A list of best music history research paper topic ideas

Music is–and always has been–found in every culture since the early beginnings of humanity. Even the most isolated groups and tribes use music to get together, dance and express themselves artistically; every soul on earth has a relationship to music.

If you plan to write a research paper about the history of music, you’re facing a topic with a sheer infinite scope. We recommend focusing on a specific era, country or type of music to research and write about.

The following list provides you with fifteen ideas to pick a topic from.

  1. A history of musical style in Europe after World War 2
  2. The origins of Black Music and it’s influence on American pop culture
  3. Tribal music and transcendental states: how ancient tribes used music to cure mental diseases
  4. Jazz: it’s evolution from the basement to the concert hall
  5. How the Roman Catholic Church affected musical development in medieval Europe
  6. Psychedelic Rock and the Summer of Love: the birth of a new genre
  7. The rhythm and pace of sub-Saharan African music
  8. The musical instruments of early Indian music
  9. The fall of the Berlin Wall and it’s contribution to techno music in Germany
  10. The melodies and texture of the Classical music era in Europe
  11. Radio and music: how the introduction of the radio has changed the listener’s taste
  12. A comparative study of 19th century Chinese and Japanese music
  13. Persia: the music of 1001 nights
  14. Early Music: a journey from the Roman Empire to the beginnings of Baroque
  15. An analysis of the plucked string instruments used in early Greek music

Still nothing that interests you? Here are a few additional ideas to consider.

Take a look at historic events and try linking them to the musical style of the era. Did you know that Western music was strongly influenced by ancient Greek writings?

Or maybe consider the religious angle. Christian music, mostly the chanting of hymns and psalms, has its beginnings in old Hebrew traditions. In the Middle Ages, music was almost limited to the churches and cathedrals and very few people outside of the church were able to read music.

Last, you could analyze an instrument and its use amongst different cultures and for different types of music. The guitar is amongst the most widely used instruments in the world and even poor farmers in Havana learned to build their own versions of the guitar out of cigar boxes and nylon strings.