App for transcribing music?

Both of my primary school daughters are taking piano lessons, and they love to compose their own songs. And some of them are really not bad. :grin:

In addition to making video recordings of these pieces, I would like to save them for posterity. Are there any apps out there that can ‘listen’ to a musical piece and then produce the score with all the correct notes that I can then print out? My kids have been using Simply Piano, which has the ability to identify the notes that they are playing, so it seems to me that the technology must be there.

Can anyone recommend an app or some software that can do the trick?

Have a look at this.
Sounds like it’ll do what you want,
Presumably you have a midi (piano) keyboard as you’re using Simply Piano.
NB this will not produce a score from previously recorded audio, you need to play
the notes into it - or input a previously recorded midi file.

I suggest you and/or your daughters try learning to write music yourselves (paper and pencil). If they’re reading sheet music, writing it is just a few steps away, and the doubts they deal with along the way will help to consolidate their interpretative skills. I’ve met a lot of musicians, some of them sight-readers, who think it’s very hard to learn to write music, and the truth is that it’s not.

Also, many notation programs (for writing sheet music with a computer) have a playback function that allows you hear what you’ve written. Even with some very small details, it will be obvious if something’s been written incorrectly. The disadvantage there is having to learn to use the program, although it’s not all that hard and is a very handy skill if you want to share sharp-looking scores.

Another option: it’d cost you maybe $10-20 on to pay someone to transcribe the song for you.

thanks. Actually my daughters’ piano teacher used MuseScore to transpose a song that my youngest wrote to play at the online memorial for her grandfather who died from COVID. (She’s only 8 and it was very touching)

I thought MuseScore was the solution but then learned that MuseScore didn’t input the sound, but her teacher actually looked at my daughter’s hands and entered each note manually herself. I was hoping for something more automated.

We have a real upright piano, not a midi keyboard. SimplyPiano is able to do ambient note recognition.

that’s a good point. But the problem is that I myself don’t play piano (only trumpet) and it would be really difficult for me to oversee the process. I am hopeless with the F staff and even the notes in the G staff are intuitively a different key than I am used to. :roll_eyes:

MuseScore will open MIDI files, but note that the raw results may not be particularly pretty, depending on the input file, and you will still have to mess with it yourself.

Programs like “Audacity”, “Sonic Visualizer”, and others offer plugins that operate on audio clips enabling you to see what pitch(es) is/are present at any given time, but that is still pretty far from automatic notation or a substitute for ear training.

The problem with converting real-time performance sounds to sheet music is phrasing. Musicians don’t play like player pianos play, or like quantized digital loop files play — they slow down to be expressive here, pick up speed in this section, exaggerate the syncopation here… the software tends to not understand this, and either it handles it in a technically correct but jaw-droppingly awful rendition where your measure starts off with a dotted 64th-note tied to a half note (and so forth) that no one can read , OR it creates a squared-off approximation of what was played, attempting to find the nearest beat and snap to it, but in doing so makes some assumptions about where “the nearest beat” actually lies — oh, you were doing 3/4 measures with an underlying 12-beat? So sorry, the software thinks in terms of 4/4 and within that 8/4 or 16/4, so the end result actually isn’t what you played.

Having said that, I’ll give MuseScore high points for successful conversion of MIDI files — not perfect, but better than most competing packages, including Sibelius. So a composer who has a MIDI system that lets them drag notes and stretch durations (which is infinitely more intuitive than writing notes on a damn staff) can output via MuseScore and then do any necessary fine editing post facto.