Enjoy a CovidSafe visit to the National Library.

A musical tour through Trove

A musical tour through Trove
Tips and tricks on finding music resources
16 October 2017

Accompany us on a musical mystery tour through Trove, focusing on all the wonderful music collections you can find within, plus a few extra searching tips and tricks for finding specific collections along the way.

The tour includes objects in museum collections, like the drum pictured below from the Australian Jazz Museum, digitised sheet music, biographies, posters and more. 

Picture of bass drum

Musical Instrument. Australian Jazz Museum. http://trove.nla.gov.au/work/208708519

 First stop: Music

Our first stop on the tour is in the Music, Sound and Video zone and the National Library’s digitised sheet music collection. 

Sheet music

Lumsdaine, Jack (1930). Since Ma's gone mad on community singing. D. Davis & Co, Sydney, http://trove.nla.gov.au/work/24572209

This collection contains music which is either out of copyright, by Australian composers, or published in Australia between 1840 and 1939.

When searching the Music, Sound and Video zone, the filters are your friends. Type your keywords into the search box, run your search, and then select options under "Refine your results" to filter what you find. For instance, search by theme such as “World War” and sort by ‘printed music’, ‘decade’ and ‘freely available’.

Trove screenshot

There are two other ways to focus your search on the National Library’s digitised music collection (and this works across the entire Library’s digitised content). Type "nla.obj", including quotations marks into the search box in the Music zone, then filter by printed music. 

Trove screenshot

You can also use the advanced search form. Add your keywords and any other filters (such as "printed music") in the Format section, then choose ‘Trove Digital Library’ from the Library search and drop-down menu section.

Advanced search results

Once you’ve found the music you are seeking, in a couple of clicks you can open it in our digital viewer, allowing you to turn the pages, download it, cite it, buy it and share it.

Trove screenshot

 Second stop: Pictures

The next stop on our tour is the Pictures zone. Trove has a wealth of music-related ephemera including concert postersmusic programs and artwork relating to musicians.

Some of the best things in Trove are the pictures contributed by our Trove community through Flickr. By adding your images to Trove’s Australia in Pictures group, you’re helping us see everyday Australia, including our musical life.

Picture of music festival

Shula (2006). Nymagee Outback Music Festival. http://trove.nla.gov.au/work/192322568

Third stop: Diaries, Letters and Archives

We continue on our tour to the Diaries, Letters and Archives zone.

Trove screenshot

The image above is the Finding Aid for Miriam Hyde’s papers. Within it, you can easily identify what the collection holds, jump to the items which have been digitised and locate the ones which haven’t been digitised. While digitised content is growing at a rapid rate, many items remain in physical object form. In this instance, Trove acts as your locator beacon for particular items.

Final stop: People

The final stop on our musical tour of Trove is the People and Organisations zone. This zone aggregates biographical, relationship information and resources about the people and organisations who have shaped Australia. 

Trove screenshot

Within each record, there are name and dates, short biographies with links to more information, related people and organisations, curated lists of resources by and about the person or organisation, and canned searches of Trove for other mentions of them.

Trove screenshot

If the organisation contributing the biography to Trove has included it, you’ll also find the person's field of activity. Once you've selected a record in the People and organisations zone, you can search for other records in Trove with the same listed occupation. For example, in the Miriam Hyde record above, you can find other composers by clicking on the first link in Field of activity. 

We hope you’ve enjoyed this short tour of the music in Trove. However, there's so much more to be found and we’d love to hear about any new surprises you uncover. Please share them below, or contact us.

Miriam Hyde portrait

Brady, Mary. (1985). Portrait of Miriam Hyde, http://nla.gov.au/nla.obj-136207916