Theory

by | Sep 4, 2018

https://pinkfrog.co.za/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/scales-1.pdfttp://pinkfrog.co.za/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/scales.pdfWhy is Transposing Important

Transposing a song is simply changing the key of a song or a part of music.

There are four primary reasons to transpose music.

  1. To play in a key that is easier for another musician.  Often, this is a singer or a wind instrument.    
  2. To make a song easier to play.  You man want to transpose a song to a key that is easier to play on the guitar.
  3. It sounds better in another key.  This is subjective, but you may like the song at a higher pitch, or you may not like how your guitar rings on open strings.
  4. To reuse music.  You may have a song that is perfect for a lick that you learned, but the lick was written in a different key.

Steps to Transposing a Song

Transposing is easy to do.  That doesn’t mean it’s always easy to play.  When you transpose, your fingerings may be harder to play.  Regardless, transposing the song is the first step.  Follow these steps to do it easily.

  1. Determine the key of the song.
  2. Determine the new key.
  3. Determine the interval between the keys.
  4. Shift the chords and notes by the interval.

Example (Change from Key of G to the Key of A)

  1. Determine the key: key of G
  2. Determine the new key: key of A
  3. Determine the interval between the two keys: G to A is +2 semitones
  4. Shift every note and chord by the interval difference found in Step 3.
    1. G +2 semitones becomes A
    2. C +2 semitones becomes D
    3. Em +2 semitones becomes F#m

Example (Change from Key of B to the Key of A)

  1. Determine the key: key of B
  2. Determine the new key: key of A
  3. Determine the interval between the two keys: A to B is -2 semitones
  4. Shift every note and chord by the interval difference found in Step 3.
    1. B -2 semitones becomes A
    2. F# -2 semitones becomes E
    3. G#m -2 semitones becomes F#m