Friday, December 13, 2013

End-of-Semester Blocks

All materials checked out by students or alumni are due Wednesday, December 18. Any student or alumnus with overdue materials or excessive fines may be subject to a bursar block, which will prevent them from receiving their diploma or checking in for upcoming semesters as well as restrictions on library privileges.

Please see a library professional staff member if you have any questions.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

RIP Jim Hall

Revered jazz guitarist Jim Hall died December 10 at the age of 83.

As the National Endowment for the Arts noted in naming him a Jazz Master in 2004:
Jazz guitarist Jim Hall's technique has been called subtle, his sound mellow, and his compositions understated; yet his recording and playing history was anything but modest. He recorded with artists ranging from Bill Evans to Itzhak Perlman and performed alongside most of the jazz greats of the 20th century. The first of the modern jazz guitarists to receive an NEA Jazz Masters award, his prowess on the instrument put him in the company of Charlie Christian, Wes Montgomery, and Django Reinhardt.
NPR Jazz's A Blog Supreme has a full obituary:

Remembering Jim Hall, A Different Sort Of Guitar God

A few highlights from his works in our collection:

  •  Jim Hall Live! (CD 22994) Grove Music Online calls it "an example of his most fertile work."
  • The Bridge, Sonny Rollins (CD 2685) From the NEA: "The interplay between Rollins' fiery solos and Hall's classic guitar runs make this one of jazz's most essential recordings."
  • Jim Hall Jazz Guitar Master Class: Principles of Improvisation (LVD 475)
  • Exploring Jazz Guitar (MT580 .H27 1990)
  • Jazz Guitar Environments: Jim Plays 5 of His Unique Compositions, Fully Transcribed (MP126 .H355 J5 1994)

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Inspiration for the Coen Brothers' Folk-Themed Film

Joel and Ethan Coen's new movie about the Greenwich Village folk scene of the early 1960s, Inside Llewyn Davis, is loosely based on the life of Dave Van Ronk. The New York Times has an article about the connections:

For a Village Troubadour, a Late Encore: The Singer Who Inspired Coen Brothers’ New Film

The library has the source material, Van Ronk's memoir written with Elijah Wald, The Mayor of MacDougal Street (ML420.V37 M3 2005).

We also have CDs by Van Ronk, including Inside Dave Van Ronk (CD 11978), that inspired the Coen brothers' movie title, and two method books on fingerstyle guitar.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Remebering Nelson Mandela

As the world morns the death of Nelson Mandela, our library might not be the obvious place to turn to take in the full impact of his legacy. But a look at works in our collection related to Mandela highlight how influential he was as well as the breadth of our collection.

Start with The Winds of Change: A Journey Through the Key Music and Moments That Gave Birth to a Free, Democratic South Africa (CD 31547-31548). It includes both music and spoken words, such as Hugh Masekela's protest song "Bring Him Back Home" and Mandela's inauguration speech. Masekela's song and other apartheid protest songs appear on Amandla!: A Revolution in Four-Part Harmony (CD 21529), the soundtrack to the documentary Amandla! (DVD 966) about the role of music in the fight for freedom in South Africa.

Hear from the man himself in Long Walk to Freedom with Connections: The Autobiography of Nelson Mandela (DT1974 .A3 2000).

46664 was Mandela's prison number, and after his release he gave it to a global HIV/AIDS prevention and awareness campaign as a reminder of the sacrifices he made for a cause he believed in. We have recordings of several concerts to benefit the campaign:
Some other highlights:
  • Key Events in African History: A Reference Guide by Toyin Falola (eBook) includes the chapter "The Fall of Apartheid and the Advent of Nelson Mandela’s Government, 1994–99."
  • 33 Revolutions per Minute: A History of Protest Songs, from Billie Holiday to Green Day by Dorian Lynskey (ML3780 .L96 2011) includes a section on "Nelson Mandela" by the Special AKA.
  • Although The African Typic Collection (CD 24051) is a collection of music from Cameroon and Cape Verde, Koko Ateba's track is entitled "Nelson Mandela (Will Never Give Up)."

What Can I Get RIGHT NOW? How to Use Limits for Instant Gratification

It's late in the semester, so you don't want to waste your time looking for things that aren't available immediately. Earlier in the semester, you might place a hold on a checked-out book or request a journal article via interlibrary loan because it's not in our physical or electronic collection. But deadlines are fast approaching, so let the library help you with instant gratification.

When searching our catalog, use the Advanced Search, and check the "Limit to Available" box. This will eliminate any resource where all the copies are checked out, damaged or otherwise unavailable. This is particularly useful when you're looking for a song that appears in lots of different scores.

Some of our databases, such as Oxford/Grove Music Online and our eBooks, are completely full-text, but many of our databases have a combination of full-text articles and citations only, which tell you where you can find an article without providing the full text. If you are too pressed for time to look in our print collection of magazines and journals or even to check a different database for electronic access, you can often limit your search results to those with full-text availability. Each database handles it slightly differently, although there are similarities in the same family of databases. Here's an example from Academic Search Premier from EBSCOHost, and it looks the same in EBSCOHost's Music Index and Business Source Premier.

If you're not finding what you need with using these limits, you might need to take more time. But let our resources do the work for you when they can.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Archives Update: Dean Earl Finding Aid

Dean Earl

Thanks to the work of Anne Mansella, archives intern from Simmons College's Graduate School of Library and Information Science (GSLIS), a new archives finding aid has been completed and posted online for the Dean Earl papers (BCA-010). This collection is comprised of pedagogical arrangements created and/or compiled by distinguished pianist, faculty member, and alumnus Dean Earl as teaching aids for Berklee Piano Department courses in harmony and piano performance. The arrangements consist mainly of popular music and jazz standards, as well as musical exercises. These papers have also been scanned and are available online as part of the college archives' virtual display page. The physical collection is approximately 4.5 cubic feet and may be accessed by appointment on-site at the Stan Getz Library. Email or call 617-747-8001 to schedule an appointment or to learn more about Berklee's archival collections.