Can Cubase 4's Score window tell me the Key of my music?

Discussion in 'Production' started by parsons19, Dec 3, 2011.

  1. parsons19

    parsons19 Active Member

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    Howdy yall,

    Have been trying to get my theory a little bit better. I was wanting to come up with a melody for a new chord progression but was having trouble just making it all up :lol:

    So, I wanted to find out the key of the chord progression. I found the Score option in Cubase and have done a bit of internet searching and it seems you can only set the key yourself. Is there any way at all that Cubase can work out the key for me?

    I know that No Sharps or Flats means C major or A Minor. One sharp is G major or E minor. etc etc.

    I recorded the Key of G major in there and there are still no sharps or flats being displayed after the clef at all...

    Is there an option I am missing so the score can work out what key I am working in?

    Hope that makes sense :)

    Jordan
     
  2. Mr Fletch

    Mr Fletch aka KRONIX

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    You should instantly know what key "your" music is in because you have written it.

    So if you start a bassline off on say D1, then that is classed as your root note, and effectively what key your track will be in. make sure you pitch all your drums and percussions to this note, and then from there you can move to your melodies, again starting off on the root note. I have no idea when it comes to music theory, what I have just explained is basically everything I know, but I do know to always work within the root note for the track, that way everything sounds right.
     
  3. parsons19

    parsons19 Active Member

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    It's honestly that simple? In that case I am in the key of E Minor :)

    Made myself look a little stupid there :lol: Once again Fletch, thanks for the help!
     
  4. Mr Fletch

    Mr Fletch aka KRONIX

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    Pretty much, I'm sure someone around here with more theory knowledge than me can explain it in better depth, but thats the basics.

    I tend to work mainly in D minor. BUT like I said, always pitch your drum work to the same key too, cant stress enough how important this is to gel the whole track together. Most sample pack drum hits are set in the key of C, so when writing drums I transpose up 2 semitones to put them in the key of D
     
  5. Eternaloptimist

    Eternaloptimist Active Member

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    sorry to hijak,but how do you picth drums?
    how do you know what key they are in?
    i usually work with audio.
    thanks
     
  6. Mr Fletch

    Mr Fletch aka KRONIX

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    Well from my experience, most sample pack drums are set in the key of C unless stated otherwise.

    Pitching them really depends on what DAW you use I guess. When I used FL I used to write the drums in the piano roll and just put them on the correct key of said piano roll. Now I use Ableton and I write all my drums using the drum rack. So once I have my pattern set how I want it, I'll go into each individual instrument (Kick, snares, hats etc) and on the sample section of the drum rack there is a transpose wheel, where I'll transpose up or down to the correct key. Remember, theres 12 keys in an octave, so 12 semitones is one octave, if the sample is set in C and I want it in D I go up 2 semitones, if I only went up one it would be sitting on the black C key.
     
  7. Eternaloptimist

    Eternaloptimist Active Member

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    big ups mr fletch
    i use logic 8 and i have an idea on how to transpose.
    will try it tonight.
    so do you have to pitch everything?like bongo,hi hats (alll percussion)?
     
  8. parsons19

    parsons19 Active Member

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    Hey mate,

    I think Logic and Cubase are quite similar? They are from my experience :p

    If doing percussion in audio (like me) just select all the percussion clips and do a pitch shift to suit your key :)

    Hope that gives you a little bit more info
     
  9. Mr Fletch

    Mr Fletch aka KRONIX

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    Yes mate, pitch everything. I know it sounds like a tedious job, but it's well worth doing. Try it out by writing a track with the drums in their standard key, then upon completion, pitch all the drums then listen again. It's a very subtle change, but it really does make a difference!
     
  10. Eternaloptimist

    Eternaloptimist Active Member

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    wicked mate
    just thought it didnt matter with hi hats coz of the high frequencies.shot
     
  11. Mr Fletch

    Mr Fletch aka KRONIX

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    nah it notices, especially if you pitch everything but the hats.

    Every element of the track needs to be linked to the root note of the track
     
  12. parsons19

    parsons19 Active Member

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    Thats actually some reallt good info there man. Never have I pitched my drums before. Cheers Fletch! :)
     
  13. Mr Fletch

    Mr Fletch aka KRONIX

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    I never used to either. But once I realised how much of a difference it makes I wondered how I'd gone so long not knowing this fundamental knowledge
     
  14. lostnthesound

    lostnthesound Burns Easily in the Sun

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    This. Pitching is underrated and is extremely important, especially when it comes to your key percussion elements like your snares. If you're using Logic, you can do this directly within the EXS24 or your can simply add a pitch plugin, I believe logic's even has an option for drums.

    Cheers.
     
  15. KODIN.

    KODIN. New Member

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    you can easily find root keys of drum hits and other samples using this chart Frequency Chart (Equal Temperament).gif and spectrum analyzer just look for loudest par of the sample and that is usually root key
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2011
  16. Eternaloptimist

    Eternaloptimist Active Member

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    KODIN those tracks sound big!
     
  17. KODIN.

    KODIN. New Member

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    tnx man :)
     
  18. sam the dnb man

    sam the dnb man Variation

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    That isn't always the case.
    I've done tracks in D minor but the first note was A which is the 5th in the Dmin chord.

    Check out the circle of fifths which can help work out what key the track is in.

    Also the first, fourth and fifth chords of each key signature are commonly used in music.
     
  19. Mr Fletch

    Mr Fletch aka KRONIX

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    Thanks for the correction. I'm not that clued up on Theory / scales / progressions etc, so I tend to only work the way I have explained. I know what I'm doing that way lol ;)

    I really should take a few month's away from production and actually learn some theory, I know it will benefit me in the long run, I just find that sort of thing a little boring!
     
  20. d-low

    d-low I know you got soul

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    yeah i mean technically it comes down to how many sharps and flats are in your music, but its a lot easier to guess rather than add these up - usually just the key you have most often throughout the tune