CurriConnects Book List - Music and Musicians

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Music and Musicians
Dance to the beat with books about musicians, composers, and the way they make music. This list includes fiction and nonfiction books, as well as books about instruments and how they are made. Take note of music and the people who make it -- from long ago until today. This list includes books for ALL levels. Share it during Music in Your Schools Month (March) or even during a unit on sound in your science classes. Bring the Arts into STEM to make STEAM!

Preschool and Picture Books

A is for Alliguitar: Musical Alphabeasts - Nancy Raines Day, (978-1455615575) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-1, ESL level: 2
This alphabet book creates its own names for instruments based on the letter of the alphabet it is teaching.

A, B, Sea - Dianna Bonder, (978-1770500433) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-1, ESL level: 2 - 3
This alphabet book offers views of deep sea animals playing a myriad of instruments.

Animal Parade - Allia Zobel Nolan, (978-0547558677) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-1, ESL level: 2
Viewers can hear musical sounds as they lift the flaps of this picture book.

Bang Bang Plink Plink - Jolie Dobson, (978-1770854383) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-1, ESL level: 2
Enjoy learning the sounds of different instruments.

Boom Bah! - Phil Cummings, (978-1935279228) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-2, ESL level: 1
This book shows how families can create their own bands with household objects and enjoy creating sound and following it with movements.

The Cat's Baton is Gone - Scott Hennesy, (978-1423145837) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-2, ESL level: 2 - 3
The conductor of a cat band loses his baton and must come up with creative ways to conduct.

Chuck's Band - Peggy Anderson, (978-0547562223) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-1, ESL level: 2
Chuck and his farm animal friends create a band, but Fat Cat proves to be a problem since he prefers sleep to music.

Encore, Opera Cat! - Tess Weaver, (978-0547146478) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, ESL level: 2
Madame, the opera singer, has a cat who fancies that she herself is just as talented as her mistress in singing and acting the opera parts; what happens when the cat tries her hand at the music?

Farmer Joe and the Music Show - Tony Mitton, (978-0545124935) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-1, ESL level: 2
Farmer Joe gets all the animals on his farm to tune up their instruments and/or use their voices to make music for a show.

Farty Marty - B. J. Ward, (978-1442439016) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-2, Lexile: 630, ESL level: 2 - 3
After cat Marty's annoying flatulence is discovered to be actually musical, the offending smells and sounds are viewed differently.

Hey Diddle Diddle - Eve Bunting, (978-1590787687) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-2, ESL level: 2 - 3
The animals team up to create an orchestra.

Jake the Philharmonic Dog - Karen LeFrak, (978-0802795526) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, ESL level: 2
Jake the dog loves music even more than barking, so when he attends a symphony rehearsal, he joins right in with his "ruffs" and "woofs."

James the Dancing Dog - Linda Maybarduk, (978-0887766190) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-2, ESL level: 2 - 3
Based on the story of a real dog involved with orchestra, this book imagines how James the dog must have been feeling as he observed the ballet dancers with delight only to see another dog get the "dancing" role.

Little Pig Joins the Band - David Hyde Costello, (978-1580892643) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-1, Lexile: 360, ESL level: 2
Little Pig is disgruntled to find there are no band instruments left for him to play in the band which includes all of his other family members, but he does notice they need a leader!

M is for Music - Kathleen Krull, (978-0152064792) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-3, ESL level: 2 - 3
This alphabet book goes through terms, musicians, instruments, and musical elements to create a fast-paced read.

Marsh Music - Marianne Berkes, (978-0761374619) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, ESL level: 2 - 3
Learn about how to hear a natural orchestra while walking outside; readers learn many musical terms as well.

Meeow and the Pots and Pans - Sebastien Braun, (978-1907152917) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-1, ESL level: 2
Meeow and his friends make music with pots and pans and other kitchen utensils.

Music Is - Lloyd Moss, (978-0399233364) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-1, ESL level: 0 - 1
This book shows how music can be experienced and appreciated.

Musical Instruments - Christophe Boncens, (978-2733827154) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-2, Lexile: 730, ESL level: 4
Preschoolers will love pressing the buttons to hear the sounds of trumpets, violins, guitars, drums, and pianos in this book of photographs and explanations (My Little Sound Books series).

Nighttime Symphony - Timbaland, (978-1442412088) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-1, ESL level: 2
The sounds of a city thunderstorm lull a baby to sleep.

Olivia Forms a Band - Ian Falconer, (978-1416924548) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, ESL level: 2
Olivia has to start her own band; she must be creative about the types of instruments it has since she has no time to get traditional ones before the fireworks display that night.

The Orchestra Pit - Johanna Wright, (978-1596437692) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-2, ESL level: 2
When a snake happens into the orchestra pit, it enjoys naming and describing all the instruments, but the members of the orchestra do not enjoy seeing the serpentine creature so much!

Peter and the Wolf - Janet Schulman, (978-0375824302) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-2, ESL level: 2 - 3
Peter leaves his safe home to explore the world and runs across a dangerous wolf, hunters, and a big challenge; the accompanying cd offers different instruments representing the different characters of the story for a great introduction to musical instruments.

The Polka Palace Party - Erica David, (978-1416917991) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-1, ESL level: 2
Cowboy and friends plan to make music at a polka palace, but their instruments meet with disaster on the way to the site.

The Remarkable Farkle McBride - John Lithgow, (978-0689835414) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-2, ESL level: 2 - 3
A very young boy has to try all the instruments of the orchestra to find which is the very best for him.

Sounds Around Town - Maria Carluccio, (978-1846864308) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-1, ESL level: 2
Read about what sounds a young child might hear walking around town while listening to the birds and finally nodding off to sleep.

Squeak, Rumble, Whomp! Whomp! Whomp! - Wynton Marsalis, (978-0763639914) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-2, ESL level: 2
Readers learn to listen for neighborhood sounds and respond to them with clapping and stomping!

Teach Your Buffalo to Play Drums - Audrey Vernick, (617-62539) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-2, ESL level: 2
Although the buffalo really wants to make music, should he be helped to play drums since he has often started other activities with a bang but then his interest has faded?

This Jazz Man - Karen Ehrhardt, (978-0152053079) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-5, ESL level: 2 - 3
Following the rhythms of "This Old Man," this book introduces readers to different jazz musicians and incorporates their rhythms and sounds into the words used on the different pages of the book.

Violet's Music - Angela Johnson, (978-0803727403) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-5, ESL level: 2
Violet loves music and has been searching since infancy to find others who share her passion.

Who Hoots? - Katie Davis, (978-0152050276) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-2, ESL level: 1
Find out what animals make the hooting noise.

Who Hops? - Katie Davis, (978-0152164126) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-2, ESL level: 1
Follow some of your favorite animals with their rhythmic and varied movements.

Early Elementary Books

The Steel Pan Man of Harlem - Colin Bootman, (978-0822590262) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, ESL level: 2 - 3
This book, a variation on the legend of the Pied Piper of Hamlin, portrays a steel pan player who claims to be able to lead the rats out of Harlem.

The 39 Apartments of Ludwig Van Beethoven - Jonah Winter, (978-0307554000) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-5, ESL level: 2 - 3
Why did Beethoven have to keep moving? Was it that his piano playing disturbed his neighbors?

Acoustic Rooster and His Barnyard Band - Kwame Alexander, (978-1585366880) , Fiction
Interest level: 1-5, ESL level: 2 - 3
A barnyard rooster forms a jazz band whose members names are allusions to the jazz greats like Ella Fitzgerald and Billy Holiday; a glossary explains the names, characters, music, and history.

Ah, Music! - Aliki Brandenberg, (978-0064462365) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-5, ESL level: 2 - 3
This book is a great introduction to many elements of music.

Bach's Goldberg Variations - Anna Harwell Celenza, (978-1570915109) , Fiction
Interest level: 1-4, ESL level: 2 - 3
Johann Sebastian Bach's composition of the Goldberg Variations came from a count's challenge to a servant to combine all his harpsichord music into a unified piece that contained a riddle; Bach obliges and the famous variations were born.

Ballet of the Elephants - Leda Schubert, (978-1596430754) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-4, Lexile: 780, ESL level: 2 - 3
This fictionalized account shows how a famous composition was set to music for a group of ballerinas (and elephants).

The Battling Bands - Frank Cammuso, (978-0439903189) , Fiction
Interest level: 2-4, Lexile: 260, ESL level: 2 - 3
Artie tries to find a magical sword that can help his band win a music contest in this graphic novel (Knights of the Lunch Table Series).

Baxter Barret Brown's Bass Fiddle - Tim McKenzie, (978-1931721066) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-2, ESL level: 2 - 3
After Baxter adds wheels and other devices to his bass to make it more convenient to use, it loses its ability to play!

Before John Was a Jazz Giant - Carole Boston Weatherford, (978-0805079944) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-4, Lexile: 1090, ESL level: 2 - 3
This book illustrates how John Coltrane's growing up in the south and being influenced by church music, preachers preaching, and the radio playing all paved the way for his great musical career.

The Best Mariachi in the World - J.D. Smith, (978-0979446245) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, ESL level: 2 - 3
Gustavo adjusts his dream of becoming a mariachi after he finds he has a slightly different talent.

Can You Hear It? - William Lach, (978-0810957213) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 1-5, ESL level: 2 - 3
Youngsters read about and listen to great works of music matched with great paintings; as they listen for certain elements, they come to appreciate the entire piece (offered by the Metropolitan Museum of Art).

The Carnival of the Animals - Jack Prelutsky, (978-0375864582) , Fiction
Interest level: 1-5, ESL level: 2 - 3
Poet Jack Prelutsky expands the music of Saint Saens' Carnival of the Animals, showing readers exactly what each animal does when it hears music; the accompanying cd introduces the very young to the delights of the different musical instruments.

Dizzy - Jonah Winter, (978-0439507370) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-8, ESL level: 2 - 3
Dizzy Gillespie overcame his challenging childhood to become a great, ground-breaking musician.

Do Re Mi: If You Can Read Music, Thank Guido D'Arezzo - Susan Roth, (978-0618465729) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-5, ESL level: 3
Guido d'Arezzo invented the system of lines and spaces that musicians around the world use to write music; this fictionalized biography tells of his determination to share his original system.

Drumbeat in Our Feet - Patricia Keeler, (978-1620140796) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-5, Lexile: 950, ESL level: 4
This book goes into the history and characteristics of African dance as seen in traditional African settings and also in modern-day Harlem.

Duke Ellington's Nutcracker Suite - Anna Harwell Celenza, (978-1570917004) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-5, Lexile: 620, ESL level: 2 - 3
This book recreates the time when Duke Ellington and his comrades reset Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker Suite as jazz.

The Fabulous Feud of Gilbert and Sullivan - Jonah Winter, (978-0439930505) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-4, Lexile: 640, ESL level: 3
Half of the Gilbert and Sullivan opera team, Mr. Sullivan, refuses to continue writing silly operas with themes that repeat all the other ridiculous ones he has already written.

The Farewell Symphony - Anna Harwell Celenza, (978-1570914065) , Fiction
Interest level: 1-4, ESL level: 2 - 3
Haydn's famous Farewell Symphony reflects a summer at Prince Nicholas' palace at Esterhazy.

Frederic Chopin - Mike Venezia , (978-0516265346) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 1-4, ESL level: 3
This biography of Chopin serves as an introduction to him and his work for younger children and the series it is in offers biographies of many other composers (Getting to Know the World's Greatest Composers.)

Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue - Anna Harwell Celenza, (978-1570915567) , Fiction
Interest level: 2-4, Lexile: 830, ESL level: 2 - 3
Under pressure to create an original concerto for an upcoming concert, George Gershwin decides to model his music on the American people and their great variety.

Green Golly and Her Golden Flute - Keith Torgan, (978-1936172627) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-4, ESL level: 2 - 3
Green Golly passes her time in imprisonment practicing music on a golden flute and dreaming of getting out of the witch's tower.

The Heroic Symphony - Anna Harwell Celenza, (978-1570915093) , Fiction
Interest level: 2-4, ESL level: 2 - 3
Beethoven's Heroic Symphony took its roots from Napoleon's accomplishments, at least at the beginning.

I Know a Shy Fellow Who Swallowed a Cello - Barbara Garriel, (978-1590789469) , Fiction
Interest level: 1-3, ESL level: 2 - 3
A man just listening to music has an uncontrollable urge to gulp down one of the instruments in this book written in the style of "I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly."

I, Vivaldi - Janice Shefelman, (978-0802853189) , Fiction
Interest level: 2-5, Lexile: 570, ESL level: 2
The writer imagines how Vivaldi himself would describe his choice of music over the priesthood to very young readers in this picture book.

The Little Piano Girl - Ann Ingalls, (978-0618959747) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-5, Lexile: 690, ESL level: 2 - 3
This book introduces readers to Mary Lou Williams, an African American jazz pianist.

Little Stevie Wonder - Quincy Troupe, (978-0618340606) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-4, ESL level: 2 - 3
This book is a poetic tribute to Stevie Wonder, musican and composer.

The Magic Flute - Kyra Teis, (978-1595721143) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, Lexile: 590, ESL level: 2 - 3
This book retells the story of Mozart's Magic Flute opera.

Making Music - John Langstaff, (978-1580175128) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 3-5, ESL level: 3 - 4
Readers can learn how to make instruments from household objects and how to play them as well!

The Man with the Violin - Kathy Stinson, (978-1554515653) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, Lexile: 560, ESL level: 2 - 3
A young boy has a difficult time getting his mother to stop and listen to the subway musician.

Marvin Makes Music - Marvin Hamlisch, (978-0803737303) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-2, ESL level: 2 - 3
Marvin wows everyone with his musical ability, but he is hesitant to perform pieces by famous composers with names like Ludwig or Wolfgang until his father's advice changes his mind.

Meet the Orchestra - Ann Hayes, (978-0152002220) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-4, Lexile: 720, ESL level: 2 - 3
Readers learn the names and ranges of various orchestral instruments as they greet each musician in turn.

Mendel's Accordion - Heidi Smith Hyde, (978-1580132145) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-3, ESL level: 3
Mendel, a master accordion player in Eastern Europe, loses his fame when he moves to the U.S., but the instrument is revived after his great-grandson discovers the treasure.

Morgy's Magical Summer - Maggie Lewis, (978-0618777075) , Fiction
Interest level: 2-5, ESL level: 2 - 3
Morgy's delight at being at music camp where he can play his trumpet to his heart's content is diminished by meeting Damian, a tease and a bully.

Music Everywhere - Maya Ajmera, (978-1570919374) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-2, Lexile: 330, ESL level: 2 - 3
Enjoy this picture book of musical instruments and music around the world, complete with wonderful photos and maps.

Music Star - Paul Hannigan, (978-1449401733) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, ESL level: 2 - 3
Jack tries out a variety of musical instruments which he accesses with his imagination, substituting a broom for a guitar for example.

Musical Instruments from A to Z - Bobbie Kalman, (978-0865054080) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-3, ESL level: 3 - 4
The very young learn about musical instruments and their history in this fascinating but simple book told in a question and answer format (Alphabasics series).

My First Classical Music Book - Genevieve Helsby, (978-1843791188) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 1-4, ESL level: 3 - 4
This book does a great job introducing the very young to classical music venues, composers, and music instruments.

Octopus's Garden - Ringo Starr, (978-1481403627) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, ESL level: 3
Enjoy dancing and singing with the Octopus of Beatle fame.

Pecorino's First Concert - Alan Madison, (978-1442421912) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, ESL level: 2 - 3
Although Pecorino is supposed to be the silliest boy in the world, he gets into even more trouble than imaginable when he attends an orchestra concert.

Play It Again Mallory - Laurie Friedman, (978-0761360759) , Fiction
Interest level: 2-5, ESL level: 3
Mallory is not terribly happy to get stuck playing the tuba as her choice of electives ends her up in band, but she learns that persistence pays off (Mallory McDonald books).

Play, Louis, Play! - Muriel Harris Weinstein, (978-1599903750) , Fiction
Interest level: 2-4, ESL level: 2 - 3
Louis Armstrong's horn tells the story of his life.

Sadie the Saxophone Fairy - Daisy Meadows, (978-0545106306) , Fiction
Interest level: 1-2, Lexile: 750, ESL level: 3
Rachel and Kirsty must get the Magic Fairies' instruments back from Jack Frost whose thievery has caused music to fall out of tune (Rainbow Magic series).

Saint-Saens's Danse Macabre - Anna Harwell Celenza, (978-1570913488) , Fiction
Interest level: 1-4, Lexile: 600, ESL level: 2 - 3
Camille Saint-Saens' journey to Parisian catacombs inspired him to create an eerie masterpiece, the Danse Macabre.

Simply Fantastic: An Introduction to Classical Music - Ana Gerhard, (978-2924217214) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 1-4, ESL level: 2 - 3
This book and its accompanying CD are great introductions to classical music and its sounds for the youngest listeners and readers.

Sweet Music in Harlem - Debbie Taylor, (978-1620140802) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-3, Lexile: 800, ESL level: 2 - 3
A young nephew races around Harlem looking for his uncle's lost hat but instead comes up with lots of other lost articles and a score of famous Harlem jazz musicians.

Tchaikovsky - Ann Rachlin, (978-0812015454) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-4, ESL level: 2 - 3
This book touches on Tchaikovsky's childhood and focuses on how his love of music influenced his ultimate career choice and accomplishments (Famous Children Series)

Tubby the Tuba - Paul Tripp, (978-0525477174) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-3, ESL level: 2 - 3
Tubby the Tuba is an important member of his musical group, but he really wants to play the melody sometime.

Vivaldi and the Invisible Orchestra - Stephen Costanza, (978-0805078015) , Fiction
Interest level: 1-4, ESL level: 2
Antonio Vivaldi really did use orphans to make up the orchestra that played his music; this book imagines how one other orphan, who transcribed his music, got a little acclaim and recognition for herself and the other silent orchestral members.

Vivaldi's Four Seasons - Anna Harwell Celenza, (978-1570916373) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-4, Lexile: 760, ESL level: 2 - 3
This book tells the story of Vivaldi's creation of his Four Seasons concerto set against the backdrop of the orphanage Ospedale della Pieta.

When Louis Armstrong Taught Me Scat - Muriel Harris Weinstein, (978-0811851312) , Fiction
Interest level: 1-4, ESL level: 3
A girl learns scat from jazz master Louis Armstrong, and readers will delight in the wonderful onomatopoetic words that propel the narrative.

Xavier Ox's Xylophone Experiment - Barbara deRubertis, (978-1575653495) , Fiction
Interest level: 1-2, Lexile: 510, ESL level: 2
Xavier finds new friends at a new school who help him build a super xylophone when his drum set fails.

Yellow Submarine - Beatles, (978-0763624408) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-12, ESL level: 3
TheBeatles take the yellow submarine to assist the residents of Pepperland who are being beseiged by the Blue Meanies.

Upper Elementary to Middle School Books

The Black Canary - Jane Louise Curry, (978-0689864780) , Fiction
Interest level: 4-9, Lexile: 1020, ESL level: 4
After James time travels to the 17th century UK, he discovers why his parents are musicians and uses his beautiful singing voice and biraciality to get into music himself.

Blues Journey - Walter Dean Myers, (978-0823420797) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-12, ESL level: 3 - 4
The history of the African American experience emergences in this beautiful blues poem.

A Certain Music - Celeste Walters, (978-1742757407) , Fiction
Interest level: 4-6, ESL level: 3
A young child with problems at home befriends an elderly deaf musician and later sees their friendship reflected in his great music.

Children's Book of Music - DK Publishing, (978-0756667344) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 2-10, ESL level: 4
This book explores the history of music around the world, touching on cultures, instruments, and the use of technology in modern music.

Chillax - Jerry Scott, (978-0062228512) , Fiction
Interest level: 6-9, ESL level: 4
Jeremy finally succeeds in getting to go to a rock concert only accompanied by a friend in this humorous take on young teens.

Come Sing Jimmy Jo - Katherine Paterson, (978-0140373974) , Fiction
Interest level: 7-9, Lexile: 760, ESL level: 3
James faces a lot of personal changes, even changing his name, after his family becomes a popular country music ensemble.

The Composer is Dead - Lemony Snicket, (978-0061236273) , Fiction
Interest level: 0-12, Lexile: 710, ESL level: 2 - 3
Each musical section in an orchestra must provide answers to an inspector when the conductor is found dead.

Growler's Horn - Mark Delaney, (978-1561452064) , Fiction
Interest level: 5-9, Lexile: 820, ESL level: 4
A musician's strange disappearance and other mysterious thefts lead Jake to invesigate the eerie occurrences after his own clarinet disappears.

Harlem Stomp - Laban Carrick Hill, (978-0316034241) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 6-12, Lexile: 1270, ESL level: 4 - 5
This book describes the fascinating history and marvelous accomplishments of the Harlem Renaissance artists and musicians.

Jason and the Wonder Horn - Linda Hutsell-Manning, (978-1550502145) , Fiction
Interest level: 4-6, ESL level: 3 - 4
Jason's attic find of an old bugle leads him to creating a band that time travels whenever Jason plays the horn.

Jazz - Walter Dean Myers, (978-0823421732) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-12, ESL level: 3 - 4
This non-fiction offering celebrates the history of jazz with vivid illustrations and jazz-aping rhymes.

Jazz Kid - James Lincoln Collier, (97-80805028218) , Fiction
Interest level: 4-9, ESL level: 3 - 4
Paulie's sole desire is to play jazz on his cornet, but it gets him into trouble with his parents when he gets involved in the Chicago underworld.

Legends, Icons and Rebels - Robbie Robertson, (978-1770495715) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 4-7, ESL level: 2 - 3
Learn about musicians who changed the way people experience music.

Leonard Bernstein - Jean Blashfield, (978-0894343377) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 6-9, ESL level: 3 - 4
This very accessible biography of Bernstein includes his education, mentors, challenges, and composing and conducting achievements.

Lives of the Musicians - Kathleen Krull, (978-0152164362) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 5-8, ESL level: 4
This book approaches discussing musician biographies by telling very interesting anecdotes about the positive and negative personal experiences and happenings of their times.

Magnifico - Victoria Miles, (978-1550419917) , Fiction
Interest level: 3-6, ESL level: 3 - 4
Mariangela's new accordion teacher does a lot more for her than teach accordion; his stories bring her to a new understanding of her own immigrant family.

Matthew Meets the Man - Travis Nichols, (978-1596435452) , Fiction
Interest level: 5-8, ESL level: 3 - 4
Matthew's attempts to return to drum player find many obstacles as he attempts to work to make the money to do what he wants while in high school.

Meet the Great Composers - June Montgomery, (978-0882848556) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 6-10, ESL level: 4
This book is divided into teaching units for many famous composers and provides a great classroom resource with a variety of activities for each and the accompanying cd offers students a chance to listen to some of their music.

Meet the Musicians - Amy Nathan, (978-0805097863) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 3-10, ESL level: 3 - 4
Members of the New York Philharmonic discuss their backgrounds and interests in this book of interviews.

Molly Moon and the Monster Music - Georgia Byng, (978-0061661631) , Fiction
Interest level: 4-6, Lexile: 670, ESL level: 3
Molly Moon comes across a magical coin that seduces listeners with its music and makes them slaves.

Mountain Solo - Jeanette Ingold, (978-0152053581) , Fiction
Interest level: 5-12, Lexile: 810, ESL level: 3 - 4
A child prodigy violinist gives up the hectic competitive life of a young musician in NY City to return to her roots in Montana and contemplates a musician's life, both in the past and present.

Mozart - Marcus Weeks, (978-1426314513) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 3-7, ESL level: 3 - 4
Learn about this amazing musician who began composing at the age of 6 (National Geographic World History Biographies series).

The Phantom of the Opera - Joeming Dunn, (978-1602706798) , Fiction
Interest level: 3-5, ESL level: 3 - 4
A mishapen creature who lives in the bowels of the Parisian opera house disguises himself and approaches a beautiful opera diva with music and love.

Play It Again, Mozart! - Geronimo Stilton, (978-1597072762) , Fiction
Interest level: 3-5, ESL level: 2 - 3
Geronimo Stilton has his friends prevent the theft of a famous Mozart piece.

Riding on Duke's Train - Mick Carlon, (978-1935248064) , Fiction
Interest level: 2-6, ESL level: 3 - 4
After Danny gets onto Duke Ellington's train, he finds a new home in Harlem with many celebrated musicians.

The Right Chord - James Ponti, (978-1423117780) , Fiction
Interest level: 4-6, ESL level: 3 - 4
At the end of music camp, each camper must present a song from music history and solve an accompanying mystery (Camp Rock series).

Rock God - Barnabas Miller, (978-1402259623) , Fiction
Interest level: 4-9, Lexile: 760, ESL level: 4
B.J. wants to make a splash with his move to New York, so he decides to become a rock star.

Sky - Rod Townley, (978-0689857126) , Fiction
Interest level: 6-12, Lexile: 660, ESL level: 4
Alex discovers a musician friend who is blind and African American and much much older after he has a run in with his father.

Stompin' at the Savoy - Alan Govenar, (978-0763622442) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 4-7, Lexile: 820, ESL level: 3 - 4
Alan Govenar's interviews with Norma Miller, a celebrated jazz danceuse, show the spirit that led her to fame.

Story of the Orchestra - Robert Levine, (978-1579121488) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 4-8, Lexile: 1220, ESL level: 3
Use the book and the accompanying cd to introduce children to orchestral instruments, types of musical pieces, and orchestras.

Those Amazing Musical Instruments - Genevieve Helsby, (978-1402208256) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 4-9, Lexile: 870, ESL level: 3 - 4
This book introduces middle level readers to the great variety of music instruments through text and an accompanying CD.

Usher - Z. B. Hill, (978-1422225318) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 6-10, ESL level: 3 - 4
Usher's fame in hip hop includes his introducing the world to other great hip-hop stars (Super Stars of Hip-Hop series).

The Voice That Challenged a Nation - Russell Freedman, (978-0547480343) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 3-12, Lexile: 1180, ESL level: 4
This biography of Marian Anderson, a revolutionary African American singer who championed civil rights in the US, reflects information found in her letters and writings as well as other contemporary publications.

Welcome to Paradise - Cody Simpson, (978-0062281173) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 3-5, ESL level: 2 - 3
This autobiography tells of Cody Simpson's rise to fame.

Middle School to Young Adult Books

The Backup Singer - Barb Huff, (978-0613796460) , Fiction
Interest level: 7-9, ESL level: 4
Jenna's selection as lead singer for a school rock group may have something to do with her racial group.

Blue Noise - Debra Oswald, (978-1741663754) , Fiction
Interest level: 10-12, ESL level: 4
Charlie's blues band has a strange mix of classical musicians, weirdos, and poverty stricken wannabees.

Born to Rock - Gordon Korman, (978-0786809219) , Fiction
Interest level: 6-12, Lexile: 780, ESL level: 4
Conservative teen Leo Caraway is astonished when he finds out his birth father was a punk rock star.

Chariot in the Sky - Arna Bontemps, (978-0195156584) , Fiction
Interest level: 8-12, ESL level: 3 - 4
Told from the point of view of a slave, this book describes the history of the African American Jubilee Singers as well as the attempt of some black students to fund raise and save their college through their singing.

Dirty Little Secret - Jennifer Echols, (978-1451658033) , Fiction
Interest level: 7-9, ESL level: 4
After Bailey's sister separates from their singing duo to rise to stardom elsewhere, she defies her family's wishes and follows a garage band wannabe on his attempt to become famous in this fiction for mature young adults.

Fat Kid Rules the World - K.L. Going, (978-0142402085) , Fiction
Interest level: 8-12, Lexile: 700, ESL level: 4
A homeless teenager pulls Troy out of his suicidal state when he invites Troy to be in his band.

The Girl Who Became a Beatle - Greg Taylor, (978-1429928779) , Fiction
Interest level: 5-12, Lexile: 680, ESL level: 4
Regina's time travel takes her to a place where her band replaces the Beatles.

Guitar Girl - Sarra Manning, (978-0142403181) , Fiction
Interest level: 6-12, ESL level: 4
After Molly and her friends start a rock band, they discover fame is not all roses and rainbows.

Guitar Notes - Mary Amato, (978-0142403181) , Fiction
Interest level: 6-12, Lexile: 670, ESL level: 4
Tripp, a guitarist, and Lyla, a cellist, become buddies when they must share the school's practice room.

Hidden Voices: The Orphan Musicians of Venice - Pat Lowery Collins, (978-0763639174) , Fiction
Interest level: 8-12, Lexile: 1040, ESL level: 4
Three young female orphans participate in concerts that bring money to the orphanage and possible suitors to the girls; this book is for mature teens because of sexual content.

A Hip-Hop Story - Heru Ptah, (743-483235) , Fiction
Interest level: 9-12, ESL level: 4
Flawless and Hannibal are in fierce competition to become the most famous and successful rap artists.

I Am Not the Walrus - Ed Briant, (978-0738732466) , Fiction
Interest level: 6-12, Lexile: 680, ESL level: 4
When bass player Toby finds a mysterious note in an ancient guitar, his plans to become more appealing to the girls takes second place.

In Mozart's Shadow - Carolyn Meyer, (978-0152055943) , Fiction
Interest level: 6-12, Lexile: 940, ESL level: 4
Although Mozart's sister is an aspiring musician, the prodigy Wolfgang and her female sex keep her from being noticed as a serious performer.

Janis Joplin - Ann Angel, (978-0810983496) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 9-12, ESL level: 4
This biography of Janis Joplin contains it all, her originality, musical development, misery, sexuality, and drug usage which resulted in her early death.

Janis Joplin: Rise Up Singing - Ann Angel, (978-0810983496) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 9-12, ESL level: 4
Read about the life of Janis Joplin and how she tried to balance her rebellious and creative spirt with her struggle to become an excellent musician and singer.

Lemonade Mouth - Mark Peter Hughes, (978-0385735117) , Fiction
Interest level: 6-12, Lexile: 800, ESL level: 4
A group of unlikely students creates a rock band that becomes incredibly popular (Lemonade Mouth series).

Lit Riffs - Jonathan Lethem , (978-0743470261) , Fiction
Interest level: 7-12, ESL level: 4
This short story collection includes stories written after famous authors were inspired by popular songs.

Making Musical Instruments with Kids - Bart Hopkin, (978-1884365485) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 8-12, ESL level: 3 - 4
With the help of an adult, children can easily make over 65 musical instruments by using this book.

Meet the Beatles - Steven Stark, (978-0060008932) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 7-12, ESL level: 4
This book attempts to explain why the Beatles became the pop icon that changed culture and music forever.

The Musican's Daughter - Susanne Dunlap, (978-1599903323) , Fiction
Interest level: 6-12, Lexile: 950, ESL level: 4
A young girl begins to work for Haydn after her father's murder leaves her in charge of the family.

My Lord, What a Morning - Marian Anderson, (978-0252070532) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 8-12, ESL level: 4
Marian Anderson's autobiography starts with her modest beginnings and continues through her fascinating life to her international fame (Music in American Life series).

Naked on the Bench: My Adventures in Pianoland - Robin Spielberg, (978-0970563354) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 9-12, ESL level: 4
This inspirational book describes a succesful pianist's view of her life and its challenges and how she gained success.

Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist - Rachel Cohn, (978-0375846144) , Fiction
Interest level: 7-12, Lexile: 1020, ESL level: 4
Nick, immersed in rock music, asks a college bound student to pose as his girlfriend for a few minutes.

On This Day in Music History - Jay Warner, (634-066935) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 8-12, ESL level: 3 - 4
Learn a fact a day about music history from this book organized as a calendar.

Plastic Fantastic - Simon Cheshire, (978-0385732130) , Fiction
Interest level: 6-12, ESL level: 4
A two-hour encounter in a non-functioning elevator reveals much about the lives of two teen musicians who are stuck there.

Punk Rock Dad - Jim Lindberg, (978-0061148767) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 9-12, ESL level: 4
Jim Lindberg really is a punk rock fan, but he is also a father, and in this book, he demonstrates how he fits in the work of both worlds.

Shredded - Jerry Scott, (978-0062228536) , Fiction
Interest level: 7-10, ESL level: 4
Jeremy and his fellow band members hit the road in order to create their first recorded album.

Somebody Everybody Listens To - Suzanne Supplee, (525-422420) , Fiction
Interest level: 6-12, Lexile: 830, ESL level: 4
Retta's dreams of making it big as a country singer turn out to be challenging after she graduates from high school in Tennessee, but she perseveres.

The Sound of Letting Go - Stasia Ward Kehoe, (978-0670015535) , Fiction
Interest level: 6-12, Lexile: 940, ESL level: 4
Daisy escapes from the difficulties of having a brother with autism through immersing herself in jazz, although she has a difficult time when he seems to be going to live in an institution.

Spin It Like That - Chandra Sparks Taylor, (978-1426801884) , Fiction
Interest level: 9-12, Lexile: 710, ESL level: 4
Although Jasmine is a talented disc jockey and loves music, her parents disapprove of this high school hobby.

Syd Barrett: Crazy Diamond: The Dawn of Pink Floyd - Mike Watkinson, (978-1846097393) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 10-12, ESL level: 4
This biography for mature teens only by Syd Barrett, the lead member of Pink Floyd, portrays his membership with the famous band as well as his going on to becoming a solo success before his death.

The Teen's Musical Theater Collection - Louise Lerch, (978-0634030772) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 7-12, ESL level: 3 - 4
This book's collection of songs from musicals offers lyrics and sound from a wide time range.

The True Adventures of Nicolo Zen - Nicholas Christopher, (978-0375867385) , Fiction
Interest level: 6-12, Lexile: 1000, ESL level: 4
Nicolo's magic clarinet leads him on many adventures and to becoming a revered musician in 18th century Venice.

What a Song Can Do - Jennifer Armstrong, (978-0307434104) , Fiction
Interest level: 6-12, Lexile: 780, ESL level: 4
These short stories all describe the effect music has on young persons' lives.

What Every Child Needs to Know about Punk Rock - R. Bradley Snyder, (978-1940705057) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 0-4, ESL level: 4
This book helps explain the phenomenon of the punk rock movement to children.

Wildflower - Alecia Whitaker, (031-6251380) , Fiction
Interest level: 6-12, ESL level: 4
Although her family plays bluegrass for a living, Bird Barrett begins to record with a country music label and finds the glamorous world of Nashville quite challenging.

Wise Young Fool - Sean Beaudoin, (978-0316203791) , Fiction
Interest level: 8-12, Lexile: 670, ESL level: 4
A teen guitar player has rock music to help him cope with a very troubled past.

The Young Musician's Survival Guide - Amy Nathan, (978-0195367393) , Non-fiction
Interest level: 7-12, ESL level: 4
This book contains many useful tips on how teens can learn to play successfully and covers a wide range of subjects including music teachers, practicing, instrument choice, and balancing music and other concerns.