The Encyclopedia of French Art Song

frenchIn the world of music reference, are used to seeing many books by a few giant publishers play a dominant role in the collections. There are, however, less dominant houses that continue to release excellent and highly useful reference books. Frank Daykin’s Encyclopedia of French Art Song is an example of this.

Published by Pendragon Press, this encyclopedia (which also functions as a simple dictionary for some terms) is designed to acquaint users with the meaning and cultural context of any word they will see printed on a page of French art song by any of the four cornerstone french melodists, be that word in the poetry, in a performance instruction, or elsewhere. Entries include song titles, poets, proper nouns, artistic movements, poetic terms, idioms, song dedicatees, nouns, and adjectives. The organization is alphabetical with standard, cross-referenced entries.

This encyclopedia does not include reference or biographical information on the composers themselves, as that area is throughly covered in a variety of previously published sources.