MGG Online, Die Musik in Geschichte und Gegenwart

Access is now enabled to the encyclopedia Die Musik in Geschichte und Gegenwart, known in its electronic form as MGG Online.  Access on campus is via this link:

Off campus access is only available via the EZproxy server at this link:

A user choosing to access MGG Online off campus via Google, say, will not have access as MGG Online has not yet implemented Shibboleth.

A link to the encyclopedia can be found in the Cambridge LibGuides Databases A-Z and a record for it will be created in January 2018 for retrieval via iDiscover.

Die Musik in Geschichte und Gegenwart (MGG) is a general encyclopedia of music.  MGG is encyclopedic in the true sense of that term: it offers in-depth articles on every aspect of music as well as many related areas such as literature, philosophy, and visual arts.  MGG Online contains the second print edition of MGG, published from 1994 to 2008, as well as current, continuous online updates and additions.

MGG Online traces its origins to the Protestant encyclopedia Die Religion in Geschichte und Gegenwart, seeing music not as a “neutral subject but one that compels action from the individual”, like religion, a subject whose “elemental roots in daily life, experience, and practice were axiomatic to its editors”.

Growing from the turbulent post-war years of Germany, the encyclopedia will now, the editors explain, unfold – unlike a print edition – as a “living project which alters, expands, and renews itself continuously” online:

The goal is the reliable, precise, and authoritative production of musical knowledge with clearly designated responsibilities and boundaries: in short, a publication to compete with other publications. Even in the online era, knowledge must not be reduced to a medial monoculture—alas, a most persistent and perilous illusion and one to which digital players are highly susceptible. What is more, the organization of knowledge is not the same thing as the infinite reproduction of everything which can be known. Were that the case, the digital encyclopedia would be simply a rather trivial replica of the wildest dreams of a positivist age. Order and delimitation are, generally speaking, the results of cogent decisions by professionals, often after long and heated deliberations. And these decisions are intended, above all, as guidance for nonspecialists. Such is the objective of an encyclopedia in the digital age, with all the advantages offered by nonlinear access.

RILM Abstracts of Music Literature integration

As the University has subscription access to the RILM Abstracts of Music Literature, users can take advantage of links out from MGG Online to the RILM Abstracts which launch a search on RILM for the subject of the article in MGG.

Google Translate in MGG Online

The globe icon to the top right of any article in MGG links you to the Google Translate feature in the top bar of your MGG window in a browser.

 Photograph by Terry O’Neill / Getty

RALF VON APPEN, Art. Bowie, David, BIOGRAPHIE, in: MGG Online, hrsg. von Laurenz Lütteken, Kassel, Stuttgart, New York: 2016ff., published 2017-10-06,

Oxford Music Online and Oxford Art Online platform changes

Oxford University Press advises that on 7 December 2017 the location of articles and pages in the Oxford Music Online and Oxford Art Online will change.  OUP expect the “majority” of articles to re-direct.

We don’t know what the new URLs for the articles will be before the 27 November, so OUP advise that “pages within the site will need to be updated after the launch”.  You should update any bookmarks you may  have to articles when the new URLs are discoverable after 27 November.

The URLs for the platforms will remain the same:


Complimentary titles with Grove Art Online will no longer be available on the Oxford Art Online site.  Instead, these titles will be discoverable through cross-searching on Oxford Art Online.  A user clicking on one of the search results for these titles, will be taken to Oxford Reference to view the content.  The Oxford Reference links to these titles are here:

Concise Oxford Dictionary of Art Terms

Encylopedia of Aesthetics

Oxford Companion to Western Art


Similarly, complimentary titles with Oxford Music Online will no longer be available on the Oxford Music Online site.  Instead, these titles will be discoverable through cross-searching on Oxford Music Online.  A user clicking on one of the search results for these titles, will be taken to Oxford Reference to view the content.  The Oxford Reference links to these titles are here:

Oxford Dictionary of Music

Oxford Companion to Music

The exception is Encyclopedia of Popular Music, which will no longer be available via Oxford Music Online and will only be accessible via Oxford Reference, here:


The Cambridge LibGuides Databases A-Z and iDiscover records will be updated over the course of the next two to three weeks.


Note on presence of playable Sibelius examples

Grove Music Online used to offer playable musical examples supported by the Scorch browser plugin, which (as of March 2016) was no longer supported by all Internet browsers. In light of this, OUP has temporarily converted the playable examples to static images. The new Grove Music Online site retains the static images. OUP appreciates that playable musical examples have been a valued resource on Grove Music Online, and apologize that this functionality is currently not available: “Our editors and technical teams have begun work to identify and implement a suitable replacement for the Scorch plugin that supports the scholarly needs of the Grove Music Online community and will be sustainable as we continue to build our playable example library in the years ahead. This is currently a rapidly evolving area of web technology, and we appreciate your patience”.


If you have any questions please write to  Thank you.

Berliner Philharmoniker Digital Concert Hall trial

The University of Cambridge has trial access to the Berliner Philharmoniker Digital Concert Hall. 

Access to the Concert Hall is via this URL:

A pop-up window will appear which prompts you to register with your email address and password or to log in with an existing account. After registering / logging in, you can view all concerts, films and interviews in the Digital Concert Hall free of charge on all supported devices from the network of your institution or from home.

The trial access continues until 30 November 2017.

Please send your thoughts and feedback on this trial to Anna Pensaert: email:

Each season, around 40 concerts are broadcasted live and they can also be viewed at a later date in the concert archive.  The archive already contains hundreds of recordings with all the great artists of classical music. There are also fascinating documentaries and bonus films.

Das Bild zeigt den Innenraum der Hamburger Hauptkirche St. Michaelis (Michel), Author: Je-str

Interior of St. Michael’s Church, Hamburg, where Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach’s cantata Heilig Wq 217 – which forms the introduction to the concert of Brahms’ German Requiem in the Digital Concert Hall – was first performed.  “This ʻHeiligʼ,” according to the composer, “is an attempt … to attract far greater attention and sensation through ordinary harmonic progressions than any anguished chromaticism is able to achieve. It is my swan song …, and should serve to ensure that after my death I am not too soon forgotten.”–Digital Concert Hall programme notes.

History of Humanities

New on ejournals@cambridge A-Z : History of Humanities.

From the University of Chicago Press website for the journal:

History of Humanities, along with the newly formed Society for the History of the Humanities, takes as its subject the history of a wide variety of disciplines including archaeology, art history, historiography, linguistics, literary studies, musicology, philology, and media studies, tracing these fields from their earliest developments, through their formalization into university disciplines, and to the modern day.

“By exploring the history of humanities across time and civilizations and along with their socio-political and epistemic implications, the journal takes a critical look at the concept of humanities itself.”

Now available to the University of Cambridge electronically from volume 1 (2016) to present.

Access History of Humanities via the ejournals@cambridge A-Z or at this link.

Intersections: Canadian Journal of Music


From the Erudit platform for the journal:

Intersections: Canadian Journal of Music / Intersections : revue canadienne de musique, formerly Canadian University Music Review / Revue de musique des universités canadiennes, a bilingual journal, was founded in 1980 by the Canadian University Music Society. As the principal Canadian outlet for refereed scholarly research, it is supported by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.

The global aim of the journal is to publish research by scholars from around the world. Its particular mandate is to represent Canadian research to other Canadians, and thus to support awareness and interaction among Canadians interested in music research, as well as to represent Canadian research and Canadian music to the world.

The current focus of the journal is in large part upon the traditional fields of music scholarship and research, but studies in popular music and culture are playing a greater role in the journal’s output.”

Now available to the University of Cambridge electronically from the Erudit platform,from 2005 to present.

Access Intersections.Canadian Journal of Music via the ejournals@cambridge A-Z or at this link.

Image credit: “Leonard Cohen, Ottawa 2012” by rparson86  on Flickr-

Naxos Music Library

We are pleased to inform that we are now able to make the Naxos Music Library available to all Cambridge University members both on and off campus.  Previously the NML was only available via one PC in the Anderson Room at the University Library, so this should be a very useful extension of access for musicians and musicologists in Cambridge.

The Naxos Music Library can be access on or off campus at this link and via the Cambridge Libraries A-Z of eresources.

Naxos Music Library is the world´s largest online classical music library.  Currently, it offers streaming access to more than 129,850 CDs with more than 1,986,700 tracks of both standard and rare repertoire.  Over 800 new CDs are added to the library every month.

The library offers the complete Naxos and Marco Polo catalogues plus the complete catalogues or selected titles from over 650 record labels, with more labels joining every month. Along with classical music, jazz, world, and pop/rock are also represented.

MGG Online: Die Musik in Geschichte und Gegenwart

The University of Cambridge has recently enrolled in a free, 30-day trial of MGG Online, a new digital encyclopedia that includes the second edition of Die Musik in Geschichte und Gegenwart (MGG) as well as regular updates and newly written articles.

The free trial begins on 19 January 2017 and expires on 18 February 2017.

You can access MGG Online at

Please send your feedback on MGG Online to  before the trial expires.

MGG Online includes more than 16,000 articles covering almost every aspect of music and its history.

Already at the launch of MGG Online (November 2016), some 200 articles have been fundamentally updated, numerous minor revisions carried out, and articles rewritten.

  • Platform with highly developed search- and browse capabilities, e.g. biographical and subject articles, categories (occupations, among others), bibliographies, article sections, and many others
  • Work lists sortable by different categories
  • Google Translate integration into over 100 languages for users who do not speak German
  • Easy toggling between different articles versions
  • Cross references and links to related content in RILM Abstracts of Music Literature
  • An interface compatible with mobile and tablet devices