- Guggenheim Fellow (1966)
George J. Buelow majored in piano and studied with Rudolf Ganz at the Chicago Musical College, where he received both his bachelor's (1950) and master's degrees (1951). He was then accepted into the Ph.D. program in musicology at New York University. In his autobiography, Buelow states the importance of his early learning experience at NYU, "I owe everything I am today as a musicologist to three professors: Curt Sachs, the most brilliant teacher and learned and cultured man I have ever known, who became the model for my own goals; Gustav Reese, who taught me the discipline of musicology; and my mentor, Martin Bernstein, whose courses on J. S. Bach led me into my career-long interest in Baroque music." Encouraged by Bernstein, Buelow applied and was awarded a Fulbright Exchange Fellowship to prepare his dissertation at the Hamburg library in Germany (1954-1955). While there, Buelow took a class with Professor Fritz Feldmann at Hamburg University. Buelow served on music journal editorial staffs in New York and Chicago while writing his dissertation under the advisement of Professor Jan LaRue. In 1961, Buelow received his Ph.D. from NYU. While at NYU, he was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in music research (1966-1967), which he used for further research in the libraries of Europe.
Buelow's first faculty position was at the University of California at Riverside. He left California in 1968 for a brief one-year stint as professor of music and chair of the music department at the University of Kentucky. In 1969, he was appointed professor of music, coordinating chairman, and director of graduate studies at Rutgers University. He resigned from Rutgers in 1977 to return to teaching and was appointed professor of musicology at the Jacobs School of Music at IU Bloomington. While at IU, he taught courses in musicology, choral music, and piano. On December 31, 1998, he retired from IU with the title of professor emeritus of music.
Buelow's research was focused on German music (17th and early 18th centuries) and emphasized performance practice, music theory, and opera. He was a member of prestigious musical societies, served on numerous boards, was a book and journal editor, and founded and edited the series, "Studies in Musicology." He was also a prolific writer: authoring books, reviews, journal articles, and Festschriften.
Buelow passed away after a long illness on March 30, 2009.