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  • Prices of Music Monographs and Scores as Reflected in Notes, 2011–2016

Books and scores listed here are obtained from this journal’s “Books Recently Published” and “Music Received” columns. Publications with imprints before 2014 are not included in the 2016 figures. No distinction is made between paperback and hardback editions, or between volumes issued with accompanying materials (CDs, CD-ROMs, etc.) and those without. In determining prices, hardback edition prices are chosen over paperback and electronic versions. Pricing does not include any electronic versions this year. Books and scores are counted according to the number of titles rather than the number of volumes.

Price trends for books are given as a whole and also by language: English, French, German, Italian, and Spanish. Out of 609 books from the “Books Recently Published” columns in 2016, 609 (100 percent) have been used in calculating this year’s price trends. The 2016 figures included 0 books with imprints before 2014 and 0 books without available prices. Broken down by language, the total number of books included in this year’s figures is: English 565 of 565 (100 percent), French 9 of 9 (100 percent), German 27 of 27 (100 percent), Italian 3 of 3 (100 percent), and Spanish 5 of 5 (100 percent).

Data for scores as a whole is given first, followed by six score categories. Categories of scores used in “Music Received” do not always correspond directly with categories in this column. In those cases, this compiler has placed the score in the most appropriate or closely related category. “Music Received” columns for 2016 listed 449 scores. Of the 449 scores, 361 (80 percent), met the criterion of having an imprint date of 2014 or later, and were not choral octavos. Prices were available for all scores compiled in this survey.

All prices are reported in U.S. dollars and reflect retail prices; they do not reflect discounts or special sale pricing. When given, prices listed in the “Music Received” columns are used in compiling the data. The “Books Recently Published” columns do not include prices. Prices not given in Notes were obtained from a number of online sources including, but not limited to: and its various international sites [End Page 235] (; GOBI Library Solutions (; Theodore Front Musical Literature (; and individual publishers’ sites. Prices were converted to U.S. dollars on 30 April 2017 using the Universal Currency Converter (

Although every effort was made to collect and report data accurately, errors and inconsistencies may exist; please use the data with this in mind. This column is intended to show general trends in pricing of music materials, and should be used only as a guide to collection-development planning.

The definitions for the categories are:

Monographs: Books that are typically classified in the Library of Congress classification schedule at ML or MT. All books with an imprint date of 2014 or later, whether issued as installments in a publisher’s continuation under a distinctive series title or issued individually, are included.

Historical and monumental editions: Critical editions of scores usually representing specific ethnic, national, geographical or chronological repertories, or the compositions of a particular individual. These scores are typically classified in the Library of Congress classification schedule at M2, M3, and M3.1. Historical and monumental editions usually appear with critical apparatus, and include facsimile editions not intended primarily for performance. Titles issued with parts or an accompanying volume of critical notes are counted as one item.

Large instrumental works: Orchestral works, concertos, wind ensembles, and band music. Full scores present the notation for all the performing forces required by a composition simultaneously, by means of vertical and horizontal alignment and placement upon each page.

Multivoice vocal works: Operas, oratorios, choral works, and musicals. Both full and vocal scores are included. Vocal scores present the text and notation for all the vocal lines required by a composition, but present the notation for all the accompanying instrumental forces condensed and arranged for a single keyboard instrument. Choral octavos are excluded.

Chamber ensembles: Scores typically featuring any combination of two to nine solo...


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pp. 235-242
Launched on MUSE
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