MLA Newsletter
Music Library Association No.186 Jul-Aug 2016
Etching of a musical instrument called the Handja From "Adventures in the Great Forest of Equatorial Africa..." by Paul Belloni du Chaillu
Part of the British Library's digital collections in Flickr Commons
Table of Contents
From the Board
Latest Publications from MLA
MLA Oral History Insights
Diversity Scholarship Fund News
Conference [Planning] Reflections
Website Highlight
Transitions & Appointments
In Recognition
Member Publications
Spotlight On…Military Music Libraries
News & Notes
Institutions & Collections
From the Board
photograph of Music Library Association Fiscal Officer Andrew Justice

Greetings from the wild world of fiscal planning--I may or may not advise starting a new position halfway across the country in the months leading up to the creation of an annual budget for our beloved association. Fortunately, the southern California sunshine (seriously, it does not rain here--and I grew up in Oregon, people) imbued me with a mellow, New Age-y approach to life, and I was hence very Zen-like when preparing for how MLA would pay for 2016-2017. [pause for laughter]

But I get ahead of myself: Hi, I'm Andrew Justice, your Fiscal Officer! I suppose this column is to give you a window to what the financial planning side of being on the Board is about. First I should note that I had an excellent role model in Tracey Rudnick, who handled the work with a detail-oriented tenacity that would make the most accomplished cataloger (or Vincent Duckles) red with envy. On the other hand, I did have to succeed Tracey Rudnick, and the phrase "a daunting challenge" doesn't even come close to doing justice (no pun intended).

The main thrust of fiscal planning comes immediately after the annual meeting, when the Fiscal Officer (FO) solicits budget requests from committees, officers, etc. who received an allocation the previous year and welcomes new appeals which match the Board's goal of encouraging innovation from every corner of the association. Once the requests are received and collated, the FO puts them into a template for the next year's budget…and then the fun begins.

Traditionally, the annual Board meetings in Middleton, WI (where the offices of A-R Editions

reside) are three days long, with the first being simultaneous sessions for the Finance and Planning committees, followed by two solid days of full Board sessions. The FO spends much of the first and second nights in Middleton madly trying to bring the unruly Excel spreadsheet that is the budget template into some sort of meaningful order, so they can take the Finance Committee through it line by line, hopefully ironing out all of the considerations and discussions necessary to balance the budget, before presenting a mostly-finalized version to the Board where it's voted upon and approved.

This year threw some interesting curveballs at us, mainly (and perhaps unsurprisingly) related to the annual conference; different contracts and locations often means different costs, and Orlando presented us with a few major challenges. Aside from being generally more expensive than Cincinnati, the wireless access in the meeting rooms (not the hotel rooms or public areas) is costing MLA a not insignificant amount, at least in comparison to past years when we've been compensated for that expense. To address this, we discussed and ultimately approved the use of the MLA Fund to cover the expense--per my email to MLA-L of June 23rd, we felt that this is an essential component to the association's work at the conference and hence an appropriate use of the fund.

Another challenge was the streaming of sessions, which has been a popular component since the Denver meeting in 2015. The company we've been using for this compensated us then and in Cincinnati, so it was time for MLA to pony up. We discussed a model whereby those not attending the conference in person could have access to the live streams by paying a modest fee (which we compared against other associations offering a

From the Board, continued

similar service). It's clear from post-conference surveys and communicating with colleagues that streaming will continue to be a vital aspect of the conference experience, so the Board is motivated to explore and identify the best and most equitable method(s) to address how MLA can continue to offer it to the membership and wider interested public; keep an eye out for announcements regarding this, as February nears.

"Wicked Problems" aside, the main demand for the FO at the Middleton meeting is the near-Sisyphean task of simply getting the budget template to be comfortably in the black by the time the Board votes to approve it. I'm happy to say that we successfully achieved that, thanks to the superhuman help of Paula Hickner, Hermine Vermeij, and Janelle West. Seriously, I (and by extension, all of us) owe them a debt of gratitude and/or drinks in Orlando; I leave it to your individual conscience.

For those interested in this kind of work, my best piece of advice is: learn Excel. Knowledge of all the association's doings and financial needs is obviously important as well, but one

of the great things about Board work is that you're surrounded by people who either know and/or have the energy to learn things that one person can't ever hope to hold in their head. But if you can walk out of a budget meeting and know--absolutely know--that your spreadsheet minds its P's and Q's, that is a great feeling. On the other hand, following a scrupulous juggernaut like Tracey Rudnick…well, just pray you're not a violist as well. Overall, the collaborative aspect is probably what I enjoy most about being on the Board. You get this wonderful mash-up of experiences and perspectives and ideas, and usually by the end of a meeting, I feel like I've done really good work for the association I care most about. Plus, it's really fun to make a motion to adjourn the meeting in the voice of Howlin' Wolf and then have Damian Iseminger second the motion, following suit.

I would be remiss in not actively thanking Michael Rogan, Mark McKnight, and the rest of my Board colleagues, as well as Pat Wall, Jim Zychowicz, and everyone at A-R for this undeniably excellent experience.

Photo of Fiscal officer Andrew Justice dressed as Darth Vader sitting at a desk
Pictured: Darth Andrew hard at work at his previous job at UNT.
Latest Publications from MLA

The July 2016 issue (vol. 47, no. 7) and August 2016 issue (vol. 47, no. 8) of the Music Cataloging Bulletin are now available online.

Subscriber Access:

Subscription/Access Issues:

Comments on Content:

Notes volume 73, no. 1 (September 2016) is now available full-text in Project MUSE.

MLA Member Access

Questions? Contact Anne Shelley, Notes Assistant Editor for Electronic Vendors,

MLA Oral History Insights

The interview continues! Read the conclusion of the two-part interview of several MLA Presidents past that took place live at the 2016 Annual Meeting in Cincinnati. See MLA Newsletter no. 185 for the first part. And keep an eye out for more from the Oral History Committee in future issues of the Newsletter!


Session moderated by Robert DeLand (VanderCook Music Library) and Therese Zoski Dickman (Southern Illinois University Edwardsville); Transcription by DeLand; Edited by Dickman

Past presidents during live interview session
MLA Past-Presidents, Michael Ochs, Geraldine Ostrove, Bonna Boettcher, and Phil Vandermeer during the live interview

QUESTION: While you were MLA president, what was a notable accomplishment, challenge, or revelation that stands out for you?

GERRY OSTROVE: What I observed was that things happened during my tenure [in the mid-1980s] that were important, although I didn't necessarily start them off or finish them. One of the things, for example, was the founding of the US RILM (Répertoire International de Littérature Musicale) office. That had been in the works for a while, but it happened while I was president. There were also RISM (International Inventory of Musical Sources) activities: The A/II [music manuscripts after 1600] project at Harvard which you heard about a moment ago, with the US RISM libretto project at

UVA [the University of Virginia], also funded by NEH, was in progress while I was president. What those folks did was catalog up the librettos from the [Albert] Schatz Collection at the Library of Congress. It hadn't catalogued itself. So it's a remarkable addition to the bibliography of librettos. You didn't have to go to the Music Division and look in the card catalogue or the great big Schatz volumes to find them.

The Walter Gerboth Award was established and named. Vincent Duckles' name was attached to one of the book awards. He was a person whom we revere, for heaven's sake. Of course, when you talk about Vincent, you always remember [his wife] Madeline, who often came to meetings with him and really was quite a character. What else? Oh, tax exempt status was an issue that seemed to take forever to straighten itself out. We finally got it for MLA itself and then we began on the chapters; which, again, took a long time. So you see these things happen in [stages], and some of them are quite boring. But they had long range implications, to be sure.

Now another thing occurred during my tenure--a study of what the relationship between the US branch of IAML (the International Association of Music Libraries) and MLA ought to be. This was the study conducted by Ruth Watanabe. Four models were presented. One was "Don't do anything," and the fourth was that MLA become the US branch of IAML. When the report was discussed, Model Four dropped off the end and nobody talked about it. I remember Don Roberts, Lenore [Coral], and I got together, looked at each other and said, "There is only one way to go here." But it took a long time. So, when you heard earlier that I was delighted that MLA finally became the US branch, you see what I mean about things being a long time in coming.

MICHAEL OCHS: Like Gerry, I thought the way to approach this [session] was to read the minutes of the meetings during my time on the [MLA] Board. I

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printed out the first two sets of minutes and started reading. It was so boring, I couldn't go on. So instead I thought, "All right, I'll read my president's report and the MLA Newsletter. I won't bore you with what I found. I will read you one thing, though, because it gives you an idea of what the president's life [was like]. I wrote this in a kind of funny way. This was at the end of the Kansas City meeting [in 1994]. I guess it was my first meeting as actual president:

"What time do you want the hotel to drive you to the airport? Oh my gosh, it's a white stretch limo! Forget the iced champagne inside, instead discuss plans with Vice-President Elect Jane Gottlieb for MLA self-study." That was one of the things that we did. We had decided there needed to be a self-study of MLA, and we appointed a committee chaired by Mary Wallace Davidson. Then there should be a report and an implementation committee. Anyway, we arrived at Kansas City International Airport and were immediately surrounded by menacing MLA'ers. "Who paid for the limo? So that's where our money goes?! A likely story." So you slink off to your gate, spend the flight home making a numbered list of things to do and people to contact. We're up to Item 57 when the plane lands. I think the other presidents here will have an idea of what that means. Write letters appointing talented folks to chair MLA committees: Linda Solow Blotner for Development; Roberta Chodacki for Education; Brenda Nelson Strauss, Preservation; Leslie Troutman for RaPS…. I don't even know what that is. Anybody know?

PHIL VANDERMEER: Reference and Public Services.

OCHS: Thank you! I spelled it RaPS. Brad Short for RSCD.

BONNA BOETTCHER: Resource Sharing and Collection Development.

OCHS: Thank you! When you get old, you forget things, don't you?

(Laughter offside)

OCHS: …and name Dan Zager to chair the search committee. Also, go on and look ahead to June when Beth [Elisabeth] Rebman takes over as Placement Officer; October when Jim Cassaro becomes Treasurer; and 1995 when Deborah Pierce will locally arrange the Seattle meeting and Jim Farrington will be program czar. Now write fifty-five more letters appointing people to this, thanking them for that, and vary some things. So that gives you some idea of what it's like to be president!

BONNA BOETTCHER: When I took over first as president-elect then president, MLA was coming out of one of the more unpleasant periods in its history and needed to move on. I was fortunate to have the work particularly of Paula Matthews and Jim Cassaro in straightening out some of our administrative issues. Laura Dankner had also continued to move in that direction. One of the challenges was "Okay, we need to figure out what we're going to do with the MLA Fund besides keeping the organization afloat." We were also working on a joint meeting with SAM [the Society for American Music]. Another major challenge when I was past president was--people will remember--the Newport meeting (laughter from aside) where we were in the dripping hotel and many people were slogging across the causeway in the cold to the other hotel.

Things that I remember when I was also looking through notes from my term as president--this sounds so mundane, but it turned out to be so marvelously useful--was building a calendar of tasks and actions that had to happen at specific times of the year, and particularly what needed to be settled at each Board meeting. This was so much easier than trying to dig through, at that point, this quite linear calendar and hope that you didn't forget to do something that needed to be done! We established a real program committee. Prior to that the program chair was almost

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functioning as a glorified scheduling agent. They'd come up with some ideas for plenary sessions to run past the Board. Generally, though, if committees and round tables wanted to present programming, they would send in their ideas and what they wanted to do, and the program chair had to schedule all of those activities.

One of the things that came out of a survey that Virginia Danielson worked on was that people were concerned about "How can I present at the Association if I don't know someone already?" So we wanted to come up with a process that would allow people to submit ideas, to have speakers planned ahead of time, and we would have a representative committee who would vet those suggestions. I think it has resulted in a much stronger program. Louis Kuyper-Rushing was the first person blessed with this new idea after she had agreed to be program chair, but she was quite gracious about it.

"We said, 'Can't we at least feed people for their first meeting at MLA and not ask them to pay for it?' So we turned the dessert reception into a dinner reception."

We also saw the beginnings of planning for the educational outreach program. I think it came out of Board discussions while I was president. There had certainly also been a first time attendees meeting and we had mentors. Whoever was in charge of that would arrange for everyone to go out to dinner with their mentors. But often it was the first timers, and they were scrambling to find a place to eat and make it back for the dessert reception. We said, "Can't we at least feed people for their first meeting at MLA and not ask them to pay for it?" So we turned the dessert reception into a dinner reception.

PHIL VANDERMEER: I feel like I've been joined at the hip with Bonna, because we were on the Board

together before we were presidents, respectively. My first meeting on the Board was in Louisville. I was coming in as the assistant fiscal officer only to find out that we had been embezzled, and we had no money. So that was sort of my moment of Zen, I suppose, where I decided "Do I really wanna be here?" (laughter offside) But as MLA is apt to do, we have creative people in this organization, and we have people who have good sense. I feel like we became a stronger organization from that whole experience. We had to hire a lawyer, we had to hire a forensic accountant, and we had to start being audited on a regular basis. That was the context into which I came as president following Bonna. She described many other things that we did to move on and become a healthier organization.

"I look back at my time as president and I feel that a president is only as good as his or her Board of Directors and the membership."

I look back at my time as president and I feel that a president is only as good as his or her Board of Directors and the membership. I had the privilege of serving with two wonderful boards who were just as capable as anybody can be. They were cooperative about wanting to do things that had to do with strategic planning. So we decided to look at the Board and how we spent our time in meetings. I decided that we weren't really using every member of the Board or the time we had in an efficient way. So one of the things we proposed was the creation of a Planning Committee. Up to that point, planning was done pretty much by the financing committee. Finances ran the planning rather than planning running the finances. So I believe my first year as president we implemented a planning committee to actually work in concert with the finance committee. They would meet separately during the board meetings. I feel like that was one of the accomplishments. It's one of

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those technical tweaking kinds of things, but I think it has been good for the organization. It's certainly been good for the way in which we proceed since then to do our strategic planning.

For about 20 minutes we were a million dollar organization during my time [as president]. (laughter offside) Paula Matthews was development officer at that time. We found out we had a million dollars in assets and, all of the sudden, Paula said she's writing to everyone in the organization, "Guess what? MLA's a million dollar organization!" Of course then the credit recession happened and we weren't so much after that, but we are back up there again now.

The other thing that was both a challenge and very much of a relief to us the way it happened, was the [$379,000] Mellon Foundation Grant that funded IPM [the Index to Printed Music] and [our subcontractor], the James Adrian Music Company. MLA was the holder of and responsible for that grant. We had gotten through the three years of the grant and--I'm pretty sure this is true--we had not spent 50% of that grant yet. I thank my development officer at the University of North Carolina for giving me good advice as to how to approach the Mellon Foundation. We spent a good amount of time putting together a proposal for an extension. They gave us an extension, and we were able to spend the rest of that [sizeable] grant and come out with a pretty good product, I think. It was a relief to us because we were actually deciding, "Do we just cut it loose and cut our losses, or do we try for an extension?" We had to go for the extension because MLA was at the point of becoming an organization that needed to be doing fundraising on a regular basis. We knew we needed to find grants. If we couldn't come through with the final part of that project, we weren't gonna be taken seriously. So, I think that was our Board that came together and did that, because you [referring to Bonna] were on the Board at that time as past president.

DICKMAN: Okay, the next question is a two part question. The next one will be shorter.

QUESTION: How has a particular technology change or need impacted your work as a music librarian? How can the lessons learned be applied today?

OSTROVE: The technological advance didn't impact me personally because I didn't do that work, but I think getting our cataloging online was a monumental advance in the field of librarianship. It resulted in a kind of unusual situation. In the Boston area--those of you who have lived there--know that it's utterly dense with libraries and librarians. My [New England Conservatory] library belonged to two organizations: the Boston Area Music Libraries [BAML] and something called the Fenway Library Consortium [FLC]. My idea was to get my library into OCLC [the Online Computer Library Center]. We didn't have enough cataloging or enough money to be regular members, so we were able to work out a deal where we participated. The cataloguing staff would walk up to the Wentworth Institute [of Technology] with our materials to catalog a few blocks up Massachusetts Avenue or Huntington Avenue. I think we were the first independent conservatory to be members of OCLC. Jean Morrow had to teach herself everything about the MARC format and how to do inputting. It was a really important thing that happened. To this day, I appreciate that OCLC let us get our toe in the door even though we couldn't manage to be full time, regular members.

The thing that worries me about technology is…that traditional collection development--the job I always saved for myself because I liked it the most--is disappearing. To a large extent libraries don't acquire things, they lease them. It's very hard to get my head wrapped around that. Where can we go from here? What will we have? What does ownership mean anymore? I'm awfully glad I can leave the resolution of that to all of you!

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OCHS: Gerry mentioned computerizing catalogues. One of the things I was able to get done at Harvard in the early 1990s was to get a large grant to computerize the Harvard Music Catalogue and get that online so other people can get at it. It was one of the first really large music libraries to get online. The other thing happened when I was editor of Notes. When I took over Notes in 1987, everything was done manually. If you wrote an article, you typed it up and you US mailed it to the editor, and the editor marked it up and sent it back, and so forth. Then the entire issue was mailed off to Edwards Brothers, which was a production [company], and was printed from there with all of the intermediate steps. At that time, it was already possible to do electronic publishing. I finally got in touch with A-R editions and said "Can you do this?" and they said "Oh yeah, sure! You don't have to do all this paper stuff." So I told Edwards Brothers we were leaving them, and they said "Oh you wanna do electric? We can do that!" And I said, "Thanks a lot, you're too late!" They replied, "We can give you a good price, a better price than…" They had been charging us much more. So anyway, that was one of the major changes.

I told you that I read through the MLA newsletters from when I was president. The March/April 1993 MLA Newsletter has an article in it by H. Stephen Wright (Northern Illinois University), entitled "But I Don't Have Access to Email." I'll read you a bit of it. It says: "I certainly don't consider myself a technologically oriented person. In fact, I have a genuine aversion to technological advancements that remind me every day that I'm growing older. I prefer dial phones over touch tone,"--Do you even know what that is?--"LP's over compact discs, and original track over next generation. (laughter offside) Yet despite this, I'm a happy and frequent user of electronic mail and can assure one and all that sending an email message is far less difficult than you might imagine." (laughter offside) So much for technology of that day! Where it's going, I have not the slightest idea. I will leave it to my

colleagues to discuss that.

BOETTCHER: And we didn't even plan this, Michael! One of the technological changes that I wanted to talk about is just the Internet in general. I remember MLA's first web presence, which I worked on when I was executive secretary, to where we are now. We didn't have a web presence in 1996. That came somewhere around in 1998-1999. I also [recall] the associated expectations around that [development]. Think what it's done to our sense of time and expecting answers from people! What I remember as MLA president is that my email really got us, because people really wanted answers right away. I also remember Internet at meetings and the ongoing battles about "Why can't we have live Internet for our presentations? Why can't we have Internet in the rooms? Why are we paying so much for Internet access?"

"There have got to be people in here who remember that, even if you had a presentation that you planned to give online…you traveled with your back up overhead transparencies because you never knew when that connection was going to crash."

When we were first starting using the Internet, many of the hotels we stayed in weren't ready for it. They wouldn't even have been able to support someone willing to bring their own modem and plug it into a phone jack. There have got to be people in here who remember that, even if you had a presentation that you planned to give online-- like at a plenary session where we might have an Internet connection--you traveled with your back up overhead transparencies because you never knew when that connection was going to crash. In contrast, at this meeting, even though there have been a few glitches here and there, they've been

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so quickly solved. So I think we've seen that infrastructure grow and improve. That's been a major change. I think what I'm looking at now for MLA, but also at my institution, is coping with all of our electronic output, our electronic resources, and our electronic records, and how are we going to preserve and archive these for the future.

VANDERMEER: I was thinking about the most dramatic change in technology in my career. I think it's just the PC. I started my career without one. I had a typewriter with extra symbols on it, and I'd type my catalog cards for the Free Library of Philadelphia Chamber Music Collection. I didn't even have a PC until a year after I got to Maryland!

"…the work that we do is not the technology that we have to do it. The technology is the tool and the work that we do has always been important…our work is not our technology."

I remember very clearly the departmental secretary standing over my shoulder. I was gonna type a word processing document and there was this green screen and a little flashing cursor and I said, "What do I do?" and she said, "Just start typing!" And so, the development of that technology, from going from not having a PC to spending 99% of my time during the day on a PC has probably been the biggest change in my life.

I was thinking about what this teaches us. The fact is: We think that technology is something new; [yet] technology is as old as human beings. There has always been new technology. The book, the codex was an amazing technical achievement, and it's still an amazing piece of technology. I think we get kind of far away from the idea that technology is taking over our lives. Well, technology is always taking over our lives. I think it's important to keep that in mind, because the work that we do is not

the technology that we have to do it. The technology is the tool and the work that we do has always been important. It's not any more important now because we have certain types of advanced technology that we can use for it. But we need to remember to use it as a tool and not as an end in itself. I love seeing all of the younger folks here at MLA who are just, you know, part of the e-revolution, the technology revolution, and are comfortable with it in a way that I have never been and will never be. It's always kind of a struggle to get there.

One of the things I forgot to mention in the previous question was that the Emerging Technology and Services Committee came up under my watch, and I'm proud of that. I'm proud also that we're staying at the forefront of how we use technology. Anybody remember Second Life? Remember when we were all gonna have to learn Second Life? We were gonna exist in Second Life? All of the sudden nobody remembers what Second Life is anymore. Well, there's a lot of stuff like that. I think it's really important to be on top of [technology], to understand it, and understand how it helps us do our work. Because our work is not our technology.

DICKMAN: This is the last of the four original questions:

QUESTION: What do you envision as the future of MLA and music librarianship?

OSTROVE: Some years ago, IAML [the International Association of Music Libraries, Archives, and Documentation Centres] met in Australia. I think we were in Sydney, and the president of IFLA [the International Federation of Library Association and Institutions] happened to be an Australian. We had the pleasure of having him at a session which the local folks had arranged. One of the things he did was pick four youngish attendees at the meeting, [perhaps] students, and asked them to describe what they did and what they considered

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themselves to be. Now mind you, this is ten years ago or something like that. Okay, so it was seven years ago! (laughs) Not a single one of those four people from, I think the countries were Great Britain, Australia, and United States--not a single one of those people regarded him- or herself as a music librarian. Even then, the name we give ourselves in our profession was becoming obsolete. It wasn't that they were responsible for a number of topics like performing arts librarians, but their duties were more varied. So, I'm wondering whether there will be people who call themselves music librarians anymore. That's one thing that's on my mind. I suppose I could look at that from the perspective of part of my history dying or something melodramatic, but things change. It may also be that our jobs, as we see them now, change dramatically.

Another thing on my mind was prompted by Jonathan Manton's presentation earlier today, in which he got down to some of the nitty-gritty of archiving digital materials--born digital. When I thought about the storage space, and the cost and the fact that fewer and fewer of our library materials may be text based, I began to worry about when we would find the ability to digest all of that--I mean "terabytes!" I don't know what a terabyte is. It's a quantity which is beyond my comprehension, but if we think we have had a problem with shelving, folks we haven't seen anything yet! (laughs)

"About MLA: If you turn to your MLA colleagues for help, they will knock themselves out for you. That's still true."

OCHS: As most of you know, I actually left music librarianship as a profession almost 25 years ago; not MLA I have to add. At the time I thought, "I'm going to write down some things that I think would be useful for people to know." My career had taken

an unexpected turn out of music librarianship into full-time editing the previous year. For whatever use it may be, I offer here a list of some things I learned in thirty years as a music librarian, interspersed with some wonky pieces of guidance. This is from 1993, okay? I would still envision that music librarianship will be like this in the future:

Cataloguing: Always think of cataloguing as a public service. If it's not worth cataloguing, it's not worth cataloguing well. If it's worth cataloguing, it's worth cataloguing quickly. Selection and Acquisitions: If your library director wakes you up at 3 am to ask how you would spend $50,000 if offered, have a response ready. Public Service: Treat everyone who walks into the library as a potential donor. Public service isn't the most important thing you do, it's the only important thing you do. Users are not impressed by glitzy buildings, vast collections, and 21st century computer systems if they have to leave without the information or materials they came in for. Administration: Especially for some of you folks who are getting a little older, write notes for yourself as if you expect to suffer acute memory loss when you wake up tomorrow morning. Welcome constructive criticism by having a patron comment book. Answer every suggestion seriously and politely even those that are nasty and outrageous. In general, music and art librarians can be a little wacky; people expect it of them, so it's okay. About MLA: If you turn to your MLA colleagues for help, they will knock themselves out for you. That's still true.

BOETTCHER: First with music librarianship, I'm seeing much more interest again in music librarianship from people looking for alternative careers who are in academia who aren't going through the traditional channels of joining the faculty. I think that's been common among music librarians, but I think we're going to see that probably increase. Music librarianship, as we know it now, is possibly more secure in larger

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institutions. However, I'm seeing lots of expanding roles and absorbing more of fine arts and humanities as we're looking at disciplines differently, as disciplines are looking at themselves differently. There's more encouragement among academia, if not to move to a post disciplinary world, to move to a more collaborative world. I think that encourages us to make sure we collaborate with our colleagues who may be in other areas, other fields, and other buildings.

We are also seeing major changes in the expectations of our users for the availability of information, the availability of us, and for when our services and our buildings are open. When I think back, let's say to my undergraduate and graduate school years, it never occurred to me not to conform to the expectations of the library--except about returning materials and getting fines! It would never occur to me, "Why should the library not be open on Saturday when I want it to be open?" and I don't. We're not quite seeing such docile behavior now from some of our users.

As for MLA, I said many times and will continue to say: I think we really need to be careful about not just existing for ourselves. We need to look outward, and see what we can offer the greater library profession. We need to find and nurture our associations, our partnerships with other professional associations, both library associations and scholarly associations. Really continue our programs and continuing education. I'm thinking most immediately of the web and our series with ALA that have been remarkably helpful, but not just with people in the association, but for people who work with music materials who aren't MLA members. We need to find our way into library school curricula, to make sure that people who may never call themselves a music librarian but are dealing with library materials will see those that are produced by MLA as resources for them in their jobs. And I think we need to think about, "Is MLA really thinking about all the kinds of institutions

and those there who handle music? Can we see that we have a place for them when they come, and that they want to come to us because they see that we have a place for them?"

VANDERMEER: I have to agree with everything you said. It's absolutely true. I was struck by David Hunter's presentation yesterday--about his new way of thinking about the research that he does, how interdisciplinary it is, and how different it is from what we have been used to think was music scholarship. I think it's true in terms of music performance as well. So, if we think of things in terms of the individuals that we serve, whether they be the public in public libraries or conservatory students or musicology students, I think things are going to look very different. I see the three newest members of our musicology faculty at Chapel Hill doing extraordinarily interesting work that perhaps Donald J. Grout would never imagine to be musicology. Yet they teach musicology, and we call ourselves a small "m" musicology program, which means if you want to do field work and historical studies and critical studies and archival studies and all this, come to Chapel Hill. Very different than Chapel Hill used to be--a place for medieval and renaissance work. Most of our students are doing work in popular music these days or some aspect of ethnomusicology. And so, I think if I thought about what my job looked like 20 or 25 years ago and try to project that 20 to 25 years ahead, I would say I have no idea where we're going in 20 or 25 years. I couldn't imagine being where we are now 25 years ago! All I know is it's probably gonna look different. I also think that MLA has a place in that, as long as we are willing to think in terms of how new performers are performing and how young scholars are doing their work. If we're tied into that, I think we will be a viable profession. We have the ability to continue to work with our colleagues in larger libraries in other subject areas, because we have a lot of the same issues. We also have much to teach them. So, I think there will be an MLA in 25 years. It

MLA Oral History Insights, continued

will look very different than it does today. I think it'll be very exciting and that the kind of work that people will be doing that we're supporting is gonna be even more exciting!


POSTLUDE QUOTE from Q&A Segment:

VANDERMEER: I think it is important for all of us who have been in the profession for a long time to

see the potential in younger members, to encourage them, and to say, "Yeah--you might do well at that," or "I want you to be President of MLA one day!"

Additional recollections and words of wisdom were shared in the Question&Answer segment that followed the above shared program. For more, view the video recording of the complete session, captured by Katie Buehner (University of Iowa).

Diversity Scholarship Fund News

Lindsay Hansen, Diversity Scholarship Fundraising Subcommittee

Great news! Thanks to your generous donations and pledges, we have exceeded our goal of $10,000 to meet Judy Tsou's match!

In other good news, it is not too late to contribute:

Our overall goal is to endow the Diversity Scholarship Fund at $50,000 so that it is healthy enough to grant scholarships. While we are much closer thanks to your contributions and Judy's matching donation, we are still in need of additional donations. And the best part is, now you have the opportunity to give in any amount you choose whether it is a one-time or recurring gift!

Visit the Donate to MLA page for more information.

image of definition of diversity in a dictionary

logo of the California Chapter

Lindsay Hansen, Diversity Scholarship Fundraising Subcommittee and the California Chapter

During the recent business meeting of the California Chapter, the membership voted unanimously to contribute $500 to the Diversity Scholarship Fund. We challenge other chapters to contribute at any level--no amount is too big or small!

If your chapter has a healthy budget, please consider donating to this worthy cause!

More information can be found on the Diversity Fund Scholarship page.

Questions on how to send funds from your chapter? Contact the MLA Business Office.

THANK YOU to the members of the California Chapter for the contribution and the challenge!

scanned image of shape notes
From "The Duke of Guise: A Tragedy";
British Library digital collections, Flickr Commons

Conference [Planning] Reflections

Usually, this section of the MLA Newsletter includes the reflections of attendees at one of their first MLA conferences. This time, we have a special treat as we hear from the out-going Conference Manager, Jim Farrington. MLA owes Jim a debt of gratitude for his service in this position. Thanks, Jim!

By Jim Farrington, Out-Going MLA Convention Manager

Convention managers past and present, Jim Farrington and Diane Steinhaus

Jim Farrington, left, with Diane Steinhaus, his successor as MLA Convention Manager for the 2017-2018 meetings

On June 30th, I completed my last official day as MLA's Convention Manager (CM), a four-year run that started with two years as Assistant Convention Manager (ACM) (to Laura Gayle Green). MLA Newsletter Editor Michelle Hahn asked me to share some of the things I've learned from the experience.

One of the first things I was told was that you'll never look at hotels again the same way. And that's true, even when I travel with family and stay at the kinds of properties that are nothing like what we have to use for MLA meetings. The look and feel of hotel lobbies suddenly becomes important; how many registration desks can be used to

accommodate a throng of librarians checking out Sunday mornings is noteworthy; the proximity of grocery and/or drug stores, not to mention quick lunch spots, is taken into account (and you might be surprised at the number of otherwise fine hotels that we reject just based on location).

Another outlook that the job alters is the one you have of the membership. When we attend our meetings we tend to hang out with those who have shared interests and reasons for attending. However, the CM has to take into account a wide variety of opinions (and boy does the membership have them!) and needs, and then attempt to devise solutions that will serve most people, while constrained by the vagaries of space, money, etc. The phrase "you can't please all the people" is never more apropos. There are members who would be just as happy at the same airport hotel every year because they don't get out to see the locale. Others make the meeting a destination and may bring a spouse or family (which, I suspect, will be especially true in Orlando). As ACM, you are working with our vendors, all of whom are supporting the convention by renting table space in the exhibit area and therefore have anticipations of placement in the hall and hopes of bringing in hundreds of potential customers. The juggling act that occurs is a constant reminder of the very diverse needs and expectations of our attendees.

How the hotel and hospitality industry works--and makes money--is another eye-opening aspect of the job. I came on board just as we were really just starting our affiliation with a meeting/event support company. As that relationship has developed over the past four years, we are starting to reap some terrific benefits with our representative's long experience and evolving understanding of our organization's needs and operations. Once a region of the country is suggested by the board for the CMs to explore, the CMs target various cities for our representative to submit RFPs to hotels. Their proposals come back

Conference [Planning] Reflections, continued

to us in the form of a detailed spreadsheet with side by side comparisons of each property (number of rooms, square footage of meeting spaces, website address, preliminary concessions, etc.). From this information, the CMs choose which hotels to visit in person. For the past several years, we have tried to target two cities that were within driving distance. Sometimes the choice becomes obvious once we walk through the properties, and sometimes we have to weigh the pros and cons of each site very carefully.

"The juggling act that occurs is a constant reminder of the very diverse needs and expectations of our attendees."

At this point in the process, costs have not been a strong consideration. Often hotels with too high a room rate or food&beverage minimum are weeded out before we make the site visit. But more importantly, everything is negotiable. A hotel has a bottom line number that they would like to get from a meeting of our size. They make their largest percentage profit (75% on average) on room nights (MLA attendees typically account for about 1100 room nights for the week-this figure is higher if more attendees stay in the host hotel, which in turn helps MLA in negotiating the rest of

the costs). The second major source of income for them is food and beverage at 35% profit. Simply put, if we can provide them with more attendees staying on site, we become a more attractive business for them. Another thing that makes MLA more appealing is if we can reduce our need for meeting space, which opens up rooms that the hotel can rent for other purposes. That is how we were able to negotiate successfully with the Portland Hilton, a property that on paper seemed too expensive. If we meet certain metrics (e.g. a negotiated percentage of our room block), the meeting room space is provided gratis.

Being ACM/CM is a very demanding, yet equally rewarding job within MLA. There is a certain amount of pressure in putting on an annual party for 400 of your friends. You want them all to have a memorable experience. My time was certainly made easier with the great people I've worked with: Laura Gayle Green and Diane Steinhaus in CM/ACM roles, Jim Zychowicz and Katie Cummings in the MLA business office, four Program Chairs, Local Arrangements representatives, and of course dozens of hotel representatives in the last four hotels and the next three. I think the membership will be quite pleased with the locations of the next three meetings, and I look forward to being able to actually take in the meeting content from now on.

Website Highlight

Check out the "For Members" section of the MLA Website! Here you will find discounts from vendors, various legal and business documents for MLA activities, procedural handbooks and manuals, and access to both Notes and the online membership directory…all perks of being an MLA member! (Note: some features do require logging into the site.)

Plus, update your profile to stay connected to your colleagues!

screen capture of For Members section drop-down menu on website

Transitions & Appointments
Our best wishes to all those pursuing new or additional opportunities.

Sylvia Yang, Music and Performing Arts Librarian, DePauw University
Dustin Ludeman, Music Cataloger (Senior Librarian), New York Public Library
Sara Outhier, Music Librarian for Digital and Audio Services, University of North Texas
Darwin F. Scott, Mendel Music Librarian, promoted to highest rank of Senior Librarian at Princeton University

Not on the list but think you should be? Contact our Placement Officer!

In Recognition
We appreciate our Corporate Patrons and Corporate Members and their support of MLA.

Corporate Patrons
American Institute of Musicology
A-R Editions
Arkivmusic, Inc.
HARRASSOWITZ Booksellers&Subscription Agents
JW Pepper and Son
Naxos Music Library
OMI Old Music and Incunabula
Theodore Front Musical Literature Inc

Corporate Members
Alexander Street
A-R Editions
Ashgate Publishing Co
The Broude Trust
CD-A/V Source
G Schirmer Inc/Associated Music Publishers
Hal Leonard Corporation
Harmonie Park Press
Hit Songs Deconstructed
Maurice River Press, LLC
New World Records / DRAM
Paraclete Press, Inc.
Répertoire International de Littérature Musicale (RILM)
RIPM Consortium Ltd


Member Publications
Please send citations for items published or premiered in the past calendar year to John Baga via e-mail at Please follow the citation style employed below. You must be a current MLA member to submit citations.


Doi, Carolyn (University of Saskatchewan)
"Applying the Flipped Classroom Methodology in a First-Year Undergraduate Music Research Methods Course." Music Reference Services Quarterly 19, no. 2 (2016): 114-35.

McFall, Lisa M. (Hamilton College), Janet Thomas Simons, Gregory Lord, Peter J. MacDonald, Angel David Nieves, and Steve Young
"Collaborations in Liberal Arts Colleges in Support of Digital Humanities." In Technology-Centered Academic Library Partnerships and Collaborations. Edited by Brian Doherty. IGI Global, 2016.

Moore, Tom (Florida International University)
"Heinrich Soussmann: composizioni per flauto solo." Falaut (July 2016): 16-18.

"A Conversation with Alejandro Rutty." Sonograma 31, (June 2016).

"A Conversation with Sergio Oliveira." Sonograma 30 (April 2016).

J. Rémusat, Le Flûtiste Romancier: Romances Variées en forme de Fantaisies." Sonograma (April 2016).

"Un'importante collazione di Trii per tre flauti alla Sibley Library." Falaut (April 2016): 25-30.

"Chatham Baroque: Upcoming Recordings." Early Music America 22, no. 1 (Spring 2016): 57.

"50 Unknown Flutists - 1800 to 1850." University of Miami. January 29, 2016. Lecture.

"Mika Putterman." Early Music America 22, no. 2 (Summer 2015): 58.

Philpott, Lisa Rae (University of Western Ontario)
"The Drs. James L. and Margaret Whitby Music Collections, Music Library, The University of Western Ontario, London, Ontario, Canada." Fontes Artis Musicae 63, no. 3 (2016): 235-238.

Scott, Rachel (University of Memphis)
"Music Reference Sources: Analog in a Digital World." The Reference Librarian 57.4 (2016): 272-285.

Trescott, Paul T. (Trescott Research)
"Music in the Library." Public Libraries Online (April 2016).

"Privacy Laws, Libraries, and Librarians." Public Libraries Online (April 2016).

"Search vs. Research." Public Libraries Online (February 2016).

"Finding Answers III: Searching For the Right Questions." Public Libraries Online (February 2016).

"Finding Answers Part Two - Locating Resources." Public Libraries Online (December 2015).

"Finding Answers." Public Libraries Online (November 2015).

"Developing Book Donation Resources." Public Libraries Online (September 2015).

Ward, Jennifer (RISM Zentralredaktion), Martina Falletta and Alexander Marxen.
"Die RISM-Nutzerstudie: Überblick und erste Ergebnisse." Forum Musikbibliothek 37 (2016): 7-15.

"The Use and Reuse of RISM Data in Libraries." Journal of Electronic Resources Librarianship 28, no. 2 (2016): 129-133. DOI:

Books and Book Chapters

Clark, Joe C. (Kent State University)
"Librarians as Event Coordinators: Building Partnerships and Engagement through User-Centered Programs." In Marketing and Outreach for the Academic Library: New Approaches and Initiatives. The 21st-Century Academic Library Vol. 7. Edited by Bradford Lee Eden. Lanham, MD: Rowman and Littlefield, 2016. 37-45.

Palkovic, Mark (University of Cincinnati, retired) Wurlitzer of Cincinnati: The Name That Means Music to Millions. Charleston, SC: History Press, 2015.

Shetuni, Spiro J.(Winthrop University)
Albanian Traditional Music: An Introduction. Denver, Colorado: Outskirts Press, Inc., 2012.

Albanian Traditional Music: Gheg Music. Denver, Colorado: Outskirts Press, Inc., 2012.

Albanian Traditional Music: Tosk Music. Denver, Colorado: Outskirts Press, Inc., 2012.

Spotlight On…Military Music Libraries

Music Librarians in the Military: Marine Band Library&Archives
By Master Gunnery Sergeant Jane Cross, USMC, Chief Librarian of the US Marine Band Library&Archives

I'm often asked, "What is a typical day like in the Library?" As you know, there is no typical day, and below is just a sampling of the wide variety of issues and tasks handled by the United States Marine Band Library and Archives. Though we are not a public library, we answer approximately 500 outside requests for information and music each year from individual researchers, ensembles, and military bands both foreign and domestic.

  • Email: Does the Secretary of Labor rate musical honors? If so, what should be played?
  • Marine Band Musician: Do we have String Quartet No. 7 by Shostakovich? I'm thinking about programming it on a recital.
  • Phone call: I think my great-grandfather was either in the Marine Band or the Sousa Band. Can you tell me for sure? Would you have any photos?
  • Research and prepare scores and parts for the White House State Dinner in honor of the Nordic countries.
  • Phone call: "Is there any documentation about the standardization of 'The Star-Spangled Banner?'" (from the History Detectives television show, followed by an interview and broadcast on PBS)
  • Meetings: Help coordinate music preparation and program deadlines for our national tour, recording sessions, and educational chamber music series in local elementary schools.
  • Email: I would like to perform Elgar's "Crown of India" with my high school/community/college band. Where can I find that?
  • Build folders for a summer evening concert on the steps of the U.S. Capitol.
  • Marine Band Musician: I saw this on YouTube and I'd love to perform it. [This leads to two years of coordination with a rental agent in an Eastern European country to obtain the music and make the performance happen.]
  • Author: What are the ingredients in the cocktail named after your 18th director? [The Fanciulli: bourbon, vermouth, and Fernet Branca]

While responding to the many interesting inquiries can be fun, it is in addition to our primary mission, which is to support the full range of musical commitments tasked by the White House; the Head of Marine Corps Music Section/Division of Public Affairs; and the Director of "The President's Own." Supporting the many ensembles that the Marine Band can form from its 130 musicians means that the Library makes sure the right music is in the right place at the right time. With an average of more than 1,200 performances and rehearsals for band, orchestra, chamber ensembles, and commercial music groups appearing anywhere from the South Lawn of the White House to ceremonies, funerals, and the concert stage, it's a whole lot of "music on the move." When musicians win one of our auditions, many of whom graduate from your universities and conservatories, they work hard, and the library is right there keeping up with them, ensuring they have all the sheet music, reference materials, and listening resources we can provide to help them be successful and have great performances.

As primarily a performance library, we are members of the Major Orchestra Librarians' Association (MOLA), and our priority is the preparation of music for performance. This includes acquisition, cataloging, fixing page

Spotlight On…Military Music Libraries, continued

turns and rehearsal systems, errata, proper documentation of past performances, and preservation of approximately 100,000 titles of sheet music covering a wide variety of instrumentations, ensembles, and genres.

The Library also provides instrumentation information for upcoming performances to aid in personnel and equipment decisions. We handle copyright and licensing, serve as historians, edit all program and album liner notes, and manage subscriptions. One of the best things about working in our library, in addition to being surrounded by amazing music and the wonderful people who make it, is the wide variety of materials we get to work with and the many different types of tasks we undertake, from research, reference, and music preparation to serving as curators and archivists. We are privileged to have excellent support from the National Museum of the Marine Corps to help properly curate, preserve, and document approximately 1,300 historical artifacts related to our organization's history. The artifact collection includes items such as uniforms and instruments dating to the 1800s, and the majority of these holdings are related to the Marine Band's legendary 17th Director John Philip Sousa.

Unsurprisingly, the majority of our archival holdings are also related to Sousa, and this includes photographs, scrap books, papers, and ephemera. Artifact and archival holdings not linked to Sousa include donations that help illuminate the organization's 218-year history.

Sousa is credited with helping establish the Marine Band Library, appointing his percussionist brother George in 1898 as the first librarian to lay the foundations of our permanent collection. Today we are a full time staff of six, a dedicated team with a good sense of humor ready to acquire, license, prepare, edit, catalog, research, preserve, and perform "any and all other duties as assigned." We are all musicians enlisted in the Marine Corps, and we each hold at least a master's degree in music performance or a related field, including history, library science, and music education. The variety of education and experience each of us brings to the Library helps forge the dynamically creative team required to best serve our organization and our nation.

members of the staff of the marine band library

Left: (clockwise from top right) Master Gunnery Sergeant Jane Cross, Staff Sergeant Nishana Dobbeck, Staff Sergeant Tilden Olsen, Staff Sergeant Charles Paul, Gunnery Sergeant Kira Wharton

Right: (clockwise from top right) SSgt Charles Paul, GySgt Jennie Mills, SSgt Nishana Dobbeck, MGySgt Jane Cross, GySgt Kira Wharton, SSgt Tilden Olsen

members of the staff of the marine band library
News & Notes

Submitted by Jim Soe Nyun

I'd like to draw your attention to the Training section of the Metadata for Music Resources (MMR), a place on the MLA website where you can find opportunities for training in various aspects of metadata. These opportunities might be webinars, meetings, videos, classes, or anything else that you can use to learn more about various aspects of metadata.

One of the long-term goals of the MMR site is to allow parts of the site to be open to contributions from you, our dear readers. If you have access to the Metadata Training blog, you can post your announcement directly and it will feed directly to the Training page. Alternately, you can send the text of your training opportunity to me at and we'll post it for you. The announcement can be about training hosted by your organization, or about other training opportunities that you think would be relevant.

As an extra incentive, we'll be doing a brief demo of the site at MLA, so this could be a terrific chance for your announcement to get even more exposure in front of a live audience.

screen capture of metadata for music resources page

scanned image of music from the Musicians Birthday Book
From "The Music of the Poets: A Musician's Birthday Book"; British Library digital collections, Flickr Commons

Submitted by Lisa Shiota

The final version of the March 2016 Cincinnati Board meeting minutes, and a draft of the June Middleton Board meeting minutes are now available online. An updated Index to Board Policies is also posted--follow the link at the top of the page. As always, many thanks to Ray Heigemeir for posting these to the website.

Submitted by Matt Snyder

At its spring 2016 meeting, the MLA Board approved the creation by the Archives and Special Collections Committee of the Working Group on Archival Description of Music Materials. The Working Group is chaired by Elizabeth Surles, Archivist at the Institute of Jazz Studies/Rutgers University, and John Bewley, Associate Librarian Archivist at the University at Buffalo/SUNY.

The charge of the Working Group is to consider current archival description practices for music scores (manuscript, print, and born-digital) held by a wide range of repositories. Its ultimate goal is to create an MLA-endorsed guide to best practices for the archival description of music materials that can serve as a supplement to DACS (Describing Archives: A Content Standard, 2nd ed.). The Group intends to present the results of its work at the 2018 MLA conference.

News & Notes, continued

Submitted by Jim Farrington

In one of my last duties as Convention Manager, I wanted to let you all know that the Board has approved our budget proposal that keeps the registration rates the same as the 2016 rates in Cincinnati:

Early members $240
Early member 1st 3-years; paraprofessional/non-salaried/part-time; retired members $190
Early non-members $340
Reduced for work at meeting $140
Regular members $340
Regular non-members $440
Regular students $80
Single day $115
Accompanying person $115

Our hotel rate before, during, and immediately following the convention (for those of you mixing in some vacation time in the land of Mickey) is $185/night for single or double.

Submitted by Mark McKnight

As stated in the Association's Administrative Handbook: "All chapters may apply for funding from the national organization. They should apply to the chapter liaison (Vice-President/Past President) by the publicized deadline. The chapter liaison will present the applications to the Board of Directors for consideration. When grants of support are made to a chapter, the excess of the grant over the amount expended need not be reimbursed to the national organization but may be used by the chapter for projects of a similar nature. The chapter must provide a written report to the Board on how the entire grant was used."

Proposals that support the Goals of the MLA Strategic Plan will be given preference. Proposals for projects engaging other organizations (such as workshops or presentations) will receive special consideration.


Please note, according to the Fiscal Policies Handbook: "Chapter grants must be in round numbers in increments of no less than $50."

For FY2015-2016, the Board approved a chapter grant of $600 to the SEMLA Chapter to support the work of Chapter Oral History Project.

Further information and application materials may be found on the Chapter Grants page of the MLA website.

Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions.

Submitted by Paula Hickner and Janelle West

The renewal "grace period" for MLA membership expired at the end of July. If you haven't renewed yet, this means you will no longer be able to access the MLA online directory; instead, when you log in you will be taken directly to the "Renew Your Membership" page. You may also see an interruption in the delivery of your copy of Notes.

Atlantic, California, Greater New York, Midwest, and Pacific Northwest chapter members may now renew/ join chapter membership at the same time.

Don't forget! You can donate to MLA when you renew. Click here to read about MLA's funds!

If you haven't done so, please take a few minutes to renew your membership in MLA. Membership rates and categories for 2016-2017 are as follows:

News & Notes, continued

  U.S. non-U.S.
Regular members $130 $140
Institutional members $165 $175
Student members $65 $75
Retired members $95 $105
Sustaining members $260 $280
Corporate patrons $780 $790
Corporate members $480 $490
Paraprofessional/Non-salaried/Part-time members $75 $85

If you need help logging in, or if you have any questions, please contact the MLA Business Office.

Excerpted from submissions by Casey Mullin and Michael Rogan

After the 2015 Music Library Association meeting in Denver, when MLA members expressed concern about the discontinuance of the FirstSearch service, MLA President Michael Rogan and MOUG Chair Bruce Evans established the Joint MLA-MOUG OCLC Search and Discovery Task Force with the following charge:

"Investigate OCLC's WorldCat Discovery Services to determine if it will be sufficient to meet the needs of music users. If the Task Force determines that WorldCat Discovery Services is not sufficient, it will recommend a course of action to petition OCLC to continue to provide the FirstSearch interface for WorldCat after December 31, 2015. It will also recommend a course of action to petition OCLC for specific improvements to WorldCat Discovery Services to meet the needs of music users."

The Joint MLA/MOUG OCLC Search and Discovery Task Force submitted its report, with cover letter, to both Boards in May 2016. The report was then sent to select OCLC management staff, including CEO Skip Prichard.

The report includes recommendations based on the checklist assembled by Rebecca Belford in her article, "Evaluating Library Discovery Tools through a Music Lens," Library Resources&Technical Services 58, no. 1 (January 2014): 49-72, These recommendations are specific to WorldCat Discovery Services and address areas of functionality that are critical to music users.

A response from Mary Sauer-Games, Vice President, Global Product Management, states the following:

"The OCLC Search and Discovery Task Force Report is particularly timely, given the recent announcement that we will build a new version of FirstSearch. That new version will deliver the full-featured WorldCat searching valued by many FirstSearch users, including expert searchers in the music library community. Your recommendations will be helpful as we move forward with that product, as well as enhancements to search features in WorldCat Discovery."

We are encouraged by this response and hope that it, like the decision regarding a renewed life for FirstSearch, reflects a growing awareness of all users' needs. MLA and MOUG will continue to advocate for these improvements and work in cooperation with OCLC toward solutions that work for the music community. The MOUG Board will meet with OCLC staff during its August Board meeting to discuss the recommendations.

Please don't hesitate to contact Michael or Casey with any questions or comments. As Casey very well stated, "we owe the Task Force our immense gratitude for successfully fulfilling their charge and producing such an excellent and thorough report, which will provide a framework for seeking these improvements for years to come."

News & Notes, continued


The New England Chapter of MLA is accepting proposals for the fall meeting at Bennington College in Bennington, VT on October 14, 2016.

Presentations should be 35--40 minutes in length. Please indicate if additional time is requested, subject to approval. Proposals must include:

  • Name(s) and affiliation(s) of presenters
  • Contact info (e-mail and phone number)
  • Title of presentation/panel
  • An abstract of 100-300 words
  • Additional equipment required beyond a computer, Internet access, projector, and speakers

Please send proposals to Jared Rex. The proposal deadline is August 21, 2016. Accepted presenters will be notified of their status by September 9, 2016.

The Texas Chapter of MLA is accepting proposals for the annual meeting at Hardin-Simmons University in Abilene TX, October 7-8, 2016. The deadline is Monday, August 29. Questions may be directed to Maristella Feustle.

Submitted by Jennifer Vaughn

The New York State-Ontario Chapter of MLA has a new website! Please use the new site to join or renew membership in NYSO, to access back issues of newsletters, past programs and meeting minutes, and to find information on our upcoming Fall Meeting in Toronto.

Big thanks go out to MLA's Web Manager, Katie Buehner, for her enormous help with the transition! I hadn't updated the (old) NYSO site for

a while, and when I tried to update a couple small things, found that it had met the same fate as Copyright for Music Librarians (which has since been relaunched). I couldn't log onto the server to update the HTML, and a lot of links were broken. Katie quickly put a new template for our chapter together, and I migrated everything over to the new site with help from Beth Kelly at Cornell. Katie fixed navigation and menu issues very quickly, and even found some nice images for us to use. YourMembership, the new content management system, is much simpler and friendlier than hand-coding, and NYSO's web site looks like it's joined the 21st century at last.

I'd been wanting to update the look of the website for a while, but never had time. So this was kind of an unexpected opportunity, and it was pretty painless. Other chapters should consider making the transition and integrating with the MLA web platform!

Submitted by Reed David

It gives me great pleasure to announce that the 2017 meeting of the Pacific Northwest Chapter of MLA will be held in Anchorage! This will be the northernmost meeting of any portion of MLA ever held, surpassing the mark set by the Mountain-Plains chapter's meeting in Edmonton in 2015. The chapter has not chosen dates for it yet, but it will probably be some time in July. All of you are invited; if you have never visited Anchorage (or Alaska, for that matter) but have been looking for a reason to do so, here you go!

advertisement inviting readers to buy something at the MLA shop on cafe press

News & Notes, continued

Submitted by Michelle Hahn

In the fall of 2012, the Membership Committee of the Music Library Association conducted the first of a series of surveys of student members, recent graduates and new professionals to garner information about their status in the field, their connection to the organization, and their perceptions about the role of MLA in music librarianship. Ninety-two people responded to that first survey. Though 80% of participants agreed to be included in future surveys, 26 stuck with us throughout the series.

A full report of the first survey can be found in MLA Newsletter no. 173. A number of great insights came from that initial survey, particularly in the ideas put forth by members for the benefits they would like to see as part of MLA membership.

All of the possible change scenarios (number of areas where a change could occur X number of participants) were examined throughout the set of surveys. The second and third surveys saw both positive and negative changes in perception of what MLA has to offer its members. In particular, mentoring saw a negative change over the course of the surveys, while areas such as professional development, organizational responsiveness, and conferences saw a dip in round two but recovered in round 3. Only career services maintained a highly positive perception throughout the 3 surveys.

The most important benefits of MLA membership became evident as they emerged throughout the responses. By far the greatest perceived benefits of participation in MLA were networking with peers, career resources, opportunities for professional

development/involvement, training, and mentoring. It is also important to note that MLA-L was mentioned quite often as a boon to the organization. Respondents believed that MLA could also affect the profession the most with the following contributions: developing and maintaining standards of practice, producing scholarly output (presentations, publications, etc. by members), and most importantly, advocacy and representing the interests of music collections and their champions.

The responses we obtained from participants brought to light some areas for improvement as well as ideas of ways we can increase our efforts and provide greater benefits to our members and the profession. We will be developing initiatives to bolster membership, working with other committees to enhance the member experience, and leading efforts to turn those ideas into reality. Though there were some issues of which we were aware, we learned of many unexpected perceptions of the organization and hope to utilize that enlightenment in a constructive way.

The complete report is available from the Board meeting agendas and supporting documents page of the MLA website.

Submitted by Joe Clark and Jonathan Sauceda

MLA members have been invited to participate in the 2016 MLA Survey of Personnel Characteristics, which builds on previous surveys in 1997 and 2009. The survey was sent via email directly to registered members of the organization. If you feel that you should have received the survey based on your membership but haven't, please contact Jonathan Sauceda or Joe Clark.

Institutions & Collections

Submitted by Liz Berndt-Morris

The Boston Public Library recently created a finding aid for the Minuetta Kessler Collection through the fantastic work of Simmons student and intern Catherine Hammer, supervised by music curator Liz Berndt-Morris. Minuetta Kessler was a pianist, composer, and music educator who lived and worked in the Boston area from the 1950s until her death in 2002; her collection is held by the Boston Public Library. She was an advocate for female composers and was involved with the New England Pianoforte Teachers' Association, the American Women Composers of Massachusetts, while cofounding Concerts in the Home.

The collection at the Boston Public library contains personal correspondence, performance programs as well as articles and reviews about her performances, manuscripts, published copies, and print masters that she retained after she self-published many of the works from her home. The collection can be searched on the BPL's website.


scanned image of a phonogram player
From "Thrilling Life Stories for the Masses"; British Library digital collections, Flickr Commons
In an effort to help preserve historic media-related periodicals, the National Recording Preservation Board has digitized the entire run of The Phonogram, published 1891-1893. It is available on, and will soon be indexed at the Media History Digital Library. The NRPB will follow suit with other serials in the future. Read more about it in a post from Mason Vander Lugt on the Association for Recorded Sound Collections Blog.

Submitted by MGySgt Jane Cross

scanned image of the table of contents from an encore book

Excerpt from table of contents,
Sousa Encore Books (Bassoon I)

The Sousa Band Encore Books are now available online for research.

It was tradition for John Philip Sousa's civilian band (1893-1932) to play two or more encores after each program selection, meaning that a program with 10 pieces on it could expand into 25. The encores contrasted with the preceding piece and could be popular songs or short classics, but most often they were Sousa's marches, pasted into ledger-sized books. These 44 encore books were donated to the Marine Band by Charles Walker Hyde in 1967, and they include occasional notes from Sousa Band members and many marches in their earliest known editions. The books have helped us understand Sousa's performance practice and instrumentation choices, which have proven invaluable as we continue to work on The Complete Marches of John Philip Sousa recording project. Read more about the collection here.



The 2016 IAML Congress, held in Rome, Italy, has concluded. Official reports from the various branches, commissions, committees, etc. are available, as well as presentation materials from sessions. The opening session was recorded and is available on YouTube.

The following Congress Diaries were submitted by attendees, reflecting on their time in Rome: 1. Hans Braun, Switzerland (in German) 2. Marianna Zsoldos, Hungary (in Hungarian) 3. Antony Gordon, United Kingdom (in English) 4. Anna Pensaert, United Kingdom (in English) 5. Massimo Gentili-Tedeschi, Italy (in Italian)

Also, check out#iaml2016 on your social media of choice to see what people shared about IAML Rome!


An Honorary Membership in IAML was conferred upon H. Robert Cohen, the music historian who first suggested the idea that we now know as

Répertoire Internationale de la Presse Musicale, or RIPM. Congratulations to Robert!


Fontes Artis Musicae, volume 63, no. 3 (July-September 2016) is now available online. This issue is on "Referencing Music in the Twenty-first Century: Encyclopedias of the Past, Present, and Future" and was guest edited by Tina Frühauf. It features articles by Markus Bandur ("Musikalisches Wissen und seine Geschichte als lexikographische Herausforderung. Das Handwörterbuch der musikalischen Terminologie"), Harry White ("The Lexicography of Irish Musical Experience: Notes towards a Digital Future"), Hanns-Werner Heister ("Paper is Patient: The Loose-leaf Lexicon Komponisten der Gegenwart and The Digital Future"), Anna-Lise P. Santella ("The Ideal Dictionary: Impossible Tasks, Frank Adjustments, and Lexicographical Innovations in the Creation of Grove Music Online"), and Laurenz Lütteken ("Music(ologic)al Knowledge in the Digital World: Preliminary Notes concerning MGG Online"), along with a number of book reviews.

MLA Calendar

75th Annual Meeting, MWMLA
Bloomington-Normal, IL
October 13-15, 2016

Fall Meeting, NEMLA
Bennington, VT
October 14, 2016

Annual Meeting, NYSOMLA
Toronto, Ontario
October 14-15, 2016

Annual Meeting, SEMLA
Durham, NC
October 20-22, 2016

Annual Meeting, TMLA
Abilene, TX
October 7-8, 2016

MLA Board Meeting
Bloomington-Normal, IL
October 13-15, 2016