Selected Bibliography of Film Music Materials for Librarians

Note: This bibliography was compiled for a presentation at the Annual Meeting of the Music Library Association in Washington, DC, February, 2004. It is not intended to be exhaustive but to be a starting point for collection development in this area. It will be updated as time permits. Any feedback is most appreciated.




OP= out-of-print

Surveys (including Compositional Techniques)


Bazelon, Irwin. Knowing the score: Notes on film music. New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold Co., 1975. OP


Brown, Royal S. Overtones and undertones: Reading film music. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1994.


Burlingame, Jon. Sound and vision: Sixty years of motion picture soundtracks. New York, NY: Billboard, 2000.


Burt, George. The art of film music: Special emphasis on Hugo Friedhofer, Alex North, David Raksin, Leonard Rosenman. Boston: Northeastern University Press, 1994.


Davis, Richard. Complete guide to film scoring: The art and business of writing music for movies and TV. Boston, MA; Milwaukee, WI: Berklee Press, 1999.


Eisler, Hanns and Theodor W. Adorno. Composing for the films. London; Atlantic Highlands, NJ: Athlone Press, 1994, 1947.


Evans, Mark. Soundtrack: The music of the movies. New York: Hopkinson and Blake, 1975. OP


Faulkner, Robert R. Music on demand: Composers and careers in the Hollywood film industry. New Brunswick, NJ: Transaction Books, 2003, 1983.


Film music 1. ed. Clifford McCarty. New York: Garland, 1989. OP


Film music: Critical approaches. ed. K.J. Donnelly. New York: Continuum, 2001.


Film score: The view from the podium. ed. Tony Thomas. South Brunswick, NJ: A.S. Barnes, 1979. OP


Flinn, Caryl. Strains of Utopia: Gender, nostalgia, and Hollywood film music. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1992. OP (on demand)


Gorbman, Claudia. Unheard melodies: Narrative film music. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1987. OP


Hagen, Earle. Advanced techniques for film scoring: A complete text. Los Angeles: Alfred Pub. Co., 1990. OP


———. Scoring for films: A complete text. Los Angeles: Alfred, 1989, 1971. OP


Kalinak, Kathryn. Settling the score: Music and the classical Hollywood film. Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 1992.

Karlin, Fred and Rayburn Wright. On the track: A guide to contemporary film scoring. New York: Schirmer Books: 1990; New York: Routledge, 2003.


Karlin, Fred. Listening to movies: The film lover's guide to film music. New York: Schirmer Books, 1994.


Knowing the score: Film composers talk about the art, craft, blood, sweat, and tears of writing music for cinema. Interviewed by David Morgan. New York: HarperEntertainment, 2000.


London. Kurt. Film music. Translated by Eric S. Bensinger. New York, Arno Press, 1970.


MacDonald, Laurence E. The invisible art of film music: A comprehensive history. New York, NY: Ardsley House Publishers, 1998.


Manvell, Roger and John Huntley. The technique of film music. New York: Communication Arts Books, 1967, 1957. OP


Marill, Alvin H. and James L. Limbacher. Keeping score: Film and television music, 1988-1997. Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press, 1998.


Movie music, The film reader. Ed. Kay Dickinson. London; New York: Routledge, 2003.


Music and cinema. ed. James Buhler, Caryl Flinn, and David Neumeyer. Hanover, NH: University Press of New England, 2000.


Northam, Mark and Lisa Anne Miller. Film and television composer's resource guide: The complete guide to organizing and building your business. Milwaukee, WI: Hal Leonard Corp., 1998.


Palmer, Christopher. The composer in Hollywood. London; New York: Marion Boyars, 1990, 1992.


Prendergast, Roy M. Film music: A neglected art. 2nd ed. New York: WW Norton, 1992.


Rona, Jeffrey C. The reel world: Scoring for pictures. San Francisco: Milwaukee, WI: Miller Freeman Books, 2000.


Skiles, Marlin. Music scoring for TV & motion pictures. Blue Ridge Summit, PA: Tab Books, 1976. OP


Swynnoe, Jan G. The best years of British film music, 1936-1958. Woodbridge, Suffolk; Rochester, NY: Boydell Press, 2002.


Thomas, Tony. Film score: The art & craft of movie music. Burbank, CA: Riverwood Press, 1991.


———. Music for the movies. South Brunswick, NJ: A. S. Barnes, 1973. OP


Timm, Larry M. The soul of cinema: An appreciation of film music. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall, 2003.



Dictionaries and encyclopedias


Craggs. Stewart R. Soundtracks: An international dictionary of composers for film. Aldershot, Hants, England; Brookfield, VT: Ashgate, 1998.


Encyclopedia of music for pictures. Manchester: Ayer, 1970, 1978.


McCarty, Clifford. Film composers in America: A filmography, 1911-1970. New York: Oxford University Press, 2000.





Anderson, Gillian B. Film music bibliography I. ed. H. Stephen Wright. Hollywood, CA: Society for the Preservation of Film Music, 1995. OP


Benjamin, Ruth and Rosenblatt, Arthur. Movie song catalog: Performers and supporting crew for the songs sung in 1460 musical and nonmusical films, 1928-1988. Jefferson, NC: McFarland, 1993. OP


Deutsch, Didier C. MusicHound soundtracks: The essential album guide to film, television and stage music. Detroit: Visible Ink, 2000. OP


Harris, Steve. Film and television composers: An international discography, 1920-1989. Jefferson, NC: McFarland, 1992, 2001.


Stubblebine, Donald J. Cinema sheet music: A comprehensive listing of published film music from "Squaw Man" (1914) to "Batman" (1989). Jefferson, NC: McFarland, 1991.


Wescott. Steven D. A comprehensive bibliography of music for film and television. Detroit: Information Coordinators, 1985. OP





Bruce, Graham. Bernard Herrmann: Film music and narrative. Ann Arbor, MI: UMI Research Press, 1985. OP (on demand)


Cooper, David. Bernard Herrmann’s Vertigo: A film score handbook. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 2001.


Danly, Linda. Hugo Friedhofer: The best years of his life: A Hollywood master of music for the movies. Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press, 1999, 2002.


Daubney, Kate. Max Steiner’s Now Voyager: A film score handbook. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 2000.


Henderson, Sanya Shoilevska. Alex North, film composer. Jefferson, NC: London: McFarland, 2003.


Schelle, Michael. The score: Interviews with film composers. Los Angeles: Silman-James Press, 1999.


Siddons, James. Toru Takemitsu. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 2001.


Smith, Steven. C. A heart at fire's center: The life and music of Bernard Herrmann. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1991, 2002.



Special topics


Altman, Rick. Silent film sound. New York: Columbia University Press, 2005.


Atkins, Irene Kahn. Source music in motion pictures. Rutherford, NJ: Fairleigh Dickinson University Press, 1983.


Film music collections in the United States: A guide. eds. H. Stephen Wright and Stephen M. Fry. Hollywood, CA: Society for the Preservation of Film Music, 1996.


Hayward, Philip. Off the planet: Music, sound, and science fiction cinema. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2004.


Larson, Randall D. Music from the house of Hammer: Music in the Hammer horror films, 1950-1980. Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press, 1996.


———. Musique fantastique: A survey of film music in the fantastic cinema. Metuchen, NJ: Scarecrow Press, 1985.







The Cue Sheet

Film Music Magazine


Film Score Monthly


Hollywood Reporter


The Journal of Film Music












Brigham Young University Film Music Archive


Film Score Monthly




Marco Polo




Silva Screen


Varese Sarabande






Film Music Network


Film Score Monthly


FILMUS-L (listserv)


Music and Moving Pictures (listserv)


Screen Archives


Soundtrack Collector




Themes and Variations





©2004, 2005 Leslie N. Andersen


Last updated: January 2005