You are bound to have encountered a capella music, from either a musical, barbershop quartets, or perhaps through a chorus group. I've been exposed to a capella music using the "shape note" method for most of my adult life. I've even found that learning the "do re mi" shapes is not that hard.
At some point, I wanted to actually convert a song from "normal" shaped notes to the "7 shape note" style. It was harder than I imagined. I tried a high end music software package, but I found it very hard to use.
Fast forward to a couple of years ago. I discovered the "Abc music notation" system. A simple way to enter music using just a keyboard and typing the note names. On top of that, there were a lot of "open source," free programs that printed the music, played the music and opened up a world of music notation software that was (and is) free and easy to use!
I thought it would be a great project, but as I tried to create instructions, I realized that it still took a bit of "fiddling" to make everything work.
Recent improvements in web technology (HTML5) and a creative musician and programmer, Jef Moine, changed that. I was looking for a new programming project anyway, and a lot of hours later, I feel like I have a set of instructions that are truely easy to follow and will enable you to create a shape note music score that you will really be happy with.
That is my goal for this project, and I hope it comes close!
Best wishes in your own musical projects.
A set of instructions and a web site that lets you easily enter, play, and print musical scores, including scores in the 7 shape note and the 4 shape note traditions.
"ABC edit with Shape Notes" web page
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