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Information for Authors


1. Contributors should provide an electronic copy of their article (in Word or Rich text format). Footnotes and indented quotations should be double spaced. The Editors will consider all submissions as quickly as possible; contributors will, however, understand that the process of sending manuscripts to referees and awaiting their reports can take some time. Submitted manuscripts will not be returned to authors save in exceptional circumstances. We try to be helpful in indicating reasons for our decision on publication, but this is not always possible. Whatever the case, any such decision must be regarded as final.

All submissions should be addressed to:
The Editors,
'Music & Letters',
Music & Letters Editorial Office,
Faculty of Music,
11 West Road,
Tel: 01223 335178

2. Music examples, tables and diagrams should be placed on separate sheets and identified by captions. Captions should also be written out in full on a separate sheet. The abbreviations Ex. and Exx. are used for examples, Fig. and Figs. for diagrams, and Pl. and Pll. for plates. Plates should be supplied as glossy positive photographs or as digital images scanned at a minimum of 300 dpi and should be clearly identified.

3. All dates, page numbers, titles and quotations should be checked before an article is submitted.

4. Use single, rather than double, inverted commas for short quotations (longer quotations are indented without inverted commas). Footnote references should give the name of the author in the form in which it appears in the work cited (including first names, not just initials, where appropriate) and the full title of the work (in italic for books; in single inverted commas for articles and essays); surname and short title are used for subsequent references (not 'op. cit.' or such formulations, except for 'ibid.'). In the case of books, give the place of publication but not the publisher; in the case of journals, give the volume numbers in Arabic numerals, with inclusive page numbers at the first citation.

5. For general matters of style and spelling contributors should consult The Oxford Dictionary for Writers and Editors and/or New Hart's Rules. For more detailed matters of house style, contributors may request a style sheet from the Editorial Office. While the editors will try to be sympathetic to complex manuscripts, we reserve the right not to consider for publication material that is poorly presented or which is unsuited to our format.


Preparing your manuscript

1. Manuscripts must be submitted online. Music and Letters conducts double-blinded peer reviews. Manuscripts (designate as Main Document) should include no identifying author information; the author’s name should not appear anywhere in the Main Document, including the references/notes. A separate title page (designate as Title Page) should be uploaded with author details, any acknowledgements, and an address for correspondence with readers. Once you have prepared your manuscript according to the instructions below please visit

2. Prepare your manuscript, including tables, using a word processing program and save it as a .doc, .rtf or .ps file. All files in these formats will be converted to .pdf format upon submission. Upon acceptance, prepare your figures at publication quality resolution, using applications capable of generating high-resolution .tif or .jpg files (1200 d.p.i. for line drawings and 300 d.p.i. for colour and half-tone artwork). The printing process requires your figures to be in this format if your paper is accepted and printed. For useful information on preparing your figures for publication, go to Low resolution figures can be submitted initially with the manuscript but will need to resupplied as high resolution files upon acceptance for publication.

3. Prepare any other files that are to be submitted for review, including any supplementary material. The permitted formats for these files are the same as for manuscripts and figures. Other file types, such as Microsoft Excel spreadsheets and Powerpoint presentations may be uploaded and will form part of the single .pdf file that is created for use in the peer review process. When naming your files, please use simple filenames and avoid special characters and spaces. Please make sure your file name has the correct suffix, e.g. .doc, .docx, .rtf, as appropriate.

4. The online submission software will automatically create a single .pdf file containing your main text and reduced-resolution versions of any figures you have submitted. This document will be used when your manuscript undergoes peer review. Your submitted files will appear in this .pdf sequentially, as specified by you on the submission page, and you will have an opportunity to enter figure captions/legends and to check the .pdf file prior to final submission.

Submitting your manuscript

Now that your files are ready, visit the online submission web site.

First, you will need to log into the system. Note: Before you begin, make sure you have an up-to-date version of your browser software. ScholarOne has a list of supported browsers and versions which can be accessed from the ‘Get Help’ button on the submission site.

• If you know your login details (i.e. you have submitted or reviewed a manuscript on this system before), use your User ID and Password to log on.
• If you do not know your login details, check to see if you are already registered by clicking on the 'Forgot your password' button and following the on-screen instructions. If you are not already registered, you can register by clicking on the 'Create account' button on the login screen and following the on-screen instructions.
• If you have trouble finding manuscripts or have other problems with your account do not create another account. Instead, please contact

2. To submit a new manuscript, go to the 'Author Centre', choose 'Submit a Manuscript' and then follow the on-screen instructions. There are up to 7 steps for you to follow to submit your manuscript. You move from one step to the next by clicking on the 'Save and Continue' button on each screen or back to the previous screen by clicking on the 'Previous' button. Please note that if you click on the 'Back' or 'Forward' button on your browser, the information you have entered will not be saved. At any stage you can stop the submission process by clicking on the 'Main Menu' button. Everything you have typed into the system will be saved, and the partially completed submission will appear under 'unsubmitted manuscripts' in your 'Author Centre'. To return to the submission process you will need to click on the button 'Continue Submission' against the relevant manuscript title.

3. When submitting your manuscript, please enter your manuscript data into the relevant fields, following the detailed instructions given at the top of each page. You may like to have the original word processing file available so that you can copy and paste the title and abstract into the required fields. You will also be required to provide email addresses for your co-authors, so please have these to hand when you logon to the site.

4. When you come to upload your manuscript files via the 'File Upload' screen:

• Enter individual files using the 'Browse' buttons below and select the appropriate 'File content' type.
• Select the document's designation from the pull-down menu. The designation choices may vary from journal to journal, but will always include 'Main Document' (your manuscript text). If you do not wish a document to be included as part of the consolidated PDF used for peer review, please designate it as a 'supplementary file'.
• Upload your files by clicking on the 'Upload files' button. This converts your files to a PDF and may take several minutes. Repeat these steps until you have uploaded all your files.
• When the upload of each file is completed, you will see a confirmation window and will be prompted to provide figure legends and 'file tags' that will link figures to texts in the HTML proof of your main document.
• Once you have uploaded all files, indicate the order in which they should appear in your paper. This will determine the order in which they appear in the consolidated PDF used for peer review.
• After the successful upload of your text and images, you will need to view and proof your manuscript. Please do this by clicking on the blue HTML button or a PDF button.
• If the files have not been uploaded to your satisfaction, go back to the file upload screen where you can remove the files you do not want, and repeat the upload process.

5. When you are satisfied with the uploaded manuscript proof click on 'Next' which will take you to the 'Review & Submit' screen. The system will check that you have completed all the mandatory fields and that you have viewed your manuscript proof. It will also present you with a summary of all the information you have provided and give you a final chance to edit it. When you have finished reviewing this information press 'Submit'.

6. After the manuscript has been submitted you will see a confirmation screen and receive an email confirmation stating that your manuscript has been successfully submitted. This will also give the assigned manuscript number, which is used in all correspondence. If you do not receive this, your manuscript will not have been successfully submitted to the journal and the paper cannot progress to peer review. If this is the case your manuscript will still be sitting in the 'Unsubmitted Manuscripts' section of your 'Author Centre' awaiting your attention.

7. If you return to your 'Author Centre' you will notice that your newly submitted manuscript can be found in the 'Submitted Manuscripts' area. Among the information listed there, the 'Processing Status' section provides information on the status of your manuscript as it moves through the review process.

Submitting a revised manuscript

Please supply your revised paper though the online submission web site using your User ID and Password to log-on - remembering that these are both case-sensitive.

1. Logon to as before and, in the 'Author Centre', click on 'Manuscripts to be Revised'. You will then see the title of any manuscripts you submitted that are under revision.

2. If you click on the manuscript title you will reach the 'File Manager' screen. Here you can upload the files that constitute your revised manuscript. To facilitate the production process, it is essential that you upload your revised manuscript as a .doc or .rtf file, and not in .pdf format.

3. If you click on 'View comments/respond' you will see the editor's letter to you together with the referees' comments. You may cut and paste your responses into the text areas at the bottom of the screen.

Please note: All the files from your previous submission will have been retained by the system. So, when your reach the 'File Upload' screen (Step #6), you will need to delete any files that are no longer needed or need replacing with revised versions.

IMPORTANT. As detailed above, your images are required as high-resolution .tif or .jpg files (1200 d.p.i. for line drawings and 300 d.p.i. for colour and half-tone artwork). For useful information on preparing your figures for publication, go to Please note that publication of your

Getting help

If you experience any problems during the online submission process please consult the Author's User Guide ( which provides more detailed submission instructions, and 'movie tutorials' explaining how to submit your paper. Alternatively, please contact the Music and Letters Editorial Office who will be pleased to assist you.


For information about this journals policy, please visit our Author Self-Archiving policy page.


Details of all funding sources for the work in question should be given in a separate section entitled 'Funding'. This should appear before the 'Acknowledgements' section.

The following rules should be followed:

  • The sentence should begin: ‘This work was supported by …’
  • The full official funding agency name should be given, i.e. ‘National Institutes of Health’, not ‘NIH’ (full RIN-approved list of UK funding agencies) Grant numbers should be given in brackets as follows: ‘[grant number xxxx]’
  • Multiple grant numbers should be separated by a comma as follows: ‘[grant numbers xxxx, yyyy]’
  • Agencies should be separated by a semi-colon (plus ‘and’ before the last funding agency)
  • Where individuals need to be specified for certain sources of funding the following text should be added after the relevant agency or grant number 'to [author initials]'.

An example is given here: ‘This work was supported by the National Institutes of Health [AA123456 to C.S., BB765432 to M.H.]; and the Alcohol & Education Research Council [hfygr667789].



In line with most academic journals, Oxford Journals require contributors to obtain clearance for any copyright materials reproduced in their articles. The fact that our journals appear in an online version, some with downloadable sound examples may further complicate the position. The law governing copyright, especially as it refers to non-print media, is far from clear but the following guidance is offered in good faith; of necessity, these guidelines are not comprehensive, but rather a simplification of the law governing copyright. Furthermore, these guidelines are based on English Law only. You should always seek advice when in doubt.

In essence it is necessary to ensure that clearance is gained for the following:

• reproduction and distribution in printed form of copyright textual or graphic material or music;
• reproduction in electronic form and dissemination on-line of copyright textual or graphic material or musical or dramatic works;
• reproduction in electronic form and dissemination on-line of copyright sound material (eg a sound recording); and
• reproduction in electronic form and dissemination on-line of performances of music and/or words (eg a song embodied in a sound recording).

While the owner of the rights in a sound recording may also own or control the rights (eg of the performer) in the performance recorded, it would be wise to get confirmation of this from that owner when seeking a clearance, and to make it clear that a licence of both categories of rights is being requested.

Finally you must respect the author's moral rights. This means being careful to ensure that the author and source of any material used are identified sufficiently, and that no material used is subjected to any derogatory treatment.


There is no restriction on the inclusion of non-copyright materials in either the printed or the electronic version of the journal, but be aware that there may be rights in performances of public domain works. Terms of copyright in literary, dramatic, artistic and musical works (whether published or not) depend both on when and where the work was first published, and on if and when the author has died and on the residence and nationality of the author. The rules are complicated, but the general rule is:

• copyright expires seventy years after the end of the calendar year in which the author died;
• if a work was unpublished (and this term has a broad meaning including public performance and broadcasting) at the date of the author's death, then the period of copyright protection will be the longer of:
1. seventy years after the end of the calendar year in which the author died; or
2. fifty years after the end of the calendar year in which the work was first published (in the case of works first published before 1 August 1989) and fifty years from 1 January 1990 (in the case of works first published after 1 August 1989).

In the case of an unpublished document you will need to seek permission from the owner of the document as well as the owner of any copyright in the document.

New editions: A new copyright may exist in a new edition of an existing work. If the new edition contains material alterations which suffice to make the totality of the new edition an original work, then the new edition will be a new copyright work. This is so whether or not the existing edition is in the public domain. Copying the existing work will require no consent if it is in the public domain, but that copying must be done from the existing work and not from the new edition. If the existing work is still protected by copyright, then permission for use must be obtained from the rights owner. If the new edition is used and the old edition is still in copyright, permission must be obtained from the owner of the rights in the new edition and, if that owner does not also own the rights in the old edition, from the person who owns the rights in the old edition. Copyright on typography and music setting (engraving) lasts for 25 years from publication.

Sound recordings: In the case of sound recordings, copyright in the recording generally lasts for fifty years from release. Release has a wide meaning and includes broadcast and public performance. That means that you do not need permission to reproduce clips from original recordings that were released over 50 years ago; reissues (for instance CD compilations of historical recordings) may however be protected by a new copyright, as will sound recordings which have been remastered or digitally enhanced. Rights of performers performing on sound recordings generally last for the same period as the copyright in the sound recording.

Multiple copyrights: As you will gather from the above, a single publication will have multiple copyrights. For a musical score, these typically include the composer, the editor or arranger (if any), and the music setting; in the case of songs and operas the lyrics or libretto will be copyright, too. The publisher will normally handle all these rights. For a recording there will be a number of separate copyrights relating to the performance but they will usually all be handled by the record company, although it may sometimes be necessary to get separate permission from performers; you should check with the record company. Where the work itself is copyright, however, you will have to obtain permission for that separately from the publisher. Material can be considered out of copyright only if all the relevant copyrigh


Make sure you do not apply for permission when you do not actually need it! There is one important circumstance under which permission is not required, and you should consider carefully whether it applies in your case.

Where copyright is in force, it is legal to quote brief extracts from books, articles, or musical works for purposes of review or criticism, provided that the source is acknowledged. In this context 'musical works' is believed to include both scores and recordings, and this provision is believed to extend to electronic as well as to print publication. However you must note the following:

• 'brief' is generally understood to mean no more than 5% of the work and, in any event, no more than is necessary for the criticism or review in question (note that individual items in collections, eg songs, count as works in their own right)
• you cannot include the materials just for illustration; the legality of the quotation depends on the presence of critical commentary on it or its use for critical commentary on another work. For instance it might only be legal to reproduce an extract from a recording if you were commenting on the performance or the work recorded.

These provisions do not however apply to illustrations or figures in books, since each illustration or figure is treated as a separate copyright item. You will need to obtain permission to reproduce them from the publishers, or where they are credited to third parties from those third parties.


In most cases the best place to start applying for permission is with the music publisher. Publishers of most music published in the UK can be found by searching on the web site of the Music Publishers Association

You need to write to the copyright holder or owner of the rights in the performance, explaining what you want to reproduce and the nature of the publication; you may have to pay a fee. In the case of textual and graphic material there will normally be little problem; publishers and libraries are used to handling such enquiries.

You may wish to include or adapt the following when writing:

[name of journal], which is published by Oxford University Press, is a scholarly journal with a limited print run. It is also published in an electronic (web-based) version, accessible only to authorized users. I am therefore seeking clearance for both the printed and the electronic versions of the journal for the life of the work. As a scholarly publication, the journal does not offer any remuneration to authors and I would therefore ask you to consider reducing or waiving any fees in respect of this permission.

Sound recordings: The situation is more complicated in the case of sound recordings, largely because record companies are not yet used to handling such requests. As you will only be reproducing a short extract from a recording, an enlightened company will see this not as undercutting sales but as offering free publicity. For this reason it may be advisable, when writing to large companies, to address your letter to the marketing rather than the rights division.

You may wish to include or adapt the following when writing:

[name of journal], which is published by Oxford University Press, is a scholarly journal with a limited print run. It is also published in an electronic (web-based) version, accessible only to authorized users. The electronic version includes a facility for sound examples, and I am writing to request permission to include and use an extract from one of your recordings as a sound example in the way just described, for the life of the work. Full details of the recording will be given. As a scholarly publication, the journal does not offer any remuneration to authors and I would therefore ask you to consider reducing or waiving any fees in respect of this permission.

A problem you may run into is being offered permission for the electronic version on the basis of a fixed-term or renewable license only, which we would unfortunately be unable to accept. In this case, contact the editorial office.

You may have difficulty in determining exactly who holds the rights for older recordings. The National Sound Archive) (a division of the British Library) has information on this and will be glad to advise. The National Sound Archive may also be able to supply CD copies of recorded extracts for journal submissions, with the copying charges paid by the Archive from an educational trust fund (but please note that responsibility for copyright and other rights clearance remains with the contributor).

Mechanical rights and performance rights:
1) In the UK: MCPS/PRS Alliance. The MCPS (mechanical rights for sound recordings, UK) and PRS (performing rights, UK) have formed an alliance which means that it is possible to apply to both of them for permission in tandem. This is good news and should make research and clearance more straightforward:

2) In the US: Mechanical rights: The Harry Fox Agency in New York is roughly equivalent to MCPS for the US:

Musical extracts from films: Unlike the reproduction of film stills (where film companies sometimes have little interest in granting permission for academic publications), film companies are very keen to license permissions for the use of musical extracts, and will usually charge. Academic publications might be an exception, and we can expect them to be a little more flexible for a journal article, but it means it is very important to emphasize academic journal publication whenever submitting a permission request to a film company.

Music in facsimile:
Permission for music in facsimile works in much the same way as any other illustrative material, so permission should usually be sought for use of the photograph, even if the original object (such as a book) is out of copyright. Usually the best place to start is with the publisher, or in the case of an out of copyright book, the library or collection where the book is held. Where the music itself is still in copyright, then of course the rights have to be cleared as well.

If you have queries about clearing permissions for your article, please contact the editorial office.


Article authors can claim 25 offprints free of charge plus 1 gratis copy of the issue in which their article appears. This is not an automatic service and authors must order their copies by logging on to the Oxford Journals Author Services site. Review authors can claim 1 gratis copy of the issue which their article is due to appear in through the same site.


Music and Letters authors have the option to publish their paper under the Oxford Open initiative; whereby, for a charge, their paper will be made freely available online immediately upon publication. After your manuscript is accepted the corresponding author will be required to accept a mandatory licence to publish agreement. As part of the licensing process you will be asked to indicate whether or not you wish to pay for open access. If you do not select the open access option, your paper will be published with standard subscription-based access and you will not be charged.

Oxford Open articles are published under Creative Commons licences. Authors publishing in Music and Letters can use the following Creative Commons licences for their articles:
• Creative Commons licence (CC-BY)
• Creative Commons Non-Commercial licence (CC-BY-NC)

Please click here for more information about the Creative Commons licences.

You can pay Open Access charges using our Author Services site. This will enable you to pay online with a credit/debit card, or request an invoice by email or post. The open access charges applicable are:

Regular charge - £1875/ $3000 / €2438
List B Developing country charge* - £938 / $1500 / €1219
List A Developing country charge* - £0 /$0 / €0
*Visit our Developing Countries page for a list of qualifying countries.

Please note that these charges are in addition to any colour/page charges that may apply.

Orders from the UK will be subject to the current UK VAT charge. For orders from the rest of the European Union, OUP will assume that the service is provided for business purposes. Please provide a VAT number for yourself or your institution, and ensure you account for your own local VAT correctly.


OUP offers pre-submission language editing through Oxford Language Editing, a service for researchers all over the world. Language editing, particularly if English is not your first language, can be used to ensure that the academic content of your paper is fully understood by the journal editors and reviewers. Visit to find out more about the freelance editors available and the different services offered. Please note that edited manuscripts will still need to undergo peer-review by the journal.


Dr Rebecca Herissone, Manchester, UK
Dr Sam Barrett, Cambridge, UK
Dr Sarah Hibberd, Nottingham, UK
Professor Stephen Downes, Royal Holloway, London, UK

For Authors

Oxford OpenRCUK Welcome Trust Open Access

Open access options for authors - visit Oxford Open