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Old 01-27-2019, 06:54 AM   #1
DamhCabrachPiping
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Default Transposing Help

Hey all,

So Ive got a tune in front of me, but its obviously not written for bagpipes, and Ive got no clue how to transpose it.

Any ideas?

As Ive said before: the advanced musical theory of keys and chords etc is not my strong suit, but Im willing and eager to learn if someone can teach me/ explain it.


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Old 01-27-2019, 07:51 AM   #2
Klondike Waldo
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Default Re: Transposing Help

What's the tune?
Do you know what key it's in? Even the number of sharps or flats in the key signature would be helpful to know.

Then, find the range- what's the lowest note and highest note.



Once we know those, it's a lot easier to transpose.
For example, this past week "When I Meet MacKay And MacKay Meets Me" was requested for a Burns Supper ( Yes, I know it's not a Burns Song) On teh recording, it a sounded to be in D, but the lowest note was a low F# and the highest a high D above High A. The low F#s where they occurred were pick-ups, so could be changed without demolishing the tune. By transposing the tune down to A, everything but those pick-ups fit within the GHB scale.
That gave me a day to work over the tune before Friday's Burns Supper, which went very well. ( Of course I played a lot of Burns tunes and other requests, but the MacKays in attendance were happy).
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Old 01-27-2019, 07:54 AM   #3
DamhCabrachPiping
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Default Re: Transposing Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by Klondike Waldo View Post
What's the tune?
Do you know what key it's in? Even the number of sharps or flats in the key signature would be helpful to know.

Then, find the range- what's the lowest note and highest note.



Once we know those, it's a lot easier to transpose.
For example, this past week "When I Meet MacKay And MacKay Meets Me" was requested for a Burns Supper ( Yes, I know it's not a Burns Song) On teh recording, it a sounded to be in D, but the lowest note was a low F# and the highest a high D above High A. The low F#s where they occurred were pick-ups, so could be changed without demolishing the tune. By transposing the tune down to A, everything but those pick-ups fit within the GHB scale.
That gave me a day to work over the tune before Friday's Burns Supper, which went very well. ( Of course I played a lot of Burns tunes and other requests, but the MacKays in attendance were happy).

im not sure how to read fiddle music lol but here the ABC info

https://goo.gl/images/g97wMC
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Old 01-27-2019, 11:12 AM   #4
Patrick McLaurin
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Default Re: Transposing Help

Copy and paste into here (don’t forget to “show transposed output”) keep going until it looks like it fits and then hope the key is D (or A, though any Gs will be off cause they’d need to be sharp). “G” would be okay-ish if there are no C naturals unless you know how to cross finger the note (though it may sound bad against your “A” drones).

http://mandolintab.net/abcconverter.php
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Old 01-27-2019, 11:22 AM   #5
DamhCabrachPiping
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Default Re: Transposing Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrick McLaurin View Post
Copy and paste into here (dont forget to show transposed output) keep going until it looks like it fits and then hope the key is D (or A, though any Gs will be off cause theyd need to be sharp). G would be okay-ish if there are no C naturals unless you know how to cross finger the note (though it may sound bad against your A drones).

http://mandolintab.net/abcconverter.php

http://mandolintab.net/recent.php?fi...0rvhtS-000.png

But now how do I fix the outlying notes?

I may just work from ear on this.

Thank you for the link! I believe transposing makes sense now, I hope.



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Old 01-27-2019, 12:14 PM   #6
Patrick McLaurin
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Default Re: Transposing Help

Yeah, that tune just doesn’t fit. It spends way too much time below low G. You could keep transposing and then splice parts from two different transpositions together so that it all fits. Or just play the low notes up an octave. I would try first to keep transposing and get the tune in D instead of A. It may be then that you have a tune that goes too high instead of too low, but then you could bring those notes down the octave.

But, in general, such things usually result in a tune that doesn’t sound very good.

Last edited by Patrick McLaurin; 01-27-2019 at 12:19 PM.
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Old 01-27-2019, 01:54 PM   #7
DamhCabrachPiping
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Default Re: Transposing Help

Ive got it all figured now. Thanks for all the help


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Old 01-27-2019, 01:56 PM   #8
Kevin
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Default Re: Transposing Help

Coincidentally, I just went through this exercise with the exact same tune (The Log Driver's) last week. It really doesn't fit Scottish pipes but you can get close by transposing the first part (3 lines) to D-maj and the second part to G-maj (remembering to play your Cs natural in the latter key). There will be one or two high Bs that you will have to substitute with low B or a harmonizing note and a couple of G#s in the first part that you will have to subs with something else (maybe C#).

I haven't had the time to decide if this is worth the effort for this tune. Good luck with it and please let us know if you get it rolling.

Kevin

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