APA 6th referencing

A guide to APA referencing (6th edition)

Music Recordings and Scores

At the end of your assignment, essay or project you must include a reference list that gives the full details of each source. The list should be in alphabetical order and include the author, composer and/or performer and publication information (if it is a published work, eg. book or magazine/journal article).

Music references are similar to books; the composer, the title of the work, the performer/s, the date and location are given so that whoever is reading your assignment can trace the work/s you refer to and also to acknowledge the people who performed or contributed to the work.


The basic elements:

Composer, X.  (Copyright year). Title of song [Recorded by X.X. Singer, if different from composer]. On Title of album [medium of recording]. Location: Label. (Date of recording if different from copyright date)

eg. Hunter, S. (1981). Happy tunes. [Recorded by S. Gatherer]. On Sunshine singalong [CD]. Auckland, New  Zealand: Reef (1992)


Performer and composer are the same:

Reference list

Davis, M. (2001). Buzzard Song On Birth of the cool [CD] (Classics in jazz (Hollywood, Los Angeles, Calif.). Hollywood, Calif.: Capitol Jazz Records.
In text citation (Davis, 2001, track 1)


Performer and composer are different:

Reference list

Hunter, S. (1981). Happy tunes. [Recorded by S. Gatherer]. On Sunshine singalong [CD]. Auckland, New  Zealand: Reef (1992)

In-text citation (Gatherer. 1992, track 3)


The basic elements:

Composer, X. X. (Year of publication). Title of score [Medium]. Place of Publication: Publisher.

eg. Todd, S. (1964). Twisting til sunrise [Score]. Auckland: Catchy Tunes for Teens.

In-text citation (Todd, 1964)

nb: examples of medium include, score, choral score, miniature score, orchestral score, libretto, lyrics, song etc.


Score from a collected work or anthology:

Todd, L. E. (1959). Sibling squabble. In H. E. Gibson (Ed.), Tunes for happy families (2nd., Vol. 2, pp. 10-20). Auckland: Belfast Musical.


Other places to look for more information on referencing music resources:

University of Canterbury APA music guide:Referencing Music in the APA style

Youtube, DVDs and CDs - Please use the information under the blue tabs on the homepage of this guide, Youtube information is with DVDs, Videos and CDRoms






Need More Help!

For more help contact Te Puna Ako Learning Centre 

Mt Albert Campus Tel 09 815 4321 Ext. 8611.

Waitākere Campus Tel 09 815 4321 and ask for Waitākere Student Central

Things to remember

Authors' names : Use the Producer and the Director of a film in the place of the authors.


Dates of Films :Dates for films should be the date of first release, not when the video/DVD was published.


Italics : Only the film title or title of the CD-ROM should be in italics. 


Capitalization : The first letter of the first word of a title should be capitalized as should the first letter of the first word of any subtitle.  Everything else should be in lower case unless it is a proper noun or an abbreviation that is always written in capitals.