How to Cite a Musical Recording in Chicago/Turabian

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If you want to quote song lyrics or are writing about a music related topic, you may need to cite a song or album in your paper. This guide will show you how to create notes-bibliography style citations for musical recordings using the 17th edition of the Chicago Manual of Style.

Guide Overview


Citing a Musical Recording

Note: The Chicago Manual of Style states that audio materials should usually be listed in a discography, not a bibliography. This is especially important if you have a large number of entries for musical recordings. Check with your instructor and reference section 14.262 of the manual.

Citation Structure:

Note:

1. “Song Title,” track # on First name Last name/Band name, Album Title, Record label Number of recording, Year of recording, format.

Bibliography: 

Last name, First name of performer/Band name. “Song Title.” Track # on Album Title. Record label Number of recording, Year of recording, format.

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Note: “Number of recording” refers to the catalog number for the recording. This information can be found on the back cover or online at websites like www.discogs.com.

Citation Example:

Note:

1. “One for the Road,” track 3 on Arctic Monkeys, AM, Domino Records WIGCD317, 2013, compact disc.

Bibliography: 

Arctic Monkeys. “One for the Road.” Track 3 on AM. Domino Records WIGCD317, 2013, compact disc.


Citing a Whole Album

Citation Structure:

Note:

1. First name Last name/Band name, Album Title, Record label Number of recording, Year of recording, format.

Bibliography:

Last name, First name of performer/Band name. Album Title. Record label Number of recording, Year of recording, format.

Citation Example:

Note:

1. Cake, Comfort Eagle, Columbia CK 62132, 2001, compact disc.

Bibliography: 

Cake. Comfort Eagle. Columbia CK 62132, 2001, compact disc.


Citing a Musical Recording Accessed Via Streaming Service

If you accessed the recording online via a streaming service such as Spotify, include that information instead of the format.

Citation Structure:

Note:

1. “Song Title,” Name of Streaming Service, track # on First name Last name/Band name, Album Title, Record label Number of recording, Year of recording.

Bibliography:

Last name, First name of performer/Band name. “Song Title.” Track # on Album Title. Record label Number of recording, Year of recording, Name of Streaming Service audio.

Citation Example:

Note:

1. “Limelight,” Spotify, track 4 on Rush, Moving Pictures, Anthem (5) ANR-1-1030, 1981.

Bibliography: 

Rush. “Limelight.” Track 4 on Moving Pictures. Anthem (5) ANR-1-1030, 1981, Spotify audio.



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