LEARNING RESOURCES @ BERKLEE COLLEGE OF MUSIC
[Berklee Archives]
Finding Aids
  • The following collections are open for research use by appointment: Monday - Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., with evening hours available upon request. These materials are non-circulating, but may be browsed via finding aids, which provide an inventory of contents and valuable contextual information.
  • To schedule an appointment or request further information on a particular collection, please email (sbecerralicha@berklee.edu) or call (617-747-8001) Sofia Becerra-Licha. For more details on planning your visit, please see "Visiting the Archives."

The personal papers of American saxophonist, clarinetist, and educator John D. LaPorta (1920-2004), who taught at Berklee College of Music from 1959-1985. LaPorta's papers include published and unpublished compositions and arrangements, teaching materials, correspondence, clippings, programs, assorted writings, photographs, awards, and performance recordings collected by LaPorta over the course of his career as a performer and teacher.

The Donald Bacon papers represent the work of a journalist and photographer who documented the jazz scene in New England over an approximately twenty-five year period; 1970-1997. The collection includes a significant collection of incoming correspondence (he received) and outgoing correspondence (he sent) to jazz musicians, agents and other individuals. Photographs of jazz musicians make up another important component of the collection. A third category of records (Series II: Sound Recordings), are recorded interviews with musicians and live recordings of jazz concerts on audio cassette tapes.

Memorabilia created by Franklin McGinley for and by Duke Ellington, including a scrapbook, additional clippings, and various commemorative materials. The scrapbook, presumably put together by McGinley, documents the rise of swing music and Duke Ellington and includes autographs by Ellington and other musicians of the period. The remaining loose materials document Ellington's posthumous legacy, with the majority of the clippings consisting of obituaries or coverage of Duke Ellington’s passing in 1974. Selected materials have also been scanned and are available online here.

Scores, audio recordings, and other related materials created and collected by vibraphonist and Latin jazz composer Bobby Vince Paunetto ‘73. Scores include original compositions, arrangements, and sketches. Other papers include publicity-related correspondence, lists of compositions, and some class assignments. Audiovisual materials include both published and unpublished recordings in reel, cassette, and compact disc formats.

This collection is comprised of materials documenting correspondence, coursework, and memorabilia produced and collected by Bert Henry and Dr. Jerome Gross, as students and proponents of the Schillinger System of Musical Composition (SSOMC). The Schillinger System of Musical Composition was invented by Russian composer and theorist Joseph Schillinger. The system is modeled on mathematical processes and includes theories of rhythm, harmony, melody, counterpoint, form, and semantics. Additional archival materials on the Schillinger System may also be found in the Lawrence Berk papers on the Schillinger System (BCA-007)

This collection consists of 11 binders comprised of notes, formulas and other figures compiled and created by Lawrence Berk, founder of Berklee College of Music. Although materials are undated, it is assumed that these materials were produced in the 1930s as a result of Berk’s private study with Joseph Schillinger, creator of the Schillinger System of Musical Composition (SSOMC). Therefore, these papers presumably contain the foundation of Berklee’s early curriculum. A digitized version of this collection is available online and additional archival materials on the Schillinger System may also be found in the Jerome Gross and Bert Henry papers on the Schillinger System (BCA-006)

Dean Earl papers (BCA-010)

Pedagogical arrangements created and/or compiled by distinguished pianist, faculty member, and alumnus Dean Earl as teaching aids for Berklee Piano Department courses in harmony and piano performance. The arrangements themselves consist mainly of popular music and jazz standards, as well as musical exercises. These papers have also been scanned and are available online here.

The encoding of these finding aids and the processing of the majority of these collections were funded by a grant from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission.