External Links

If you are interested in learning more about music theory, history, and performance, we recommend starting with these resources. Many of the books listed below are readily available for purchase online and may also be available in your local library.

Online Music Academies

Dave Conservatoire

Dave Conservatoire is "a free online music school, aiming to provide a world-class music education for everyone." Modeled on Khan Academy, Dave Conservatoire has videos, exercises, and progress tracking on music basics, reading music, and ear training. The site also offers ABRSM test preparation for grades 1-3 (ABRSM, the exam board of the Royal Schools of Music, is a UK-based organization that provides music assessment in 93 countries).

Khan Academy

Khan Academy offers self-paced learning in many subject areas with videos, exercises, and a "learning dashboard" that tracks your progress, all for free. In music, Khan Academy offers content on music basics, classical masterpieces, and the instruments of the orchestra.


Muted.io is "a magical collection of interactive music theory tools & visual reference pages to learn music online for free." This charming site does not use music notation, but has a variety of interactive keyboards and other tools to illustrate and play with musical concepts. Useful for ear training and seeing/hearing examples on a keyboard.

General Music Resources

Oxford Music Online

Grove is considered the definitive music encyclopedia, and the additional Oxford resources are excellent as well. The website is available by subscription only, but both paper copies and website access are available at many libraries.

Naxos Streaming Music

Naxos is subscription-based service offering high-quality streaming music. Many libraries offer access to Naxos.

Dolmetsch Music Theory and History Online

Naxos Music Genres


The Encyclopedia of Music, by Wendy Thompson and Max Wade-Matthews

An excellent introduction to musical instruments and composer biographies; concise, with lots of pictures.

A History of Western Music by J. Peter Burkholder, Donald Jay Grout, and Claude V. Palisca

One of the standard textbooks used in music history courses for undergraduate music majors.

Online Companion to A History of Western Music, 10th Edition

This website is the companion to A History of Western Music listed above. Purchasing a copy of the book also gets you a code to unlock the website. Alternatively, you can purchase access to the website directly.

Music in the Western World: A History in Documents, selected and annotated by Piero Weiss and Richard Taruskin

Source readings in music history.

"Why So Serious?" by Alex Ross

This article from The New Yorker considers the history of the classical concert.

Max Hunter Folk Song Collection at Missouri State University

Lyrics, notation, and audio recordings of American folk songs.

Physics of Sound

Physics of Music and Musical Instruments, Tufts University (PDF)

Music Science at the University of New South Wales (Sydney, Australia)

The Physics Classroom: Sound Waves and Music

The Physics Hypertextbook: Music and Noise

Hyperphysics: Sound


Naxos Musical Instruments Overview


Virtual guitar and chord guide.

Ear Training

Good Ear

Ricci Adams's MusicTheory.net


Aural Idiom Drill

The Musical Mind

Big Ears

Aural Skills Guide: Dictation, InTactus, Diktus


Majoring in Music

Informational site for high school students considering majoring in music in college and their parents.

Hofstra University School of Law: Music Law Resource Guide

Discussion and links to resources concerning music copyrights and publishing.

"Music is nothing else but wild sounds civilized into time and tune." - Thomas Fuller

"After silence, that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music." - Aldous Huxley

"Music in the soul can be heard by the universe." - Lao Tzu

"Music is a higher revelation than all wisdom and philosophy." - Ludwig van Beethoven

"Music is the movement of sound to reach the soul for the education of its virtue." - Plato

"Music expresses that which cannot be said and on which it is impossible to be silent." - Victor Hugo

"Music is nothing else but wild sounds civilized into time and tune." - Thomas Fuller

Copyright © Sienna M. Wood, 2015-2022