How to Cite a Song in APA

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Published August 10, 2012. Updated September 23, 2021.

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Structure:

Songwriter F.M. (Copyright year). Song title [Recorded by F.M. Last (performer’s name/musical group)]. On Album title [Medium of recording]. City, State of label: Record label name.

Note: If the songwriter and performer are the same person, leave out the bracketed data [Recorded by _______] following the song title.

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Note: Songwriter information can be found in the digital booklet or the CD sleeve (if you’re old school!).

Example:

Turner, A. (2013). Do I wanna know? [Recorded by Artic Monkeys]. On AM [MP3 file]. London, England: Domino Records.

Note: In-text citations, include band or track numbers (Turner, 2013, track 1).


 

 

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How do I cite a song or music video in APA format?

To cite a song or music video in APA style, you need to have basic information including the name of the composer, title of the song or music, company name, and publication date. The templates for in-text citation and reference list entry of a song or music video, along with examples, are given below:

In-text citation template and example:

In parenthetical citations, use the composer’s surname and the publication year.

Narrative

Composer’s Surname (Publication Year)

Beyoncé (2013)

Parenthetical

(Composer’s Surname, Publication Year)

(Beyoncé, 2013)

Reference list entry template and example:

Template:

Songwriter F.M. (Copyright year). Song title [Recorded by F.M. Last (performer’s name/musical group)]. On Album title [Medium of recording]. City, State of label: Record label name.

Example:

Beyoncé. (2013). Ring off. On Beyoncé: Platinum Edition [MP3 file]. Los Angeles, CA: Parkwood; Columbia.

How do I cite lyrics in APA format?

To cite lyrics in APA format, you need to have basic information including the name of the composer, title of the song, company name, date, and URL. The templates for in-text citation and reference list entry of lyrics, along with examples, are given below:

In-text citation template and example:

In parenthetical citations, use the composer’s surname and the publication year.

(Composer’s Surname, Publication Year, timestamp)

(Beyoncé, 2019, 02:36)

Reference list entry template and example:

Template:

Songwriter F.M. (Copyright year). Song title [Recorded by F.M. Last (performer’s name/musical group)]. On Album title [Medium of recording]. City, State of label: Record label name.

Example:

Beyoncé. (2019). Don’t jealous me. On Beyoncé: Platinum Edition [MP3 file]. Los Angeles, CA: Parkwood; Columbia.