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  1. #1

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    Hey guys - pretty simple question. I want to start getting into doing more writing, and I know I need to join the 21st century and get some notation software. I'm a total newbie to this world.

    I run a mac at home. I have a little Sternberg interface that I'm using to start some small recording projects, and I've just been using Garageband and iMovie for those. I also have a keyboard with midi.

    My goals are to (1) make lead sheets for the tunes I regularly play in the keys I play them for when I want to play with other folks, (2) write lead sheets and arrangements for some things I'm writing, and (3) start keeping better records of my licks and exercises. So something that could do full scoring, lead sheet creation, and had some kind of built in guitar tab or chord charts would be awesome.

    What would you guys recommend?

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    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
     
  3. #2

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    Sibelius or Finale generally. My experience is limited to Sibelius G7, a now legacy product I purchased for $60 or so onsale several years ago. Best software expense for the buck. I'm sure there are other options, but Sibelius is a good choice for your purposes. Not the expensive version - there is a starter version like mine that is more than adequate, unless you are scoring for orchestras, etc.

    My Sibelius software is installed on a home PC desktop. I suppose I could install it on my MacBook laptop, but given that the software is 'old', I thought I would buy the newest inexpensive version for that purpose. There is a "learning curve" that initially can be annoying, but once you get the hang of it, you will love using it.

    If you would use this for gigs as a personal fakebook library of transcriptions of your 'set list', one could consider installing on an iPad or something. I've no experience with that, but I'm sure one could research it or talk to a Sibelius tech. My laptop is pretty portable, but the iPad is more compact. Could work both ways. The larger screen size may be preferable. You could transpose the music relatively quickly into another key. One possibility is to copy the song you created in one key, create a "new" template, paste the copy, and then with a click or two you transpose it to a new key.

    Although I don't bother using tablature, there is that capability. The problem is that it would double the size of your transcription, which is a negative in terms of real time use, imo. And you can't read tab quickly in a performance situation. But then again, using notation software is a great teaching aid for reading notation.

    Although I don't bother creating "chord diagrams" above the staff, you can do that quite nicely. I do like to have Sibelius "create the chord symbols from the notes", eg, Dm7b5, above the melody line. And of course you can easily enter lyrics as well.

    If you would like to see an example of what these things can look like, drop me a PM with a song 'request' (my personal transcription library is over 200 songs) and I'll e-mail you an attachment. Most of my songs are scored simply as a melody staff and a 'guitar' staff. KISS applies here unless you need to score for a quartet or something. The great part is you can assign a vibraphone or tenor sax to the melody line and practice soloing over the music. Or comping.

    This will turbocharge your playing, no doubt. You will never look back. The synergy thing is great.

    Jay
    Last edited by targuit; 11-11-2014 at 10:34 AM.

  4. #3

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    I've used Sibelius for past ten or so years. I have the full blown Sibelius 6. Now they've moved on to Sibelius 7. It's great software imo. The only problem is it's really expensive. I was taking music classes when I bought it and got it for half price which was about $250. I had to retire my XP computer and I can't move my old Sibelius to my new computer. To repurechase Sibelius, $600.

    Before Sibelius I was using Finale.

    I'm now using MuseScore. It has a UI similar to Sibelius and it's free. It does everything I need. It doesn't currently have tab or chord diagrams though. Current version is 1.3. You can make simple lead sheets or all the way to orchestral scores or Big band scores with MuseScore including printing individual parts transposed for the transposing instruments.

    MuseScore 2.0 is in beta and it does include tab and chord diagrams.

    I encourage my friends and past bandmates to use MuseScore because of the benefit of us all using the same software for sharing files and collaborating.

    I wish you could try both Sibelius and MuseScore but I wouldn't recommend it even if Sibelius gave you a free trial period (not sure if they do). The problem is that these are very robust softwares and consequently there is a significant effort in learning how to operate the software. Your first several scores will take you more time to create than if you were to do it by hand. Once you get up and running you'll be able to create scores faster with the software than by hand and of course they'll be beautiful and very easy to edit.

    Bottom line Sibelius, Finale and MuseScore are all great Notation softwares. MuseScore is free.
    Last edited by fep; 11-11-2014 at 11:03 AM.
    B+
    Frank (aka fep)

  5. #4

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    Frank, with MuseScore can you enter notation in real time? You know, play it in with a synth keyboard? Or in step-time for that matter. I find that typing in the notes off the computer keys is rather tedious by comparison with just playing it in.

    I imagine the full-blown programs are expensive, but there is likely no need to spend beyond the starter version.

    Jay

  6. #5

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    Targuit, you can enter notes with a midi instrument in step time. I don't believe musescore has note entry in real time.

    I was doing several things that required me to use the full blown Sibelius, primarily writing scores with many parts and printing the individual parts for musicians. There were other features that G7 didn't have that I needed but I can't remember the details, it was years ago. G7 was a tease for me, I could see what was possible, but I needed the other features.
    Last edited by fep; 11-11-2014 at 11:21 AM.
    B+
    Frank (aka fep)

  7. #6
    I used finale back in the day, and then downgraded to things like Finale Notepad with new machines until I found MuseScore. I found that it could do pretty much anything I wanted except for the chord grids and tab. The new 2.0 beta has those now and is a pretty nice upgrade overall. I probably haven't used it long enough to really judge, but I actually have both (real 1.X version and beta 2.0) running on my machine right now.

    I've been using the MuseScore 2.0 beta for about a week or so. I really like the updates on it, and it seems a lot more stable than the "Nightly Build" developmental versions I've used in the past to try and get some tab done. Of course the non-beta is rock solid, and I think the 2.0 is close to being finished. The beta's pretty solid as well, I repeatedly slammed ctrl-X last night, forgetting that I was using a beta version, and when I reopened it prompted me to open a recovery file. Nice...

    The chord grid editor is pretty basic but is a great addition. It's got tab, a "concert pitch" toggle button for editing transposing instruments etc. I really like that now, a mouse-over of any button reveals the shortcut keys. It's got a midi entry toggle on the home screen, but I haven't used any midi entry in several years (with anything).

    I would definitely check it out. It's always going to be a little behind the paid apps, but it's so robust now that I would have to have some deal-breaker features in my sights to put me over the line for using something else. I would imagine that, at this point, Sibelius and Finale sales are riding pretty heavily on the legacy users that already know those programs. If you're starting from scratch, I don't see much down side to using free MuseScore.
    Last edited by matt.guitarteacher; 11-11-2014 at 11:54 AM.

  8. #7

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    Thanks, guys. Seems like MuseScore is probably the way to go for my needs.

    Targuit - I'm not trying to do everything simultaneously. I just want to be able to make lead sheets, and then make scores for more intricate arrangements, and also tab out some exercises that I've been working on.

  9. #8

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    Why do you want tab? I ask this question seriously. Don't you as educators (those who teach guitar) feel any obligation to teach aspiring guitarists "grown-up musicianship"? What other group of musicians (pianists, woodwinds, horns, strings) rely on tablature?

    Oh, I know - guitarists are dumber than dirt and cannot learn to read notation - apparently it is genetic...

  10. #9

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    I feel an obligation as an educator to get my students making music. Not every student is the same...10 year old kid, picking up an instrument for the first time? You bet he learns to read. 26 year old guy with a newborn who's hacked away since he was 16, wants to learn john mayer and srv licks but never learned to read music? Tabulature's just fine.
    Jeff Matz, Jazz Guitar:
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    --The Ghost of Duke Ellington

  11. #10

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    I'm a Sibelius user for transcriptions and the like, but to create lead sheets, I use ... Excel (or OpenOffice) which is quite adapted (a bar = a cell, 4 or 8 cells per row, most often 4). Main reasons arethe the much faster startup time and ease of layout control which is a pain with sophisticated notation programs.

    I also use the row of cells right above the ones containing chord names: scales and notes refering to the cells (or group of) immediately below.

  12. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by targuit View Post
    Why do you want tab? I ask this question seriously. Don't you as educators (those who teach guitar) feel any obligation to teach aspiring guitarists "grown-up musicianship"? What other group of musicians (pianists, woodwinds, horns, strings) rely on tablature?

    Oh, I know - guitarists are dumber than dirt and cannot learn to read notation - apparently it is genetic...
    I don't think it's that guitarists are dumber. You're the one always saying that....

    It has to do with the idiosyncratic nature of the instrument itself. I think the guitar is quite unique in the repetitions of unison pitches across multiple strings etc. The notation of classical guitar music makes this evident. It's replete with additional, descriptive, notated elements to illustrate exactly what you're looking at in terms of string sets and fret numbers etc. You could say that all of that is unnecessary, but that would be silly.

    I think the instrument is unique and complex enough. There are some things that are just simpler to illustrate by rote, chord grid, picture, or (God forbid) tab. I think that it's ridiculous to say that learning things by ear or by rote is categorically without value - in any circumstance whatsoever.

    Now, if you're saying that it's questionable for a student or educator to only use tab and never learn to read notation, you could make that argument, but that's a completely different conversation from "why would you you ever use tab?". That question just seems as ridiculous as "Why would you ever use notation?".

    I learned to read notation from Rev. William Bay himself. Now, I had learned to play saxophone at school, and using only the Bayster's book, I learned to read notation all by myself, without any outside input. Now, back in those days (before interwebs) there wasn't youtube or anything like that. How did I learn to read the notation?

    With the coupling of the notational symbols and non-musical, guitar fretboard grids and pictures of Dr. Rev. Bay playing the notes! Is this heresy? I don't think so. I'm pretty sure that Frederick Noad and many other classical cats have done the same thing in there books. The simplest way is often the best. Whatever will get the job done.

    I want the student to hang with me long enough to learn to read some notation. The amount of reading skill required to read and play Sweet Home Alabama or Stairway to Heaven (sorry, those tunes do pay the bills) in standard notation is completely out of proportion with the playing skill required to perform those non-classical tunes.

    What is your deal with this? Do you feel this way about chord grids? Do you feel this way about the chord pro formatted voicings that are daily posted on this forum. Do you feel this way about the illustrations, diagrams and photography in the books of Christopher Parkening, Frederick Noad or Scott Tennant? Why do you feel such a strong need to "save" grown, adults from the wickedness of tablature? Come on.

    Try it just a little bit... A little won't hurt you... Everybody's doing it...

    Well, just kidding there. I probably need to get my life right, I guess...
    Last edited by matt.guitarteacher; 11-11-2014 at 04:02 PM.

  13. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by matt.guitarteacher View Post
    I think the guitar is quite unique in the repetitions of unison pitches across multiple strings etc. The notation of classical guitar music makes this evident. It's replete with additional, descriptive, notated elements to illustrate exactly what you're looking at in terms of string sets and fret numbers etc.
    I think that violinists, cellists and other classical string players would disagree with this.

    The only thing unique about guitar is that its origins were more folk or whatever they called it centuries ago and people used them to accompany vocals. You don't need music or TAB for that matter to accompany Home On The Range.

    But tab gives nothing that standard notation doesn't offer. If you walk into a recording session in LA you're not going to see TAB on any music stands. OTOH, you're not going to need a chart to play Mustang Sally either.

    The Nashville Numbering System is something else again.

    Different situations...different tools.
    Interviewer: Musically speaking, 50 years from now, how would you like to be remembered?
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  14. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Flyin' Brian View Post
    I think that violinists, cellists and other classical string players would disagree with this.

    The only thing unique about guitar is that its origins were more folk or whatever they called it centuries ago and people used them to accompany vocals. You don't need music or TAB for that matter to accompany Home On The Range.

    But tab gives nothing that standard notation doesn't offer. If you walk into a recording session in LA you're not going to see TAB on any music stands. OTOH, you're not going to need a chart to play Mustang Sally either.

    The Nashville Numbering System is something else again.

    Different situations...different tools.
    I understand that, but they are not exactly the same. I'm talking about degrees of difference really. Six strings tuned in fourths and a third is quite different from four strings tuned in fifths . Many more iterations.

    Incidentally, I'm not advocating for tab only. I've never said that. Again, do you have a place for chord grids? Does that somehow invalidate the use of notation? Should we all notate all chords and voicings using standard notation?
    Last edited by matt.guitarteacher; 11-11-2014 at 04:39 PM.

  15. #14
    By the way, this statement:

    Quote Originally Posted by Flyin' Brian View Post
    If you walk into a recording session in LA you're not going to see TAB on any music stands.
    ...is almost certainly true, but that doesn't make this one true:

    Quote Originally Posted by Flyin' Brian View Post
    But tab gives nothing that standard notation doesn't offer.
    Now this one:

    Quote Originally Posted by Flyin' Brian View Post
    Different situations...different tools.
    Absolutely! In fact, I'm pretty sure that's what I was saying in my other reply...

  16. #15

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    Quote Originally Posted by targuit View Post
    Why do you want tab? I ask this question seriously. Don't you as educators (those who teach guitar) feel any obligation to teach aspiring guitarists "grown-up musicianship"? What other group of musicians (pianists, woodwinds, horns, strings) rely on tablature?

    Oh, I know - guitarists are dumber than dirt and cannot learn to read notation - apparently it is genetic...
    Well, I'm not an educator. The only person I'm educating is myself.

    I actually read pretty well for a guitar player. I want tab because I'm starting to document some of the exercises I've used to get my technique together over the last year, and I want to be able to put down how things are executed on the instrument. If I write out a lick in standard notation, there are probably at least 10 different ways to finger that particular lick in that particular octave on guitar, and I'm trying to figure out what the best way is to document the way I do it, including fret position, fingers used, and picking direction.

    Seems like tab is generally a part of that.

    Same deal with chord voicings.

  17. #16

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    Guys, I love Noteflight:

    Noteflight - Online Music Notation Software

    It's cloud based, fast, and very intuitive. The first 10 songs are free. I've got 42 songs up there now. There is a tab feature, but I've never used it.

    I have nothing against tab. Reading music is not very helpful for rock styles.

    This is a song I wrote last weekend (titled by my daughter).

    Create a user name and give it a try.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by danwaineo; 11-11-2014 at 06:42 PM.

  18. #17

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    @danwaineo

    Good looking lead sheet. (I haven't tried Noteflight).
    B+
    Frank (aka fep)

  19. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by ecj View Post
    Well, I'm not an educator. The only person I'm educating is myself.

    I actually read pretty well for a guitar player. I want tab because I'm starting to document some of the exercises I've used to get my technique together over the last year, and I want to be able to put down how things are executed on the instrument. If I write out a lick in standard notation, there are probably at least 10 different ways to finger that particular lick in that particular octave on guitar, and I'm trying to figure out what the best way is to document the way I do it, including fret position, fingers used, and picking direction.

    Seems like tab is generally a part of that.

    Same deal with chord voicings.

    Just a thought ecj…….In regard to documenting ideas I have found my iPad to be fantastic for recording short videos of ideas or groups of ideas. Then I upload into my Mac and store them on iPhoto and also in "the cloud".

    So in iPhoto I have folders with titles like "Sonny Stitt Licks", "Sonny Rollins Licks", "Melodic Minor Ideas" "Billy Bean Licks, "Song Idea" etc.
    Actually hearing and seeing myself play the phrases is a life saver. I play them up to speed and then slowly. You can see fingering and pick strokes. Then I talk to myself about what's cool about the idea and any ways to change it or rephrase it. I also tend to play the original source once in the background so I can see how the original player executed the idea.
    Then there are folders of song ideas. I have quite a record of what I've been doing for the past couple of years. You can also see your progress and hear what your tone is like.
    Much more alive that dots on paper.
    Of course there are probably many uses for the actual notation but I thought I'd mention that filming approach.

    As far as recording is concerned I would have said go buy Logic Pro. A fully blown DAW used by so many pros and non pros all over the world. I'm not sure if it can do tab……don't think so. But for under $300 you have a recording studio in your Mac.

  20. #19

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    I think that it's ridiculous to say that learning things by ear or by rote is categorically without value - in any circumstance whatsoever. - matt


    Well, I never said the above statement, Matt. I learned notation first in grade school singing in the chorus. Educating my ears. I learned classical guitar from the age of eleven or twelve. My experience is that is it ultimately easier to learn to read notation in the first place than to create "chord grids" and diagrams. There are books of thousands of useless chords for that. Notation succeeded in the music world because it became the most precise and efficient way to express musical thoughts. It would be like comparing old languages written in calligraphy or elaborate handwritten characters to the alphabet.

    I am well aware that old music used tablature to indicate fret positions, but that system was superseded by a more effective system of notation adopted by most of the musical world. I just believe it is ultimately far easier to express musical thought in that manner and that guitarists should avail themselves of the the most efficient system.

    Can anyone really read tab as quickly and accurately as notation? I doubt it. So why bother? Plus wouldn't you feel just a bit ignorant to pull out one's tab charts at a gig? I certainly would.

    jay
    Last edited by targuit; 11-11-2014 at 07:44 PM.

  21. #20
    No one ever said that reading complex music was easier with tab. I'm not gonna argue points I never made.

    What you did say was "why teach people tab"? That question has been answered by a couple of different people a couple times and you keep ignoring it.

    For the record, I teach students to read music. But I also think it's asinine and ignorant to not learn ANY tab on the guitar. It's just my opinion, but it shared by plenty of other people. It's ridiculous to call yourself a modern guitar player and not be able to write out chord diagrams or simple tablature.

    Also, the argument for using tablature is not just that the guitar is more difficult to read standard notation on. There's also the consideration that tablature is particularly easy to read on the guitar, even for beginners playing music with rich harmony and otherwise very difficult to read patterns up the fretboard.

    It's silly to not teach students moveable scales up the neck or other basic patterns (which are easily written using a graphic display) until they can read at a level which may take years of study.

    It's simply a tool. If you never learn notation because of it, that's a separate issue, but it's silly to not use every tool at your disposal.

    I use electronic tuners every day, although I can tune by ear. I use things like YouTube , staff paper, smart phones, computers. If your goal is to gig playing jazz or some other kind of session work, then of course you need to have your reading chops together. If you want to really call yourself a musician on any kind of level, it's important to learn to read music. I spend time every day reading and playing from the music notation. But not everybody in the world is learning to play jazz. Not everyone is going to be professional. It doesn't mean they can't learn to play something like dust in the wind or stairway to heaven without taking lessons for multiple years and learning to read music at a level that facilitates that. No one is going to do that. Tab is a simple tool and can be very effective.

    I don't think it has lasted because of some Folk tradition or whatever. It's simple, easy to understand, and works really well for certain kinds of simple music. There is a point at which you're better off learning to read notation. But There is also a good reason why tablature is standard in teaching all kinds of homophonic stringed instruments.
    Last edited by matt.guitarteacher; 11-11-2014 at 09:31 PM.

  22. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by Philco View Post
    Just a thought ecj…….In regard to documenting ideas I have found my iPad to be fantastic for recording short videos of ideas or groups of ideas. Then I upload into my Mac and store them on iPhoto and also in "the cloud".

    So in iPhoto I have folders with titles like "Sonny Stitt Licks", "Sonny Rollins Licks", "Melodic Minor Ideas" "Billy Bean Licks, "Song Idea" etc.
    Actually hearing and seeing myself play the phrases is a life saver. I play them up to speed and then slowly. You can see fingering and pick strokes. Then I talk to myself about what's cool about the idea and any ways to change it or rephrase it. I also tend to play the original source once in the background so I can see how the original player executed the idea.
    Then there are folders of song ideas. I have quite a record of what I've been doing for the past couple of years. You can also see your progress and hear what your tone is like.
    Much more alive that dots on paper.
    Of course there are probably many uses for the actual notation but I thought I'd mention that filming approach.
    That's an interesting thought, Philco. I might have to try something like that.

    I'm starting to put some material up on a blog as a kind of practice log. I was thinking about both filming and writing out a lot of exercises, tunes, etc. and then doing blog posts on them as I work with different concepts. I like your idea of indexing things by subject and associating the stuff with the original material.

    Cool advice!

    As far as recording is concerned I would have said go buy Logic Pro. A fully blown DAW used by so many pros and non pros all over the world. I'm not sure if it can do tab……don't think so. But for under $300 you have a recording studio in your Mac.
    For what I'm doing now, Garageband and iMovie seem to work fine. I'm not really that interested in recording multitrack or anything, so I just invested in a couple nice mics and an interface so that I'm getting a better sound from my "live" recordings.

  23. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by ecj View Post
    Well, I'm not an educator. The only person I'm educating is myself.

    I actually read pretty well for a guitar player. I want tab because I'm starting to document some of the exercises I've used to get my technique together over the last year, and I want to be able to put down how things are executed on the instrument. If I write out a lick in standard notation, there are probably at least 10 different ways to finger that particular lick in that particular octave on guitar, and I'm trying to figure out what the best way is to document the way I do it, including fret position, fingers used, and picking direction.

    Seems like tab is generally a part of that.

    Same deal with chord voicings.
    Classical guitarists utilize standard notation with indications of string and fret when necessary. What does tab offer beyond that?

  24. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by rictroll View Post
    Classical guitarists utilize standard notation with indications of string and fret when necessary. What does tab offer beyond that?
    Visual, spatial relationships on the fretboard among other things. How about chord grids? What's the difference? Can you honestly say that there's ZERO value in visually sketching out chord forms or scale patterns?

    Everybody's different, but I've run into a lot of people who are just more visual. A lot of people sketch out entire neck grids. I'm not into that, but whatever floats your boat. Different strokes...

  25. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by matt.guitarteacher View Post
    Visual, spatial relationships on the fretboard among other things. How about chord grids? What's the difference? Can you honestly say that there's ZERO value in visually sketching out chord forms or scale patterns?

    Everybody's different, but I've run into a lot of people who are just more visual. A lot of people sketch out entire neck grids. I'm not into that, but whatever floats your boat. Different strokes...
    Understood. Not arguing zero value...

    standard notation often utilizes chord grids, fret positions, and fingering patterns.

    Also, it makes it easier to see how the melody line relates to the harmony. Phrasing is critical to playing a song.

    IMO tab doesn't provide as rich a growth path or reveal the detail of the music as much. But it does reveal many of the mechanical aspects.

    On a side note, my wife plays lute and she has to deal with even more 'standards' of notation. So, different strokes indeed.

    in the end it takes a musician to make any of this work :-)

  26. #25

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    I can read notation, but I learned about a dozen intricate ragtime guitar arrangements years ago that would have been impossible to correctly execute without the inclusion of tab. I see it's absolute value for unique circumstances, but not as a substitute for standard notation.

  27. #26

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    For simultaneously notating in both standard and tab formats, I find that Guitar Pro (Guitar Pro 6 - Tablature software for guitar, bass, and other fretted instruments) does a pretty good job. You can enter notes either on the stave or in the tab, moving freely between the two, or you can import standard midi files to convert them to tab. It's not free, but has plenty of features, plus, of course it plays back what you have written.

    I have no affiliation, etc........
    Have no secrets, hear no lies.

  28. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by targuit View Post
    Why do you want tab? I ask this question seriously. Don't you as educators (those who teach guitar) feel any obligation to teach aspiring guitarists "grown-up musicianship"? What other group of musicians (pianists, woodwinds, horns, strings) rely on tablature?

    Oh, I know - guitarists are dumber than dirt and cannot learn to read notation - apparently it is genetic...
    I know loads of "musicians" that can read notation like a mechanical robot but know nothing about harmony and couldn't improvise over happy birthday if their life depended on it. So what's your point? Only real musician's sight read? I'll have to disagree with you on that. In our European music schools I see every day how so much value is placed on reading and theory and none on the musicianship skills one really needs if you want to actually become a player.

  29. #28

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    +1 on MuseScore! It's what I use all the time now (coming from Sibelius).

    It's easy to use, and you can adjust just about anything (I especially like that you can switch off the clef, key signature and tempo at the beginning of each staff, I only need that in the first bar, à la Realbook, I was never able to do that in Sibelius ;-).

    Didn't hear about the 2.0 version yet, I will upgrade! Because I like adding chord-diagrams (to remember specific grips).

    I don't use tabs very often, when I do it's for wrinting down chord-melody arrangements, since in those it's very important to play things a certain way. You can put that down in standard notation, using roman numbering for positions and finger and string-numbers, but then a tab just reads a lot easier. I usually use a double notation then: standard notation on the top and a tab-staff under that.

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  30. #29

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    Quote Originally Posted by targuit View Post
    ... wouldn't you feel just a bit ignorant to pull out one's tab charts at a gig? I certainly would.

    jay
    That's, should you ever played a gig, or back in 70's when you did it wild with groupies?
    Last edited by Vladan; 11-12-2014 at 05:28 AM.
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  31. #30

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    I also use guitar pro 6 for writing guitar ideas and transcribing. Great program! You can get it for about 70 bucks I believe. They do a lot of updates. The thing that I feel could be better about it is the notation style such as the spacing between notes.
    "If I don't practice for a day, I know it... for two days, the critics know it... three days, the public knows it." -- Louis Armstrong

  32. #31

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    I think tab is overrated. I won't say don't ever use them but reading standard notation is by far more superior. That plus a ridiculously strong ears is all you really need.
    "If I don't practice for a day, I know it... for two days, the critics know it... three days, the public knows it." -- Louis Armstrong

  33. #32

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    Look - if you wish to waste your valuable (life)time reading tab rather than simply learning to read notation properly, which by comparison with reading tab is like a race between a Maserati and a Fiat 500, be my guest! If you wish to spend hours drawing intricate chord diagrams rather than play real music, go for it! If you want to be perpetually barred from the broadest world of music, from transcribing Bill Evans to the Concerto di Aranjuez, that is your choice!

    The point is missed that the notion that learning to read notation is some impossibly difficult task or that it precludes developing notions of harmony and improvisation (Alain) is totally exaggerated. I began learning to read notation in grade school, classical guitar at twelve, and could read quite well within a couple of years. That is an investment for a lifetime! And Matt, I was playing Stairway to Heaven when I was sixteen or so (essentially by ear within fifteen minutes of getting the album). No big whoop....but it did impress quite a few impressionable girls in those glory days before HIV (Vladan).

    In terms of learning chord diagrams - my chord study was based first on one of those chord books of a gazillion chord forms of which a fraction were truly relevant. And because I was fluent in reading notation, in those days before Sibelius, I used to write it out as notation on paper with a pencil. People always insist that guitar technique is 'visual' - BS. Tell that to a blind guitarist or pianist. Music is aural. But when you read notation, there is that graphic visual element - the rise and fall of melodies and the chord forms as notation that become "imprinted" on your musical intelligence. Remember, musical thought is much faster than reading serially can ever be. As David (Truth Hertz) noted in a thread about sight reading quoting an article written by a musician on the subject, the key to learning to sight read effectively is not to read e-v-e-r-y n-o-t-e like that but to read the first note of the downbeat in a measure, and then your experience of what an arpeggio looks like in notation allows your musical intelligence to 'fill in' the rest. Thus, the importance of reading ahead of the music and knowing where your note destination will be.

    Try doing that with tab.....LOL....Anyway, I have no dog in the fight. I'm trying to communicate my opinion and my humble advice. Tab away!!

    Jay
    Last edited by targuit; 11-12-2014 at 10:21 AM.

  34. #33

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    Tabs, notation......

    Why not let everybody use what he or she is most comfortable with?

    In the end, all roads lead to Rome and true talent will emerge regardless tabs or notation was used in the process.....

    :: Jazz, Funk, Soul & Boogaloo: My group ::
    ::::::: Listen to Hip Jazz a Go Go! :::::::
    :: Jazz, Soul, Blues: Eva & The Tracies :::

  35. #34

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    I use Sibelius, but noteflight and muse score are both great... I've dabbled with both. I have just used Sibelius since around 2004 and am comfortable with it ( though I still use Sibelius 5). +1 Mr. Beaumont the right tool for the right job. I teach mostly college lessons, but in my private studio, while I do always teach mensural notation, with an older student just looking to play some rock tunes tab is the way to go.... I also teach renaissance lute.... So tab is definitely the way to go (of course mostly french tab, some Spanish and Italian, and only an introduction to German).

  36. #35
    Quote Originally Posted by targuit View Post
    Anyway, I have no dog in the fight. I'm trying to communicate my opinion and my humble advice. Tab away!!

    Jay
    Yeah, that long post and your others demonstrate the opposite...

    Someone asked about notation software which, among other things, would facilitate using tablature, and you butt in with "why?". You're the only person on the forum having a conversation about using TAB ONLY, to the exclusion of any music notation, and your having that conversation with YOURSELF.

    Meanwhile, you're derailing a thread to suit your own apparent need to (once again) troll on everyone else's apparent lack of musicianship in the shadow of your own great talent. You insult actual teachers when, to my knowledge, you're not a teacher.

    It's bad etiquette to go off topic the way that you have, especially when you insult other people. Go start your own thread on "using tablature to the exclusivity of every other form of notation". I'm sure all the tab-only people will come and talk to you about it in that thread.

    Meanwhile, learn some tact and don't be so arrogant. I know it's only the Internet, but there are basic standards for discussing things on a forum like this and staying somewhat on topic. Learn some manners.

    By the way, I've posted my own amateur jazz playing, as have others. It's a healthy thing and keeps me humble. It makes me measure the tone I use and the authority with which I speak about things. I've seen better players than I speak with the same humility (and grace toward lesser players like me).

    As far as I know, you don't even play the guitar. Just saying...
    Last edited by matt.guitarteacher; 11-12-2014 at 11:50 AM.

  37. #36
    Btw, I know we'll all see your overwhelming jazz artistry "soon"...

    Whatever...That's REAL B.S....

  38. #37
    I'm sure, as a physician, that you are sensitive to matters of etiquette and manners in the real world.

    Start your own thread. Stop preaching at people to the exclusion of the original conversation. Nothing else you say changes the fact that you are being arrogant and rude, and that's addressing your actual behavior, not attacking your person or name calling.

  39. #38

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    matt - chill, my friend, as I am no troll, and I don't give a shit what you play nor how you play it. As for being a 'teacher', I have met a lot of less than competent ones in my life. If you think I hang here to carry on some pathological charade, you are dearly mistaken.

    Given that I don't cast aspersions on your character, integrity, bonafides as a teacher or anything else about you personally - in contradistinction to your characterization and insinuations about me - I suggest you moderate your comments. I give my opinions - you don't like 'em, don't read 'em. If they are not in conformity with your vast experience teaching Stairway to Heaven to aging boomers, tough. But troll behavior includes personal attacks. This is not one. And I don't doubt you can play. Perhaps you could agree to post your versions of the tunes which I will very soon put up hopefully. I just signed up for Soundcloud, after reading through the terms of service which seem to suggest that subscribers are responsible for securing the rights to the music they put up, which I interpret as including covers. But others have assured me this morning that covers do not represent a problem if not for monetization. I hope that is true.

    Btw, Matt - if you read notation as you say you do, I can send you one of my transcriptions of the jazz standard of your choice, in the key of your choice, if it is in my personal library of nearly 200. I understand that my legacy Sibelius G7 software can produce tab, but I don't waste my time with that. Nor do good pianists, string players, horn players....can't speak for those who play the triangle. Just drop me a PM indicating your preference. The guitar accompaniment is written out usually simply as block chords notationally for simplicity of use, but it is more detailed and elaborate than the Fakebook lead sheets.

    I know that teachers have to work with the quality and motivation of their students. I don't object to learning tab. I just don't understand why anyone would spend most of their lives driving a Ugo when they could ride in the Maserati...

  40. #39
    It's also considered rude and small (in the real world) to bring every conversation back around to being about oneself. I feel sorry for you. It's all hot air.... You're all talk.....

    Start your own tab-only thread, or I am calling "troll" on this. It ain't just about you.

  41. #40

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    Matt - the problem with personal attacks online is that they are hard to retract and you just might look like the fool in the end. This just might be one of those situations. Be cautious what you say - it might come back to bite you on the ass...

  42. #41

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    Why don't you guys take the argument to PM and spare the rest of us. Or take it to that Gear site where arguing is apparently as necessary as breathing.

    The rest of us get your points ... again ... and again ... and again. Really, why so much emotional investment into a subject that's so benign?

    And now you've started ad hominem attacks...that simply means that you have nothing more to say about the subject itself. Please let it go.
    Last edited by Flyin' Brian; 11-12-2014 at 12:50 PM.
    Interviewer: Musically speaking, 50 years from now, how would you like to be remembered?
    Metheny: It doesn’t matter.

  43. #42

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    I agree - I have nothing more to add. Tab, notation - all possible with notation software. Case closed on my end. As for the troll, we'll see.

  44. #43

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    Quote Originally Posted by targuit View Post
    I agree - I have nothing more to add. Tab, notation - all possible with notation software. Case closed on my end. As for the troll, we'll see.

    ...and your response would have been fine without the last statement, which kind of makes your troll remarks somewhat ironic.
    Last edited by Flyin' Brian; 11-12-2014 at 12:57 PM.
    Interviewer: Musically speaking, 50 years from now, how would you like to be remembered?
    Metheny: It doesn’t matter.

  45. #44

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    I was reading this thread with real interest, until it turned down a strange path. FWIW I sight read well, I play in orchestral situations every day, I do sessions, transcribed lots of Keith Jarrett, Brecker, wes... Wayne Krantz (tab is SO useful for his open string stuff, not so much his rhythmic approach!)
    Done lots of theatre, studio sessions ads etc... And guess what, I read tab ALSO. My philosophy when people ask "should I do A OR B?" DO BOTH.

    Piece

  46. #45

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    Or PEACE!! Oops

  47. #46

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    Well this got ridiculous.

    To try to get the convo back on track and away from metaphysical discussions on Sibelius' ability to cure cancer, is anyone familiar with a good standard for notation writing that includes:

    1) Pitch quality
    2) Rhythm
    3) Dynamics
    4) Articulation
    5) Picking direction (or fingering)
    6) Fingering
    7) Fret position

    Obviously standard notation rocks 1-4. I often see (5) notated above the notes. The Leavitt system seems to include (6), but not necessarily (7) unless you assume that you're doing his position style playing. Things get scary cluttered and hard to read. Not that versed in classical notation, does it tend to include all of this?

  48. #47
    Classical can pretty much cover all of those. There are standard pick direction symbols on notation as well. I don't know about all the different software products' options for producing these.

    On the free end, Muse has drag and drop options for 1-4, 5 (classical) and basic text editing for the other. For fingering, the lyric entry would be particularly useful, if you're not otherwise using actual lyrics because you can tab (key) through note by note entering without a lot of mouse clicks.

  49. #48

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    Quote Originally Posted by matt.guitarteacher View Post
    Classical can pretty much cover all of those. There are standard pick direction symbols on notation as well. I don't know about all the different software products' options for producing these.

    On the free end, Muse has drag and drop options for 1-4, 5 (classical) and basic text editing for the other. For fingering, the lyric entry would be particularly useful, if you're not otherwise using actual lyrics because you can tab (key) through note by note entering without a lot of mouse clicks.
    Ahh, that's an interesting thought. I hadn't considered (ab)using the lyric function.

    Thanks, Matt.

  50. #49
    You can work through chord entry in the same way above, If that's not otherwise occupied. There are likely ways to add multiple 'verses' as well.

  51. #50

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    I found this image example of MuseScore doing classical guitar notation with position (fret number), and right hand fingering. (And, three voices).
    Attached Images Attached Images What notation software to get?-musescore-fingerings-jpg 
    Last edited by fep; 11-13-2014 at 07:19 PM.
    B+
    Frank (aka fep)