All profit supporting special needs music education and Help Musicians
SYOS

iRealPro key confusion

Pete Effamy

Senior Member
Messages
2,596
Don't over think it. I find it easier to think in concert. Song is in Cm. So Am for alto Dm for tenor. That's it.

Simply tenor needs to play tone or 2 semi tones up. Alto needs to play minor3rd or 3semi tones down.

The best thing to do is get Band in a box. ;)
Agreed. A few people are getting confused here. The concert key doesn’t change. It’s C minor. Like Greg, I’ve often seen this book whilst teaching. It was handy as you could have any sax or clarinet walk through the door and you could accompany them on the piano whilst they played the tune.
 

nigeld

I don't need another mouthpiece; but . . .
Subscriber
Messages
6,393
Agreed. A few people are getting confused here. The concert key doesn’t change. It’s C minor. Like Greg, I’ve often seen this book whilst teaching. It was handy as you could have any sax or clarinet walk through the door and you could accompany them on the piano whilst they played the tune.

Unusually, the concert key does change in this example. That’s why it is confusing. The notes are written in D minor for both Bb and Eb instruments and the key of the accompaniment changes to match - it’s played in concert C minor for tenor sax and concert F minor for alto.
 
Last edited:

Pete Effamy

Senior Member
Messages
2,596
Unusually, the concert key does change in this example. That’s why it is confusing. The notes are written in D minor for both Bb and Eb instruments and the key of the accompaniment changes to match - it’s played in concert C minor for tenor sax and concert F minor for alto.
Ah yes. I meant that the tune stays the same, written out in concert Dm for whomever or whatever plays it. The sounding concert key will then be either Cm or Fm. That's completely what you said I think!

I must have further transposed the melody down a tone as if being played by a Bb instrument too.
 

nigeld

I don't need another mouthpiece; but . . .
Subscriber
Messages
6,393
Is there a generally-understood term for the pitch that the notes are written in as opposed to "concert pitch" - is it called "written pitch", or "transposed pitch" or something else?
 

Pete Effamy

Senior Member
Messages
2,596
Is there a generally-understood term for the pitch that the notes are written in as opposed to "concert pitch" - is it called "written pitch", or "transposed pitch" or something else?
Sounding Pitch I think. But your offerings are used as well.
 

Pete Effamy

Senior Member
Messages
2,596
It's just one of those things that can be confusing. In band situations everyone talks in terms of concert pitch, but when horn players talk, you have to clarify as some will still talk in concert pitch. In my experience though, most don't. "What's your fingering for that F?" for example - we mean our own F.
 

randulo

Living the dream
Subscriber
Messages
5,330
Which is why everything should just be in concert pitch and everyone should learn to read in concert pitch.
(Ok, I'm joking.) Actually, some of the working professional saxophonists I've worked with could transcribe on the fly.
 

Tenor Viol

Full of frets in North Shropshire
Subscriber
Messages
5,994
Yes, that is confusing. Normally, the instrumental part would be in two different versions, in different keys - one for Bb instruments and one for Eb instruments.

This appears to be the other way round: keep the instrumental part the same and change the accompaniment. It's a valid solution, but I don't think it's a common one.
 

randulo

Living the dream
Subscriber
Messages
5,330
I had a problem with a book where the example was for tenor and alto, but the alto chart had a 8ve I didn't notice. Learned the piece, but wondered why I could not hit the lowest note, a low C concert.
 

Tenor Viol

Full of frets in North Shropshire
Subscriber
Messages
5,994
Best to learn Bb and Eb fingerings for a given piece. When sitting in or at a jamm night, tunes have a key.
Yes, that's what's odd about this way of working. You'd go to a band/orchestra and piece would be in say Dmaj (concert) so Bb would be E and Eb would be B - the way this has been done just wouldn't work
 

randulo

Living the dream
Subscriber
Messages
5,330
Best to learn Bb and Eb fingerings for a given piece. When sitting in or at a jamm night, tunes have a key.
And then there are the singer's keys. As you listen to multiple vocal versions of a song, you can see that there are often three or more keys for different singers.
 

Tenor Viol

Full of frets in North Shropshire
Subscriber
Messages
5,994
And then there are the singer's keys. As you listen to multiple vocal versions of a song, you can see that there are often three or more keys for different singers.
That's because of vocal range. Certainly classical pieces are usually published for low (bass and alto) and high (tenor and soprano) voices. For example, the low voice version will probably be in a key a third lower. The bass/alto for example sing the same music but an octave apart. This is why songs for bass are often in treble clef, but sung an octave lower than written. You sometimes see a 'medium voice' part as well.

For example, my copy of RVW song Linden Lea is in F, but it is available in G and A as well
 

Colin the Bear

Well-Known Member
Messages
13,332
Songs are written to accomodate the human voice. A singer with a limited range is reciting the lyrics imo. However some like Billie Holiday in her later years still create magic with a limited range. Singers who need a key change need to practice more imo. The voice gets lazy and just like woodwind, practice brings familiarity. I don't sing classical and rarely exactly how it goes. :oops:
 

DavidUK

Well-Known Member
Messages
5,104
What I'd like to be able to do is remember a tune I know well and simply play it, my fingers knowing exactly which keys to press and when. No sheet music, no learning. How many known players have been able to do this?

I did have a go at this the other week and did surprisingly well with a simple tune. After 10 or 20 run throughs I could probably get it in my head, only to forget it a few days later (I can't even recall that tune now!). I found this article (and links) regarding this skill apparently called audiation: How can I play the music I hear in my head? | Musical U

In my case, not being able to do the above, I manage to read music. In other words I can press the right buttons for the notes as they appear on the page. That's fine for unaccompanied playing with no backing track.

When I want to play along to a backing track I can select from some books which come with a CD to match, or I can choose something from BOTM or SOTM here, or I can confuse myself with iRealPro. But iRealPro has the advantage of being able to find almost any tune from its forum.

What I'd like is a little like "on demand" for TV. With that, I think of a programme, or film, search, find it, off I go.

"On demand tunes" would give me the sheet music, a correct backing track, a one click "move backing track to GarageBand (or other app)" button, so then I could search for Cry me a River for alto sax and whoosh... it's all there, ready.

I'm guessing there is such a service, I've probably heard of it and found it either too pricey, too complicated, or with naff backing tracks. But do tell if you know something that can do this and is cheap and easy to use?

By the way, my tutor would have taught me all there is to know about theory but when I showed no interest at practising scales (reminded me of my school flute days... yeurgg!) he gave up. I have loads and loads of theory books on the shelve but never wanted to make time for them... should I? How would it help me? And if so, what's the best source for quick, simple, understanding, i.e. all I need to know in a nutshell?
 
Last edited:

Colin the Bear

Well-Known Member
Messages
13,332
Karaeoke is your friend.
There's lots on you tube. Also vocal star have a vast selection of CD's to choose from. There are sites you can subscribe to with a vast data base of tracks to play/download.
Learning the words will help greatly with remembering a tune. Even if you only learn the first verse.

Lots of the tracks for download on biab have a transposable lead sheet.
A piano lesson or three will help with theory and maybe reveal an accompanist.
 

brianr

Senior Member
Messages
1,168
What I'd like to be able to do is remember a tune I know well and simply play it, my fingers knowing exactly which keys to press and when. No sheet music, no learning. How many known players have been able to do this?

I would expect that 100% of “ known players” would have this ability.

Certainly in the jazz world.

And it goes further. On basic type tunes, they could play it starting on all 12 notes.

Basically, if you can sing it inside your head, you can play it in any key.

On more complex stuff like say Charlie Parker Be Bop tunes, there may be some mistakes, but they would get close.

Ive been doing this 12 key stuff on Parker tunes for the last couple of years, and it has helped all aspects of my playing hugely.
 

Pete Effamy

Senior Member
Messages
2,596
Songs are written to accomodate the human voice. A singer with a limited range is reciting the lyrics imo. However some like Billie Holiday in her later years still create magic with a limited range. Singers who need a key change need to practice more imo. The voice gets lazy and just like woodwind, practice brings familiarity. I don't sing classical and rarely exactly how it goes. :oops:
That's a bit unfair on singers. They have naturally strong parts to their range and a point where their chest voice ends and their head voice starts. The "money" (as the music biz says) is with the voice. Depending upon the range of the melody, even a key change of a tone can make an enormous difference to a singer. Of course, nearly all singers take lower keys as they get older as their top end goes.
 

DavidUK

Well-Known Member
Messages
5,104
Karaeoke is your friend.
There's lots on you tube. Also vocal star have a vast selection of CD's to choose from. There are sites you can subscribe to with a vast data base of tracks to play/download.
Learning the words will help greatly with remembering a tune. Even if you only learn the first verse.

Lots of the tracks for download on biab have a transposable lead sheet.
A piano lesson or three will help with theory and maybe reveal an accompanist.
Is this the kind of thing you meant?:


How do I then download the backing track into GarageBand?

:confused2:
 
Top Bottom