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Tech: ABC notation

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GUEST,HiHo_Silver 13 Mar 04 - 12:06 PM
GUEST,MCP 13 Mar 04 - 12:33 PM
GUEST,HiHo_Silver 13 Mar 04 - 02:37 PM
GUEST 13 Mar 04 - 03:11 PM
Malcolm Douglas 13 Mar 04 - 03:39 PM
Mark Clark 13 Mar 04 - 03:43 PM
GUEST,HiHo_Silver 13 Mar 04 - 04:42 PM
GUEST,Jon 13 Mar 04 - 05:15 PM
Mark Clark 14 Mar 04 - 01:21 AM
GUEST,MCP 14 Mar 04 - 06:25 AM
pavane 14 Mar 04 - 11:21 AM
GUEST,Jon 14 Mar 04 - 11:59 AM
Mark Clark 14 Mar 04 - 12:02 PM
GUEST,Jon 14 Mar 04 - 12:16 PM
GUEST,Jon 14 Mar 04 - 12:17 PM
GUEST,HiHo_Silver 14 Mar 04 - 04:07 PM
pavane 15 Mar 04 - 07:25 AM
GUEST,Jon 15 Mar 04 - 07:44 AM
Mark Clark 15 Mar 04 - 10:17 AM
pavane 15 Mar 04 - 10:31 AM
Mark Clark 15 Mar 04 - 10:44 AM
pavane 15 Mar 04 - 11:51 AM
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Subject: Tech: ABC notation
From: GUEST,HiHo_Silver
Date: 13 Mar 04 - 12:06 PM

Can someone write the following bar of music in ABC notation so that it draws and displays correctly?   have tried everything I can think of and am unable to get the doubled dotted quarter note to display.
Key A Major
Default note 1/8

notes are all above middle c, except for last B note

Note names as follows: group 1 (a dotted eight note with g sixteenth note): next an a quarter note: Next    sixteenth grace notes ag slurred to g double dotted quarter note: Next B sixteenth note below middle c. Tried to paste the actual sheet music into the message but was unsuscessful in the attempt. perhaps someone can tell me how to paste the actual notes to this message.
Thanks for any help


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Subject: RE: Tech: ABC notation
From: GUEST,MCP
Date: 13 Mar 04 - 12:33 PM

Here are three ways to get what you want. The 1st does exactly what you ask for, the second the same but altering the default note length, and the third getting the same effect without the double-dotted note. All three display correctly with abcm2ps.

As regards posting the music here, that's not really possible, the best you could do would be to link to a web page with the score on it.

Mick




X:1
T:Test
M:4/4
L:1/8
K:A
A> G A2 {AG}G2>> B,||

X:2
T:Test
M:4/4
L:1/4
K:A
A3/4 G/4 A {AG}G>> B,||

X:3
T:Test
M:4/4
L:1/8
K:A
A> G A2 {AG}G2-G> B,||


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Subject: RE: Tech: ABC notation
From: GUEST,HiHo_Silver
Date: 13 Mar 04 - 02:37 PM

Thanks for the great try but this still does not give me the proper effect on my program. It is OK A>G A2 From there I need sixteenth grace notes of ga slurred or tied from g grace note to g quarter note double dotted and then a low B sixteenth note. the following is
how I tried to write it but do not get the desired results.
a>g a2 {(ga}g2>>) B/

Could be I am trying to do something beyond the program capabilities.
However, the sheet music reads adotted eigh, g sixteenth, a quarter,
Grace sixteenth notes ga tied or slurred to g doubled dotted quarter note, Low B sixteenth note.

How about having another go at it. Thanks Jim


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Subject: RE: Tech: ABC notation
From: GUEST
Date: 13 Mar 04 - 03:11 PM

Not sure I've got my maths thinking right here but how about:

X:1
T:Test
M:4/4
L:1/8
K:A
A> G A2 {AG} G7/ B,/||


While it lasts, abcm2ps output is at the folkinfo abc test post


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Subject: RE: Tech: ABC notation
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 13 Mar 04 - 03:39 PM

Perhaps you should tell us what program you're using, Jim, rather than expecting people here to guess. Abc software differs widely, and much is non-standard and/or obsolete. Have you contacted the developer you bought it from?


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Subject: RE: Tech: ABC notation
From: Mark Clark
Date: 13 Mar 04 - 03:43 PM

Actually, you were pretty close. The ABC to do what you want is
A>G A2 ({GA}G2>>) B,2
You see, there are two ways to achieve a dotted note. One is to use the broken rhythm technique the way you did and the other is to specify a fraction associated with note (e.g., G3/2). The broken rhythm technique using the less-than and greater-than characters doesn't just add dots, it modifies the relation between two adjacent notes. Your use of two greater-than characters not only produces the desired dots but reduces the time value of the following note (B,) by the same amount. To offset this, you need to begin with a quarter note; B,2 in this case.

I also moved your left paren noting the start of the slur. Try to balance your use of symbols whenever possible.

And for best results, always be sure you're using the latest version of abcm2ps from the ABC+ site for translation. The ABC+ manual found there is also very useful. I've provided links to these in other ABC threads.

Hope this helps.

      - Mark


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Subject: RE: Tech: ABC notation
From: GUEST,HiHo_Silver
Date: 13 Mar 04 - 04:42 PM

Thanks a hole bunch for everyone's efforts. The ABC version is 2.1 i and although several years back, has never given me a problem with any notations before. I suppose I shall just have to forget about the problem and discard the abc notations for this piece of music and/or look for an up graded version. Have the sheet music, but.as the tune is a bit complicated in the timing was hoping to write the ABC's in order to get a good feel for the timing of the piece. The problem lies in the fact that I cannot draw the 1/4 double dotted note after the grace notes. all the tries by myself and the postings from you good people either produce 1/2, 1/8 or 1/16 double dotted notes. Thanks once again for everyone's efforts. Jim


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Subject: RE: Tech: ABC notation
From: GUEST,Jon
Date: 13 Mar 04 - 05:15 PM

Jim,

What do you want? As long as it's not a long work (something like an orchestral score would most certainly be out), as a one off, I for example would be quite prepared to accept an email scan from you and do my best to return you a file in pdf format.

If you just want something to sound as you play it, you would probably be better off using some MIDI sequencing software which is more performance orientated than notation software.

Longer term with ABC, I'm still not clear what you have (the latest draft proposal for the standard is only at 2.0 stage) but if you are looking to print, I really would reccommend following up Mark Clark's suggestion. If you are using Jim Vint's ABC2Win 2.1, bear in mind, going by the site - to quote: "This revised update was first posted on May 5, 2000.", it may be OK for your own use (most of the time) but is certainly not a program for exchanging abc format with others.

Jon


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Subject: RE: Tech: ABC notation
From: Mark Clark
Date: 14 Mar 04 - 01:21 AM

Jim,

The latest software to correctly display your example is entirely free. Just visit the ABC Plus Project site on SourceForge and download what you need. The abcm2ps program generates PostScript from the ABC which you can print directly from GhostView or use to build a PDF file to share with others.

      - Mark


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Subject: RE: Tech: ABC notation
From: GUEST,MCP
Date: 14 Mar 04 - 06:25 AM

HiHo - I forgot about your slurs in my examples, but they have been covered above (and my error in last note of example one corrected by Mark Clark above). I did say in my post that they worked in abcm2ps (the best printing program IMHO) because that's what I tested it with.

I've just run the examples through abc2win 2.1i and as you say the elegant method 1 produces the wrong notation for the final B,. The other 2 produce the right effect, with the 2nd one producing the written double-dotted note. So if you want it to look like that as well as having the correct timing, you could just change the default note length for that section using either the L command on a separate line as in example 4 or the nicer inline command as in version 5. Both of these produce the correct output with ABC2Win 2.1i

Mick

X:1
T:Test
M:4/4
L:1/8
K:A
A> G A2 ({AG}G2>>) B,2||

X:2
T:Test
M:4/4
L:1/4
K:A
A3/4 G/4 A ({AG}G>>) B,||

X:3
T:Test
M:4/4
L:1/8
K:A
A> G A2 ({AG}G2-G>) B,||

X:4
T:Test
M:4/4
L:1/8
K:A
A2 B2 A4|
L:1/4
A3/4 G/4 A ({AG}G>>) B,|
L:1/8
E2 G2 A4||

X:5
T:Test
M:4/4
L:1/8
K:A
A2 B2 A4|[L:1/4]A3/4 G/4 A ({AG}G>>) B,|[L:1/8]E2 G2 A4||


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Subject: RE: Tech: ABC notation
From: pavane
Date: 14 Mar 04 - 11:21 AM

I didn't think that grace notes could officially have a defined length in abc. I think the latest standard says length modifiers like /2 can be used, but action is software dependent.


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Subject: RE: Tech: ABC notation
From: GUEST,Jon
Date: 14 Mar 04 - 11:59 AM

I wouldn't know the answer to that without looking it up Pavane, although I could perhaps point to an example where we found gracenotes and slurs behave differently with our site (abcm2ps) and concertaina.net/tunatron (abc2ps)

A certainty though is that in the past, abc standards have been ambiguous and open to more than one interpretation.

My personal hope is that when finalised, abc 2.0 will clear up these sort of things. abc has excellent potential, has some excellent developers (which may well include you and Harmony) but IMO is plagued by this "simple" flaw. I can for example be pretty confident that our abc at folkinfo will produce a reasonable graphic or MIDI but I can't have the same confidence over what other abc programs may do with the raw abc.

Jon


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Subject: RE: Tech: ABC notation
From: Mark Clark
Date: 14 Mar 04 - 12:02 PM

Neil, I haven't followed the developing standard as closely as you probably have but my impression is that the new standard is intended to be a textual encoding of what ABC+ (abcm2ps) already does. For my purposes, whatever abcm2ps does (or means to do) is correct and any other behavior is wrong. That doesn't mean alternate behaviors aren't good ideas, just not what I regard as faithful to the standard.

My sense is that the worldwide community of ABC users is generally moving toward the same position I've adopted.

      - Mark


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Subject: RE: Tech: ABC notation
From: GUEST,Jon
Date: 14 Mar 04 - 12:16 PM

Mark, that is pretty much my position with regard to my involvement with folkinfo. I think the biggest difference is I'm looking towards 2.0 rather than abc+.
Jon


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Subject: RE: Tech: ABC notation
From: GUEST,Jon
Date: 14 Mar 04 - 12:17 PM

(which hopefully become one and the same thing)


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Subject: RE: Tech: ABC notation
From: GUEST,HiHo_Silver
Date: 14 Mar 04 - 04:07 PM

Hello Mick:

X2 is correct in value as is X 4 and X 5. X 4 gives me the nicest and most, complete drawing of that particular bar on the staff.

Thanks so much for all the effort. - problem solved. Perhaps this effort will benefit someone else somewhere someday. Thanks again to all who contributed to the thread. Discussion closed.
From the snowy east coast of Canada.

Jim


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Subject: RE: Tech: ABC notation
From: pavane
Date: 15 Mar 04 - 07:25 AM

I am not even clear if anyone has the authority to issue a definitive version. Without this, abc will never achieve its potential.

Also, there are two aspects to music which seem to be be incompatible in many ways - performance and presentation. Trying to represent the full range of facilities for both in a single format seems doomed to eventual failure. Other formats (e.g. MusicXML) also have restrictions in one or other direction.


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Subject: RE: Tech: ABC notation
From: GUEST,Jon
Date: 15 Mar 04 - 07:44 AM

Also, there are two aspects to music which seem to be be incompatible in many ways - performance and presentation.

I think if you could crack that one, you would be made!


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Subject: RE: Tech: ABC notation
From: Mark Clark
Date: 15 Mar 04 - 10:17 AM

Neil, Jon, Yes, that is the crux of the matter all right. I doubt there will ever be an electro-mechanical or mathematical means to “play” a piece of music from a symbolic representation so that the performance is indistinguishable from a skilled human performance. The problem isn't one of representation, it's the nearly infinite number of minute variables that make a musical performance beautiful instead of mechanical.

Having said that, I strongly feel that the primary goal in systems of symbolic representation such as ABC, MusicXML, et al., must be to represent and retain those elements that allow a complete, correct score or lead sheet to be printed with all the nuanced markings a skilled musician needs to correctly perform the music.

We already have ways to perfectly capture and transmit a particular musical performance. Analog and digital recording techniques do this amazingly well as does MIDI when the events are captured in real time from an actual performance. The MIDI playback won't retain the sound quality or waveform of the original, but it has the capacity to retain the feel of the music with respect to tempo, timing, volume and so forth.

The technology to derive a complete score from a performance representation is improving. I'm confident that algorithms will one day be available to do the job quite nicely. For the purposes of folk musicians, midi2abc already has a good start though the result may still need a lot of cleaning up before an accurate score can be produced.1 Still, the goal of capturing a performance is entirely separate from the goal of documenting the details needed for performance. I see no reason why the nuances of performance and the details of documentation need to exist in the same representation scheme.

Jon tracks the 2.0 standard development better than I do but my sense is that the process is fairly well controlled. People like Guido Gonzato, Jean-François Moine, Seymour Shlien, John Chambers and many others, together with Chris Walshaw, seem to have this well in hand. I see no disagreement between these people with respect to the developing standard. Of course any developer who so wishes may alter the ABC representation in any way he wishes for the purpose of producing software but I see nothing to suggest that these private aberrations affect the standard in any way. The best way to deal with those people is probably to refuse to download, buy or use their software and to let them know that we would support their efforts if they stayed within the devloping standard.

      - Mark

___________
1 I'm anxious to try Neil's new version of Harmony, capturing a MIDI performance directly.


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Subject: RE: Tech: ABC notation
From: pavane
Date: 15 Mar 04 - 10:31 AM

Mark,
I am sorry, I didn't promise that at all! My MIDI input is step-time only, and limited to single notes, not chords. I did experiment with real-time, but it was obvious that it was impossible to play short notes sufficiently accurately.
Version 3.2.7, containing this facility, was uploaded to my web site last week.

Maybe I should have tried a half-speed or quarter-speed option.

I did also experiment with a MIDI File 'adjustment' program to make the MIDI file better for import to scoring programs, but there seemed to be little interest in this after all, so I have suspended work.
I have succeeded in creating MIDI files whose note lengths have been adjusted (Not simply quantised) for this purpose, but haven't yet perfected the algorithm, nor tried the output in the common packages.


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Subject: RE: Tech: ABC notation
From: Mark Clark
Date: 15 Mar 04 - 10:44 AM

Neil, Sorry. I knew you were working on MIDI input directly into Harmony and didn't stop to think that you wouldn't be capturing a full performance in real time. Finale does that but they have many developers and get huge sums for their work.

      - Mark


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Subject: RE: Tech: ABC notation
From: pavane
Date: 15 Mar 04 - 11:51 AM

Mark,
There is no technical difficulty in doing it, but that's not compatible with the main objective of HARMONY, i.e. to add chords.

For this reason, the internal tune structure does not permit polyphonic voices.

HARMONY can import a full MIDI file to its Event List display, but this is not very useful at the moment, and the Microsoft Flexi Grid control seems VERY slow to load. About the only thing you can do with it is save it in a different format (i.e. it can convert from format 0 to 1 and vice versa)

Neil


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