Transcribe your favorite songs with the help of the TRANSPOSER! (Note! Ses also the video tutorial!)
The Transposer is our own invention which makes it possible for anyone to transcribe songs from any songbook to zitheroo song sheets – without needing to know anything about music notation! It is used by teachers, nurses, and even works well with children aged 10 and up.
Instructions for the Transposer are on the back of it, and may also be found farther down this page. It does not matter what key the song is in – just adjust the Transposer to the same number of sharps (#) or flats (b) at the beginning of each line of music. However, if additional sharps or flats occur in the middle of the song, this means that it goes outside of a normal scale and will not sound right at that point.
Working in pairs is a good idea, one holding the Transposer and checking the notes in the song book, the other marking balls/notes on an empty model song sheet (comes with each zitheroo and may be printed out as a pdf here from this website, see left side panel). You can make copies of the model song sheet so you can transcribe more songs.
- The Transposer has 2 possible positions for some keys. If you notice that the song goes too high or low, choose the other position. If both are possible, choose the one which allows you to play on the lower strings since you have more room there.
- You can ignore rests, barlines, and rhythmic values (long, short) if you wish. If there are “ties” (2 of the same note next to each other with an arched slur between them), just put one ball/note instead of 2 since they form just one long note.
- If you want to add chords, remember that any song in a major key will come out in C-major. This means you will likely need C, F and G7 chords, and perhaps Am, Dm. Transposing chords can be easy – ask a musician friend if you have questions.
First adjust the transposer to the right key:
Hold the Transposer to the left of the first note in the song and follow the corresponding line or space leftwards until you find its number on the Transposer. Then write a ball/note on the line with that number on the model song sheet (there are lines numbered 1-15 which represent zitheroo strings):
Repeat this procedure for the next note in the song, finding the string number on the Transposer (in this case number 5):
With a little practice you will get the hang of it!
(instructions given on the back of the Transposer)
HOW TO WRITE OUT SONGS for the ZITHEROO from REGULAR NOTATION
1. Choose a song (It may have any number or sharps (#) or flats (b) at the beginning of each line of music, but will only sound right if there are no sharps or flats in the middle of the song since the zitheroo lacks the black keys of the piano.)
2. Set the Transposer for the number of sharps or flats in the key of the song (may be seen at the beginning of each line).
3. Hold the Transposer just to the left of the first note of the tune
so that the 5 lines of music match the lines of the Transposer.
4. Look to see which string (1-15) on the zitheroo corresponds to the first note of the song
(Follow the line or space toward the left from the note to the string number on the Transposer).
5. Draw a ball (or note) on an empty zitheroo sheet music form (comes with the zitheroo) on the appropriate line. Draw the first ball far to the left so that the other notes will fit better.
6. Do the same thing for the next note and draw a ball for it. You may but do not need to pay attention to rests, measures, or different sorts of notes (short/long).
7. Note! If there are “ties” (2 notes beside each other on the same note line with a curved line linking them), draw just 1 ball instead of 2 since they form one longer note, not 2 separate ones.
8. Connect all the balls with a line when you are done.
Add the words to the song so you can sing and play.
Play and enjoy!