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Thread: Transposing Chords and player for Bb trumpet

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2016

    Default Transposing Chords and player for Bb trumpet

    I've seen a couple of posts about this but I'm still very confused. I have a Bb trumpet part with chord changes already transposed. These are the chords I want to enter in iRealpro so I can play along, but I can't figure out how to tell the app that they're Bb chords and they should be played accordingly (as if the rhythm section had their own transposed chords that would match mine).

    I've tried setting the key to Bb in the song. But then the chords play as written, ie a tone above me (playing in C when I'm playing in Bb). I've tried using the transposition option for wind instruments, but then all the chords changed according to the new key (what was an E chord is now displayed as an F# chord) and it became really confusing, not to mention I still didn't manage to make it play the way I wanted.

    I checked the help and the tutorials, but still cannot figure it out. Any help with this would be much appreciated. I cannot use the app at all otherwise. Thank you.

  2. #2


    Transposing functions can be confusing.
    The global transpose (you have yours set to Bb) transposes the displayed chords of ALL your charts for your instrument while the player continues to play the midi track in the concert key.

    As I understand it, the Editor writes and thinks only in the default concert key. (As it is set in the editor)

    You have two options:
    1. You can edit/write charts in the concert key for that chart as it is set in the editor.
    Then have the transposing instrument feature work it's magic on your chart's display.
    2. If you find it easier to "think" in your instrument's (transposed) key. You can write your song, and set the default (concert) key in the editor to "your" key (as your displayed chords appear) then select DONE, closing the info screen. Next, open the info-screen again and using the "set and transpose" choice, change the chart's default key (and chords) to the desired concert-key. Save your song. Then let the transposing instrument feature readjust the displayed chart for your instrument's key while the player plays in the concert key.

    Notice that at no time have we used the song-transpose function which transposes just that one chart (both display and playback) to a different key from its default key (which remains)

    If you are not confused enough yet, here's more:


    Last edited by pdxdjazz; 10-21-2016 at 02:16 PM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2016


    Thanks for the reply. I must be doing something wrong, though, because although I did try to follow your instructions, I still can't get the player to play in the right key. I've set the default key in the editor to Bb, then I entered the chords for my song as they are displayed in my part (ie Bb trumpet). Finally, I reset the default key to C. All the chords are now "up" 1 tone, which makes sense when you think about it, but it's not at all the right chords for my accompaniment. They should really be "down" one whole tone to match my trumpet. Maybe I'll have to bite the bullet and transpose all the chords before putting them in the editor. That's a shame...

  4. #4


    Sounds like the song you are entering the chords for (set to Bb) may not be in Bb. (Key signature two-flats)

    As I understand it, your Bb instrument sounds notes that are a whole step lower in pitch than the displayed notes on the page. In order to play in "concert-pitch" the notes you read need to be "up" a step from concert.

    Say the C concert realbook key for a tune is G, (one sharp).
    Your Bb realbook displays the chart in A, (three sharps) so your notes will actually sound in G-concert.

    When entering the changes for that tune from your Bb book, you would initially set the key to A, enter the chords as displayed in your Bb book and then (in the Editor) set and transpose the chart to G (the desired concert-pitch key).

    When you use the global transpose feature set for your Bb instrument, the chart would display in A and play in G.

    Post your chart so we can see.

    Read this:

    Note, I edited my earlier post. See if the instructions makes more sense to you now

    Last edited by pdxdjazz; 10-21-2016 at 02:34 PM.


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