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Folk Music Journal

Folk Music Journal (FMJ) is a unique specialist scholarly journal. Published by the English Folk Dance and Song Society, it is the annual publication of the Vaughan Williams Memorial Library.


What you can expect

The Journal features papers devoted to folk music, folk dance, and folk song, which in practice are interpreted in their broadest sense. Contributions come from a variety of subjects and disciplines ranging from ethnomusicology, dance ethnology, and social anthropology, through folkloristics, social and oral history, the history of street literature and ballad studies, to the study of contemporary performance. Various approaches are adopted, including theoretical, empirical and fieldwork-based studies, which may be local, regional, national or international in scope. Essentially, the Journal is concerned with ‘lived’ as opposed to ‘processed’ popular culture, with the focus on the British Isles and the English-speaking world.

The Journal combines erudition and accessibility in a manner that is intelligible to non-specialists and academics. The reviews section provides an invaluable source of information on the latest studies and collections that have been published. Recent audio and video materials and electronic resources which document music and dance traditions also receive informed reviews.



Since its inception in 1899 as the Journal of the Folk-Song Society, the Journal has had a long and auspicious history. From 1932 onwards, it incorporated dance within its brief as the Journal of the English Folk Dance and Song Society, and assumed its current title in 1965. Many eminent scholars have been associated with the Journal. These include Lucy Broadwood, Ralph Vaughan Williams, Frank Kidson, Percy Grainger, Lady Gomme, Cecil Sharp, Frank Howes, Anne Geddes Gilchrist, Patrick Shuldham-Shaw, Maud Karpeles, Margaret Dean-Smith, Douglas Kennedy, A.L. Lloyd, and more recently, Mike Yates, David Buchan, Roy Palmer, and Keith Chandler.

Before its amalgamation with the Folk-Song Society in 1931, the English Folk Dance Society also had a distinguished publishing programme. Its journal was published in two series, the first as EFDS Journal in 1914-1915, the second as Journal of the English Folk Dance Society from 1927 until the merger.


How can you get your hands on a copy?

FMJ is published annually in December. It is mailed to individual EFDSS members, to affiliated groups, and to institutional subscribers.

Join us: find out more about the benefits of membership


Back issues

To buy a back copy of the printed FMJ please contact the Society Administrator: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or +44 (0)20 7241 8955.

To request a digital copy of a particular article, please contact the Library: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or +44 (0)20 7241 8950.

All profits from EFDSS membership and FMJ subscriptions support the organisation.


Contributing to the Journal

Contributions are invited for Folk Music Journal. Submissions should be sent as an email attachment to the Editor at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and should be formatted in 12pt Time New Roman. Illustrative material should be submitted as separate files. Endnotes should follow the recommendations of the MHRA Style Guide.

Contributions are accepted throughout the year, but potential contributors are advised that decisions on content are taken in November each year, and submissions intended for consideration in November should reach the Editor by the first week in September.