Re: Notation

M. Steven Ginn <sginn@...>

Hi Susan,

thanks for your response

IMHO, the root of your problem is that you've mistaken BIAB for a
notation program. It's not. It's an auto-accompaniment tool, which
supports a minimal set of notation for Lead Sheet printing. That
notation support is, uh, idiosyncratic in some cases buggy in others.
It often handy for me, but if you want to be able to do key changes,
have accidentals display in a conventional manner, have
second endings,
specify precise note values, rests, ties, dots, etc.... you need a
notation program.
I understand its not a notation program as I have Finale for that. And
I am not looking for all the bells and whistles that you can get with a
notation program (like second endings, etc.). But, if PG music is going
to include notation functionality, it should at the very least include
some fundamental features.

First, making a key change is not even just a notation issue and as an
auto-accompaniment tool, modulating keys should be very necessary. Then
when you add in the other capabilities like melodist and soloist, it is
one thing to generate notes based on the chords (which I assume that it
does) but it sounds kind of funny when the key doesn't change to reflect
the modulation.

Second, since music is fundamentally tied to "time", if you can't
control the time element of a melody line that you enter with basic
elements like rests, ties, dots, etc. (and I'm not talking about codas,
repeat endings, tacets, etc. and various other time related features)
then it renders the program from this standpoint virtually unusable.

Once you have the melody entered in either program, it's relatively
straightforward to export it as a MIDI file and ship it to the other
program. Of course, you'll lose the formatting in that case, but for
example you could use a melody exported from NWC to play with a BIAB
auto accompaniment. You'd have to enter the chords twice: as text in
NWC, and in the chord window of BIAB.
So if I understand correctly, then the most accurate way to do this, is
to create a melody line (exactly) in a notation program. Then export
that to BIAB where you add the chords (and lyrics if you like, but I
haven't gotten to that point yet). From there you should have a somewhat
useful compilation closely resembling the original song, assuming you
can find a decent style to make it sound real. Then finally, if you
want to use this song and print out lead sheets, you need to take this
back into a notation program again, to clean it all up so that the band
members can follow it.


About practicing with your personal library of music.

What I often do, if I have a lead sheet from another source, is just
enter the chords in BIAB and the read from the lead sheet while BIAB
plays. Better yet, I don't enter the chords but find the tune in the
collection of stuff I've downloaded from the web.
This sounds like a great idea. I guess I was just hoping to prevent
double entry into BIAB and into the notation app for the lead sheet.


Anyway, good luck, and I hope this helps a little.
Thanks for the help!


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