New site feature: tune sets

New site feature: tune sets

Here’s a feature of the site I’ve been working on for a while, and I’m very happy to finally unveil it: tune sets!

If you’re browsing through the tunes section you’ll notice a new button under every tune setting: "play this in a set".
https://dribbble.com/shots/2508622-Tune-Options

If you click that button, you can create a set with that tune setting (or add the tune setting to an existing set of tunes).
https://dribbble.com/shots/2508624-Tune-Set-Options

Here’s one I made earlier:

https://thesession.org/members/1/sets/1

As you can see, you can view (and print) the sheet music for the whole set, and download the set in ABC file.

If you see a set that somebody else has made that you like, you can click the "copy this set" button to make a duplicate of the set.

Don’t worry if you put tunes in the wrong order in a set; you can edit the set at any time (click the "edit this set" button). Drag and drop the tune titles to rearrange them in the set and then click "save changes". You can also drag tunes out of the set completely.
https://dribbble.com/shots/2508629-Drag-And-Drop

Once you start making sets of tunes, there’ll be a link to your sets from your member profile (along with all your other contributions). Here are my sets, for example:
https://thesession.org/members/1/sets

I hope you’ll find this new feature useful. In the long term, I’m hoping that it could surface some really interesting and useful information, like which tunes are most commonly paired together—that’s the kind of information that could then find its way back onto the tune pages.

Give it a whirl and let me know what you think.

Re: New site feature: tune sets

Excellent.

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Re: New site feature: tune sets

Great! The best website keeps getting even better.

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Great idea, thanks Jeremy.

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Thank you very much for the site, this is a great idea and looks to be well implemented!

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Sorry, cut myself off by accident…

That being said, it’d be great to be able to name sets in the future, or give an anecdote as to their origin. In connection to that, the possibility of choosing the names of the tunes in one’s tunebook and setbook would be great, as is available when filing recordings. This way, the names might even be able to be recorded in a way that would show which name is most in use.

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Thady, remember: if you think a tune has the wrong name, you can edit it (putting the current name as an alias). That’s probably the best way of showing which name is most in use.

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It would be great to be able to name some of the sets. That’s an important/useful part of how we distinguish different sets we play when they share similar tunes.

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This is great, Jeremy! An excuse to spend even more time poring over the mustard…

Re: Tunes comments

Sorry for breaking protocol, Jeremy. I just don’t understand why the Tunes section is not treated as a discussion (unique topic) page in it’s own right.

When I click on the *Tunes* tab the left column has the setting; using a common header
[a name of the tune is used/listed under the category "Newest Tune Setting"].
Yet the second column, which links to the full discussion (about said tune), uses a random header
chosen by the respondent. The system is great if you’re only searching tune settings; but tends to be
less useful for following Tunes *discussions* if one wishes to stay current with a discussion about any given tune.

(i.e. ~ unless the ‘comment’ is a new tune setting it will not appear under a heading using the {tune} title (any title) of said tune, except when the contributor includes a title in the post.)

End of rant.

Jeremy, I apologise for carrying on so. I love what you’re doing. I intend no disrespect.
It’s just one of those things which has been so frustrating for me.

please, please, please; carry on!

Ben

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Re: New site feature: tune sets

This is fantastic!

Re: New site feature: tune sets

You read my mind! I was just thinking a few a days ago that I wished it was possible to do this. What would be great now is if the midi files for each tune in a set were available on the set page and would autoplay one after the other. I practice along with the midi files, so this would be helpful in putting together new sets. I know it’s not really possible, I’m just wishing into the ether.

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"What would be great now is if the midi files for each tune in a set were available on the set page and would autoplay one after the other… this would be helpful in putting together new sets."

I think it would be a terrible way to learn and to put your sets together. There is no ‘feel’ in those midi’s, and you have to develop a ‘feel’ for putting your sets together. Even if we ignore the robotics of the midi’s, they would all have to be written in the same tempo to do what you are suggesting. Also, When I play a set (often spontaneously), I may change they key of a certain tune to fit.

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Re: New site feature: tune sets

An excellent new feature.
It’s exactly what I’ve been wanting to be able to do with sheet music pdf files for quite a while now so this is a timely innovation. Thank you, Jeremy. :)

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I know they are only suggestions but are you not contributing towards a narrowing of the tradition, standardised sets are just as ‘bad’ as standardised settings. Tune and set diversity is a characteristic of Irish trad.

Mind you, this only influences those who look in here and not the great unwashed who just play away, so I suppose it’s effect overall may be small.

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I think that this doesn’t act to "standardize" sets at all (other than the Copy Set function, which is nice, too). Any tune can be combined with any other tunes in a set; you can even mix tune types. If anything, I think the function encourages creativity in putting together tune sets. If someone’s not the type that plans tune sets ahead of time, perhaps not so useful.

While we’re offering you unsolicited advice, Jeremy, two enhancements come to mind:

Perhaps enable a First Two Bars export or print tool — this would enable the sort of cheet sheet reminders that are more memory aid than sight-reading exercise. "Incipits" is what they’re called, I think.

Being able to link to a list of user generated sets from a tune page would be really cool. I could see it getting bogged down if it listed every instance of someone saving the Tarbolton three, making it hard to sort out the cool strathspey-reel sets done with Tarbolton. To that end, maybe a counter that displays the number of users with a certain set of tunes (this would probably need to deduplicate at the tune level rather than the setting level). That would prevent the Copy This Set behavior from clogging up the lists.

Again, this feature is very promising. Thanks for all the work you do!

Re: New site feature: tune sets

Ben, I agree that being able to see which sets a particular tune is in would be useful. But that’s a feature that will only make sense once sets have been used for a while—there probably isn’t much point in me implementing the feature straight away. But yes, it’s definitely something I plan to do, assuming that people make use of the new sets feature.

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Thanks, Kilcash. I hope the overall effect of standardization is small. I like the way you think about this, too.

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This is super! Thanks so much, Jeremy! The site just keeps getting better and better. Cheers!

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Thanks Jeremy .This is a great help.
For members like me who flit in and out occasionally I and many like me appreciate this resource and the ongoing effort made to assist our learning.Again well done.

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Thanks much Jeremy.
Most of time website new features are crap, but this one it truly useful,
and quite well done. Dude! Its totally tubular and mondo gnarlarific… :-)

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Well, Gobby, thanks for your input but I don’t agree. I don’t take the midis as gospel and I am actually able to add "feel" to them once I have the basic notes down. The midis are there for that, after all…to get the basics of the tune. I don’t imagine anyone who knows anything about the traditional music represented here thinks the midis are the be-all end-all of the tunes. Indeed, they are the very beginning of learning the tune and any competent player knows they must add their own feel to the tunes once the basics are achieved. Being able to place them together in a set one is working on would be helpful in order to hear the basic tunes flow one into the other. This would be especially helpful for intermediate players who are beginning to experiment with putting together their own sets.

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The best beginning point for appreciating a tune is hearing the tune played. MIDI versions serve a limited purpose. Use them however you choose but I recommend listening to tunes being played by a musician for your primary source.

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Re: New site feature: tune sets

Lovely

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@FledglingFiddler …. I wouldn’t argue that midi’s can serve the purpose of helping get the notes down, and being half blind myself, I’ve often used them to analyse some of the more complex tunes I hear played. I see them as ladders which once you’ve climbed you throw away and then get down to the real playing. My scepticism with your idea is that although this is a handy feature of individual midi’s, it would be very unlikely that the compatibility required for a set would be very apparent to the ear if you played a run of selected midi’s (unless they were perhaps all created by the same person, with a set in mind in the first place). What I mean is, you could weave them together if you played them in your own way, but you would be unlikely to hear that quality in two incompatible midi’s. I personally don’t play in sessions so I have the luxury of being versatile and spontaneous with my sets. But I’ve only very recently begun to develop the skill of weaving tunes together (and it’s the best part of my whole education so far) but an essential part of that depends how you I (or somebody else I hear) choose to play the tune. There are so many ways to play any individual tune. I often read people’s advice for sets and after I try it out I think, "No, that doesn’t work for me". That’s because of the way I choose to play the tunes. Alternately, sometimes I will bend my playing of a tune just to fit it in. You can’t do that with pre-set midi’s. All the same, having said that, I still maintain that Jeremy’s new feature is great news, in that it will open up endless ‘suggestions’ to experiment with. My suggestion to you is that you get the individual tunes well into your head first, and then work out for yourself what tune you want to go with another.

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@benhockenberry: "Perhaps enable a First Two Bars export or print tool — this would enable the sort of cheet sheet reminders that are more memory aid than sight-reading exercise."

Yay! Since I’m having fun fiddling with thesession bookmarklets lately, here’s one to do this…

http://pastebin.com/x467yRTC

To use it, just create a new bookmark and copy/paste the code into the "location" field. Then click that bookmark when you’re on someone’s "sets" page, like

https://thesession.org/members/32493/sets

This will generate the incipits for all sets on that page. As an alternative, here’s one that also prints out the header fields so that you can feed it into an ABC converter…

http://pastebin.com/88zcbd85

Re: New site feature: tune sets

Hmm. Not working for me, for some reason.

Tried it in Safari and also in Chrome. I can create a set and add one tune, but that’s as far as I can get. When I try to edit a set, I get a funny little up and down arrow cursor and nothing happens when I click.

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On the editing screen you can drag and drop the items in your set to rearrange them.

That’s really only useful once you have more than one tune in a set though. So the idea is that once you’ve created a set, you go back to the tunes section and find another tune to put in the set.

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Ah, ok, got it working!

Now if I can just find the last tune in the "Sliabh Luachra National Anthem" set!

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I was once lost in a storm at sea, and found my way home thanks to the sweet melodic sounds of the MIDI version of Port Na BPucai from this site, calling me home.


Or was that all just a terrible dream? Cool feature Jeremy, cheerz!

Re: New site feature: tune sets

Brilliant.

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Jeremy, I think you should make provision for deleting sets. I started to explore the function, decided it was unlikely to be useful to me, and I am left with a non-set of one tune, which I would like to remove. Thanks!

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Me too, Stiamh - [ blush ]

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Re: New site feature: tune sets

You can delete sets by going to the set, clicking "edit this set", then dragging out all the tunes. When you click "save changes", the set will be deleted.

Re: Tune sets, edit feature

Yes, a "delete set" option does seem more intuitive, Stiamh & Kenny.

Jeremy, I know you designed the sets to be edited (not deleted) but sometimes it’s useful to take the lot & toss it rather than drag ‘em off one at a time.

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Re: New site feature: tune sets

You work fast, Mr Keith! Delete button found. Thanks.

Mr. Keith

What were you thinking, Stiamh? Brother Keith doesn’t just work fast; he wrote the book ~ https://abookapart.com/products/html5-for-web-designers

Jeremy, you’re in a cool way, man. Cheers for *the work* and don’t forget to play a tune, when you find time, down at the pub (that other thing aka your local session).

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Re: New site feature: tune sets

Thanks Jeremy, this is a wonderful addition!

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Is it just me or has the Midi option disappeared?
P

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Scratch that - I’ve found it!

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The midi files are still there, but now you have to click the "download" button to access the links to the ABC and midi files.

Maybe I should switch around the positions of the "download" and "play this in a set" buttons: it sounds like a lot of people have muscle memory for the button for downloading midi files.

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Could you change the button so it says something like "Download ABC/MIDI"?

It just seems to me that the functionality is hidden away a bit now, so new users, if they just tended to view the sheet music or ABC wouldn’t even know there was an option to hear the midi file.

Good work though - nice addition!
P

Re: New site feature: tune sets

@Sebastian — you’re awesome. This bookmarklet is pretty slick.

Re: New site feature: tune sets

Cheers Ben, glad you have some use for it! :~)

Re: New site feature: tune sets

Great tool, Jeremy!

If the database can track what tunes are usually before or after a tune in a set, then a report could be displayed on the individual tune view showing a list of those tunes that are often played before or after the currently-displayed tune in a set. They could be prioritized in descending order by the sum.

example:
Cooley’s Reel
….
Usually Preceded By:
Maid Behind the Bar (4)
Merry Blacksmith, The (2)
Swinging on a Gate (1)
Star of Munster, The (1)

Usually Followed By:
Merry Blacksmith, The (3)
Maid Behind the Bar (2)
Flowers of Edinburgh (2)

The preceded-by query could look something like this (roughly):

select tunes.title, tunes.id, count(sets.precededbyid) AS tunetotal
from tunes, sets
where sets.followedbyid = 12345
and tunes.id = sets.precededbyid
group by tunes.id
order by count(sets.precededbyid) desc

…and swap a couple column names for the followed-by query.

Thank you for all of the work you do!

-Bryce

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Not that I’m using the tune sets feature, but what you mention would be interesting to see - if a given tune is statistically more common in a certain position in a set, and possibly if preceded by/followed by a certain tune;and also if the player’s instrument affects the sets;how many tunes are played in a set and so on… Sometimes sets are put together without much thought, sometimes it’s magic.

Back in the old IRTRAD-L days, one member posted his research regarding keys and key changes in sets. Some of us had a blast reading that.

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Only discovered this feature this week. Superb!! Thanks!

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I love this. As I currently don’t have a session, it’s gotten me thinking about creating completely new sets.

Two really minor things I’ve thought about:
1. It would be cool if you were notified when a set you originally created was copied, just as you are notified when someone adds one of your tune settings to their tune book. So when someone clicks the copy set button on one of your sets it sends you a notification. As someone who likes to create new sets, it’s a form of feedback. I could see, though, how as everyone copied the "Tarbolton" set you’d be notified a thousand times which would be crazy. Not sure how to set a balance there.
2. Duplicated sets wouldn’t appear in set lists. I know this has been mentioned before, but if two or more users have saved sets containing the exact same tunes in the exact same order, it would be nice to see that set as one entry, perhaps by the person who first created it. That way you could see the different sets a tune is in, not just all the saved copies.
Also what about adding a comments feature on a set’s page? More feedback…

Anyway this is amazing. I’ve created a couple of my own sets so far and I really like the thought process that goes into it. Thanks for everything.

Best,
Daniel