From modern to classical … What are the best books on music and its different aspects, such as music history, musicians, composers and different music genres? Read on for our top recommendations …

Footnotes and octaves: the best the music world has to offer on paper

Music is art. Music is freedom. Music is life. Let’s look at our best picks when it comes down to books about music. We start our recommendations with the top 10 best books about Music of all time. This list has been updated this year, including all the recent titles.

Best Books About MusicAuthor
The Storyteller: Tales of Life and MusicDave Grohl
How Music WorksDavid Byrne
This Is Your Brain on MusicDaniel Levitin
Finding the RagaAn Improvisation on Indian MusicAmit Chaudhuri
Nocturnes: Five Stories of Music and NightfallKazuo Ishiguro
Music Is HistoryQuestlove
Major Labels: A History of Popular Music in Seven GenresKelefa Sanneh
Musicophilia: Tales of Music and the Brain Oliver Sacks
The Lyrics: 1956 to the PresentPaul McCartney
Confess Rob Halford 

The updated top 10 list: the best books about music

This Is Your Brain on Music: The Science of a Human Obsession

Can music be even more important than language? Daniel J. Levitin seems to think so, and he wants to prove this fact by researching the link between music and the functioning of the brain.

All You Need to Know About the Music Business: 10th Edition

Don Passman used to be a music lawyer, so he knows everything there is to know about the music industry. This book will help you select a team of people around you (as a musician) that works best in today’s day and age.

The Greatest Music Stories Never Told: 100 Tales from Music History to Astonish, Bewilder, and Stupefy (The Greatest Stories Never Told)

We like ‘The Greatest Music Stories Never Told’, because of the appeal it has. Rick Beyer’s stories will surprise you, intrigue you, and keep your passion for music going. Once you have read this book, you will always have a music story to share when the room falls quiet.

Legends, Icons & Rebels: Music That Changed the World

This book is especially written for readers age 9 to 12, and the writers (well-known in the music industry) want to share their knowledge of some of the world’s biggest music legends.

How to Write About Music: Excerpts from the 33 1/3 Series, Magazines, Books and Blogs with Advice from Industry-leading Writers

We recommend this book on our top ten list, because it is from writers for writers. Read the advice from writing experts on how to write about music and what to avoid.

How Music Works

The time we live in and the technology we use has a huge influence on the development of the music industry. David Byrne (founding member and songwriter for the Talking Heads) shares his view in ‘How Music Works’.

Music: The Definitive Visual History (Dk Smithsonian)

Music is a part of our lives, and it has evolved greatly over time. Find out what music can mean for people when looking at its history, the styles, musicians’ profiles, and musical instruments.

The World’s Hardest Music Trivia: Rock n Roll History, Fun Facts and Behind the Scenes Stories About the Groups and Songs You Thought You Knew

We recommend this book to anyone who thinks he knows his music and would like to test that knowledge. This trivia book works two ways: with open questions or multiple choice questions.

Booze & Vinyl: A Spirited Guide to Great Music and Mixed Drinks

With music from the 1950s up until now, this musical guide is a lovely mix of music for parties, and the music is also accompanied by recipes of cocktails to complete the event.

Dolly Parton, Songteller: My Life in Lyrics

If you love Dolly Parton, then you should listen to this audiobook that delves much deeper into her personal life. Find out what the story behind a song is, or how Dolly Parton’s music connects people of all generations.

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