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How to Cite Song Lyrics Using APA Format

Updated June 13, 2017

In-Text Citations

In-text citations should be written in a simple, basic format that will help the reader find the source and should include the lyricist’s last name, followed by the date of publication. If there are two writers, they should both be listed. For example: “Whatever Lola Wants" (Adler & Ross, 1955).

Reference List Citations

Reference lists are at the end of the paper. Write the lyricist’s last name, followed by first and middle initial, the date the piece was written in parentheses, followed by the name of the piece, and the location and name of the publisher. For example: Adler, R. & Ross, J. (1955). Whatever Lola Wants. New York: BMG Music.

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About the Author

Bonnie Crowe is a mother of two teenagers; a teacher and author of children's books, curriculum and articles on English grammar, literature, technology, art, parenting and career guides for high schoolers. She's a former director of AOL Parenting, a member of SCBWI, and a graduate from the University of California,Berkeley.