De-Stress THAT MESS ®


Your music is your life’s work.  Respect it and yourself by treating it with the care it deserves.  Life has enough challenges — this is one area you can do something about and minimize the stress. Knowing you can easily put your hands on any piece of music you might need on short notice — and that all the parts will be there – will put your mind at rest. To have your music stored in an accessible and organized system with an overview of what you have and what is missing.  A simple system that enables you to pull a piece of music for a gig in minutes.  And a way for you to log in parts after a gig so that if one is missing, you can track it down before it is too late to remember who might have it, or what other piece it might be folded up with.  And, if you are ambitious, to compile a printed catalogue of your library.

Why now?  Is there a deadline by which you need to find all the parts for a piece you’re to perform?  Or are you fed up with not being able to find something easily?  Is the music in the respective “books” in no particular order?  Are pieces formerly taped together in danger of becoming separated?  Are you unsure if you have all the parts to some pieces – could someone have inadvertently walked off with a part after the last gig?

A member of American Federation of Musicians Local 802, she combines both her careers to freelance as a Music Librarian – actually getting a thrill from creating order where none existed. Judy works with personal libraries as well as small- and medium-sized performing ensembles — hands-on, sleeves rolled up, side-by-side.  Her rates vary from hourly to a flat fee, depending on the project. Judy is a classical flute and piccolo player (married to a jazz saxophonist/composer/arranger).

Judy recently organized 50 years of music — from 200 trio to dozens of sextet, big band and string orchestra arrangements — for singer Jackie Cain (of Jackie & Roy).  Jackie and her late husband Roy Kral were so busy working that they could never dedicate time to organization — sound familiar? Arrangements were found separated, stored in briefcases, suitcases, cartons, envelopes, in closets, the attic and under beds. What treasures were found!

Click here to read the how-to article "Clean it Up! or, It's Time Your Music Library Came Out of the Closet" by Judy in the April 2006 issue of Allegro, AFofM Local 802's newspaper. (Scroll all the way down to, and click on, "all publications", then click on "April 2006" in the first list of dates, then click on "Member to Member: Clean it Up!".  Sorry, but that's as direct a link as exists.)


These are rolling drawers, with drawers of different depths -- chosen to fit the needs of the artist. One small closet was taken over, leaving the center cart lower to use as a sorting surface. Judy worked together with the artist to determine how best to sort the arrangements, and chose envelopes over folders to minimize the potential of parts getting lost in transport. (Note: the 2 large empty drawers are waiting for 150+ trio arrangements, which are are currently being gone through by the artist for future gigs.)

(Other clients are happier with manila folders hanging -- Judy customizes the system to the artist.)


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