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Black, Indigenous, people of colour (BIPOC) musicians

Use this guide to explore the musical traditions, compositions, and scholarship of Black, Indigenous, people of colour (BIPOC) individuals.


This section contains a selected list of resources available through the Library about BIPOC musicians and musical traditions. Discover a selection of bibliographies, discographies, encyclopedias and dictionaries, handbooks, collections of essays, and journals.


Encyclopedias and dictionaries

  • Floyd, Samuel A. Jr., ed. International Dictionary of Black Composers. Center for Black Music Research. Chicago: Fitzroy Dearborn, 1999.
  • Price, Emmett George, Tammy L Kernodle, and Horace Joseph Maxile, eds. Encyclopedia of African American Music. Santa Barbara, Calif.: ABC-CLIO, 2011. 
    • Showcases all facets of African American music including folk, religious, concert and popular styles
    • More than 500 in-depth entries on a vast range of topics - genres, styles, individuals, groups, major record labels, institutions of higher learning, and cultural venues
    • Includes historical topics such as the music of the Harlem Renaissance, the Black Arts Movement, and the Civil Rights Movement
    • Provides a selected bibliography of the most important works on African American music
  • Continuum Encyclopedia of Popular Music of the World
    • Comprehensive reference work on popular music of the world
    • Read articles by leading popular music scholars
    • Includes extensive bibliographies, discographies, sheet music listings, and filmographies
    • Certain volumes available online:
  • Encyclopedia of Music in Canada
    • Includes entries on prominent musicians of all genres as well as entries by ethnic group, city, and region.
  • The Garland Encyclopedia of World Music
  • Grove Music Online
    • Foremost English-language scholarly encyclopedia of music and musicians
    • Extensive articles and bibliographies written by subject experts
    • Includes detailed works lists for certain composers: useful for confirming the identity of pieces and for finding individual pieces within composers' complete works sets held by the Library
    • Includes access to New Grove Dictionary of Opera and New Grove Dictionary of Jazz (2nd edition)
  • MGG Online (Die Musik in Geschichte und Gegenwart)
    • Comprehensive German-language encyclopedia
    • Provides in-depth articles on many aspects of music and related areas
    • Features all content from the 2nd edition plus current updates and additions
    • Integrated translation available
    • View a tutorial on using MGG Online (4:00)

Books, handbooks, and collections of essays

Location and contacts

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Music Library Staff
Marvin Duchow Music Library
Elizabeth Wirth Music Building
3rd floor - 527 Sherbrooke Street West
Montreal, Quebec H3A 1E3
Subjects: Music

Resource key

  • McGill users only
  • Open access resource
  • Free resource
  • In-library use
  • Catalogue record

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