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I’m having a bit of trouble with loading third party MIDI files into three different pieces of software I have – Noteworthy Composer, Sibelius and Band in a Box.

When I load the MIDI in, Noteworthy and BIAB show on the notation as a complete jumble and it’s hard to isolate the lead line, to produce a lead sheet to transpose for sax. Sibelius assigns everything to a full score but drums are at the top and the lead line is at the bottom or it even assigns a parts of the same melody line to two separate staffs. Is this due to the voices assigned to each channel by the creator of the MIDI? Do any of these three programs have anything to help me out and how do you guys deal with the problem, since it can’t be just me!
 

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I could try it in Rosegarden if you send me a link to one of the files.
Unless, of course, that is in violation of any copyrights.


BTW - Rosegarden is free and requires Linux to run.
http://www.rosegardenmusic.com/
 

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A lot depends on the midi file creator.If they follow standard GM conventions, and use good quantization, you will generally get something you can work with. I use Sibelius, and have had good success with many (but not all) midi file imports. You usually need to re-arrange the order of the instruments, combine the percussion into one stave, change the bari sax from bass to treble clef, etc. Swing figures are difficult, since the software translates it literally. Some of the worst examples out there have variable time signatures - downbeat of 1 never is on 1 - some measures only have 3.5 beats, etc. Most software also has problems with glisses & scoops - it will notate it in strange combinations of 32nd and 64th notes.
 

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Since you have Sibelius, you might try the excellent forum on their website.
 

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Sounds like the Midi file from Hell.

First, to arrange staves in the correct order go to: Layout>Instruments and Staves. A menu box will come up and on the right hand side there is a white box entitled “Staves in Score.” Click on the Stave you want to move. Then to the left of that section you will see “Move” in the middle and two click-on, one for UP and one for DOWN. Move the Stave up and down till your hearts content until you get the staves in the score the way you want.

Second, for all of that jumble in the Staves. Go to: Edit>Filter. When you hit filter another menu box will appear. It’s got a lot on it. Whatever you choose by clicking will be highlighted. Experiment with what Sibelius highlights. All bets are off because it’s a Midi file and it’s wasn’t inputted with Sibelius. If you don’t like what is highlighted, just click the score to remove the highlighting and keep experimenting. Once your highlighting appears managable you can transfer the notes onto a new stave for editing.

It’s a good idea to create additional staves to place these notes in and then you can do some minor editing once the beast is dissected.

If you choose the top note on a given stave, and cut and paste it to a new stave, then the second line of notes then become the top line.

This might take some time, depending on how the midi files was recorded. Personally, I don’t tell anyone I know how to do this. People just don’t understand how convoluted these scores can look. It’s a labor of love – all other causes – forget it..

Hope this helps.
 
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