For the longest time I have been working on getting my lead-sheet style in the editor of my choice just right, the one thing that I always found the point of failure were the look of the chord-symbols. I really like the style of the “The New Real Book” but neither Finale, Musescore or Sibelius came close. Alas, this seems to have changed now.
As announced in the post Introducing the Norfolk and Pori chord symbol fonts for Sibelius on Scoring Notes the people behind NYC Music Services have ported Dorico’s Petaluma font (no, I’m not going to try Dorico as well, although I’m tempted) to Sibelius and judging by the screenshots it looks just like what I’m looking for.
The one thing I’m wondering is how this font does blend with the other “handwritten” fonts in Sibelius, but I guess I will figure that out once I have given it a thorough try.
The sweet spot for much of the music I prepare is around 7.5 mm. For studio sessions and other instances where music is sight-read, the stands are shared, and/or lighting is sub-optimal, 7.7 mm is nice; for chamber music that is likely to have the benefit of a lot of rehearsal, 7.3 mm or even smaller can be just fine.
Just finished another arrangement and these ideas are certainly useful. I usually stick to the default of 7.0 mm, but will give a slightly larger size a try. Either though feels a bit small on iPads. At least on the 9.5 inch models. I have yet to see music on one of the larger ones.
Sibelius 8.3 has been released the other day and it brings improvements to an awesome little feature I didn’t knew it had. I would have needed this a lot in past and will surely be added to my toolkit.
Sibelius 8.2 introduced a promising new feature with which a note a or passage could be moved left or right by the use of the new shortcuts Command-Option-Left Arrow (Mac) or Ctrl+Alt+Left Arrow (PC) and Command-Option-Right Arrow (Mac) or Ctrl+Alt+Right Arrow (PC), respectively.Slide too far, though, and you left a trail of unconsolidated rests behind This has been significantly improved in Sibelius 8.3.
During a recent rehearsal we played an arrangement which was set in Sibelius and featured header styles and formatting similar to the original handwritten charts, made popular by the music of Thad Jones in the sixties/seventies. The title, subtitles and composer info were nicely underlined and with the templates choice of font, it added a more vintage-y feel to the chart.
I like this style, because it makes the resulting files ever so slightly more authentic. “If you want it to sound like Jazz, it has to look like Jazz“1. I wanted to use a similar style in an arrangement I am working on but my first instinct, Text - Format - Underline was amiss.
After a bit research and searching around the interface I found two solutions: one that works globally and one slightly more finicky which is helpful on a case-by-case basis.
Finale had been my music notation software of choice for many years but currently very much into using Sibelius. I have spent the last few days (or better nights) of my vacation learning Sibelius 7.5 with the help of these tutorial videos and feel already rather comfortable using the application.
The aforementioned videos cover the basics very well and give a good starting point, and on the blog by the same author is a lot more interesting stuff to find.
Once I learned some key-keyboard shortcuts and getting a grasp how the app thinks working with it started to feel rather fluent. Still I am forgetting how to do this or that, but it surely feels rather simple to use and I am getting more and more impressed with it. And ease of use aside, I enjoy how nice already the default output is. There’s not much work needed to have a lead sheet look good.
Considered that I at the moment only learned the basics I really would like to get to know the application better and learn a lot more about it hence I’m searching for some nice resources. I might post some links that I find here on the blog, and anyway will save them over on Pinboard.