Starting a sheet music collection is easy, once you’ve decided what you want to collect. Sheet music is inexpensive and relatively easy to find. You can find music at yard sales, antique shows and on the internet. Only music that is very scarce or rare is expensive. Most pieces can be found at a price between three and twenty five dollars. Extremely rare sheet music can carry a price of up to a thousand dollars, but few pieces fall into this category. You will find music in any color graphic or subject matter you are looking for.
People collect sheet music in many ways. Sometimes sheet music is collected by the genre or songs. You could put together a history of music in America with a sheet music collection. You could do this with the entire history of our country or concentrate on one time period or decade. The possibilities are endless – be creative when building your collection! Songs have been written about most important events in our history, including wars, plane crashes and natural disasters. Themes such as love or the evolution of images of women in music are popular themes for sheet music collections. Other collectors focus on one composer or cover artist.
Ragtime music from the early twentieth century is popular with collectors of vintage sheet music. This music is considered the foundation of modern jazz music. A ragtime music collection looks great displayed in a room decorated in the Early American style. And the cover art on rag time sheet music looks great displayed in picture frames on a wall or sofa table.
Music written by famous composers is popular among sheet music collectors. This music is readily available in all music genres. Other collectors focus on rare or vintage sheet music. The value of these documents depends largely on the condition of the sheets. Pieces in mint condition will be more expensive. Most sheet music isn’t found in perfect condition. The spine of the sheet was usually broken to make the score stand up in the music stand. Spills, tears and names written on the covers are common because sheet music was often used at parties.
Sheet music displayed in a family room or bar area makes a great focal point. Even people who don’t collect sheet music use it in a display of other collectibles. Collectors of beer, whisky, golf, military, cigars or trains can find sheet music to accent their collection. A few pieces of sheet music with great cover art enhance a display of other collectibles. Collectors of memorabilia from movies or Broadway productions often look for sheet music written for the production.
Any sheet music that isn’t displayed should be stored properly to preserve the condition. Store each set of sheet music in a plastic baggie like those used for comic book collections. Place those bags in a large plastic storage container to protect them from being ripped or crumpled. Store your containers in a dry place away from sunlight or moisture, which can damage the music.