Library and Information Services, Royal Conservatoire of Scotland

Friday, 29 January 2016

When a Reference leads to a Book not a Job Offer

RefMe saves your references!

 If you write essays or other assignments, you'll have been told to make sure you cite your references;
in other words, you must say which author you're quoting from.  (Some people talk about references, some about citations.  Same thing.)

There are many ways of citing your references - basically, they're different ways of formating your references so that they all give the necessary bibliographical information in a prescribed way.  Here at RCS, we use the Harvard referencing style.  (Click here to find a page about it. You'll have to be an RCS student or staff member to access this page.)

It's very handy to automate the procedure a bit, by using referencing software.  There are a number of free apps available.  RefMe is one of the latest, and probably the simplest.

How to use it?  Sign up here.

  1. If you're citing books, go to your library catalogue or a website like Amazon or Copac.  
  2. Highlight and copy the title of the book you've quoted from, and make a mental note of the date the book was published.
  3. Tell RefMe that you're creating a reference.
  4. Tell RefMe you're listing a book.  A search box will appear.
  5. Copy and paste the book title in.
  6. Choose your book from the list of results that will appear - make sure the date is right. Click on it.
  7. Bingo! Your first reference.
  8. Once you've got all your references listed, you can export it various ways, eg as a Word document.  That can be copied and pasted at the end of your essay.

Thursday, 28 January 2016

Stand Like a Superhero? Really?

Tea-breaks in the Whittaker Library involve wide-ranging conversations.  Today, we feel obliged to share this with you, because it offers wisdom that could help you to win friends, influence people, get jobs and even promotions ....

Why You May Want To Stand Like a Superhero, 

The author is Robin S. Rosenberg, PhD, and she wrote her blogpost for Psychology Today, in July 2011.

(If you see the library staff standing like superheroes all of a sudden, it's because we've now realised where we've all been going wrong.  The only way forward, is up!)

Lots of Lovely Fiddle Music - Historical Music of Scotland (

The new Historical Music of Scotland website is live - click hereThere are 22 fully digitized historic fiddle tune books, and full details of another 200, including where to find them, who their compilers were, and what kind of collections they published.  So if you're looking for old fiddle tunes and plenty of insight into how they were harmonized for the cellist, this is the place to go.

There's an article about the website (and the research project that led to it) in the February copy of Box and Fiddle magazine.

We kept a blog before the website went live. It's here at Bass Culture in Scottish Musical Traditions and shows you some of the things we were looking out for.

 You can now buy i-Tunes recordings from the Concerto Caledonia website, with CDs due to be released very soon.

The website will be launched with a concert in London - it's in Café Oto in Dalston on the 11th of February.

Many a Good Tune Played on an Old Fiddle - introducing MIMO

Musical Instrument Museums Online

Think about all the old musical instruments that have survived through the centuries. What stories they could tell! If only we knew who had played them, and what they played!

Sometimes, we do know.  Especially if they're in a musical instrument museum.  RCS lecturer Dr Simon van der Walt thought we might like to share details of this online facility - MIMO.  It stands for Musical Instrument Museums Online.

Do take a look and see what you can find.  For a start, Edinburgh isn't that far away ....

Friday, 22 January 2016

Burns - a Poet for the 21st Century

Monday is Burns night.  Singers will be out "warbling their wood-notes wild"*, and half of Scotland will be eating haggis and neaps. But Burns and his poems are also the stuff of serious scholarship:- 

Editing Robert Burns for the 21st Century - a project at the University of Glasgow

Did you need some Burns songs to sing?  

  • Check our catalogue here.  Registered staff and students, if you need to borrow anything, then remember we're open until 20:30 on Burns Night (Monday). 
  • Try our music streaming services if you're looking for recordings to accompany that haggis dinner!  
  • Whittaker Library Electronic Resources for staff and students - click here.

When YouTube comes into its own!

  • The Ayoub Sisters play Scottish Melodies. We found this YouTube video which you might enjoy - click here. 
  • Robyn Stapleton and Claire Hastings sing 'Logie o' Buchan' at the Star Folk Club 2014. Another YouTube clip for you! Here. 

Warbling their wood-notes wild: when talking about traditional songs, 
Burns's generation frequently used this phrase, referencing the poet Milton! 

Friday, 15 January 2016

The contribution of women to Trinity Laban's Faculty of Music

Interested in the role of women in early music colleges?  Read Emma Greenwood's latest blogpost!  It's good to see what other music conservatoire libraries are sharing with their readers.

Without Any Apologies for Their Sex: A Celebration of Women at Trinity Laban’s Faculty of Music

Singers, Do You Act? Interesting article about variety theatre

  'When Singing Was Acting: Song and Character in Variety Theater'

 Staff and students at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland can read a new article by Gillian M. Rodger, entitled 'When Singing Was Acting: Song and Character in Variety Theater' - it's in the latest edition of Musical Quarterly (Spring-Summer 2015).

Our registered staff and students can read it online using the Conservatoire's subscription to Musical Quarterly. Access it via our library website, using our institutional login.

The whole journal is about Tin Pan Alley; it's well-worth a look:-

  • “Making Songs Pay”: Tin Pan Alley’s Formula for Success / Daniel Goldmark
  • Hogan’s Tin Pan Alley: R. F. Outcault and Popular Sheet Music / Keir Keightley
  • When Singing Was Acting: Song and Character in Variety Theater / Gillian M. Rodger
  • Richard Rodgers: Collaborator / Charlotte Greenspan
  • My Father’s Musical Time Capsule: On Tin Pan Alley Songs (1920–50), Sheet Music, and the American Dream That Got Away / Rose Rosengard Subotnik
  • Arlen’s Tapeworms: The Tunes That Got Away / Walter Frisch

Monday, 11 January 2016

A Retrospective Look Back at Boulez

Readers will probably have heard of the sad death of Pierre Boulez last week.  

Our professional association reminds us that Antony Gordon wrote an article for our website on the occasion of Boulez's 90th birthday last year, so we share this with you today:-