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Yet another transposition question

C.ward

New Member
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5
As said above to transpose from Concert pitch to an Eb instrument, you add 3 sharps. then shift notes accordingly, but the key signature always should have 3 extra sharps.

But I look at it this way - if my instrument is an Eb pitched instrument, when I play a written C, it sounds Eb, so I write out the scale of C major and call this "written Sax in Eb", then immediately underneath it, I write out the scale of Eb major and call this "sound like, Concert pitch"

then I use this "ready reckoner" as my crib for transposing from C to Eb.

I use this method for any transposing instrument.
You might need to check a little more as to exactly where you need to pitch your new note (eg is it a D under the stave or a D on the 4th line) but it should be fairly self- obvious anyway.
Great! Thank you so much
 

AndyWhiteford

Senior Member
Messages
455
Re. the black notes on a keyboard, I’d always think the flat names , since all five have commonly used major scales/ keys built on the roots: Db, Eb, Gb, Ab and Bb.
Also learn the two major keys/scales which you’ll commonly see the sharp-keyed enharmonic equivalents, C# and F#.
( D#, G# and A# are most often seen as the roots of minor keys)
 

tenorviol

Full of frets in North Shropshire
Subscriber
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5,870
Re. the black notes on a keyboard, I’d always think the flat names , since all five have commonly used major scales/ keys built on the roots: Db, Eb, Gb, Ab and Bb.
Also learn the two major keys/scales which you’ll commonly see the sharp-keyed enharmonic equivalents, C# and F#.
( D#, G# and A# are most often seen as the roots of minor keys)
Whilst I can understand why you say that, personally I think you should use the name that’s appropriate for the key. So, if you’re in the key of Dflat major,then it’s 5 flats Bb Eb Ab Db and Gb; but Csharp minor is 4 sharps F# C# G# and D#.

If you start thinking “oh, Gb is F#” that’s an extra layer of translation your brain is unnecessarily doing.
 

C.ward

New Member
Messages
5
Easy way to transpose key is to remember an Eb instrument starts with 3 flats so to convert to concert add three sharps to however many the concert piece has.
Hi Colin, so just to check if the band is playing in Eb Minor and I add 3 sharps it will change it from 6 flats to 3 flats therefore I should be playing in Eb Major?
 
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nigeld

I don't need another mouthpiece; but . . .
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5,853
Hi Colin, so just to check if the band is playing in Eb Minor and I add 3 sharps it will change it from 6 flats to 3 flats therefore I should be playing in Eb Major?
Yes it changes to 3 flats, but you will be playing in C minor, not Eb major.
 

Ivan

Undecided
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7,310
The path to playing in the key of E is to first work on scales and exercises in the key of G - 1 sharp. Next work on scales and exercises in the key of D -2 sharps. Then go to A - 3 sharps, and finally you are at the key of E - 4 sharps. The keys are much less formidable when you add one sharp or flat at a time which is the way most method books are organized. Once you go around the circle of 5ths both directions you have eaten the entire elephant. :)
Just re-read this thread

That technique defuses the fear
 

Pete Thomas

Chief of Stuff
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13,693
I've just noticed that when I'm writing I'll sometimes use E# and sometimes F natural, depending on how I read the phrase while playing. Odd.

View attachment 13017
When it makes most sense to use E# rather than F is when the harmony suggests that. technically that is what should happen, so in the above example in the key of G, if there was a (chromatic) C# chord, then E# is absolutely what it should be.

At times (e.g. with diminished chords) I consider it fine to use what are technically wrong enharmonic spellings if it means that sight reading becomes easier.
 

zannie

Member
Messages
146
When it makes most sense to use E# rather than F is when the harmony suggests that. technically that is what should happen, so in the above example in the key of G, if there was a (chromatic) C# chord, then E# is absolutely what it should be.

At times (e.g. with diminished chords) I consider it fine to use what are technically wrong enharmonic spellings if it means that sight reading becomes easier.
See now that depends on who is doing the sightreading. For the tragic among us that have done more theory than is frankly useful or healthy, if it's the wrong enharmonic it can be quite offputting, particularly if you are playing with others and trying to work out the harmonic blend. I get quite excitable about correct enharmonic spellings.
 

Pete Thomas

Chief of Stuff
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13,693
See now that depends on who is doing the sightreading. For the tragic among us that have done more theory than is frankly useful or healthy, if it's the wrong enharmonic it can be quite offputting,
I accept that but I still do not want to see Bbb when sight reading, there's a very good chance I would get it wrong.
 

Dibbs

Member
Messages
662
I completely agree with Pete on that. There's a limit to enharmonic correctness.

Dave's E#s and A#s are wrong both harmonically and as far as ease of reading are concerned. I'd call him a very bad name under my breath if I had to sight read them.
 

Veggie Dave

Sax Worker
Messages
3,145
Dave's E#s and A#s are wrong both harmonically and as far as ease of reading are concerned. I'd call him a very bad name under my breath if I had to sight read them.
Luckily I only write for one band and I would never expect someone to sight read anything. I even provide MP3s for people to practise to, that have the exact arrangement, ending and even a count-in, that they get weeks or months before they need to be able to play it, so that they can turn up to a rehearsal and rehearse the song rather than try to learn it.

I'm nice to play for, really. ;) :D
 
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