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Book Cover of The Classical Music Companion

Intro to Classical Music

Classical music can be one of the most daunting topics for someone to get interested in. Although other forms of art such as literature and visual art have been around for centuries as well, classical music somehow seems like it existed for hundreds of years and then kind of stopped being created, leaving it stuck in the past and somewhat difficult to start discovering.

Anything Goes

Musical Theatre

Who doesn’t love a good show? Let’s look at an overview of one of America’s great homegrown institutions as well as some of the people and shows that have contributed to its history. Anything Goes: A History of American Musical Theatre by Ethan Mordden

Clothes, Clothes, Clothes. Music, Music, Music. Boys, Boys, Boys by Viv Albertine

Girls to the Front: Women, Punk, and Memoir

It's time to read n' rock.

Come into the studio, on tour, and to the afterparty with some of the most intriguing and commanding women of punk. Historically, music biographies place men center stage while women have been relegated to the margins.

Something Wonderful

We've Got Magic To Do

American musical theater inside and out

Here in Washington, we’re starting to get into the summer: the 90 degree weather, the building humidity and the drawing call to the beach. The transition from spring to summer, however, reminds me of my favorite awards show of the season: the annual Tony Award ceremony. As you take your last opportunity to review the season’s cast recordings, catch up on show highlights online and make your award predictions, why not pick up a book about this incredible art form?

Holy or Broken cover

Five Books About One Song

Expertise.  It's a nice thing to have, but it often takes time and effort that we don't have.  Luckily, it's fairly easy to be an expert on one very, very specific thing, like a song.  Think about it.  Would you rather spend 2 years studying American music history, or one afternoon learning all there is to know about "White Christmas?" Here are five books that will have you on your way to faking pop music expertise. 

Black is a Color cover

Summertime Fun: Art & Music

Many art and music festivals occur over the summer. Whether you're a fan, a developing artist or musician, or just curious, below are a selection of titles for your reading pleasure. Black is a Color by Elvan Zabunyan

Choral Masterworks by Michael Steinberg

A Place in the Choir

an overview of choral music

Choral singing is a very popular pastime for many Americans. According to Chorus America, a nonprofit organization representing choruses of all types (from community to professional), one out of 10 Americans sings in a chorus, choir or other vocal music ensemble. The titles profiled below offer a great introduction to choral music, the history and culture of specific choral groups, and the choral experience. 

DC locals Cigarette play on the Woodridge rooftop on July 12, 2017

Summer of Punk Reads!

History in the Making with the DC Punk Archive

After the closure of the Martin Luther King Jr. Library for renovation earlier this year, we wondered how to continue the joy and community built around the DC Punk Archive Basement shows hosted there since October 2014 to promote the DC Punk Archive collection. Why not start with our newest DC Public Library building?

Mo meta

"Allow Me to Re-Introduce Myself..."

Memoirs from the Hip Hop Community

Hip-hop has firmly rooted itself worldwide as an important part of modern day culture. Clothing, vernacular, art and literature have all been influenced by hip-hop culture. As of late, some notable rappers and hip-hop producers have thrown their hat in the literary ring, giving us the stories behind some of their greatest hits. Here are some popular memoirs written by hip-hop notables.

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