Forescore Beginner

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Geordie
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Forescore Beginner

Post by Geordie » Thu Nov 04, 2021 1:42 am

Starting this week with Forescore onto a 2020 iPad Pro. My plan is to create three libraries. One for Soul band charts, one for swing band charts and one for play along charts matched to backing tracks for personal use. Tracks vary from YouTube conversations, professional produced downloads/ripped CDs and iReal Pro, of which I have limited experience. Will be using it with Airturn Duo BT200.
Would welcome words of guidance about what do do/not do and any potential pitfalls.
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kingsk1117
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Re: Forescore Beginner

Post by kingsk1117 » Thu Nov 04, 2021 4:40 am

I personally use Tags to categorize the music for the various bands I play in. Also, consider how you will will add files to the iPad. Personally, I prefer going through my iTunes software, but you can also either upload directly from a file storage service like Dropbox or Google Drive, or even take pictures from inside ForScore to add them directly. I prefer scanning the music rather than taking a picture of it with the iPad because the image will be brighter. Set ForScore to change 1/2 page at a time which allows you to be reading the bottom of page 1 while the top of page 2 will become visible.
timothy42b
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Re: Forescore Beginner

Post by timothy42b » Thu Nov 04, 2021 5:53 am

I use MobileSheets but it would seem like all programs must have similar functions.

The way MS works is there are songs - if you are in the songs page you can see every file.

Then there are setlists. You designate which songs go in a setlist. So I have a separate setlist for the church choir, the trombone choir, the community band, the practice etudes, the sightreading, the solos, etc. If I have a gig then I create a setlist for that, and pick which pieces from the songlist go in it. Songs can be in multiple setlists. It's not like they are in separate folders.

I've tried various ways of loading files. Currently I scan with the iPhone into Google Drive, then use the Import from Google Drive function. But if I find a PDF I want in a browser I just download it. I have also scanned with a flatbed printer/scanner, and that gives good quality, but my printer is old and only scans to JPG, so I have to convert.
afugate
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Re: Forescore Beginner

Post by afugate » Thu Nov 04, 2021 6:15 am

Here are a few tips..
Libraries: I use libraries to separate music for the different bands I'm in. Searches are restricted to the current library, which makes it helpful if a tune is called up on a gig. Note: Setlists are also tied to libraries.

Need a tune to appear in multiple libraries? No problem. Just tap the title at the top when the chart is pulled up. That allows you to change all the chart properties including assigning it to setlists and libraries. Speaking of this, I keep a separate setlist called practice. When I'm in a rehearsal and run across something that needs extra work, I just tap the chart title, switch to the setlists view, and tap to add the tune to my practice list.

Cropping: I routinely use Forscore's cropping feature. It does both cropping and deskewing to fix pages where the scan isn't quite straight.

Links: I love links - use them for DS Al Coda. Touch the link and you're taken to the corresponding place in the tune where a circle flashes to show you immediately where to look. These are also very handy when you're playing in pit and need to jump around in the book. Pit work is also where indexes are handy.

Editing: I use red to indicate courtesy accidentals and changes requested by the music director or the section leader. I use black to clarify or overwrite something the composer wrote that is hard to read. You can change the size of symbols to match what's on the page.

Editing 2: Erase doesn't erase what's already on the page. It erases what you've added to the page. I use white lines to draw over stuff on the page. If I need to wipe out large sections of a page I just change the line size to max width.

Half Page Turns: You aren't just limited to half pages. The little tab on the far right allows you to adjust where the split happens. Forscore will remember this the next time you pull up the chart.

Enjoy Forescore! I know I do.

--Andy in OKC
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Geordie
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Re: Forescore Beginner

Post by Geordie » Fri Nov 05, 2021 7:26 am

Really helpful comments that will guide me. Thank you.
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Geordie
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Re: Forescore Beginner

Post by Geordie » Sun Nov 07, 2021 5:14 pm

Well, have created my first library by scanning and then made a set list. Hoping to trial this at a soul band rehearsal on Wednesday and then a show on Friday.
During scanning I unknowingly made one large file with all my charts. Didn’t want to tag within this, so started again, saving and naming each chart separately. A little laborious but a good learning experience. Will try to work out how to import PDFs from my laptop into forscore on the iPad next time.
For the benefit of fellow newbies I’m pointing out that I have disabled the screen lock timer as well as the display function on the iPad that adjusts to ambient light. Otherwise the light dimmed when the screen was in a dark environment. Didn’t want it to dim when stage lighting was low.
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afugate
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Re: Forescore Beginner

Post by afugate » Sun Nov 07, 2021 5:47 pm

Geordie wrote:
Sun Nov 07, 2021 5:14 pm
During scanning I unknowingly made one large file with all my charts. Didn’t want to tag within this, so started again, saving and naming each chart separately.
FYI, you can use ForScore's rearrange feature to break these apart into individual PDFs.

--Andy in OKC
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hwlentz
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Re: Forescore Beginner

Post by hwlentz » Sun Nov 07, 2021 8:01 pm


FYI, you can use ForScore's rearrange feature to break these apart into individual PDFs.

--Andy in OKC
I found this to be the easiest way to scan my 250 chart big band book. I would lay out as many charts as I could around the dining table and kitchen island and just walk down the line scanning.

Bill
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Geordie
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Re: Forescore Beginner

Post by Geordie » Mon Nov 08, 2021 12:20 am

afugate wrote:
Sun Nov 07, 2021 5:47 pm
Geordie wrote:
Sun Nov 07, 2021 5:14 pm
Snip

FYI, you can use ForScore's rearrange feature to break these apart into individual PDFs.

--Andy in OKC
Interesting and noted for future use when scan my swing band charts. Thank you.
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afugate
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Re: Forescore Beginner

Post by afugate » Mon Nov 08, 2021 6:23 am

Geordie wrote:
Mon Nov 08, 2021 12:20 am
Interesting and noted for future use when scan my swing band charts. Thank you.
You're welcome. I will note the process is a little cumbersome, but it works.

If I have more than a few pages, I find it easier to break them apart on my Mac, using the preview tool. Select pages in thumbnail view - Ctrl-C to copy, Ctrl-N to create new PDF with just those pages. I assume similar for windows PCs.

--Andy in OKC
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Geordie
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Re: Forescore Beginner

Post by Geordie » Mon Nov 08, 2021 4:59 pm

I guess one of my next steps on this learning journey is to get my Windows laptop, where I produce my scores, to talk to the iPad directly, so there is no need to scan.
Ran through the set list at home today and found the foot pedal page turner a revelation. At first I kept putting the horn down to set up a new chart 😂. Seeing pages turn for a new chart when still holding the horn was strange, but fun and very smooth.
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Geordie
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Re: Forescore Beginner

Post by Geordie » Wed Nov 10, 2021 5:28 am

Using Airturn duo pedal. Is it worth downloading the Airturn app? Keen to keep things simple.
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afugate
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Re: Forescore Beginner

Post by afugate » Wed Nov 10, 2021 5:41 am

Geordie wrote:
Wed Nov 10, 2021 5:28 am
Using Airturn duo pedal. Is it worth downloading the Airturn app? Keen to keep things simple.
I've had my Airturn for about 3 years. Didn't know they had an app. So, I'd safely say you can get by without it.

However, it does look like you can do firmware updates with it.

--Andy in OKC
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Geordie
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Re: Forescore Beginner

Post by Geordie » Wed Nov 10, 2021 6:49 am

Thanks Andy. In line with my ‘keep it simple’ approach I’ll wait and see if any significant firmware updates are announced.
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Geordie
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Re: Forescore Beginner

Post by Geordie » Fri Nov 12, 2021 8:37 am

afugate wrote:
Thu Nov 04, 2021 6:15 am
Here are a few tips..
Libraries: I use libraries to separate music for the different bands I'm in. Searches are restricted to the current library, which makes it helpful if a tune is called up on a gig. Note: Setlists are also tied to libraries.

Need a tune to appear in multiple libraries? No problem. Just tap the title at the top when the chart is pulled up. That allows you to change all the chart properties including assigning it to setlists and libraries. Speaking of this, I keep a separate setlist called practice. When I'm in a rehearsal and run across something that needs extra work, I just tap the chart title, switch to the setlists view, and tap to add the tune to my practice list.

Cropping: I routinely use Forscore's cropping feature. It does both cropping and deskewing to fix pages where the scan isn't quite straight.

Links: I love links - use them for DS Al Coda. Touch the link and you're taken to the corresponding place in the tune where a circle flashes to show you immediately where to look. These are also very handy when you're playing in pit and need to jump around in the book. Pit work is also where indexes are handy.

Editing: I use red to indicate courtesy accidentals and changes requested by the music director or the section leader. I use black to clarify or overwrite something the composer wrote that is hard to read. You can change the size of symbols to match what's on the page.

Editing 2: Erase doesn't erase what's already on the page. It erases what you've added to the page. I use white lines to draw over stuff on the page. If I need to wipe out large sections of a page I just change the line size to max width.

Half Page Turns: You aren't just limited to half pages. The little tab on the far right allows you to adjust where the split happens. Forscore will remember this the next time you pull up the chart.

Enjoy Forescore! I know I do.

--Andy in OKC
Am I right in thinking half page turns only works in landscape mode?
I started using a cheap ‘apple’ type pen/stylus to mark a chart before tonight’s first gig on this new set up. Really easy and convenient. Having access to a range of colors in the app is a big bonus when marking up.
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afugate
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Re: Forescore Beginner

Post by afugate » Fri Nov 12, 2021 9:07 am

Geordie wrote:
Fri Nov 12, 2021 8:37 am
afugate wrote:
Thu Nov 04, 2021 6:15 am
Half Page Turns: You aren't just limited to half pages. The little tab on the far right allows you to adjust where the split happens. Forscore will remember this the next time you pull up the chart.
--Andy in OKC
Am I right in thinking half page turns only works in landscape mode?
Half page turns work just fine (maybe even better) in portrait mode. My default practice is to use half page turns in portrait mode and just move the slider to find the best "split" location for the next page, taking into account things like helpful multimeasure rests.
Geordie wrote:
Fri Nov 12, 2021 8:37 am
I started using a cheap ‘apple’ type pen/stylus to mark a chart before tonight’s first gig on this new set up. Really easy and convenient. Having access to a range of colors in the app is a big bonus when marking up.
I agree 100% regarding colors. BTW, you can also change the opacity for your markings. I use a yellow pen set at half transparency just like I would a highlighter on printed copies.

I used to carry an Apple pencil, but I find my accuracy is good enough with just a finger - so the pencil stays home.

One additional tip - the top annotation bar can be moved. The little lines in the corners allow you to tap-and-drag the bar up and down the page. That allows you to make annotations at the very top of a page.

--Andy in OKC
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Geordie
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Re: Forescore Beginner

Post by Geordie » Fri Nov 12, 2021 5:26 pm

Thanks Andy, really helpful again.
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afugate
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Re: Forescore Beginner

Post by afugate » Sat Nov 13, 2021 7:44 am

Geordie wrote:
Fri Nov 12, 2021 5:26 pm
Thanks Andy, really helpful again.
You're welcome. :)
--Andy in OKC
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Geordie
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Re: Forescore Beginner

Post by Geordie » Wed Nov 24, 2021 8:06 am

Up and running now, couple of shows and rehearsals. Very glad I made the move. In dark/low light situations sometimes the pedal cannot be seen. I try to remember location of the L - R pedals but want to reduce the risk of, literally, ‘working in the dark’. Anyone successfully dealt with this issue?
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BGuttman
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Re: Forescore Beginner

Post by BGuttman » Wed Nov 24, 2021 8:32 am

Geordie wrote:
Wed Nov 24, 2021 8:06 am
Up and running now, couple of shows and rehearsals. Very glad I made the move. In dark/low light situations sometimes the pedal cannot be seen. I try to remember location of the L - R pedals but want to reduce the risk of, literally, ‘working in the dark’. Anyone successfully dealt with this issue?
Fluorescent tape should help (it glows in the dark). Or, see if you can attach a small book light to the stand column pointing down.

Big problem is total blackouts. Your stand glowing with the rest of the theater in darkness will make the Director see red.
Bruce Guttman
Merrimack Valley Philharmonic Orchestra
"Almost Professional"
afugate
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Re: Forescore Beginner

Post by afugate » Thu Nov 25, 2021 5:48 am

BGuttman wrote:
Wed Nov 24, 2021 8:32 am
Big problem is total blackouts. Your stand glowing with the rest of the theater in darkness will make the Director see red.
Perhaps hang a thick piece of felt behind your tablet and then pull it over the tablet whenever you need to blackout? Or just hit the OFF button?

--Andy in OKC
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Geordie
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Re: Forescore Beginner

Post by Geordie » Thu Nov 25, 2021 6:46 am

Perhaps hang a thick piece of felt behind your tablet and then pull it over the tablet whenever you need to blackout? Or just hit the OFF button?

--Andy in OKC
[/quote]

The screen isn’t an issue, it’s accurately finding the right and left pedals in the dark/dim light.
Luminous tape or glow paint that works on plastic seems the way to go. Thanks Andy and everyone for the advice.
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