Notes: Quarterly Journal of the Music Library Association

Publication Profiles > LIS Scholarly Journals > Notes: Quarterly Journal of the Music Library Association

 

Publication analysis


About the publication

Title: Notes: Quarterly Journal of the Music Library Association

Website: http://www.musiclibraryassoc.org/?page=Notes

Purpose, objective, or mission: Per their website, Notes is the journal of the Music Library Association and since 1934 has offered “its readers interesting, informative, and well-written articles in the areas of music librarianship, music bibliography and discography, the music trade, and on certain aspects of music history.”1

Target audience: Primarily music librarians, but also musicologists, musicians, and music lovers.2

Publisher: Music Library Association, Inc.3

Peer reviewed? Yes.4

Type: LIS scholarly. Notes is a top-tier humanities scholarly journal. It is peer-reviewed, and contributors are almost exclusively academic music librarians and/or musicologists preeminent in their field. This is a publication primarily by and for scholars.5

Medium: Print and online.6

Content: Issues typically contain an editorial section, general articles on music and music librarianship,7 and reviews of books, periodicals, and media materials.8

Frequency of publication: Quarterly.9

About the publication’s submission guidelines

Location of submission guidelines: http://www.musiclibraryassoc.org/?page=Notescontributors

Types of contributions accepted: According to the journal’s submission guidelines, “Notes welcomes submissions of interesting, informative, and well-written articles in the areas of music librarianship, music bibliography, the music trade, and discography, and on certain aspects of music history.”10 Unsolicited reviews are not accepted, but persons who wish to become reviewers for the publication “are invited to send a curriculum vitae and a statement delineating their special areas of interest and competence to the appropriate editors.”11

Submission and review process: Articles should be submitted in electronic form as an email attachment. A brief author note should be included as the fist (unnumbered) note. The article should be followed by an abstract of not more than 250 words. Manuscripts are first read by the editor for “general suitability,” and then are subjected to a double-blind peer review process. Once a submission is accepted, the author is informed of the conditions governing that acceptance.12

Editorial tone: Not specified.

Style guide used: The Chicago Manual of Style, 16th edition.13

Conclusion: Evaluation of publication’s potential for LIS authors

As the quarterly journal of the Music Library Association, Notes clearly belongs to the library and information science literature. Music librarianship, however, is still largely the domain of librarians who are also scholars in the field of musicology–they have advanced degrees, teach, and publish in both disciplines. As such, publishing in Notes is only an option for LIS authors with a great deal of expertise in both librarianship and some area of musicology, such as music history, music theory, or the music trade. Being published in Notes would be a huge boost to the career of any LIS author who could manage it, and it would be sure to impress almost any tenure committee.

 

Audience analysis


About the publication’s readers

Publication circulation: According to Editor Jim Cassaro, 2,200 copies of each issue of Notes are printed; 2,000 of these are sent to Music Library Association members (individual and institutional) and individual subscribers.14

Audience location and language or cultural considerations: Notes is the quarterly journal of the Music Library Association.15 According to a profile of that organization’s membership that was published in Notes, as of 2000 93% of MLA’s members work in the United States, so the bulk of this publication’s readers are American.16 That said, according to Cassaro the publication is “global in nature, and certainly in its readership.”17 The journal is published in English, but foreign languages (especially the musical languages: French, German, Italian, and Latin) are often included in quotes, citations, reviews of foreign-language materials, etc.18

Reader characteristics: According to the profile of MLA’s membership cited above, the average age of MLA members is just over 49 years old with a standard deviation of 12.5 years (meaning 2/3 of MLA members are between the ages of 37 and 61). Of the 213 members responding to the survey, 54% were female, and 44% male (the remaining 2% chose not to respond to this question). A demographic study of the readers of Notes would likely yield similar results. “Most MLA members have undergraduate education in music, but with a fairly wide spread of actual majors. However, those MLA members who pursue graduate work (in addition to the MLS) have a much narrower focus, and tend to specialize in musicology. 206 MLA members (97%) had at least one graduate degree. 134 (63%) had either the MA or MM, and 43 (20%) had a doctorate in music.”19 From this we can extrapolate that most readers of Notes share a professional interest in music and/or musicology.

According to the same profile, MLA members work:

  • In academic/conservatory libraries (58%)
  • In public libraries (13%)
  • In other types of libraries (archives, etc.) (12%)
  • As educators (7%)
  • In publishing (3%)
  • Retired (13%)

(Note: 18% of respondents indicated multiple categories)20

The readership of Notes likely includes many scholars and students in music, musicology, and related fields from outside the LIS professions, too.

Knowledge of LIS subject matter: Of the MLA members who responded to the surveys used in the profile cited above, “147 (69%) had an accredited MLS, and 7 (3%) had a doctorate in library science.”21 The majority of the readers of this publication can therefore be said to be familiar with LIS subject matter.

Conclusion: Analysis of reader characteristics and their potential impact on authors

Notes readers are a very educated group of people who typically have advanced degrees in both library science and musicology. It’s reasonable to assume that they expect a comparable expertise from the publication’s authors, so Notes is probably a venue that should be left for authors with that kind of background. Writers who do publish in Notes can assume that their readers are familiar with the terminology of both the music/musicology and LIS fields. According to Editor Jim Cassaro, the publication is including more articles on music librarianship itself than ever before, so that’s a good body of subjects for prospective authors to draw on.22 Scholarly language is appropriate for this publication.

Last updated: October 31, 2014


References

Show 22 footnotes

  1. Music Library Association. (2014). Notes, The Quarterly Journal of the Music Library Association. Retrieved from http://www.musiclibraryassoc.org/?page=Notes
  2. Music Library Association. (2014). Notes, The Quarterly Journal of the Music Library Association. Retrieved from http://www.musiclibraryassoc.org/?page=Notes
  3. SerialsSolutions. (2014). Music Library Association. Notes. Ulrichsweb Global Serials Directory. Retrieved from http://ulrichsweb.serialssolutions.com.libaccess.sjlibrary.org/title/1402525129373/50046
  4. SerialsSolutions. (2014). Music Library Association. Notes. Ulrichsweb Global Serials Directory. Retrieved from http://ulrichsweb.serialssolutions.com.libaccess.sjlibrary.org/title/1402525129373/50046
  5. Music Library Association. (2014). Notes, The Quarterly Journal of the Music Library Association. Retrieved from http://www.musiclibraryassoc.org/?page=Notes
  6. SerialsSolutions. (2014). Music Library Association. Notes. Ulrichsweb Global Serials Directory. Retrieved from http://ulrichsweb.serialssolutions.com.libaccess.sjlibrary.org/title/1402525129373/50046
  7. Music Library Association. (2014). Notes, The Quarterly Journal of the Music Library Association. Retrieved from http://www.musiclibraryassoc.org/?page=Notes
  8. Music Library Association. (2014). Notes: Where to Send Materials for Review. Retrieved from http://www.musiclibraryassoc.org/?page=Notesmaterials
  9. SerialsSolutions. (2014). Music Library Association. Notes. Ulrichsweb Global Serials Directory. Retrieved from http://ulrichsweb.serialssolutions.com.libaccess.sjlibrary.org/title/1402525129373/50046
  10. Music Library Association. (2014). Notes: Information for Contributors. Retrieved from http://www.musiclibraryassoc.org/?page=Notescontributors
  11. Music Library Association. (2014). Notes: Information for Contributors. Retrieved from http://www.musiclibraryassoc.org/?page=Notescontributors
  12. Music Library Association. (2014). Notes: Information for Contributors. Retrieved from http://www.musiclibraryassoc.org/?page=Notescontributors
  13. Music Library Association. (2014). Notes: Information for Contributors. Retrieved from http://www.musiclibraryassoc.org/?page=Notescontributors
  14. Cassaro, J. (2008) Personal communication. Received September, 2008
  15. Music Library Association. (2014). Notes, The Quarterly Journal of the Music Library Association. Retrieved from http://www.musiclibraryassoc.org/?page=Notes
  16. Lesniaski, D., Cherubini, T., Coldwell, C., Griscom, R., Fisken, P., Koth, M., McBride, R., & Richardson, C. (2000). A Profile of the Music Library Association Membership: Report of the Working Group Surveying Music Library Personnel Characteristics. Retrieved from http://library.music.indiana.edu/tech_s/mla/person/notesarticle.htm
  17. Cassaro, Jim. (2008) Personal communication. Received September, 2008
  18. SerialsSolutions. (2014). Music Library Association. Notes. Ulrichsweb Global Serials Directory. Retrieved from http://ulrichsweb.serialssolutions.com.libaccess.sjlibrary.org/title/1402525129373/50046
  19. Lesniaski, D., Cherubini, T., Coldwell, C., Griscom, R., Fisken, P., Koth, M., McBride, R., & Richardson, C. (2000). A Profile of the Music Library Association Membership: Report of the Working Group Surveying Music Library Personnel Characteristics. Retrieved from http://library.music.indiana.edu/tech_s/mla/person/notesarticle.htm
  20. Lesniaski, D., Cherubini, T., Coldwell, C., Griscom, R., Fisken, P., Koth, M., McBride, R., & Richardson, C. (2000). A Profile of the Music Library Association Membership: Report of the Working Group Surveying Music Library Personnel Characteristics. Retrieved from http://library.music.indiana.edu/tech_s/mla/person/notesarticle.htm
  21. Lesniaski, D., Cherubini, T., Coldwell, C., Griscom, R., Fisken, P., Koth, M., McBride, R., & Richardson, C. (2000). A Profile of the Music Library Association Membership: Report of the Working Group Surveying Music Library Personnel Characteristics. Retrieved from http://library.music.indiana.edu/tech_s/mla/person/notesarticle.htm
  22. Cassaro, J. (2008) Personal communication. Received September, 2008
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