Monday, January 2, 2012

Common Chord, LLC Music Notation and Transcription

I am back after a brief break from posting.  You know...the holidays and stuff.  But I did want to give a shout out to a great professional music transcriber that I found online.  Her name is Tracy Jane Comer and her music notation and transcription services are under the name of Common Chord, LLC.

I still have a long, long way to go with learning music but I've gotten fairly adept at sight reading tablature.  Playing by ear, not so much.  So, when I recently came upon a whole new genre of music called mento via recordings by The Jolly Boys and The Blue Glaze Mento Band, I was itching to play some of these great Jamaican folk songs on my tenor banjo, an instrument that is frequently used in this type of music.  The only problem is it's next to impossible to find notation for mento songs online.  Plus, I wanted to be able to play along in key with the soloists on the recordings.  Any normal folk musician worth his salt would take the time and plug away until figuring it out by ear.  I, however, am still lacking that skill - and crave instant gratification - so I poked around online for music transcribers and happened upon Common Chord!

Tracy Jane Comer - Common Chord
I contacted Tracy with what I had in mind and sent her a YouTube link to a typical Mento song.  She was quick to respond and eager to help.  She quoted me an extremely reasonable rate which I was very happy with so I compiled a CD and got it out to her.  Tracy notified me when the CD arrived and then just a few days later she already had a few songs ready for me!  She transcribes in both sheet music notation and - in my case - mandolin tablature (AKA "Irish" tenor banjo tablature) and sends me the pdfs.

In addition, she has offered to move songs to other keys or to a higher or lower octave at no additional charge.  Fortunately my passable understanding of music theory allows me to do this on my own and, in fact, I find it fun to work my brain that way so I didn't need help in that area...I just needed help getting the melodies and chord changes to begin with!  Oddly, once I am given the tab and chords something clicks and I am able to instantly play these tunes and even improvise a little bit over the notes and changes.  I hope to get much better at this in 2012!

Tracy accepts small and large projects in any style of music and produces easy to read scores and/or tab with a quick turnaround time. (Including altered tunings and capos).  She can work from audio or video - you can either send her the music electronically or mail out an actual CD or DVD.  She makes it very easy and once you start working with her you will want to hire her for all of your transcription needs.  I know I will!


  1. Very informative,thanks for sharing..keep it up and good luck!

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