The Arkansas music collection contains an eclectic mix of materials related to the rich Arkansas music scene. Arkansas music includes many genres, from country and folk to blues, jazz, and rock. In addition to the music created here and by Arkansans, Arkansas has often been the subject of songs created both in the state and outside, reflecting the perceptions of natives and of outsiders at various points in the state's history. Many important venues and events have and still take place in Arkansas, and significant contributions have also been made by Arkansans behind the scenes in music production, management, and technology.
The collection is organized into the following large categories: People and Events; Sheet Music/Lyrics; Posters/Musician Items; Miscellaneous (mostly magazines and publicity clippings).
Items of particular interest include the Ruth and Howard Bearden Scrapbook collection, containing photos and memorabilia from the big band era, as well as, photographs and memorabilia from The Light Brigade, a local band who performed and recorded mostly during the mid-sixties through the late seventies. The Light Brigade materials include articles of clothing worn by band members during some of their performances.
The Arkansas music collection is an open and growing collection. As relevant materials are acquired, they will be processed and added to the collection.