This paper describes how alternative documents – memory, metaphor, and storytelling – negotiate musicians’ ongoing process of knowledge building. Examples are drawn from five music practitioners of different traditions around the world. In the contexts of teaching and learning, these documents provide evidence of changing epistemic perspectives in these music practitioners, and can be used to examine the complex relationships between time, knowledge building, and experience. Recent work in oral information and oral documents by Turner (2007; 2010), in addition to conceptual views of documents and documentation as early as Otlet (1934) and Briet (1951) and revisited by Buckland (1991; 1997) and Frohmann (2004; 2009), continue to examine what constitutes a document and in which contexts. The idea of devices like memory, metaphor, and storytelling as documents providing “windows” into epistemological dynamics is a new perspective offered on a diverse and complex subject. Future research into music knowledge contexts of documents will further the overall discussion of non-textual documents and documentation practices in Library and Information Science.

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