by the name of the standard chamber ensemble. Orchestral accompaniment is not indicated: Concertos (Piano trio)
Concertos (String quartet)
Concertos and concertinos accompanied with accompaniment other than orchestra
If the work is a concerto or concertino for one or more solo instruments with accompaniment other than orchestra, use "Concertos," qualified by the name(s) and number of the solo instrument(s), followed by "with" and the accompaniment: Concertos (Violin with string orchestra)
Concertos (Trombone and trumpet with brass band)
Concertos (Piano with clarinet choir)
If the work is a concerto or concertino for a standard chamber combination with accompaniment other than orchestra, use "Concertos," qualified by the name of the standard chamber ensemble, followed by "with" and the accompaniment: Concertos (Piano quartet with string orchestra)
Concertos (String quartet with band)
Works in forms other than concertos and concertinos
If the work is a specific type other than concerto or concertino for one or more solo instrument accompanied by large ensemble, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by the name(s) and number of the solo instrument(s), followed by "with" and the accompaniment: Variations (Piano with orchestra)
Potpourris (Violin with chamber orchestra)
Rondos (Flute with flute choir)
If the work is a specific type other than a concerto or concertino for a standard chamber combination with accompaniment of large ensemble, use the subject heading for that type, the name of that standard chamber ensemble, followed by "with" and the accompaniment: Canons, fugues, etc. (String trio with string orchestra)
Variations (String quartet with string orchestra)
Works not in a specific form
If the work is not a specific type for one or more solo instrument accompanied by large ensemble, use the name(s) of the solo instrument(s), qualified by number if applicable, and subject heading for that type, qualified by the name(s) and number of the solo instrument(s) followed by "with" and the accompaniment: Pianos (2) with orchestra
Horns (4) with chamber orchestra
Violin and viola with string orchestra
Violin, viola, cello, double bass with string orchestra
Bass trombone with trombone choir
If the work is not a specific type for a standard chamber combination accompanied by a large ensemble, use the subject heading for that type, the name of that standard chamber ensemble: Piano quintet with string orchestra.
String quartet with orchestra

*H 1917.5, 5e: "Concerto headings are not assigned to chamber music, where there is one player to a part, even if the composer has used the term "concerto"."

The name of the accompanying ensemble:
H 1917.5 10. b.: "accompanying instruments are indicated by the appropriate term for the type of ensemble." (e.g.: "... with woodwind ensemble")

H1917.5 4.b.(5) on p.9  Non keyboard accompaniment. When indicating non-keyboard accompaniment (accompaniment follows the connecting word with & ) in both instrumental and vocal headings,  ensemble usually stands for 2 more instruments.

H 1917.5 4.a.(2) (a) on p. 7  Ensembles of different instruments


Keyboard (harpsichord, piano, organ, etc.) music

Music for one or more performers, 1 or more hands, 1 or more piano(s):

One performer: 1 piano | 2 pianos || Two or more performers: 1 piano
Two performers: 2 pianos || Three or more performers: 2 pianos | 3 or more pianos
Prepared piano music

The subject heading "Piano music" can be qualified by number of hands when other than 2 hands.
The default (no indication of number of hands) is 2 hands per performer:
     Piano music = for 2 hands
     Piano music (Pianos (2)) = for 2 performers on two pianos
Otherwise, the number of hands is indicated
     Piano music (1 hand)
     Piano music (3 hands)
     Piano music (4 hands) = for 2 performers on one piano
     Piano music (6 hands)
One performer, 1 piano
One performer playing one piano, 2 hands
If the work is a specific type for one performer playing one piano, 2 hands, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by "piano": Suites (Piano)
Sonatas (Piano)
If the work is not a specific type for one performer playing one piano, 2 hands, use the medium of performance "Piano" as the subject heading followed by "music": Piano music
One performer playing one piano, 1 hand
If the work is a specific type for one performer playing one piano, 1 hand, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by "piano, 1 hand": Suites (Piano, 1 hand)
Sonatas (Piano, 1 hand)
If the work is not a specific type for one performer playing one piano, 1 hand, use the medium of performance "Piano" as the subject heading followed by "music (1 hand)": Piano music (1 hand)
One performer playing one piano, 1 hand with two to eight other instruments
For chamber works requiring piano, 1 hand (one performer) and other instruments, use "piano (1 hand)": Quintets (Piano (1 hand), violins (2), viola, cello)
Suites (Piano (1 hand), violins (2), cello)
One performer, 2 pianos
If the work is a specific type for one performer playing two pianos, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by "Pianos (2), 1 performer": Concertos (Pianos (2), 1 performer)
If the work is not a specific type for one performer playing two pianos, use the medium of performance "Piano" as the subject heading followed by "music (Pianos (2), 1 performer)": Piano music (Pianos (2), 1 performer)
Two or more performers, 1 piano
Two or more performers playing one piano, 3 or more hands
If the work is a specific type for two or more performers playing one piano, 3 or more hands, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by "Piano,     hands": Suites (Piano, 4 hands)
Sonatas (Piano, 3 hands)
If the work is not a specific type for one performers playing one piano, 3 or more hands, use the medium of performance "Piano" as the subject heading followed by "music (    hands)": Piano music (3 hands)
Piano music (8 hands)
Two performers, 2 pianos
Two performers playing two pianos, 1 hand each
If the work is a specific type for two performers playing two pianos, 1 hand each, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by "Pianos (2), 1 hand each": Concertos (Pianos (2), 1 hand each)
If the work is not a specific type for two performers playing two pianos, 4 hands, use the medium of performance "Piano" as the subject heading followed by "music (Pianos (2), 1 hand each)": Piano music (Pianos (2), 1 hand each)
Two performers playing two pianos, 4 hands
If the work is a specific type for two performers playing two pianos, 4 hands, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by "Pianos (2)": Suites (Pianos (2))
Sonatas (Pianos (2))
If the work is not a specific type for two performers playing two pianos, 4 hands, use the medium of performance "Piano" as the subject heading followed by "music (Pianos (2))": Piano music (Pianos (2))
Two performers playing two pianos, 3 hands
If the work is a specific type for two performers playing two pianos, 3 hands, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by "Pianos (2), 3 hands": Concertos (Pianos (2), 3 hands)
If the work is not a specific type for two performers playing two pianos, 3 hands, use the medium of performance "Piano" as the subject heading followed by "music (Pianos (2), 3 hands)": Piano music (Pianos (2), 3 hands)
Three or more performers, 2 pianos
If the work is a specific type for three or more performers playing two pianos, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by "Pianos (2),     hands": Suites (Pianos (2), 6 hands)
Rondos (Pianos (2), 8 hands)
If the work is not a specific type for two or more performers playing two pianos, use the medium of performance "Piano" as the subject heading followed by "music (Pianos (2),     hands)": Piano music (Pianos (2), 8 hands)
Piano music (Pianos (2), 5 hands)
Three or more performers, 3 or more pianos
If the work is a specific type for three or more performers playing three or more pianos, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by "Piano ensemble": Suites (Piano ensemble)
Variations (Piano ensemble)
If the work is not a specific type for three or more performers playing three or more pianos, use the medium of performance "Piano ensembles" as the subject heading: Piano ensembles
Prepared piano music
"Prepared piano" refers to a piano whose sound has been altered by attaching objects such as clips, paper, rubber, or felt to the strings; mis-tuning the unison strings; etc.
The subject heading "Prepared piano music" can be qualified by number of hands when other than 2 hands.
The default (no indication of number of hands) is 2 hands per performer:
     Prepared piano music = for 2 hands
     Prepared piano music (Prepared pianos (2)) = for 2 performers on two prepared pianos
Otherwise, the number of hands is indicated
     Prepared piano music (1 hand)
     Prepared piano music (3 hands)


Percussion music

Music for percussion instruments is treated differently in LCSH. According to the scope in the subject authority record for "Percussion music," the heading "The word 'percussion' may stand for any number of percussionists when used as a medium of performance or as accompaniment ... e.g., Concertos (Percussion); Percussion with orchestra; Songs with percussion"

There are different subject headings for works requiring one percussionist playing one instrument, one percussionist playing two or more instruments, and two or more percussionists, each playing one or more instruments. Subject headings for works including percussion and non-percussion instruments follow a different practice than that explained above (see works for more than one instrument).

Music for 1 or more performers playing 1 or more percussion instrument:

One percussionist: 1 instrument | 2 or more instruments
Two or more percussionists: one instrument || two or more instruments
Indicating number of percussion instruments

One percussionist
One percussionist playing one instrument
If the work is a specific type for one percussionist playing one percussion instrument, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by the name of the instrument: Suites (Marimba)
Sonatas (Timpani)
If the work is not a specific type for one percussionist playing one percussion instrument, use the name of the instrument as a medium of performance heading as the subject heading followed by "music": Snare drum music
Xylophone music
Music for one percussionist playing one unspecified solo percussion instrument and for collections of compositions for several different solo percussion instruments: Percussion instrument music
Chimes vs. tubular bells: "Chimes" is a generic subject heading; "Tubular bells" is a specific kind of chimes. Both are subject headings. The former term is used when no specific kind of chimes is indicated. When tubular bells are specified, use "tubular bells."
Source: e-mail from G. Ostrove, CPSO, Nov. 21, 2005
One percussionist playing two or more instruments
If the work is a specific type for one percussionist playing two or more percussion instruments, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by the "percussion": Rondos (Percussion)
Sonatas (Percussion)
If the work is not a specific type for one percussionist playing two or more percussion instruments, use the medium of performance "Percussion" as the subject heading followed by "music": Percussion music
Two or more percussionists
Two percussionists playing one instrument
If the work is a specific type for two percussionists playing one instrument, use the subject heading for that type, qualified the name of the instrument followed by "(    hands)": Sonatas (Marimba, 4 hands)
If the work is not a specific type for two percussionists playing one instruments, use the medium of performance followed by "music (    hands)": Marimba music (4 hands)
Two or more percussionists, each playing one or more instruments
If the work is a specific type (with the exception of sonatas) for two or more percussionists, each playing one or more instruments, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by "Percussion ensemble": Suites (Percussion ensemble)
Sonatas (Percussion ensemble)
If the work is not a specific type for two or more percussionists, each playing one or more instruments, use the subject heading "Percussion ensembles": Percussion ensembles

Indicating number of percussion instruments

In subject headings for chamber combinations that include percussion, the number of percussion instruments is not indicated
In this subject heading there is only one percussionist:     Quintets (Percussion, violins (2), viola, cello)
In this subject heading there are three percussionists:     Quartets (Percussion, viola)
a sonata for flute and marimba
a sonata for flute and one percussionist playing two or more instruments
Sonatas (Flute and marimba)
Sonatas (Flute and percussion)
a quintet for string quartet and marimba
a quintet for flute, bass clarinet, tubular bells, violin, and cello
a quintet for string quartet and one percussionist playing two or more instruments
a quintet for violin, viola, cello, and 2 marimbas
a quintet for violin, viola, cello, and two percussionists playing two or more
instruments
a quintet for violin, viola, cello, and two percussionists, one playing timpani,
the other playing marimba
Quintets (Marimba, violins (2), viola, cello)
Quintets (Clarinet, flute, tubular bells, violin, cello)
Quintets (Percussion, violins (2), viola, cello)
Quintets (Marimbas (2), violin, viola, cello)
Quintets (Percussion, violin, viola, cello)


Quintets (Marimba, timpani, violin, viola, cello)


Music using non-musical instruments as instruments

The heading "Sound effects music" for music produced by means of various objects or devices not normally regarded as musical instruments.

See MCB, vol. 44, no. 1 for a discussion of establishing subject headings for natural objects such as leaves, tree branches, sand, rocks, water, etc., taken "out of the wild" and used as musical instruments.

Music for solo non-musical instrument
If the work is not a specific type for a specific non-musical instrument, use the subject heading for that medium, followed by "music": Glass music
Leaf music
Computer music
Duets with one non-musical instrument and one traditional instrument or soloist
For works not of a specific type for one non-musical instrument and one traditional instrument or soloist use the names of both followed by "music" following the order of instruments in subject headings. Balloon and electronic music
Radio receiver and piano music
Guitar and computer music
Works for one or more non-musical instrument and two or more traditional instruments or soloists
For works not of a specific type for one non-musical instrument and two or more traditional instruments or soloists, use a form heading qualified by the names of the instruments following the order of instruments in subject headings. Trios (Electronics, sound effects)
Quartets (Clarinet, flute, computer, double bass)
Sextets (Clarinet, flute, keyboard controller, mallet controller, violin, cello)
Septets (Piano, clarinet, flute, radio receiver, xylorimba, violin, cello)
Works for one non-musical instrument and accompanying ensemble
For works of a specific type for one non-musical instrument and accompanying ensemble, use the subject heading for that type qualified by the names of the non-traditional instrument. When the type is "concerto," specify the accompanying ensemble only with it is not orchestra: Concertos (Cellular telephone)
Concertos (Saxophone and computer with chamber orchestra)
Works for two or more non-musical instruments of the same kind
For works either of a specific type for two or more non-musical instruments of the same kind, use the name of the instrument in the plural, qualified by number: Overtures (Computers (2))
Overtures (Tin cans (4))
Works for two or more different non-musical instruments
For works not of a specific type for two or more different non-musical instruments, use the heading "Sound effects music": Sound effects music
Works for soloist and two or more non-musical instruments as accompaniment
Use "sound effects" as the name of the accompaniment: Songs (High voice) with sound effects
Vocal quartets with computer.


Those darn electronic music headings!

Usual LC practice for pieces with tape is to treat "electronics" as an instrument. For a work for 4 percussionists and tape, the heading would be Quintets (Electronics, percussion) and the class would be M585. Since "electronics" appears in the Quintets heading, there is no need to add the second heading Electronic music. Current practice is to add Electronic music as a second heading only when the electronic element is not brought out in the main form/genre heading.
Source: very slightly modified from a message from Joe Bartl, LC, posted June 27, 2012, on MOUG-L

Solo electronic music
If the work is a specific type for electronics, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by "Electronics" enclosed in parenthesis: Suites (Electronics)
Canons, fugues, etc. (Electronics)
If the work is not a specific type for electronics, use "Electronic music" as the heading: Electronic music
Duets with one traditional instrument or soloist
For works either of a specific type or not of a specific type for electronics and one traditional instrument or soloist use "        and electronic music" or "Electronic and         music," following the order of instruments in subject headings. Flute and electronic music
Electronic and percussion music
Works for electronics and chordal instrument
For works not of a specific type for electronics and one chordal instrument the name of the chordal instrument followed by "and electronic music": Harpsichord and electronic music
Organ and electronic music
Piano and electronic music
Works for electronics and two or more other instruments
Following the order of instruments in subject headings, use "electronics":
If the work is a specific type, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by the names of the instruments: Canons, fugues, etc. (Electronics, violin, viola, cello)
If the work is not a specific type, use a form heading qualified by the names of the instruments: Trios (Clarinet, flute, electronics)
Octets (Piano, clarinet, flute, harp, electronics, percussion, violin, cello)
Septets (Electronics, percussion)
Works for electronics and large ensemble
Following the order of instruments in subject headings, use "electronics":
If the work is a specific type, use the subject heading for that type, qualified by "electronics" enclosed in parenthesis: Concertos (Electronics)
If the work is not a specific type, use a medium of performance heading that includes "electronics": Electronics with string orchestra
Recorder and electronics with orchestra
Piano and electronics with orchestra
"Electronics" as an accompanying ensemble
Use "electronics" as the name of the accompanying ensemble: Vocal ensembles with electronics
Choruses, Secular (Mixed voices) with electronics


Music with audience participation

For works in which audience members are required to participate, use a subject heading for the non-audience performers and an additional subject heading "Music with audience participation": Piano music
Music with audience participation


Arrangements

LCSCM H1160: The qualifier ", Arranged" is added to subject headings for works that have been arranged. When it is added to a subject heading that includes medium of performance, the subject heading will be for the arranged medium of performance. This varies from practice for uniform titles. With a uniform title for a work that has been arranged, and AACR2 Chapter 25 requires that the uniform title include the original medium of performance, followed by ";o arr."

See comparisons of music uniform titles and music subject headings: arrangements and uniform title/subject heading combinations: arrangements for more information.

When to use and when not to use the qualifier ", Arranged"

Instrumental music

1. the qualifier is free-floating with headings for arrangements when the headings are for instrumental music and the medium of performance of the arrangement is specified. The arranged medium of performance is given in the subject heading:

650 0 Organ music, Arranged.
650 0 Suites (Organ), Arranged.
650 0 Toccatas.

It is not added to the subject heading "Toccatas" because that subject heading is not qualified by medium of performance The qualifier is not added to subject headings for instrumental music in which the medium of performance is not given.

2. use in subject headings in which medium of performance is not given:

The qualifier may be used in large instrumental forms, such as:

650 0 Incidental music, Arranged.
650 0 Motion picture music, Arranged.

The qualifier is not used:

° when the only change in a work for one or more solo instruments accompanied by large ensemble is the reduction of the accompaniment for a keyboard instrument.(See the examples "v Solo with      " under Free-floating musical presentation and medium of performance subdivisions.)

° with subject headings that generally do not include medium of performance (See Musical form/genre headings that are not qualified by medium of performance above), such as:

650 0 Fanfares.
650 0 Waltzes.

A second subject heading with the arranged medium of performance would be assigned:

650 0 Fanfares.
650 0 Trumpet and piano music, Arranged.

Vocal music

1. Generally, ", Arranged" is used for instrumental music. However, the qualifier may be used with subject headings for larger vocal forms that do not indicate medium of performance.
Examples:
650 0 Operas, Arranged.

"v Instrumental settings" is generally used for vocal forms arranged for an instrumental medium:

650 0 Brass octets (Trombones (8)), Arranged v Scores and parts.
650 0 Madrigals, Italian v Instrumental settings.

2. The qualifier ", Arranged" is not added form/genre headings for the following vocal forms:
Forms whose headings are usually qualified by type of chorus
Works for solo singers or for one singer to a part.

Other

1. The qualifier is not used with subject headings for seasons, such as "Christmas music."

2. When only excerpts of a work have been arranged, the qualifier follows the subdivision "v Excerpts"
650 0 Symphonies v Excerpts, Arranged.


Comments to Mickey Koth Yale University Music Library
©Yale University Library Last revised June 11, 2014.