Philadelphia is a big music town, and we are home to many musical talents such as opera singer Marian Anderson, pop sensation Frankie Avalon, jazz legends John Coltrane, Grover Washington and Rufus Harley, songwriters G. Love and Amos Lee, R&B groups The Delfonics, Hall and Oates and Boyz II Men as well as hip hop artists Will Smith, DJ Jazzy Jeff and The Roots to name a few.
In Philly, music is in our bones, and the death of pop music icon Michael Jackson was felt throughout the city. I can personally remember my first introduction to Michael Jackson’s music. I was sitting on the floor, five inches away from the television, watching the “world premiere” of the Thriller video. I was a bit too young to fully understand everything going on, but I can distinctly remember the excitement around me and knew he was doing something unique.
On June 25, when the news of Michael Jackson’s death hit the airwaves, journalist and author Farai Chideya was at the Parkway Central Library to discuss her debut novel, Kiss the Sky, which chronicles the ups and downs of a black female rocker attempting to make a musical comeback amidst struggles with love, friendship, and faith. She spent the first part of her talk discussing Michael Jackson and celebrity. You can listen or download the podcast here (or subscribe to our podcasts via iTunes).
The Parkway Central Library's Music Department also provides many resources for music lovers. Here are some quick facts you might not know about our music department:
You can listen to our vast recording collection, including CDs and LPs, on one of our turntables or CD players (bring your head phones or use ours). Each patron can listen for an hour and a half each day using their library card.
You can view more than 350,00 titles in our sheet music collection (which can be used in the department)
You can check out popular songbooks of artists and shows as well as classical scores and instructional method books.
Check out biographies on composers, artists and musicans as well as books on music history, musical instruments and music business.
Our Chamber Music Collection is a unique circulating collection of scores and parts for ensembles available to amateur and professional musicians from all music periods (from Baroque to Modern) that can be borrowed with a refundable deposit.
Our Drinker Choral Music Library is the largest library of choral music scores and song books in the United States available to choirs and choral groups
Our Edwin A. Fleisher Collection of Orchestral Music is the world’s largest lending library of orchestral performance materials with over 21,000 titles available to music organizations and orchestras.
Feel free to leave comments about music you love!