Skip to Main Content

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.

Getting started

The Sofia Discovery search tool is a great place to begin your search for information about BIPOC musicians and musical traditions. The search tool provides access to a wide range of sources in both print and electronic formats, including books, articles, music scores, recordings, videos, and archival materials.

Video tutorial

Search tips

Searching by name 

Enter the name of the composer or musician into a general keyword search to discover sources either by or about the individual.


Suggested Subject Headings

To search by subject heading in the Sofia search tool, go to "Advanced Search" and choose "Subject" from the dropdown menu.

Below are examples of some useful subject headings. Click on the hyperlinked subject headings to access the search results directly.

African American Composers

African American Music

African American Musicians

Africa - Music

Composers, Black

Asia - Music

Indigenous - Music

Latin America - Music

Middle East - Music

South America - Music


Music research that engages with issues of race and racism is commonly associated with the following subject headings: 

Music and race

Race identity and music

Racism and music


General call number ranges for books

ML198 – ML360.6 Music History and Criticism by region
ML198 - ML239 Americas
ML240 - ML325 Europe
ML330 - ML345 Asia
ML348 Arab Countries
ML350 Africa
ML360 Australia
ML3544 - ML3776 Folk, national, and ethnic music
ML3916 - ML3918 Social and political aspects of music

Location and contacts

Profile Photo
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

McGill LibraryQuestions? Ask us!
Privacy notice