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How to transpose a Tenor part to Alto

Jobylou

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322
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Chipping Campden
Hi
I have been playing tenor in a band, but due to being slightly tenor heavy (6 some weeks!), I have moved on to alto. We play a piece called Down at the Chicken Shack but no one seems to have the alto part for it, I have the tenor part and was wondering how I would go about transposing it?
I know that tenors can play G blues over it and altos D blues but that is as far as my knowledge goes!
Any help gratefuly appreciated!
Thank you so much
Jo
 

Colin the Bear

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If tenor plays G it's in concert F

Concert F is D on alto

Tenor one sharp, alto 2. So add a sharp to the key sig to move from tenor to alto. Or knock off a flat

If you think in concert it's easier. If you think in saxophone you can go the wrong way and make a funny noise.

Take up clarinet and learn to do it as you play through the break lol
 

Lewis.S

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Hertfordshire, England
Hi,
I'll try to help a little, but better users on the site will come to your aid!
http://www.saxontheweb.net/Transposition.html
You could try that conversion table?
Every single note in the tenor part will move up a perfect fifth for the alto part.
E.g an A on tenor is an E on alto, or a Bb on tenor is a an F on alto.
Remember to alter the key signature too! Same rules apply, so D major for tenor becomes A major on alto.
Copy it all out onto manuscript paper!
Hopefully that helped a little :confused:
Lewis
 
Last edited:

kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
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Colin's post is good, but he left out moving the notes. You can use the link Lewis posted.

You can also use a free music program like musescore. Doing this from memory, but I think I've got it right. Set instrument to tenor sax. Type in the tenor part. Then use transpose. Or add an empty alto part, setting instrument to alto sax. Copy the tenor part there, it transposes for you. Two problems you may see. You end up outside the range of the alto, so move it up an octave. And accidental sharps/flats may be the wrong way round e.g. Db instead of C#. Just fix these afterwards.
 

jbtsax

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To play a part written for tenor sax on alto sax transpose down a 4th and it will be in the appropriate octave. Going down a 4th is easy. Count the written note as 1 and go down line, space, line, space, or if the note is on a space go down space, line, space, line. To change the key signature take away a flat. If there are no flats in the key signature, add a sharp.

If you have a copy of the tenor part, simply pencil in the alto sax notes below the tenor notes and extend the note stems. Practicing transposition helps you to begin to think "intervallically" which will benefit you as a musician in many aspects of playing.
 

Jobylou

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322
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Chipping Campden
Hi
Thank you so much for your replies, I will have a go at that over the weekend, just need to get it right for Tuesday :)
Jo
 

Colin the Bear

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Burnley bb9 9dn
A much more useful thing to learn is the circle of 4ths & 5ths. It's relevant for so much more.
 

Jobylou

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Chipping Campden
A much more useful thing to learn is the circle of 4ths & 5ths. It's relevant for so much more.
Interesting - I use that to practise my scales (anti clockwise), so I guess if I go clockwise 1 that would give me bflat to eflat (eg G to D) and so on - is that right Colin?
I have so much to learn but bits of the jigsaw seem to be going together in my mind!
 

MandyH

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Hi
Thank you so much for your replies, I will have a go at that over the weekend, just need to get it right for Tuesday :)
Jo
Type it into MuseScore as a tenor sax, then open a new document as an Alto sax. Copy from the tenor part and paste into the alto part. Shift up / down an octave as necessary to make it playable.

Bob's your uncle!
 

Jobylou

Member
Messages
322
Locality
Chipping Campden
Type it into MuseScore as a tenor sax, then open a new document as an Alto sax. Copy from the tenor part and paste into the alto part. Shift up / down an octave as necessary to make it playable.

Bob's your uncle!
Will have a look at that, thanks Mandy :)
 

OiGoier

New Member
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Locality
At the moment - Redditch, Worcestershire
Hi
Thank you so much for your replies, I will have a go at that over the weekend, just need to get it right for Tuesday :)
Jo

What sort of harsh bandleader would expect you to transpose on the spot like that?!
 

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