Cover image for The Green book of songs by subject : the thematic guide to popular music
The Green book of songs by subject : the thematic guide to popular music
Green, Jeff.
Personal Author:
Fifth edition, updated and expanded.
Publication Information:
Nashville, Tenn. : Professional Desk References, [2002]

Physical Description:
xxi, 1569 ; 24 cm
General Note:
Includes index.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Central Library ML156.4.P6 G73 2002 Adult Non-Fiction Grosvenor Room-Reference-Music
Clarence Library ML156.4.P6 G73 2002 Adult Non-Fiction Reference material
Kenmore Library ML156.4.P6 G73 2002 Adult Non-Fiction Reference material
Audubon Library ML156.4.P6 G73 2002 Adult Non-Fiction Reference material

On Order



If you have ever need to find a song about a particular subject instantly, this is the ultimate reference book. The author has researched over 35000 pop songs spanning 100 years of music and categorised them by nearly 1800 themes. Over 1500 pages and 8600 listings in all.

Author Notes

Author and publisher Jeff Green is Executive Editor for trade publication Radio & Records. His 24-year music industry career includes executive roles with the Country Music Association, as well as earlier editorial management posts at R&R in Los Angeles and Music & Media in Amsterdam. Green has also worked in radio, records and television marketing

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

" You know that song. The one about . . . It goes like . . ." Questions like this frustrate library patrons and staff. One solution is The Green Book, which indexes 21,000 twentieth-century songs by assigning one or more of 800 subject headings, based on keywords in the title or the subject of the song. Most songs are from the 1950s on. Johnny Cash's "Boy Named Sue" is found, for example, under Fight and Men's Names. The subjects vary widely from UFOs to Colors, Drugs, Marriage, Police, and States. Songs under the subject Door, for example, include "Crazy Little Mamma," "Let My Love Open the Door," "My Baby Done Changed the Lock," and "One Less Bell to Answer," among 81 songs. Love is not a subject, but there are pages of songs under Sex. See references lead from one subject heading to another. Song titles are listed alphabetically under a subject. For each song, performer, album, and label are given to help track recordings. Most are albums and are in print; a few 45s are included. The book closes with a list translating the abbreviations used for record labels and an index to subjects used. The Green Book of Songs by Subject is an unusual but useful title. The only drawback is that it is hard to put down. Recommended for medium-size and large public libraries. (Reviewed Apr. 15, 1995)

Library Journal Review

This updated and expanded edition of the 1982 original includes 700 new songs and 200 new categories. Green presents song titles and artists by keywords in the titles and by several categories including names, places, etc. Pricey, but useful. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Choice Review

Green offers a pleasurable, unique subject list of 21,000 songs of the 20th century. Songs of all varieties (children's, jazz, alternative, instrumental, to name a few) are organized by more than 800 subjects and subcategories (e.g., "Do the Funky Penquin" is listed under "Birds"). Each song entry lists artist(s), album(s), and a record label code. Some categories include subcategories ("Anatomy: Lips") and see also references to other subject headings ("Heaven" see also "Angels, Death, God, Happiness, Hell"). Following the subject category section of the book is a list of record label codes and an index by subject, which provides see references not found in the main body of the book (e.g., "Cheating see Lies"). Considering the unavoidable subjectivity of such an endeavor, placement of songs within categories is impressive and appropriate. Since Green intends to provide thematic access to songs, a song title index is not included. Although primarily created for people in audio production and programming, this book can be useful to a wide range of readers. Recommended for special music collections and larger public and academic libraries. L. A. Sullivan Northern Kentucky University

Table of Contents

Acknowledgmentsp. xi
Introductionp. xiii
Author's Notes
What Is The Green Book?p. xv
How To Use The Green Bookp. xv
How The Subject Categories And Song Classifications Workp. xvi
How Songs And Recordings Were Selectedp. xix
How The Lyrics Have Been Interpretedp. xix
Availability of Songs And Format Configurationsp. xx
Legendp. xxi
Songs Categorized By Subjectp. 1
Index By Subjectp. 1513

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