Content, Part 4: Commercial PDF Sheet Music Resources
Commercial PDF sheet music sites are available for several genres of music. You can shop online, make your purchase, and then download the PDF files for use with your favorite PDF reader app or program (see “Apps for Reading Paper Sheet Music Sources“). Here is a sampling of what’s available:
Brassworks 4 – This is an example of a niche classical site that’s surprisingly comprehensive, offering PDF files for solo and ensemble brass configurations. Some of the offerings are only available as paper deliveries, but many are also available as PDF downloads. Founded by a retired brass ensemble of “3 guys and a gal”, this virtual sheet music store came into existence out of fun and necessity as the group found that they had to write their own arrangements due to the dearth of available music for their configuration.
Every Note – this has been one of my favorite sites for commercial classical sheet music PDF files. You’ll find a collection of over 20,000 popular and hard-to-find scores representing over 1,000 composers. The site was started by Soviet-born pianist Mark Zeltser, who made it his stated goal to offer “every classical note ever written”. Dr. Zeltser maintains the site with the help of his programmer (who also happens to be his wife) Violetta.
Virtual Sheet Music – this is a popular site for classical music scores in PDF formats. They also offer Jazz and popular tunes, but those files are in a proprietary Scorch format that limits you to printing paper versions rather than downloading portable PDF files. Virtual Sheet Music also provides a free iPad reader app for classical selections, and most offerings also include an MP3 audio file to help you hear how the music goes. Great for students and teachers.
Mel Bay – Mel Bay provides an extensive library of educational PDF method eBooks and sheet music collections. A fantastic resource for teachers and students of all instruments.
PraiseCharts – PraiseCharts offers downloadable chord chart and lead sheet PDFs of popular Christian worship music with transpositions in any key, as well as orchestrated audio accompaniment tracks.
SongSelect by CCLI – CCLI stands for Christian Copyright Licensing International, and is one of the major resources for purchasing licenses for the use of popular Christian music in worship settings. CCLI offers a paid membership service called SongSelect, which gives you access to a vast library of worship music in a variety of downloadable formats, ranging from lead sheets, chord sheets, hymn sheets, and sound samples.
Feel free to share links to your favorite commercial sheet music site that provides PDF downloads and I’ll be happy to add them to this post!