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Guide to Jazz: Research and Information for scholars, performers, and listeners

Search Tips for Songs

Many of the songbooks owned by the Music Collection are published by Hal Leonard, which has a song search on its site:  After finding the songbooks that contain the song, you can search for Ball State copies in OneSearch.

A song index to the Jamey Aebersold play-along series (lead sheets with CDs) is available as a .pdf from

If Ball State does not own a song or songbook you need, fill out an Interlibrary Loan form to borrow it from another library.

Fake Books

A "fake book" consists of one stanza of melody and words, with indications for chord changes above the staff line.  These enable a musician to "fake" a song they don't really know, but has come to be the standard notation for learning new songs too.  An essential series plays on the notion for the title "The Real Book."  The style of notation for the song is called a "lead sheet."

*All fake books are for instruments in the key of C unless otherwise noted*

To find all available fake books, search  Popular Music -- Fake Books in OneSearch and limit to Music Score as the content type if necessary.

How to Play from a Fake Book, by Blake Neely (for keyboard)
MT 239 .N44 H6 1999

Selected Fake Books

  • The Hal Leonard Real Jazz Standards Fake Book
    M1630.18 .H223 2011
  • The Real Book, 6th ed.
    M1630.18 .R42 6th ed.
  • The Real Book, Volume II, 2nd ed.
    M1630.18 .R42 v.2
  • The Real Book, Volume III, 2nd ed.
    M1630.18 .R42 v. 3
  • The Ultimate Broadway Fake Book
    M1508.1 .U48 2009
  • The New Broadway Fake Book
    M1508.1 .N48 2018
  • (This is the) Ultimate Fake Book
    M1630.18 .T55 2006
  • The Ultimate Pop Rock Fake Book, 4th ed.
    M1630.18 .U586 2001
  • The Best Fake Book Ever, 2nd ed.
    M1630.18 .B39 1990z
  • Gospel's Greatest
    M2198 .G659 2000
  • Wedding and Love Fake Book, 5th ed.
    M1977 .W4 W43 2006

Artist Transcriptions and Fake Books

Omnibooks are dedicated to the solos of just one artist, with lead sheets for their famous tunes.  They are shelved with the music for that instrument, for example the Miles Davis Omnibook is shelved with other scores for B-Flat trumpet.  There are also artist-oriented scores plus CD within the Aebersold play-along series.

Miles Davis Omnibook:

  • For B-Flat Instruments:  M111 .D38 O41 2015
  • For C Instruments:  M111 .D38 O42 2015

Charlie Parker Omnibook:

  • For E-Flat Instruments:  M111 .P37 C4 2009

John Coltrane Omnibook:

  • For E-Flat Instruments:  M111 .C65 J6 2014
  • For B-Flat Instruments: M111 .C65 J6 2013

John Coltrane: Giant Steps:  M1366 .C65 G5 2013

Songbook / CD Sets

The Music Collection owns many songbooks that come with accompanying CDs.  Each of the following series has several volumes:

Jamey Aebersold Play-a-Long  Published by Indiana native, Jamey Aebersold, this series is designed to give students experience in improvisation but can be used for "gigs" as well.  Each of the over 100 volumes comes with a CD of the background (rhythm section) for practice or performance.  Some of the early volumes are devoted to improvisation in general, e.g., improvisation on standard chord progressions rather than specific songs.  For an index of specific songs, click here (.pdf)

Hal Leonard Pro Vocal is a recent series with songbooks and background CDs that can be transposed.   Some of this series is jazz-oriented.

The Singers Musical Theatre Anthology is comprised of five volumes (so far!) for each by voice type (Soprano, Mezzo/Belter, Tenor, Bass/Baritone) and volumes for duets.  Each volume comes with a CD of an accompaniment arrangement. Many of the most famous "jazz" standards came from Broadway musicals, and this series has most of the popular songs from musicals.


Transcriptions are note-for-note representations of recorded solos by famous artists.  Search "Jazz and Transcriptions" to see more.


  • 25 Great Jazz Piano Solos
    In process
  • Dick Hyman's Century of Jazz Piano Transcribed!
    M20 .H96 D5 2012
  • Duke Ellington: The Original Piano Transcriptions
    M 32.8 .E45 S7 2013
  • Bill Evans Plays Standards
    M32.8 .B55 1999
  • Earl "Fatha" Hines: Selected Piano Solos: 1928-1941
    M2 .R2375 v. 56
  • The Very Best of Oscar Peterson
    M32.8 .P48 V4 2005
  • Fats Waller: Performances in Transcription, 1927-1943
    M2 .R2375 v. 41
  • The Genius of Teddy Wilson
    M38.5 .W54 G4 1980z​


  • Best of Sonny Rollins
    M 106 .R65 B4 2008
  • John Coltrane Plays Giant Steps
    M 106.C65 G5 1996
  • Jazz Improvisation: Transcriptions of Charlie Parker's Great
    Alto Solos for All Instrumental Musicians
    M106 .P3 J3
  • John Coltrane Omnibook
    • For E-Flat Instruments:  M111 .C65 J6 2014
    • For B-Flat Instruments:  M111 .C65 J6 2013
  • Charlie Parker Omnibook
    • For E-Flat Instruments:  M111 .P37 C4 2009
    • Play-along CD:  Compact Disc 22440

Other Instruments

  • The Chet Baker Collection (trumpet)
    M88 .B35 C4 2002
  • Miles Davis: The Birth of the Cool (transcription of all parts)
    M1366 .D38 B5 2002