Musical score collection, books await discovery

Many people come to the library for the newest books or DVDs. There is one collection of song books many patrons do not know are on the library shelves and are amazed when they are discovered. This is Tiffin-Seneca Public Library’s musical score collection. This collection of music books ranges from folk music, hymns, rock, and popular music. It contains the Books for Dummies series, fake books, and music for more accomplished players. There is music for everyday playing, special occasions, or for just the fun of it.

The Books for Dummies series offers music books for all types of music. Beautiful Piano Solos for Dummies (782.42 PER) includes songs from musicals, such as Bali Ha’i, Days of Wine and Roses, The Way You Look Tonight and S’Wonderful. More popular songs are included, too, such as My Heart Will Go On, Candle in the Wind, Unchained Melody and Wonderful Tonight. In addition to the music, performance notes are provided for the songs. Jazz Piano Standards for Dummies (786.2 PER) offers jazz songs from musicals and jazz classics, such as Beyond the Sea, Cheek to Cheek and A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square. Performance notes are provided as well.

The Essential Book of Wedding Music (781.587 ESS) contains most of the classical favorites for the entire wedding ceremony and are written for the organ. Titles such as Ave Maria with versions by J.S. Bach/Charles Gounod and Franz Schubert, Cannon in D (Johann Pachelbel), Trumpet Voluntary (Henry Purcell), and Bridal March from Lohengrin (Richard Wagner) can be found in this book.

In addition, there are several books that can be used just for the fun of playing. Feel Good Fun (781.64 FEL) contains music from the 1960s and 1970s with titles such as ABC (Jackson 5), Brandy (Looking Glass), Hooked on a Feeling (Blue Swede), and Steppin’ Stone (The Monkees).

Also in the just for fun category are the popular fake books. These books contains the melodies, lyrics and chords for songs, otherwise known as lead sheets. This makes it easier for the musician to improvise or “fake” playing a song that is unfamiliar. The Beatles Fake Book (782.42166 BEA) contains music for the piano and for the guitar with titles such as All My Loving, Can’t Buy Me Love, Norwegian Wood (This Bird Has Flown), Yellow Submarine and Yesterday. The Ultimate Pop Rock Fake Book (782.42165 ULT) continues the “improvisation” with all songs written in the key of C (no flats or sharps), and all titles are listed alphabetically and chronologically from the 1950s to the 1990s. Song titles include Goodbye Yellow Brick Road (Elton John), River of Dreams (Billy Joel), Girls Just Want to Have Fun (Cyndi Lauper) and Another One Bites the Dust (Queen).

Sometimes “hidden” collections contain amazing things. Tiffin-Seneca Public Library’s musical score collection has a songbook for almost everyone. If it’s music for a special occasion or just for the fun of playing, there is a hidden treasure for every musician.


Jo Anne Schiefer is the library’s technical services manager.