Thursday, March 29, 2012

New Projects and One of My Very Own

Some new projects have happened since my last post (which was before spring break). I helped give a library tour to yet another prospective professor, and it is cool to find out what they would add to the collection if they got a job here. For instance, this one professor was more into pop music and our collection does not have much material on the subject. New professors can really transform the library in that sense, as well as online resources they recommend. I also found full scores and recordings of Bruch pieces that a former professor requested. Instead of looking up WorldCat results, I looked up the pieces on websites that sell sheetmusic, such as Arkivmusic, Theodore Front, JWPepper, and SheetMusicPlus (which is what I use when I buy my own scores).

I also edited our music research guide (accessible through the library homepage). Tim is proud that our research guide has the highest number of views than those of other academic areas. The count is now 2,496 views this year... but that could just be because Dr. Dorman made it his homepage. I added references (and my own little descriptions) to the page that conservatory professors and staff recommended: University of Oregon DigitalBach (mass in G minor) and the Library of Congress Victrola Book of the Opera.They are interactive, multimedia digital resources for musicians to use, including interactive manuscripts with linked lectures, notes, and recordings. I also added the Library of Congress National Jukebox which has a plethora of historic public domain recordings.

Most recently, I was able to develop my own project on Baroque Opera scores, which has been a plan of mine since I applied for this internship. My reason behind it is because I have had trouble finding the sheet music for some early opera repertoire assigned in lessons, specifically Alceste by Handel and Alceste by Lully. This project involved researching the most commonly performed Baroque operas, seeing which full scores our library has, and which ones we should acquire. I searched WorldCat for this, and oftentimes the library record is in a foreign language. My knowledge of French, and working knowledge of Italian and German are actually useful in a librarian position! So that was fun and I felt accomplished afterwards. I must admit when I applied I thought special project would mean a display on the main floor of all the scores I found and writing up some historical background. This was easier, but maybe that'll be in the future when we acquire the new scores.

My next project will be giving another Information Literacy Session for Dr. Robertson's American Music and Dance class. Their project is an oral history of American music of their choice. I will be showing them what music resources the library offers; books and audio as well as electronic resources. I decided that my research paper topic on Apache music from last year would provide a good example of resources we have. I used MusCat, Interlibrary Loan, JSTOR, external sites, and oral/written communication with people I met on the San Carlos Apache Reservation last January. I will also probably talk about citing such sources, as well as how to use a concept map to create keyword searches and connect the ideas of the paper.
That's all for now!

Thursday, March 1, 2012

A Variety of Things

So it's been a while since my last post. I'll just clue you in as to what I've been doing the past two weeks. I did some score cataloging for Lina. Cataloging is so complex, but I feel like when you remember all the steps and repeat them, it becomes less foreign. It's also a challenge to finish all the work because it is overwhelming going through records and trying to find the perfect one for our library. Some records have wrong editions or dates... there's a lot of work that goes into what the average student sees on their side of MusCat or WorldCat. Outside of cataloging, I have been helping two students find examples of program notes for their senior recitals. One student had composers whose birthdates were nowhere to be found on the web. A big question is how does one cite composers without a known birthdate? Put a circa date or nothing at all? The internet broadway databases did not seem to find fault in having bios without mentioning DOB. But for a recital program there is a strict outline and date of birth is required. Anyway, we never figured out the answer to that question because Lina saved the day by looking up authority records in OCLC (cataloging software). Librarians have access to information that no one else has, like the CIA. It's pretty cool (though probably not as cool as the CIA). Additionally, I looked up library resources on Irish music, and incorporated them into the program for the Cormorant's Fancy concert at Notes at Noon tomorrow. [See their website:]. I also hung flyers for the event, which I'm used to doing for gospel choir. I'm also in the process of looking up a score for percussion ensemble. Yesterday I joined Tim in giving a library tour to a prospective ethnomusicology professor. It reminded me of my first library tour when I was a prospective student! I think next time though we should talk about the 4th floor before we get up there since the students who were studying there seemed pretty annoyed with our tour. There was some not-so-subtle coughing. Anyway, as you can see, I do a lot of different tasks that relate to libraries and music. So far, I enjoy doing all of them.

Busy Times

Last week was a busy busy week. I had my first solo reference desk shift, as well as one day of filming! My first reference shift went really well. I had a few standard “do you have scissors” questions, but otherwise, real research questions! Initially it was nerve-wracking, but as I was able to successfully help the students, it became less so.  All in all it was pretty exciting, and really nice to be able to concretely help someone else. Since then I’ve had some tough questions, but I am trying my best, asking for help when needed, and taking it question by question.
Filming on Monday afternoon was good.  Unfortunately, we only got three first-years to participate. Nevertheless, three is better than zero, and if nothing else, it was good practice and offered some important insights into what does and does not work. New filming is scheduled to occur on Friday March 2—this time students are being asked to e-mail ahead of time if they’d like to participate. Hopefully, fingers crossed, this will work! If not, it’s back to the drawing board J
I’ve also been working on re-evaluating the children’s book collection with Sunni and Meggan. Meggan and I have made a big excel spreadsheet in order to examine the amount of use the collection has had over the years. Usually Excel and I have an antagonistic relationship; however, I am finding I actually enjoy examining this data. It must be the subject!
Fun facts: here are ten of the most highly used children’s materials here in Musselman Library:

Total Check-outs
Internal Use
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
J.K. Rowling
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
J.K. Rowling
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
J.K. Rowling
Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone
J.K. Rowling
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
J.K. Rowling
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
J.K. Rowling
The Giver
Lois Lowry
The Magician’s Nephew
C.S. Lewis
My world of fairy tales : stories from Grimm, Perrault, and Andersen
Jane Carruth
The Butterfly Night of Old Brown Bear
Nicolas van Pallandt

That’s all for now!