Music Composition For Dummies
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If you're composing music for more than one instrument, you know that writing for transposing instruments can get confusing. The following list offers some easy ways to approach each kind:

  • E flat instruments: Find the relative minor, make it major, and then write in that key. Notes are therefore moved up a sixth, or down a minor third.

  • F instruments: Just add one sharp or subtract a flat from the key signature and write the music in the resulting key. Therefore, notation is moved up one perfect fifth from where originally written.

  • B flat instruments: Move everything up one whole tone. E flat becomes F, F becomes G, and so on.

About This Article

This article is from the book:

About the book authors:

Scott Jarrett has been a theatrical music director and has taught recording labs, voice, guitar, music theory, and composition. He has worked with artists from Willie Nelson to Dave Grusin.

Holly Day has created work for over 3,000 international publications including Guitar One Magazine, Music Alive!, and Brutarian Magazine. She is also the co-author of Music Theory For Dummies.

Michael Pilhofer, MM, holds a Master's in Music Education with a Jazz Emphasis from the Eastman School of Music, and a Bachelor of Music degree in Jazz Performance from the University of Miami.

Holly Day's work has appeared in Guitar One Magazine, Music Alive!, culturefront Magazine, and Brutarian Magazine.

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