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Popular music


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Sources for background information


Encyclopedias can provide an introduction to a popular music theme or subject. Besides listing biographical information, statistics, recordings, and definitions, encyclopedia articles may also recommend further reading.

  • The Guinness Encyclopedia of Popular Music
    ML102 P66 G84 1995
  • Continuum Encyclopedia of Popular Music of the World
    ML102 P66 C66 2003
  • Garland Dictionary of World Music
    ML100 G16 1997
  • The Rolling Stone Encyclopedia of Rock & Roll
    ML102 R6 R64 2001
  • Encyclopedia of Canadian Rock Pop & Folk music
    ML102 P66 J33 1994
  • Allmusic


  • Popular Music Studies: A Select International Bibliography
    ML128 P63 P67 1997
  • Rock Music Scholarship
    ML128 R6 G37 1995
  • A Guide to Popular Music Reference Books: An Annotated Bibliography ML128 P63 H34 1995
  • Rock Stars/Pop Stars: A Comprehensive Bibliography, 1955-1994
    ML128 R6 L49 1994
  • The Literature of Rock, I, II, and III (1954-1990)
    ML128 R6 H63


  • The Great Rock Discography, 7th ed.
    ML156.4 R6 S8 2004
  • Moanin’ Low: A Discography of Female Popular Vocal Recordings, 1920-1933
    ML156.4 W6 L35 1996 (4th floor)
  • The Canadian Singles Chart Book: 1975-1996
    ML156.4 P6 L85 1996 (4th floor)
  • The Billboard Book of Number One Hits
    ML156.4 P6 B76 1988 (4th floor)
  • Billboard Top 1000 Singles, 1955-1986: The 1000 Biggest Hits of the Rock Era
    ML156.4 P6 W454 1986 (4th floor)

Browse the shelf

Browse the Music Library shelves at:

ML3469 – 3541 Popular music – general
ML3506 Jazz music
ML3521 Blues music
ML3534 Rock music

Search by subject heading

Enter one of the phrases below.

Popular music
Protest music
Punk rock music
Rock music
Folk music
Rap (Music)
Soul music
Country music
World music
Music and globalization
Rock musicians
Women rock musicians
Women in music
Gender identity in music
Feminism and music
Music and race
Music and technology
Sound recordings

Try adding these phrases to the headings above:

social aspects
political aspects
history and criticism
criticism and interpretation

For example: Punk rock music - history and criticism

Location and contacts

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

Resource key

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

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