Become familiar with your topic by researching music reference resources, including:
Make a list of search terms relevant to your topic, such as:
|Performers, composers, contributors||Lorde, Shostakovich, Arturo Toscanini|
|Musical styles, genres, forms, traditions, works||Renaissance motets, rockabilly, sonata-allegro form, Japanese gagaku (court music), Porgy & Bess|
|Geographic Locations||Papua New Guinea, Louisiana,8th arrondissement of Paris, Florence, Boyle Street|
|Time Periods||Classical, 19th Century, 1939-45|
|Approaches||Gender studies, anthropological, cognitive, Schenkerian|
After doing background reading and identifying search terms, turn your terms into research questions.
You may find that:
Adjust your topic accordingly. Here are some examples:
|Search Terms||Draft Research Question||Adjusted Research Question|
|Rolling Stones, African American music, cultural appropriation, Let it Bleed (album)||
How did the Rolling Stones' appropriation of African American impact their musical style?
|How did the Rolling Stones' appropriation of gospel music singing on "Gimmie Shelter" from Let It Bleed impact their musical style going forward?|
|Glenn Gould, sound recording technology, Goldberg Variations||
How did Glenn Gould's extensive use of sound recording technology affect the authenticity of his performance?
|How did Glenn Gould's extensive use of sound recording technology on his recording of Bach's Goldberg Variations, particularly the 6th variation, affect the authenticity of his performance?|
|Carnatic music, theme and variations, Tyāgayya (composer), "Meru Semana" (piece)||
How did Tyāgayya's use of rhythmic theme & variation in the kriti "Meru Semana" compare with its use by other Carnatic composers of the same period?
|How did Tyāgayya use rhythmic theme & variation in the kriti "Meru Semana"?|