Skip to Main Content

University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Finding Individual Songs

This guide will help you locate individual songs in printed music and on recordings. It also includes resources for verifying work titles and using song indexes.


Welcome to the Music & Performing Arts Library (MPAL) guide to Finding Individual Songs! This guide will help you locate individual songs, both in printed formats and on recordings. 

For help searching the library catalog for songs, check out the tabs to the left

As you read through this guide, if you realize you need a refresher on searching the catalog for music materials, make sure to read through our Finding Scores & Recordings page, which will give you some helpful background!

If you are just hoping to browse the Library for vocal materials, check out the box below for suggestions to guide your search!

Call Numbers for Browsing

No particular song in mind? Browsing the shelves for materials can be a great way to explore the collection. If you find one or two items in the catalog that seem promising, look on the shelves at the items surrounding them. Note that all scores can be found on the second floor of MPAL. 

If you're not sure where to go in the library to browse one of these call number ranges, please ask us at the service desk and we'll be happy to point you in the right direction or walk you to the shelves! 

We've highlighted some call numbers below to guide you:   

  • Songs - M1613 or M784.3 (then alphabetically by composer) 
  • Song cycles - M1621.4 (then alphabetically by composer)
  • Anthems and motets - M783.4 or M2020 (then alphabetically by composer)
  • Masses - M2010 and M2011 (including Requiems)
  • Cantatas and oratorios (also includes some Masses and Requiems) - M2023 or M783.3 (then alphabetically by composer)
  • Opera full scores - M1500 (then alphabetically by composer)
  • Opera vocal scores - M1503 or M782.1 (then alphabetically by composer)
  • Excerpts from musicals and operas - M1507-M1508    
  • Popular music of the U.S. - M1630.18 
  • Popular music of Great Britain - M1741.18                            
  • Motion picture music - M1527.2               
  • Television music - M1527.7                 
  • Wedding songs - M1977.W4