Photograph via snooOG

Focusing on Historical Musicology, this is a community coming together to share scholarly research about music and its origins. Open discussion of music philosophy, theoretical sociology, aesthetics of music, cultural and gender studies, performance, literature, theatre, theory, analysis, and theology.

Focusing on Historical Musicology, this is a community coming together to share scholarly research about music and its origins. Open discussion of music philosophy, theoretical sociology, aesthetics of music, cultural and gender studies, performance, literature, theatre, theory, analysis, and theology. Understanding is the goal of this community and civil discourse the standard method of communication. We welcome anyone with a burning desire for discovery and a thirst for knowledge. Welcome to r/musicology!


  1. Civility is our #1 rule and rudeness will result in a BAN.

  2. Plagiarism will not be tolerated and will result in a BAN.

  3. Please take the time to ensure your post is original content for this community.

  4. Please do not down-vote a topic because you disagree with the author. This is a community for discussion. Please comment and discuss any theories you may have that differ from others.

  5. Self-promotion is not allowed if promoting a paid service. Promoting free content (e.g. educational YouTube videos, podcasts, or tools) is fine as long as it is specifically musicological in nature. Your music-theory videos can go on /r/musictheory, not here. Your tools for pianists and singers can go to those subreddits. If someone asks "Are there any tools available for x?" it is OK to reply to that question with self-promotion if what you promote actually fits with the question asked. Spam of any kind is still not allowed even if the spammed content is free.

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11,391 Subscribers


Source Hunting, Archive research (String instruments, Scandinavia)

I am a cellist and artistic researcher specialized in archiving.

I am researching certain regions of Scandinavia to write about their string instrument tradition.

If any one has any information on this or knows where to look (journals/databases/archives) please DM me.

Thank you for your time!

00:33 UTC


Musical Pitch is Not "High" or "Low" (version 2)

17:22 UTC


Drone music of the antiquity

Hello, I'm looking for examples of drone music / instruments which are associated with the antiquity, like for example the greek aulos pipes, also some examples of byzantine chant. Any information would be greatly appreciated, but of particular interest to me would be anything coming from Asia or the Americas :)

1 Comment
13:15 UTC


School Project Quiz

Would be extremely grateful if some of you could do this, only takes 7 minutes. :)


13:24 UTC


Applying for Grad School Question

So after about five years away from school and lots of self reflection and figuring out what I want to do post-undergrad, I'm wanting to go on to Grad school and study musicology/ethnomusicology. While I'm trying to figure everything out, a question just came to mind: do I need a music degree specifically in musicology or music history to apply for grad school in that area? I currently have a bachelor's degree in music with a double emphasis in performance and theory, but now I am kind of psyching myself out as to whether I would need the music part focused on music history.

16:47 UTC


Country Music Criticism from the 60s?

I'm writing my dissertation on a subject related to women's liberation and the country music industry. I want to have a more direct way to measure the commercial success of specific albums and songs. Were there any music magazines, radio shows etc that covered country music specifically during the 1960s?

The reason I'm asking is because, for example, Billboard might have given a specific country album raving reviews. But Billboard's audience came from so many different genres that probably 75 percent of them weren't country music fans. I want a way to display commercial success based on the critical reception of country music listeners themselves, if that makes sense.

18:59 UTC


Journal of Music history Pedagogy - Special Issue: Teaching Global Music History: Practices and Challenges

Open access


From the final paragraph of the Introduction by the Guest Editors: Global Music History in the Classroom

The essays in this special issue demonstrate a diversity of current pedagogical perspectives on and around the emerging field of global music history. We hope that the various experiences and tools presented here will serve as resources for readers who wish to construct new courses or revise existing ones specific to their teaching context. We hope that this collection of articles stimulates constructive conversations on what the pedagogy of global music history might entail and why some of us want to teach it, especially when we want to explore alongside our students and colleagues what it means to study music in a global world, then and now, here or elsewhere.

19:36 UTC


Contemporary ethnic English music?

Is this a thing that exists? When I search google for 'contemporary ethnic English music' I find folk music, is there a reason why something like D&B would not be classed under this umbrella? I understand the roots (when you really pick them apart, bass, syncopation etc....) of D&B do not originate in England, but this style was created in England. So is it ethnic English music? Also the same question for baseline and dubstep. Thanks.

p.s I'm new to musicology and I'm really interested in this perspective, but excuse me if I am blatantly just not understanding something in my question, thanks.

16:26 UTC


Book/resource on genre features?

I learned a lot from these posts, “Why Contemporary Christian music is so uninteresting” and “Who is a successful singer and also not a very good singer?” - things that I thought were a bug, not a feature, like the “uninteresting” melody of Christian music that allows a congregation (of non singers) to participate, or that pop music - as a business - prioritizes a memorable voice over a conventionally good one.

Are there any books, websites, podcasts, or other resources that talk about these kind of features in different genres? Could be a single genre, or a collection of them. I’m more interested in the musical features, their reception, and their use within a genre rather than a social history, though I imagine those things overlap and so I’ll read anything. I don’t know much about music as a subject, so apologies if the question is too vague and needs to be clarified!

02:55 UTC


Timeline of Music Notation

10:37 UTC


-Rhythm Question-

What is the name of this rhythm?: -X-X-X-X-XX⏪

15:14 UTC


Does anyone know where the Coda of R.Korsakov Russian Easter Overture is?

I am writing an essay about the ochestration of Russian Easter Overture op.36 which was written by Rimsky Korsakov. However, I was stuck analysing the form of the piece when I couldnt find exactly the Coda and where it begins, could anyone help me?

04:44 UTC


Please help me find this song from my childhood!

I believe it was called "Poor Little Barn Owl" and was sung but what sounded like a well-trained classical female singer. I remember as a child in the 70s that our school music teacher would play this particular song for us every Halloween. Some of the lyrics I (think I) remember: "I'm just a little barn owl, who has no place to fly. So lonely and forsaken..." Then later, "They say I bring misfortune, and children fear my cry. They drive me from the rafters, although I don't know why. I'm sorry if I frighten them, but I must hoot and howl. Poor little barn owl."
Can anyone point me in the right direction? This song is a hauntingly lovely childhood memory for me, and I've tried for years to identify it with no success. Thanks for taking the time to read this.

03:19 UTC


How would you classify and analyze my project?

17:28 UTC


Lost Music of BIPOC Composers

20:17 UTC


Music challenge app for creative development


I created a web app with music challenges in form of an image- goal is to create a song that resembles/ describes given photo! Song with most votes is declared a winner! There is also search by colour for challenges. I just made a mobile version too so check it out!


13:31 UTC


Difference between musicology and ethnomusicology

Hi, can anybody explain to me the basic difference between musicology and ethnomusicology. Also, what does Masters in these respective subjects look like? What should I be expecting?

I am having doubts regarding what subject to take for my Masters. I am more interested in the world music study aspect since I'd like to do research in that area. But i don't want to come to a conclusion before clearing my doubts. To whoever helps me out regarding this, thank you <3

13:30 UTC


Hi r/musicology!

Hi r/musicology!

I'm making review videos for comprehensive exams in music studies broadly. After reading the self promo rules, I think I fit the bill, but sorry in advance if I'm mistaken. While my degrees are in performance, I look forward to exploring the history of music studies in the States.

Here is the first video on Kerman 1985. Hope you all enjoy it, and let me know if you see room for improvement!



Edit...Here is the link!


15:41 UTC


What Makes Music Appalachian?

Hey, Ya'll!

I am trying to write a research paper on, What Makes Music Appalachian.

I want to focus on artists who were not born in the cultural/geographical region but still meet (whatever the requirements are) of Appalachian Music. I want to focus on the artist Gillain Welch who was born in NYC and grew up in California. You probably know her from her contributions to the movie, "O'Brother' Where Art Thou?".

***Please feel free to share your perspectives and what you think Makes Music Appalachian.

View Poll

05:01 UTC


The day that music died, and why The Beatles killed it

Hello friends,

In this video I talk about Don McLean's famous "American Pie" and my understanding on it. Why did music die that day? It relates, in my view - to the essence of rock music. Would love to read your thoughts. I am obviously not a native English speaker so there are a few grammatical mistakes in there.


1 Comment
07:15 UTC


Literature about influence and trends in pop music pre social media and music streaming

Hey all.

I’m writing a paper on algorithmic influence on contemporary music production - how does it shape music artists work and cultural products.

I would like to compare and differentiate todays situation with how it was before the emergence of social media and streaming services etc.

So, do anyone know of any articles or books that discuss the topic of trends and influence in musical expression and sharing of creative processes etc. pre-algorithmic times?

I’m essentially trying to discuss what the differences are, if there are any, and why it is important.

Thanks all, And sorry for typos, english is not my first language.

11:11 UTC


Academic Musicology texts on Popular Music

Hi all!

I'm a professional musician who's become much more interested in reading about American popular music recently. I'm looking for more book recommendations in the vein of Walter Everett's "Foundations of Rock," or Jeff Chang's "Can't Stop Won't Stop." Ideally I'm looking for something with more focus on the historical rather than the sociological (theoretical is fine as well!), about any popular music/genre from basically 1950 and on.

I'll take both your personal favorites, as well as widely regarded/cited books. Thank you all so much!

18:20 UTC


Music In Relation To Story

I am curious what yall's take on this question is.

How would you relate the concept of point of view (1st 2nd 3rd) in story to music?

Harder question, How would you relate the concept of perspective (How close is the narrator to the character and story

My answers for clarity

POV - Harmony and texture

Perspective - Composing vs improvising

12:41 UTC


Old spiritual "turn me loose, sister Mary"

I heard these lyrics sung by an old Black woman back in the 1960s: "Turn me loose, sister Mary Don't want you to hold me Want brother George to hold me Yip, yip, yip!" Very interested in finding out if anyone else has heard this song!

10:02 UTC


Bach-inspired flute pieces?

Alright, so I’m cross-posting this to brainstorm ideas and I’d love the musicologist hive mind input! I’m working on a project involving the performance of a piece inspired by J.S. Bach. Perhaps it utilizes the B-A-C-H theme, perhaps it’s written with his style (juxtaposing French and Italian with German fugue elements, etc), or quotes him directly.

I just need solo flute pieces to start analyzing and see where it leads and I’d love new ideas instead of just my own.

Let me know what you think might be worth looking into!

19:11 UTC


Musicology of ASMR: vast individual differences in perception

ASMR stands for autonomous sensory meridian response, and it chiefly refers to a sustained, nonsexual, frisson-like tingling sensation experienced when exposed to select external sensory or situational stimuli. However, the term is more often used for a genre of audiovisual content, mostly in the form of YouTube videos, that play upon mostly auditory stimuli.

Each work consists of various sounds, planned, recorded, arranged, and/or otherwise intentionally captured by a human, designed to aesthetically please a listener in one way or another, and suit the tastes of at least some people. That meets many broader definitions of music.

As an overall medium, I think ASMR raises many questions about the aesthetics of music and sound in general.

It's far from universally liked, and while many of the sounds these ASMRtists aren't particularly loud, they're often sounds considered unpleasant or even objectively rude by many. Additionally, the seductive voices often found in ASMR videos can be perceived as sexual by some. People have said similar things about various fringe genres of music, such as ambient noise, harsh noise, experimental subgenres of relatively mainstream genres (such as black metal or glitch music), or many "20th century classical" composers. Even mainstream rock gained criticism for sounding "rude" or "raunchy" to those unfamiliar with the style.

But I think ASMR also raises some questions about music theory: even though it doesn't even claim to be music, it does feature motifs, genres, cliches, and a lineup of common triggers. Many people will gravitate towards one trigger, such as keystrokes/typing, over another, such as chewing. Some people within comments sections about which triggers they dislike or like, and rarely show confusion as to what aspects even when using more niche language. Could this be a music theory tradition in the works?

Also, the fact that people can have such divided opinions on what sounds soothing/chilling/annoying/unremarkable, to the point where people can leave positive comments on the sound of scratching a chalkboard with one's nails, speaks to a very psychological perspective on music making. Western classical music, as someone who grew up with classical musician relatives, a year of viola in grade school, and a year of piano in college, seems focused on a near-syntactic level of shared meaning via sound. Different chords meant different emotions, and anyone who differed must just not be listening carefully enough. Major was happy and minor was sad, though I don't personally think "Pound the Alarm" is sadder than "Tears from Heaven".

The general assumption was that musical perception was cultural, but not personal. Individual factors weren't accounted for, outside of "preference" or "talent". Enjoying off-key music might be a sign that someone has lesser musical faculties, or even actual hearing deficiencies. There have been debates as to why people like a genre of music that hinge upon a universal musical "language." Some say people like heavy metal, for instance, because they have angry or aggressive tendencies. Others say it helps them process anger, or even that calmer people can be metalheads because the music helps them work through their latent aggression and calms them down. But not everyone may hear anger in the music. And many times, the artist isn't trying to convey anger.

I think individual differences of psychological music perception can be fascinating.

1 Comment
09:47 UTC

18:44 UTC


I made a video about the most popular Chord in music history. The Tristan Chord. Most people do get it wrong. In the video, I explain common misconceptions and how to actually analyze it. I hope you find it valuable.🙌🏻

13:53 UTC


Musicological studies of hardcore punk and the genres it’s birthed?

Hi, I have an interest in hardcore, and I was wondering what the best ways to learn about it from a musicological perspective? I’m mainly interested in skramz and grindcore.

16:18 UTC

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