Music Cataloging at Yale Subject cataloging

Subject headings for vocal music

Still in progress

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

Instrumental accompaniment of vocal works | Subject headings for liturgical works
Works for one voice with or without accompaniment: Songs | Accompaniment || Solo cantatas | Accompaniment
Works for two or more voices, one to a part with or without accompaniment: Accompaniment
Works for two or more voices, two or more to a part with or without accompaniment: Choruses | Accompaniment || Cantatas | Accompaniment || Oratorios | Accompaniment
Unaccompanied works
Musicals and revues
Arrangements
Qualifying by language of text


Vocal music is assigned form headings or medium of performance headings just as instrumental music is.

Form headings

Medium of performance headings
Songs
Oratorios
Cantatas
Masses
Vocal trios, Unaccompanied
Choruses
Vocal duets with harp
Sacred vocal ensembles
Form heading are usually qualified by medium of performance (vocal range or vocal grouping) unless it is implied:

Choruses (Mixed voices)
Songs (High voice)
Masses

no vocal group is implied; it must be stated
no vocal range is implied; it must be stated
chorus is implied
Subject headings for vocal music may also indicate:

number of voices:


Choruses, Secular (Mixed voices, 4 parts)
type of accompaniment:

... with piano
Unaccompanied

secular or sacred use:





Choruses, Secular
Songs [secular is implied]
Vocal trios [secular is implied]
Secular oratorios

Choruses, Sacred
Sacred songs
Sacred vocal trios
Oratorios [sacred is implied]

Medium of performance headings are not assigned to works that are

[» Note: It is not LCSH practice to bring out the medium of performance in the majority of headings assigned to popular music.]

Subject headings for liturgical music are added when applicable. Most are given in the singular, with no medium of performance:
Holy-week music.
Magnificat (Music)
Nunc dimittis (Music)
Song of Solomon (Music)
Christmas music.
These headings can also be assigned to instrumental music.

The subject heading "Psalms (Music)" is given in the plural, with no medium of performance. When appropriate, subdivide the heading by the specific psalm:
650 0 Psalms (Music) v 23rd Psalm

The numbering in subject headings for psalms follows the Authorized version (e.g., the Hebrew and Protestant Bible) and to the table under BS1450 in the LC Classification schedule. Wikipedia gives a summary:

Hebrew (and Protestant)
numbering

Greek/Latin (Catholic)
numbering (also referred to as "vulgate")

1–8
9-10
11-113
114-115
116
117-146
147
148-150
1–8
9
10–112
113
114–115
116–145
146–147
148–150



Instrumental accompaniment of vocal works
A single instrument is named following the word "with": _________________________ with accordion
_________________________ with violoncello
The name of two of the same keyboard instrument follows the word "with" and is qualified with "(2)": _________________________ with pianos (2)
_________________________ with harpsichords (2)
Use "keyboard instrument ensemble" when there are two different keyboard instruments:
Note: previous practice was to name each, in alphabetical order: _________________________ with organ and piano
_________________________ with keyboard instrument ensemble
When there are
» two or more of the same non-keyboard instrument
OR
» two or more non-keyboard instruments from the same instrumental family
use the instrumental family name followed by "ensemble":
_________________________ with string ensemble
This would include string quartets, quintets, etc.
_________________________ with woodwind ensemble
This would include woodwind quartets, quintets, etc.
When there are two or more instruments from different instrumental families (one to a part), use "instrumental ensemble": _________________________ with instrumental ensemble
When there are two or more instruments from different instrumental families (two or more to a part), use the name of the ensemble: _________________________ with orchestra
_________________________ with band
When there are two or more of the same solo instruments (one to a part), use the name of that instrument followed by "ensemble": _________________________ with violoncello ensemble


Works for one voice with or without accompaniment
See also Songs vs. solo cantatas

Songs
The heading "Songs" implies secular; for sacred works use "Sacred songs". Note that "Sacred songs" is not in inverted order Songs
Sacred songs
The range of the solo voice, when known, is indicated as high, medium, or low.

Even if the specific voice type is known, it is not designated in a subject heading, unlike in a uniform title, in which either specific voice type or vocal range may be indicated.
Songs (High voice)
Sacred songs (Low voice)
Other forms
Variations (Voice ...)
Accompaniment
Unaccompanied
Unaccompanied songs are qualified as such: Songs (Medium voice), Unaccompanied
Accompanied
Accompaniment is indicated by the phrase "with         ."
Accompaniment of one instrument: Songs (High voice) with piano
Sacred songs (Low voice) with violoncello
Accompaniment of one to two keyboard instruments: Songs (High voice) with pianos (2)
Sacred songs (Medium voice) with organs (2)
Accompaniment of one keyboard instrument and one non-keyboard instrument OR
two or more non-keyboard instruments is indicated as "instrumental ensemble"
"Instrumental ensemble" could mean piano and violin; or flute and harp; or string quartet; or four horns. Indicating each would be incorrect:
Songs (High voice) with instrumental ensemble
Variations (Voice with instrumental ensemble)
Songs (High voice) with piano and harp
Songs (High voice) with string quartet
Solo cantatas
The heading "Solo cantatas" implies neither secular nor sacred.
Both must be indicated, and the headings are in inverted form.
Solo cantatas, Secular
Solo cantatas, Sacred
The range of the solo voice, when known, is indicated as high, medium, or low.

Even if the specific voice type is known, it is not designated in a subject heading.
Solo cantatas, Secular (High voice)
Solo cantatas, Sacred (Low voice)
Accompaniment
Accompaniment for solo cantatas is not indicated in the subject heading.


Works for two or more voices, one to a part
See also Vocal ensembles

Form headings
These are some of the form headings for works for two or more solo voices:
Part songs
The heading "Part songs" implies secular.
For sacred works use "Part songs, Sacred". Note that it is in inverted order
Part songs
Part songs, Sacred
For secular Part songs all in one language, qualify the heading by that language.
Latin is implied in the heading "Part songs, Sacred"


For sacred Part songs in other languages are assigned 2 headings:
Part songs, English
Part songs, Sacred
not: Part songs, Sacred, Latin
Part songs, Sacred
Part songs, English
Specific forms of Part songs
These headings may also be used for works for choral ensemble (two or more voices, two or more to a part).
Accompaniment is not indicated in subject headings for Part songs or any of the specific types of Part songs.
Secular:
Sacred:
Polyphonic chansons
Motets
Anthems
Other forms
Canons, fugues, etc. (Vocal quartet)
Medium of performance headings
The headings "Vocal duets," "Vocal trios," "Vocal quartets," etc. are used for groups of two to nine solo voices. For ten or more solo voices, use "Vocal ensembles." Neither the vocal range nor voice type is designated. These headings imply secular works. For sacred works, use "Sacred vocal duets," "Sacred vocal trios," "Sacred vocal quartets," etc., and "Sacred vocal ensembles"
Secular:



Sacred:
Vocal duets
Vocal quintets
Vocal ensembles
Sacred vocal duets
Sacred vocal quintets
Sacred vocal ensembles
Accompaniment
Unaccompanied works are qualified as such: Vocal duets, Unaccompanied
Sacred vocal quintets, Unaccompanied
Sacred vocal ensembles, Unaccompanied
Accompaniment is indicated by the phrase "with         ."
Accompaniment of one instrument: Vocal sextets with piano
Sacred vocal quartets with harp
Vocal ensembles with guitar
Accompaniment of one to two keyboard instruments: Sacred vocal trios with pianos (2)
Vocal quartets with harpsichords (2)
Accompaniment of one keyboard instrument and one non-keyboard instrument OR
two or more non-keyboard instruments is indicated as "instrumental ensemble"
"Instrumental ensemble" could mean piano and violin; or flute and harp; or string quartet; or four horns. Indicating each would be incorrect:
Vocal trios with instrumental ensemble


Vocal trios with piano and harp


Works for two or more voices, two or more to a part
See also Choruses vs. cantatas

Choruses See also Those darn chorus subject headings!
The heading "Choruses" implies neither secular nor sacred and is used without designation of secular or sacred for collections of both secular and sacred works.
For individual works or collections that are either secular or sacred, the term "secular" or "sacred" is added to the heading, in inverted form.
Collections for more than one voice grouping which do not all have the same accompaniment:
Do not add:
   voice grouping
   number of voices
   accompaniment
Do not consider solo voices in formulating subject headings for choruses.
Choruses, Secular

Choruses, Sacred
Single works and collections for one voice grouping:
Add:
   voice grouping
      mixed voices, women's voices, men's voices, children's voices,
      equal voices, unison [not unison voices]
   number of voices may be added.
Do not consider solo voices in formulating subject headings for choruses.
Choruses, Secular (Mixed voices)
Choruses, Secular (Equal voices)

Choruses, Sacred (Children's voices)
Number of voices is indicated only when these conditions apply:
a. 8 parts or fewer
AND

b. accompaniment of either
   one instrument (i.e., piano, violoncello, harp, etc.)
   two of the same keyboard instrument
   continuo
OR
c. unaccompanied
Choruses, Secular (Women's voices, 4 parts) with piano



Choruses, Sacred (Men's voices, 4 parts) with pianos (2)


Choruses, Secular (Children's voices, 3 parts), Unaccompanied.
Accompaniment
Unaccompanied choruses are qualified as such: Choruses, Secular (Mixed voices, 4 parts), Unaccompanied

Choruses, Sacred (Men's voices), Unaccompanied
Accompaniment is indicated by the phrase "with        ." Choruses, Sacred (Women's voices) with piano

Choruses with organ

Choruses, Secular (Mixed voices, 4 parts) with violoncello
Accompaniment of one or two of the same keyboard instrument: Choruses, Sacred (Men's voices, 5 parts) with pianos (2))
Accompaniment of two different keyboard instruments (indicated as "keyboard instrument ensemble"): Choruses, Sacred (Men's voices) with keyboard instrument ensemble
Accompaniment of one keyboard instrument and one non-keyboard instrument OR
two or more non-keyboard instruments is indicated as "instrumental ensemble"

"Instrumental ensemble" could mean piano and violin; or flute and harp; or string quartet; or four horns. Indicating each would be incorrect; use "keyboard instrument ensemble" for two or more different keyboard instruments.
The number of vocal parts is not indicated when the accompaniment is two or more instruments (other than two of the same keyboard instrument or continuo)
Choruses, Secular (Mixed voices) with instrumental ensemble


Choruses, Sacred (Children's voices) with instrumental ensemble
Cantatas
The heading "Cantatas" implies neither secular nor sacred and is used without designation of secular or sacred for collections of both secular and sacred works.
For individual works or collections that are either secular or sacred, the term "secular" or "sacred" is added to the heading, in inverted form.
Collections for mixed voices or for more than one voice grouping and
Single works for mixed voices
Cantatas, Secular
Cantatas, Sacred
Single works and collections for one voice grouping other than mixed voices
Add:
   voice grouping (other than "mixed voices")
      women's voices, men's voices, children's voices,
      equal voices, unison [not unison voices]
The number of voices is not designated in subject headings for cantatas.
Cantatas, Secular (Women's voices)
Cantatas, Sacred (Unison)
Accompaniment
Type of accompaniment or lack of accompaniment is not designated in subject headings for cantatas.
Oratorios
The heading "Oratorios" implies a sacred text. The heading is used without the designation "sacred."
For oratorios with secular texts, use "Secular oratorios." Unlike the subject headings for choruses and cantatas, the heading is in direct order (not "Oratorios, Secular)
Vocal grouping (mixed voices, women's voices, etc.) is not indicated in subject headings for oratorios.
Accompaniment
Type of accompaniment or lack of accompaniment is not designated in subject headings for oratorios.
Works with accompaniment reduced for a keyboard instrument include the subject subdivision
"Vocal scores with ..."
Oratorios v Vocal scores with organ
Secular oratorios v Vocal scores with piano
Other forms
Works in a specific form are assigned with the medium of performance "Chorus" added. Canons, fugues, etc. (Chorus ...)
Waltzes (Chorus ...)
Polkas (Chorus ...)
Accompaniment
Unaccompanied works are not indicated as such:



Accompaniment is indicated by the phrase "with        ."
Canons, fugues, etc. (Chorus)
Rondos (Chorus)
Waltzes (Chorus)

Polkas (Chorus with orchestra)
Waltzes (Chorus with piano)
Waltzes (Chorus with piano, 4 hands)

equal voices: voices of the same type when employed in a polyphonic work, e.g., all sopranos or all tenors; sometimes also merely all male or all female (New Harvard Dictionary of Music)


Unaccompanied works

The qualifier "unaccompanied" is used with vocal music subject headings except for with these forms: cantatas, musicals, operas, oratorios or with subject headings in which lack of accompaniment is already implied (e.g., Canons, fugues, etc. (Voices (3))


Musicals and revues

Musical: a theatrical production consisting of musical numbers (songs, ensembles, and dances) integrated into a dramatic framework
Revue: a theatrical production featuring a series of songs, dances, and other entertainments
without any unifying dramatic element


Arrangements

The qualifier "Arranged" is not used with vocal music subject headings.
The subject heading is assigned for the medium into which the work has been arranged.

A work originally for high voice and harp, arranged for voice and piano:
Correct: Songs (High voice) with piano
Incorrect: Songs (High voice) with piano, Arranged.


A work originally for chorus and orchestra; arranged for chorus and organ
Correct: Choruses, Sacred (Mixed voices) with orchestra v Vocal scores with organ.
Incorrect: Choruses, Sacred (Mixed voices) with organ, Arranged.


However, LC is using "Arranged" in the subject heading "Oratorios":
An oratorio with accompaniment originally for piano or organ, arranged for orchestra
Oratorios, Arranged.


Qualifying by language of text

Source: LC Subject Cataloging Manual H 1916.3

Vocal works are qualified by the language of the text when they are:

Vocal works are not qualified by the language of the text when they:


Comments  about this page to Mickey Koth Yale University Music Library
©Yale University Library Last revised June 14, 2011.