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Music Library        Printable Version


Music is a source of great enjoyment for visually impaired people of all ages.

The National Library for the Blind holds the largest collection of Braille music outside the USA. We have 14,000 Braille music scores for loan as well as access to other international collections.

Our Music Library is enjoyed by professional and amateur musicians as well as music teachers and students.

You can choose from a wide range of vocal and instrumental scores from classical pieces and opera to popular music and jazz. You can also browse our Music Library catalogue online.

Alternatively, you can contact our Music Librarian for help and advice on 0161 355 2045 or email:

Leaflets about Braille music from NLB

'Choice' lists
Our 'Choice' lists provide lots of ideas about the kind of Braille music you can borrow from NLB, ranging from pop music and piano duets to pieces for voice, flute, guitar and violin, to name but a few.

'Braille music - what is it and where can I find it?'
This Braille music information leaflet has been produced jointly by NLB and the Canadian National Institute for the Blind (CNIB). The leaflet gives contact details for organisations worldwide which supply Braille music.

NLB Music Library collection

We have an extensive range of music for loan:

  • 14,000 classical and popular titles ranging from Bach to The Beatles.
  • Music for piano, organ and voice as well as a variety of other instruments including strings, woodwind and brass.
  • Tutor books for beginners in Braille music.
  • Books about music including the history and theory of music.

Membership of NLB is free and, once you have joined, music scores are delivered direct to your door.

What our Braille music readers say:

"I play the clarinet and I love to play the piano too. NLB is just great." Kerry Firth, aged 13.

"I teach Braille music and I know how much pleasure and satisfaction my students gain from being able to play a musical instrument." Bernard Knight, Braille tutor.

Learning Braille music

Blind and visually impaired musicians need access to music scores just as sighted musicians do. Braille music is based on the same six dots as traditional Braille letters but in addition there are separate symbols for each note, key, tempo and duration. We can advise you about Braille music resources including learning materials.

Why learn Braille music?

  • Access to a wealth of sheet music if you don’t read print.
  • Opportunities to extend your repertoire and refresh your memory.
  • Braille music brings you closer to the original score than any other alternative format.
  • Once mastered, the Braille music code opens up a world of pleasure and fulfilment and keeps the magic of playing an instrument alive.

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