Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Dear Sessioners,

I happened to stumble upon a tome (so to speak) of Scottish tunes last week. They were apparently transcribed by this traveling fiddler from Scotland, and shared with the Learning Session group here in San Antonio, TX. These 1000 pages of sheet music seem like a good set of tunes to put up on thesession.org, except it’s too much for me to transcribe them into ABC notation manually.

So, I was wondering if anyone had any ideas/suggestions on how to efficiently convert these into ABC format to upload onto thesession.org. I know there are tools to convert ABC into sheet music, but did you ever come across some tool that worked the other way around?

-Riyaz

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Easy ABC and Smartscore X2 Professional Edition are the two programs I use for all my submissions to this website.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Is it possible to scan them and put the collection someplace where others could download them as images (like DropBox)?

Thanks

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Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

If you can get it to musicXML, I’m sure I could write a script to get it to ABC.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

This sounds like a major collection, 1000 pages, serious? Who was the fiddler and where did the tunes come from?

Please do what Chuck suggested and upload the images online if possible, much more efficient than submitting a ton of tunes as ABC…!

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Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

This is some great stuff! I’m going to try out Audiveris first to see how it works out, since it promises to get it to MusicXML atleast.

The binder is about as thick as 2 stacks of printer paper, so I’m estimating a 1000 pages. Obviously, there’s a lot of known tunes, so would need to check for duplicates on thesession.org.

Someone from the session claims to have scanned the entire collection a while ago. Let me see if I can get that onto dropbox and share the link here.

I will get more details about the fiddler at next week’s session… need to take a notebook to write things down this time 🙂

Thanks for the enthusiastic help!

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

There isn’t yet any straight forward printed to abc/xml/anydigitaltype yet although the Audiveris looks promising. I didn’t manage to get Audiveris to run on my Mac as a quick try so I’ll have to look into the configuration in depth.

In one of my many moments of musical insanity, I once thought that it would be neat to convert the King Street Sessions pdf file to abc notation only to find out after way too much time expenditure that there already was a KSS.abc file and I dropped the whole thing for all of the obvious reasons. However, I did come up with a work flow for doing what you’re describing. It’s a bit onerous though since the first step would be to scan all of the pages to .tiff files and if there are more than one tunes per page, a separate tiff file for each needs to be generated. Nominally, they have to be about 450dpi/inch before the somewhat limited software I used could generate reasonably accurate output. It’s a good think that disk space is so cheap these days. I used PrintMusic/SmartScore to convert to xml and imported the xml into EasyAbc and then compared the print to the score and made the necessary corrections. It’s non-trivial, there are a lot of things that SmartScore messes up but at least 85-95% of the drudge work is done by the computer. What doesn’t get handled are file names, an arbitrary end-of-line character for the xml output and a host of other irritating oversights on the part of the software. It really is a non-trivial process.

As a thought, if you can put the scans someplace public, perhaps a group of us could each volunteer to convert a range of scans to abc notation and send them back to you for submission. In that event, it would make better sense to see if Jeremy can import the results as a large single "tunebook" file. As an aside, if the transcriptions are by hand, so will be the conversions as no software can do that yet so far as I know. As d>j<f notes, if the files are are "web visible" somewhere, that would be great but thesession does not support images so to incorporate them on thesession they would indeed require conversion to abc notation. I’ve done the paper -> abc process several thousand times now and under ideal conditions, I can do 25-30 per day. It’s a lot of work. Consider a working group to accomplish the task and as I mentioned, contact Jeremy to see if he can import the entire collection as one file to take the pain out of the submission.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Why don’t you start with transcribing and submitting those tunes you particularly like and maybe even play yourself? I’m not sure if it’s that a good idea to post 1000 pages of random tunes at once… maybe imslp.org would be a better place for an entire collection like that.

(And then you can just lean back and watch the crowd posting transcriptions here!) :~D

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

This is probably not the best place to dump a massive corpus of music. I agree that the best approach would be to get a scan put up somewhere accessible, and then work from there.

Is it handwritten? Printed scores are getting fairly easy to convert into some form of electronic notation; handwritten stuff is more difficult.

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Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Just scan and upload the index. It’s probably 99% on the web already. We can look at the titles and tell you if any of it is worth bothering with.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Now that is a practical suggestion.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

I use Neuratron and then into Sibelius. But tbh you still need to correct most of it, and for many things it’s easier just to decide what’s good (as others have said) and then manually enter it. I tend not to scan music into my scanner any more as it’s slow, as now I use FasterScan HD on my ipad/iphone - it’s free, you take a photo of each page, it goes through and corrects for distortion in the image, and then creates a multi-page pdf. Really quick to use - I can scan and correct a multi-page score much quicker than I can in the scanner, and then at least it’s in a format I can read in software or meatware!

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

@ Riyaz Shaikh: There are various softwares available which can scan and convert printed music (the process is called music OCR).

However, as far as I’m aware, none of them has the functionality of outputting to ABC format - which is what you are asking!

There ought to be, you would think.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

I assume most optical music recognition software will be able to save the music in XML, which again can be imported with EasyABC.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

@Seb: Yes, at least one of the music OCR softwares (Sharpeye) can save as XML, so no doubt some or all of the other offerings can, too.

Your EasyABC tip is a good one, but it’s annoying to have to go through an intermediate step just to get ABC.

For my money, ABC, being universal, is the most important digital format.

The problem is, as it’s non-proprietry, some of the commercial developers don’t like it - so therefore don’t support it.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

My guess would be that most music software developers don’t even know about the ABC format, or if they do they simply don’t bother… AFAIK it’s primarily used in the niche of traditional music, and probably rather uninteresting for "serious" musicians who want to notate complex polyphonic melodies etc.

Now and again an academically trained musician will start a thread here ranting how unnecessary ABC notation is since there’s professional software like Sibelius available (which of course entirely misses the point). Oh well.

Anyway, while ABC notation may be a bit limited compared to MusicXML, it is certainly way more accessible; and this alone makes it the best music exchange format currently available, if not for *all* purposes. BTW, here’s the xml2abc script (which is also used in EasyABC); at the bottom of the page is a list of its shortcomings: http://wim.vree.org/svgParse/xml2abc.html

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Ah well, I’ve got nothing better to do. I’m not playing too much while I recuperate from having three bones removed from my left hand in August and the rod and screws removed from my upper right arm in September from when I broke that arm in February. Now I’m fighting a bone infection where the rod was so I have way too much time on my hands. Let me volunteer to reduce the first ten pages to abc notation. Scanning is the tough part anyway and that would have to be done to it to send it me so I would at least be saved of the one truly tedious part. There there’s just 990 more pages to go. Right?

Re: Tool to convert sheet music … just post the index … *!?

I hate those feckin’ incidental infections. I hope it’s getting better now, callison.
Take care.

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Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

It’s getting better, thanks. I should PM the OP and see if they’re interested in scanning some pages and emailing them my way. I’m literally not doing much but sitting around the house reading and not playing very much. I had the post-op with the surgeon this morning and he said I also have tennis elbow. I told him I don’t play tennis so we came to the conclusion it’s "mandolin elbow".

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

UPDATE:
From what I was told today, the tune binder was shared by a Joe Buchanan who was visiting San Antonio Texas for work in 2003. The tunes were apparently considered Scottish (since the guy was from Scotland), but I saw a lot of well known Irish ones in there while leafing through.

I’ve scanned the first 50 pages and uploaded here - https://www.dropbox.com/sh/ta840i5hdlizdja/AABYEJN_K_m4XdJFb1YvKJx5a?dl=0

Let me know what we should do with this collection. I know this is not the place to dump unorganized tunes, but I feel guilty having this collect dust, while I search/learn tunes from thesession.org.

Questions on my mind -

1. How do we know if these tunes already exist on thesession.org? There is no index in the binder.
2. How do we know the type of tune? The time signature seems to be the only hint we’ve got.
3. What format to scan the pages for the OCR software? I started with pdf but can do tiff/jpeg is that’s better.
4. The notes seem clear enough for OCR, right? The title and chords might need manual work though.
5. Are the tunes "Irish" enough to post here? 🙂

@callison & others - Definitely appreciate the help!

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Here are a few abcs from tunes off the first few pages ~

John MacDonald Of Glencoe https://thesession.org/tunes/9345
Ian Powrie’s Compliments To Sir Thomas Wardle https://thesession.org/tunes/10939
Miss Linda MacFarlane https://thesession.org/tunes/6856#comment262917
MacRostie Park [X:870] http://www.nigelgatherer.com/tunes/abc/tb18.abc
Gairsay http://trillian.mit.edu/~jc/music/abc/mirror/code.google.com/Gairsay_1.abc
MacKenzie* Highlanders http://www.nigelgatherer.com/tunes/abc/tb06.abc
Lord Lovat’s Lament http://trillian.mit.edu/~jc/music/abc/AmRev/march/LordLovatsLament.abc

* X:257
T:McKenzie Highlanders
B:Master Method for Highland Bagpipe (1953)
Z:Nigel Gatherer

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Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

AB Steen has covered some of the titles that are on the session. As near as I can discern in the scans, here is the list of titles in the file(s).

Page
1 John MacDonald Of Glencoe https://thesession.org/tunes/9345
2 The Athole and Breadalbane Gathering
3 Ian Powrie’s Compliments to Sir Thomas Wardle https://thesession.org/tunes/10939
4 Miss Linda MacFarlane https://thesession.org/tunes/6856#comment262917
4 MacRostie Park [X:870] http://www.nigelgatherer.com/tunes/abc/tb18.abc
5 Glanbuchat Lodge
5 Miss Barbara Bain of New Deer
6 Miss Kirsty Batchelor
7 The Brig O’Blair
7 Back Proddin’ Mudguard
7 The Standing Stones
8 Gairsay http://trillian.mit.edu/~jc/music/abc/mirror/code.google.com/Gairsay_1.abc
9 MacKenzie Highlanders http://www.nigelgatherer.com/tunes/abc/tb06.abc
9 Labergeigh
10 Lord Lovat’s lament http://trillian.mit.edu/~jc/music/abc/AmRev/march/LordLovatsLament.abc
10 The Old Rustic Bridge
11 The Burning of the Piper’s Hut
12 The Athole and Breadalbane Gathering
13 Miss Delicia Chisholm
14 John Huband of Muirhead
15 The Hut on Staffin Island
15 Fingal’s Cave
16 The Hiking Song
16 Heilan Donal
17 Mr. Michie
18 Scott Skinner’s Compliments to Dr. MacDonald
19 Da Guiser’s March
20 Iain Mac Phail’s Welcome to Scotland
21 The Headlands
22 The Meeting of the Waters
22 Highland Laddie
23 The Garden of Skye
24 Campbells Farewell to Redcastle
24 Miss Linda Macfarland
25 Bonnie Ann
26 TheMarchioness of Tullbardine
27 Grand Old MacIntyre
28 Balmoral Castle
29 Dumbarton Castle
30 Lord Huntly’s Cave
31 The Duke of Fife’s Welcome to Dee Side
32 Flett From Flotta
32 Loch Ruan
32 Peat Fire Home?
33 Boffins Off the Peg
33 Geordie Wark’s Welcome to Edinbane
34 The K.O.S.B. Leaving Sun Wai Camp
35 Major C. M. Usher O.B.E.
36 Morison Avenue
37 Edgefauld House
38 The Dunecht Loon
38 The Crags of Tumbledown Mountain
39 The Auckland Police Pipe Band
40 The Hills of Alva
41 The Champion March
42 Uist Tramping Song?
42 Marie’s Wedding
43 The Shoals of O’Herrin
43 Lochanside
44 The Green Hills of Tyrol
44 The Dream Valley of Glendarvel
45 Far O’er Struy
45 Farewell to Nigg
46 The Haunting
47 Campbell’s Farewell to Redcastle
47 Barriechoillies?
48 King George V’s Army
48 Baledonian March?
49 The Inverness Gathering
49 MacKenzie Highlanders
50 Dornoch Links
50 Mount Stewart House
IMG MacPherson’s Rant
IMG The Ladies from Hell

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

"The Athole and Breadalbane Gathering" has been converted to abc notation and emailed back to Riyaz. So… skip that one if you’re engaged in this particular activity.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Also:
"Glanbuchat Lodge"
"Miss Barbara Bain of New Deer"

Bored out of my gourd while my surgeries heal.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Some odd notes about callison’s list:

5 Glanbuchat Lodge - it’s GLENbuchat Lodge
9 Labergeigh - it’s Caberfeigh http://www.nigelgatherer.com/tunes/abc/abc6/cabar.abc
20 Iain Mac Phail’s Welcome to Scotland - it’s his welcome to SHETLAND
24 Miss Linda Macfarland - it’s MacFarlane
32 Peat Fire Home? - it’s The Peat Fire FLAME http://www.nigelgatherer.com/tunes/abc/abc8/peatf.abc
33 Boffins Off the Peg - I think it’s COFFINS
42 Uist Tramping Song? - indeed
44 The Dream Valley of Glendarvel - it’s GLENDARUEL
47 Barriechoillies? - it’s Corriechoillie’s (full title Corriechoillie’s Welcome to the Northern Meeting)
48 Baledonian March? - CALEDONIAN

OTHER TITLES:

50 Dornoch Links http://www.nigelgatherer.com/tunes/abc/abc11/dornl.abc
45 Far O’er Struy http://www.nigelgatherer.com/tunes/abc/abc8/farstr.abc
16 Heilan Donal http://www.nigelgatherer.com/tunes/abc/abc7/hdonld.abc
11 The Burning of the Piper’s Hut http://www.nigelgatherer.com/tunes/abc/abc6/burnp.abc
21 The Headlands http://www.nigelgatherer.com/tunes/abc/abc9/headl.abc
24 Campbells Farewell to Redcastle http://www.nigelgatherer.com/tunes/abc/abc1/campbl.abc

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Thanks Nigel, the title lettering in the original scans isn’t always clear - especially where the letters cross a line or the letters are cut off below the top. Just think, Riyaz has about 950 more pages of this stuff. It’s either a treasure trove or an exercise in insanity.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

I’m thinking it’s more of the latter at this point ;)

Callison suggested writing down an index first, before we start scanning/converting tunes. Makes sense.

So, I’ve started putting up the tune titles here - https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1Z9td1gqsN9peI18hbY_BlIEl9B5utWiMsU6ZVQgW_3k/edit?usp=sharing

You can add links to existing abc versions, if it’s available. After we narrow down the not-yet-online tunes, it’ll be easier to just scan/convert those tunes.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Wow, it really is the "Uist Tramping Song". There are several samples of it on YouTube. You just never know…

I have a question in general. I did find a pdf file online for "The Athole and Breadalbane Gathering" which gave my software less indigestion then the (actually) darn well hand-written notes. The major differences between the two versions were flourishes and chords etc on the Scottish Tome version. At the point that the tune gets submitted, do both versions get entered?

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

This topic is of interest— when I start taking music courses at college, I’m looking at using ABC as an accessable way to write music.
Very nice collection of tunes. I’ll have to learn some of these.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Looking over the list of titles added after the first 50 pages here are 2 possible spelling changes;

But Brown Maiden p.52
Nut Brown Maiden
https://thesession.org/tunes/9317

Men’s March O’er the Middens, The p.65
Hen’s March Through the Middens
https://thesession.org/tunes/3486

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Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Looking over the list of titles added after the first 50 pages here are 2 spelling changes;

But Brown Maiden p.52
Nut Brown Maiden
https://thesession.org/tunes/9317

Men’s March O’er the Middens, The p.65
Hen’s March Through the Middens
https://thesession.org/tunes/3486

Mormond Brass p.52
Mormond Braes
http://www.nigelgatherer.com/tunes/abc/abc1/mormon.abc

No change in spelling but here’s another abc link
Tug Argan Gap p.69
http://trillian.mit.edu/~jc/music/abc/jig2/Tug_Argan_Gap-D-64-4.abc

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Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

I think if one wished to convert these tunes to ABC format, the easiest way would be by hand.

I often have to produce orchestra scores, and if the original PDF or scan is good enough, I have a program called Photoscore Ultimate which imports the PDF, and from where I can import it into Sibelius. This can save a lot of time and work, but it’s not the answer here: it likes good clear source material, not handwritten sheets, as attractive as they may be. It won’t be long before everyone will be able to scan scribbled staff notation and convert it to any format, easily - things are progressing apace in that field, but I’m not sure we’re there yet.

Why do you want to convert it to ABC, as a matter of interest? Simply to share on the session.org, or to produce a neat volume for people to own?

As far as the material so far scanned: I like it, but it is standard fare for dance bands and fiddle societies in Scotland. With a few exceptions, I know all the tunes in the first 50 pages well, and they’re what I’d expect an experienced dance band member would know - or perhaps more accurately, what an experienced band member playing in the 1960s and 70s. I’m not putting the music down at all - as I say, I like it enormously, and perhaps for someone not in the same field as I it would be a brilliant source of new tunes. I hope so.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

@callison - Both would get submitted as "settings" of the same tune name, right?

@AB Steen - Updated the titles in sheet… the spelling corrections are hilarious. I’m sure there’s some good stories behind those names.

@Nigel - The main reason for converting to ABC is to avoid these tunes gathering dust. I tend to learn most new tunes through thesession.org/TunePal, so don’t see myself flipping through these sheets of music to find a tune. Btw, your knowledge of scottish tunes is quite incredible. Hope you get time to keep giving feedback for the remaining tunes.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

I suspect that since The Session’s baseline format is abc, that would be sufficient reason to convert to abc notation. The tunes aren’t particularly complex so abc notation should be able to cover the scoring of them.

It’s a bit a bit of a quandary though. I don’t know what Riyaz would propose in terms of submission to the session (abc notation) or producing a volume/tome etc and if a volume were the particular desire, where it would be hosted and how the various acknowledgements would be handled for tunes incorporated from other sites on specific versions. If all of the arrangements are variances of versions held on other sites, then perhaps producing the specific versions in the tome would not violate some other sites version or copyright if such exists. The King Street Session is a good example of an online tome though. It started out from humble beginnings until it grew to be too much for the person working on it, and eventually he "open sourced" it as both pdf and abc. Kudos to him, perhaps we can do the same with this one. Or not.

After correcting for typos (mine), plain old misinterpretation of handwriting and spelling variances in the titles there appear to be about 61 listed that aren’t in abc notation on a host of various sites such as The Session, Nigel Gatherer’s, Alf Warnocks, Vashon Session, Nottingham DB, Amazon Creek, Trinity Hall Session Players, Ottowa Celtic Slow Jam, Paul Hardy, King Street Session and so forth. That would be just abc versions though. At a guess, most of those that I didn’t find are covered in published song books which might make them copyrighted. Some show up as pdf files on the web, others remain unknown. I only searched through the 18000 files or so I have on my computer - not the web and none of what I have is is later than about 2012. I did use a variety of search methods and just plain eye-balling the results for similarities.

Then - just to add to the confusion, there are some titles that just make little sense. I had "Boffins on the Peg", Nigel thought it should be "Coffins on the Peg" but the handwriting on the title could be B,C or G. "Goffins on the Peg" actually makes sense since a goffin is a type of cockatoo and cockatoos perch on a peg. Perhaps I’m just grasping at straws there. Either way, that one gets no hits on the web in any sane combination.

Including those already listed by Nigel and AB Steen, I show about 64 that exist somewhere in abc notation out of Riyaz’s first 100 or so pages.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

52 The Bonnie Lass o’ Fyvre - FYVIE
53 The roses of Prince - THE ROSES OF PRINCE CHARLIE
56 … Compliments to Chrissie Lernam - I think it’s CHRISSIE LETHAM
60 Jenny’s Baubee - more usually spelled BAWBEE
64 Kelly of Kittann - KILLANE?
67 Calum’s Road - Composed by Donald Shaw and first released on record in 1988, which helps in dating the Tome.
75 RM Donald MacLean of Lewis - PM (Pipe Major)
76 Leaving Port Askais - ASKAIG
84 Portale Bay - possibly PORTREE? Possibly not.
90-91 Auch Mountains Bonnie Glens - usually one word: AUCHMOUNTAIN’s Bonnie Glens
114 Mr. And Mrs. A Ross - ALEX - here on the session
120 Lady Dorothe A Stewart Murray’s Wedding March - DOROTHEA
124 Alan Mac Pherson of Moss Park - usually one word: MOSSPARK
131 The Baremar Gathering - BRAEMAR
136 My Wife’s A Wanton Wee Thins - THING
143 Lord Randolph’s Bride - more commonly RANDALL’s
143 Bades in the wood - BABES

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

callison - it’s "Coffins OFF the Peg". Not that I’ve come across that tune before, but I’m guessing it’s a wee joke at the expense of undertakers and their pret-a-porter wares.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Riyaz has been busy hasn’t he?

Nigel, it’s a good thing you have a lot of exposure to these names and can correct a lot of the title errors. The gentleman that scored all of this by hand did a fine job but his handwriting is a bit difficult to discern. Only someone with a lot of familiarity with the names would probably be able to spot the errors.

Here are some I’ve found, not links as sometimes they’re in zip files on another site. Parentheses if known and brackets if maybe and only up through the first 100.

15 Fingal’s Cave (session)
15 The Hut on Staffin Island (session)(vashon session)(amazon creek)(trinity hall session players)
22 Highland Laddie (session)
22 The Meeting of the Waters (session)
24 Miss Linda MacFarlane (session)
25 Bonnie Ann (session)
26 The Marchioness of Tullbardine (session - Tullibardine)
31 The Duke of Fife’s Welcome to Dee Side (session - Deeside)
32 Flett From Flotta (session)
32 Loch Ruan (session)
36 Morison Avenue [morse?]
40 The Hills of Alva (session)
41 The Champion March (session - Sean Ryan’s Champion March?)
42 Marie’s Wedding (session - Mary’s Wedding?)
42 Uist Tramping Song [need to check against uist’s on session]
43 Lochanside (session)
44 The Green Hills of Tyrol (session)
45 Farewell to Nigg (session)
47 Campbell’s Farewell to Redcastle (Alf’s Place)(Ottowa Celtic Slow Jam)(Paul Hardy)
48 Caledonian March (King Street)
49 The Inverness Gathering (session)
52 But Brown Maiden (session - Nut Brown Maiden)
52 The Bonnie Lass o’ Fyvre (session - Bonnie Lass O’ Fyvie)
53 The Roses of Prince (Alf’s Place - Roses of Prince Charlie?)
55 Geordie Wark’s Welcome to Edinbane (redundant)
55 The Stonehaven March (session)
57 The Clan MacColl (session)
58 The Banks of the Nith (session - Banks Of The Nile)
59 Hunter’s Hill (session)
60 A Man’s A Man For A That (session - A Man’s A Man?) reel
60 Green grow the Rashes (session) reel
60 Jenny’s Baubee (Nottingham db - Jenny’s Bawbee)
60 The Piper o Dundee (Nottingham db - The Piper O’ Dundee)
61 The Thistle of Scotland (session - Thistle Schottische?)
62 Scotland the Brave (session)
63 The Irish Rover (session)
63 Whisky in the Jar (Ottowa Celtic Slow Jam - Whiskey in the Jar)
64 Kelly of Kittann (Alf’s Place - Kelly of Killane)
64 The Leaving of Liverpool (session)
65 The Mens March o’er the Midden (Ottowa Celtic Slow Jam - The Hen’s March o’er the Midden)(session - Hen’s March Through The Middens)
67 Calum’s Road (session)
70 Dundee City Police Pipe Band (session)
71 The Mc Neils of Ugadale (session - MacNeils Of Ugadale)
72 Dovecot Park (session)
73 Glendaruel Highlanders (session)(nottingham db)
75 RM Donald MacLean of Lewis (session - Donald McLean Of Lewis)
77 Farewell to the Creeks (session)
79 The Heights of Cassino (session)
80 Lyndhurst (session)
83 Blue Bonnets Over the Border (session)
87 A Man’s A Man For A That (redundant) polka
87 Comin through the Rye (Alf’s Place - Comin’ thro’ the Rye)
87 Green Grow the Rashes (Alf’s Place - Green Grow the Rashes) polka
88 I love a lassie [My Love is but a Lassie Yet?]
89 Glencoe March (session)
89 Invercauld [session - Invercald’s Rant?]
90 Dornoch Links (session)
90 The Farewell to Aberdeen [session - 72nd’s Farewell To Aberdeen?]
93 Terribus (session - Teribus)
93 The Earl of Mansfield [session - Earl Of Mansfield’s March?]
95 Angus Mackinnon (Alf’s Place - Angus MacKinnon)
99 Captain Cameron’s March [Alf’s Place - James Cameron’s March?]
100 79th’s farewell to Gibralter (session)

I’ve emailed a few more of the "not found anywhere" tunes to riyaz converted to abc.

P.S., I still think it might be "Goffins" ;^) Probably because I have no clue what "pret-a-porter wares" are.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Great work, callison!

Ready to use coffins rather than custom made. I might be wrong…

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Here’s some more: Question and/or brackets marks indicate possibilities or maybe’s.

102 Liberton Pipe Band (Fiddlers Companion - Liberton Pipe Band)
102 Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee (session)
104 The Lovat Scouts (session)
105 Scotland the Brave (session)
105 The roses of Prince Charlie (Alf’s Place - Roses of Prince Charlie)
106-107 The train journey north (session)
108 The Seige of Delhi (session)(King Street)
110 The Cameron Highlanders (session)
114 Mr. And Mrs. A Ross (session - Mr And Mrs Alex Ross)
114 Locheil’s Welcome to Glasgow (session - Lochiel’s Welcome To Glasgow)
115 John D. Burgess (session)
116 Bonawe Highlanders (session)
118 Ballochyle [Fiddlers Companion - Ballochmyle Brig]?
122 Corran House (Alf’s Place - Corran House)
122 The Glasgow Gaelic Club [Slow Players - The Gaelic Club][session - Gaelic Club]??
122 The Hills of Glenorchy (session)(Ottowa Celtic Slow Jam)
123 Murdo MacKenzie Of Torridon (session)
124 Alan Mac Pherson of Moss Park (session - Alan MacPherson of Moss Park)
125 Echoes of Oban (session)
129 Over the Border (Ottowa Celtic Slow Jam - Over the Border)
129 Wi’A Hundred Pipers (Paul Hardy session tunebook - Wi’ a Hundred Pipers)
129 Bonnie Dundee (session)
130 DrumLoist [session - The Rakes Of Drumlish]?
131 Farewell to the Tay [session - Farewell to the Bay]?
131 The Baremar Gathering [session - Braemar Gathering March]?
135 Dr. Ross’s 50th Welcome to the Argyllshre Gathering (session - Doctor Ross’s 50th Welcome To The Argyllshire Gathering)
136 My Wife’s A Wanton Wee Thins [My Wife’s a Wanton Wee Thing] (Nottingham db)(Sheffield Ceilidh Society)(session)
137 Kenny Gilles Of Portnalong (session)(Nottingham db)
139 Jim Ritchies March [session - Jimie Ritchie’s]?
140 Redford Cottage (session)
141 My Love She’s But A Lassie Yet (Alf’s Place - My Love she’s But a Lassie Yet.abc)
141 Duncan Gray (session)
141 The Rakes of Mallow (session)(Arkansas Celtic Music Society)(King Street Sessions)(Ottowa Celtic Slow Jam)(Paul Hardy session tunebook)
142 This is No My Ain Lassie (Fiddlers Companion - This is no My Ain Lassie)
142 The Lass O Gowrie (session - The Lass O’ Gowrie)
143 Lord Randolph’s Bride (session)
143 Bades in the wood (session - Babes in the Woods)
143 Davy Nicknack [session - Davy-Davy Knick-Knack]?
144 Roxburgh Castle (Eight Some Reel) (session)
144 Kiss me Quick [Nottingham db - Kiss Me Quick Me Mither’s Coming]?
144 The Ton (Nottingham db - The Ton or Jessie’s Hornpipe)
145 Kirk’s Hornpipe [Paul Hardy session tunebook - Kirkgate Hornpipe]?
146 Lady MacKenzie of Coull (session - Lady MacKensie Of Coul)
146 Caddam Woods (session)
147 Drumley’s [session - Rakes of Drumlish]?
147 Highland Lassie [Fiddlers Companion - The Highland Fair (Lasses)]?
148 Bill Sutherland [session - Bill Sutherland’s March]?
148 Fight about the fireside (session)
149 Always Welcome (session)
150 The Flowers of Edinburgh (session)
150 Johnny Cope (session)

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

118 Ballochyle [Fiddlers Companion - Ballochmyle Brig]? === no, there is a 6/8 march called Ballochyle
130 DrumLoist [session - The Rakes Of Drumlish]? === no, Drumloist is a tune by Jim Johnstone
131 Farewell to the Tay [session - Farewell to the Bay]? == The tune is Farewell to the Tay, a 6/8 march
139 Jim Ritchies March [session - Jimie Ritchie’s]? === I wouldn’t have thought so. I’d have to see the tune
143 Davy Nicknack [session - Davy-Davy Knick-Knack]? === Yes
144 Kiss me Quick [Nottingham db - Kiss Me Quick Me Mither’s Coming]? === same tune
145 Kirk’s Hornpipe [Paul Hardy session tunebook - Kirkgate Hornpipe]? === No, it’s always called just The Kirks or Kirk’s Hornpipe, often played with The Storrers
147 Drumley’s [session - Rakes of Drumlish]? = no, Drumleys is here under the name Astley’s Ride
147 Highland Lassie [Fiddlers Companion - The Highland Fair (Lasses)]? - No, a tune by Jim Johnstone
148 Bill Sutherland [session - Bill Sutherland’s March]? - We know it just as Bill Sutherland by Adam Rennie, but it’s the same tune.

Looking forward to seeing more.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

38 The Dunecht Loon

As a matter of interest, the Dunecht loon is none other than Robbie Shepherd, long-time presenter of Take the Floor, a weekly dance music programme on BBC Radio Scotland.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

That’s some serious tune finding!

Added the next 50 pages… the binder is finally appearing to turn, and looks like we are a quarter of the way there. Lot more duplicates starting to show up now.

@callison & Nigel, you can update the spreadsheet directly if you want, maybe just add a different color to the tunes you found online. Then we can narrow our focus to the un-found tunes.

You can sort the tunes by name if it helps… google-docs keeps a revision history so changes are not lost.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

170 The Washing White Sergeant - The DASHING White Sergeant
172 Back O’ Bennackie - BENNACHIE
175 Miss Forbes Farewell to Banee - BANFF
180 Statent Island - STATEN
189 John Spence of UYEASOUND
193 Archie Broton - I’d have to see it, but it might be Archie Beaton. There is a lament for a Rev Archie Beaton.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

> 170 The Washing White Sergeant

I like the new title better.

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Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

113 A M Scott - The tune is probably "P M Sam Scott" by peter MacLeod, a 6/8 march (P M standing for Pipe Major).

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

"The Washing White Sergeant" that’s precious!

That’s what Im going to call that tune from now on!

I just love those alternate spoof tune names: e.g. Star of Munster/Starving Monster … Kid on the Mountain/Kid on the Mountain Bike … My Darling’s Asleep/ My Darling’s a Sheep. 😉

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Drowsy Moggie
Tesco’s Jig (Morrison’s)
Ouch on the Shin
The Gravel Path
The Bark in the Morning

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

151-200 Most of these tunes exist somewhere online or in the ridiculous number of files I scraped off of the internet a few years ago. Winnowing the list down to "maybe’s" and just plain no hits at all, I get the following tunes that might be unique to the "Scottish Tome":

151 Murdo MacLeod of Earilish
151 The Pirn Reel
157 Deveron Reel
165 Kemnay House
171 Jean Kirkpatrick’s Fancy
172 Back O’ Bennachie
172 Island Spinning Song
178 The Northlands
179 Hamish’s Tune Unknown unless it’s Hamish the Carpenter or Hamish Hendersons Refusal
186 Captain Peterson of Melby
187 Miss Frances Robertson Might be: Fiddlers Companion - Francis T Robertson
187 Sandyburn Reel Might be: The Session - The Sandyburn
189 St. Ninian’s Isle
190 Da Green Isle Might be: The Session - Green Isle
190 Pam’s Peerie Tune
190 Wir May
191 Da Blacksmith Might be: The Blacksmith
193 Archie Broton Might be: Lament on the Death of Rev. Archie Beaton
194 Da Fiddler’s Soond
194 The President’s Hornpipe Which President? Could be Garfield, Lincoln, Nixon, Grant and who knows what else?
195 Da Road to Houll
196 Maggie’s Reel
197 Da Briggie Stanes Might be: Stanes Morris
198 Donny the Post
198 Willie Mann Of Paddy

I searched pretty thoroughly with sub-portions of names, possible spelling changes and what have you across abc files from the following sources - some purchased and some downloaded from the internet. Most of the sites are still out there and years more updated than my files. "Liam’s Irish Traditional Music" (sligoman) however, is gone:

(100 more tunes)
(121 Favorite Irish Session Tunes)
(40 Scottish Session Tunes Everybody Knows)
(Alan Ng tunebook)
(Alf’s Place)
(Amazon Creek)
(Apples in Winter)
(Arkansas Celtic Music Society)
(Banjo Tablatures.com)
(Cape Breton Tunes)
(Cape Irish)
(Cobb’s Music of Ireland)
(Favorite Irish Session Tunes)
(Fiddlers Companion)
(Fire Power)
(Henry Norbeck)
(Jack Campin - Irish Flutes)
(James Aird)
(King Street Sessions)
(Lewes Arms Folk Club)
(Liam’s Irish Traditional Music)
(Nigel_Gatherers)
(Nottingham db)
(O’Neill’s Music of Ireland
(O’Neils abc files)
(Ottowa Celtic Slow Jam)
(Partituras)
(Paul Hardy session tunebook)
(Scottish Session Tunes Everybody Knows)
(Session Tunes) Vol. 1)
(Session Tunes) Vol. 2)
(Sheffield Ceilidh Society)
(Slow Players)
(The Session)
(Trinity Hall Session Players)
(Tunes for the Times)
(Vashon Session)
(Wild Dismay Tunes blackflute.com)
(oldmusicproject.com))

The list of actual hits is far too lengthy to post but if anyone wants it, I’ll be happy to PM it to them.
P.S. I rely heavily upon Nigel Gatherer’s rather spectacular memory of tune names that get corrected on Riyaz’s spreadsheet for my search list. None of this search includes active web searches except some on The Session itself.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

157 Deveron Reel ===== composed by Neil Grant
165 Kemnay House ===== composed by Adam Rennie
171 Jean Kirkpatrick’s Fancy ===== composed by Adam Rennie
172 Back O’ Bennachie ===== well known song air
172 Island Spinning Song ===== well known song air
179 Hamish’s Tune ===== composed by Hamish Menzies
187 Sandyburn Reel Might be: The Session - The Sandyburn ===== by Frank Jamieson (Shetland)
189 St. Ninian’s Isle ===== a Shetland tune
194 The President’s Hornpipe Which President? Could be Garfield, Lincoln, Nixon, Grant and who knows what else? ====== It is surrounded by tunes which came from the Shetland fiddler Tom Anderson, and in fact it was written by him in 1965 for L H Mathewson, President of the Shetland Fiddlers Society and Procurator Fiscal for Shetland (that’s like a Sherriff). Pam’s Peerie Tune, Da Road to Houll and Maggie’s Reel were also composed by Anderson. And I bet Wir May was too - it means "Our May’s Tune".
197 Da Briggie Stanes ==== Another Shetland tune composed by Ronald Jamieson
198 Willie Mann Of Paddy ===== composed by fiddler Angus Cameron of Kirriemuir for a young accordionist taken before his time.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Nigel, I take it then that all of the tunes you’ve just mentioned would be game for conversion to abc notation or would there be copyright considerations?

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Copyright and the session.org. That’s a can of worms!

Strictly speaking unless the composer died before 1946 his or her work is under copyright. To put it another way, of the eight tunes you have posted at the session.org, every one is, strictly speaking, under copyright. When we post tunes here, we make a choice about whether or not to step into the grey area for the good of the community; on many such occasions the composer is OK with it, sometimes not. That choice can only be yours.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

As it turns out, that one tune is "Coffis of the Peg".
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_P-OzPmikgA

I have no clue what a "coffis" is and it doesn’t get any hits on the web either. No matter, we have the correct tune name now as "Geordie Wark’s Welcome to Edinbane" is being played in the same set and it’s the next tune in the list.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

"Coffis of the Peg"? - I would take that with a pinch of salt, callison, as the camaraman seems a little keyboard-challenged. Having said that, I have never come across anything close to that title before. We’ll find it one day!

38 The Dunecht Loon === A march by Graeme Mitchell
56 … Compliments to Chrissie Lernam === Full title Iain MacPhail’s Compliments to Chrissie Leatham by accordionist Iain T MacPhail (march)
198 Donny the Post === is a reel in A by Graeme Mitchell

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Well, maybe if someone on this forum is familiar with someone in the Dunblane Accordion Club, they can ask Willlie Shankie since he wrote it. I’m curious to know just what it is.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

A third of the way through the tome… and many duplicate tunes starting to show up now.

@callison & others - How do you search for all these names in your sources? Go to each site or just google?

Also, when you submit tunes/settings on thesession.org, does it tell you if it already exists?

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

For this collection of tunes I’ve mainly used searches developed by two people who helped create abc code ~
Chris Walshaw < http://abcnotation.com/search >
and John Chambers < http://trillian.mit.edu/~jc/cgi/abc/tunefind >

But as soon as I saw the first scans Nigel Gatherer’s abc collection seemed a perfect fit
< http://www.nigelgatherer.com/tunes/gen.html >

Those are my primary sources, though there are *quite a few* more online (abc & pdf).

" … when you submit tunes/settings on thesession.org, does it tell you if it already exists?"

No, at least not immediately; though probably sooner rather than later.

;)

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Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Lately, I’ve been using the sources AB Steen mentioned and http://tunearch.org/wiki which seems to be a good source too. There is a lot of pdf based media on the web as well but you’re still stuck with converting it to abc for submission on the forum.

A few years back, I "scraped" the web for abc notation and so I have way more material on my computer than I’ll ever be able to use plus I had purchased some cd/dvd sources and if they were pdf - I converted them to abc notation for my own use. All told, I have at least 39 different sources just for abc notation and a few more that are some sort of image media such as pdf, png or whatever. So… I have all of this stuff and I write unix shell scripts to dive through it and find what I need and yet I still have to use web sites we’ve been discussing in an attempt to resolve a tune name and whether it has abc notation somewhere or not. If I haven’t been able to locate anything at all, I’ve done my (near) best to use the scans Riyaz provided initially and stick them in the notes section of his Google Sheet. 27 so far, 3 to go for the first scan section. Subsequent to that, we’re just all trying to resolve names and when the sheet is hopefully filled in with known answers, I believe Riyaz will scan and provide files for the tunes that appear to be unique. For the tunes I have converted, I thought I would let Riyaz submit them to the session since this project is his baby and I’m just providing support like some of the others involved at various levels with it.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Never realized there were such dedicated archives for trad music… good to know!

If you guys are transcribing the scans to ABC, feel free to submit the tunes to your own sources. I was going to check with Jeremy after we get our subset of tunes narrowed down, to see if he’s okay with us submitting them here.

Or we could host the collection by itself (as callison suggested). Need to talk about how that’s better than sending it to one of the tune archives though.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Riyaz, when we’ve winnowed through the index at 50-100 and so forth to determine which tunes don’t exist on the web somewhere you can scan the unique sheets and stick them up on DropBox again like you did the first 50 or so pages. It may not be worth discussing the end effort until we get closer to finishing and find out whether Jeremy has any suggestions or not.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Riyaz, you can definitely submit them here: if the tune already exists, add a setting; if it doesn’t, add it as a new tune.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Thanks Ryaz. More fun!

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

After several of us had gone through the Google spreadsheet, I removed all of the tunes with links to make the spreadsheet a little more concise on the "unknown" tunes. The original spreadsheet data and links are in a Excel spreadsheet here: http://www.thisoldtractor.com/guzzi007/Celtic/tomebook1.xls

At this point, there are 46 or so tunes that I’ve reduced to abc format in the Google sheet and they’re visible when you click the corner box where it says "Click to see notes". I’m not looking forward to submitting them to the session (yet) simply because I don’t know a march from a polka or whatever by looking at a time signature to enter them correctly. I really wish there was a method of bulk submitting them to make the task easier.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

The tune data base has one choice for 2/4 time signature & it’s listed under polkas.
All 6/8 tunes are listed as jigs. No marches are listed, except when it is part of the title.
For the most part the only decision regarding which tune type will be 4/4 time.
Is it a reel, hornpipe or strathspey?

"I really wish there was a method of bulk submitting them to make the task easier."
Be careful what you wish for. 😉

Posted by .

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

"Be careful what you wish for."

I hear that. I was a sub-registrar for a Class C network and the head honcho ginned up a mechanism to provide bulk registrations of IP addresses on the net. I needed to register about 150 unix workstations I supported so I tried the bulk-register method following the directions very, very exactly. It blew up (insufficient testing on the part of the head honcho) and threw my bank of registrations across THREE Class C networks and really, really, messed up the local DNS server where I worked.

For the session though, it’s just a database of some sort and more than likely, all that would be necessary would be assigning the X: values to all of the incoming tunes in a multi-tune file then and adding the tune name and abc header information to wherever the index is.

OTOH, I might be able to put together some sort of script to interface to the browser and do the work for me. If The Session wasn’t behind https protocol it would be dead easy but since Lynx for the Macintrash doesn’t support https calls some other hokey method would have to be put together. I’m not swift at all at scripting the Apple environment and some of the third party software like QuicKeys is a short path to a lot of trouble. Scripting somehow might still be an advantage inasmuch as I’ve had seven surgeries to my hands and arms at this point and they’re approaching the point where they’re just wearing out. Copying and pasting all of those tunes in just doesn’t sound encouraging.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Please don’t do any bulk submission. It’s not a race. 🙂

I’d much rather that the tunes were added slowly, over time, with a comment for each setting.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Jeremy, if the original score provides no comments, what comments should be added?

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

You could add a comment about where the setting is from.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

There’s a name on the top right of each sheet, which I assumed was where Mr. Buchanan got the tune from. We could put that in the comment for the setting.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

I don’t see a name on every sheet other than the occasional composer name. I do see "Woodstock" on the bottom of each page though so perhaps it’s something to do with the "Peanuts" gang. ;^)

If I do the submitting, the comment is just going to read "Mr. Buchanan’s Scottish Tome" and the page number for that particular tune. I suppose a separate thread could be used for an index with the URL’s to the tunes in the tome that are not unique as well as the entire list of tunes submitted related to it but it would be lengthy and might exceed a character limit for a single thread entry. If Riyaz does the submission, it might be very different.

FWIW: Would someone like to identify the type of tune and enter it into the appropriate sport on the Google spreadsheet? https://www.dropbox.com/sh/ta840i5hdlizdja/AABYEJN_K_m4XdJFb1YvKJx5a?dl=0 It is honestly beyond my level of knowledge to assign the tune type.

I could be persuaded to put the entire thing together as a tunebook ala King Street Session style but it would take a very hefty bribe…

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

I hear ya… that was actually the first question I asked the person who gave me the tome - how do you figure out the type of tune? He said he looks at the name and time signature. Guess that worked for him.

But now that you mentioned it, I’m even more clueless at figuring out tune types (given that some of my reels end up sounding like polkas). Hopefully AB or Nigel have better knowledge to help out.

The titles/scans took a break last few days… will resume tonight!

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

I doubt I can be of much help. Regarding *tune types* (not something I use when writing abcs) it is a list of categories in the Mustard’s submission process using abc’s R:rhythm info field to set the M:metre field. i.e. ~
jigs 6/8
reels, hornpipes, barndances & strathspeys 4/4
slip jigs 9/8
polkas 2/4
slides 12/8
waltzs & mazurkas 3/4
three-twos 3/2

However if some of your 4/4 tunes feel like polkas you may want to post them as polkas (i.e. 2/4)

For "Para Handy" (pp 247 - 248) check out "Para Handy Polka" (track 8) on Jimmy Shand’s "Happy Hours" {composer: Ian Gourlay}

https://thesession.org/recordings/2639#comment352322

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Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

Many years ago, I came across a program called MIDISCAN, which created MIDI files from sheet music. It worked reasonably well OK on simple file scores, e.g.melody only. My program HARMONY (Not to be confused with the later program Harmony Assistant) can import these MIDI files and convert to abc. Hope this helps, if you can find that program.

Re: Tool to convert sheet music to ABC notation?

I use a scanning tool (current favorite is scanscore) to upload sheet music, edit any mistakes and then export to sibelius to switch to notation.