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NO-C-NOTES® Music: Speak the Music!
Never read music again! No-C-Notes® Music is an easy and cost effective way of using music notation. Used by the singer, songwriter, teacher or instrumentalist who wants their sheet music spoken, not written. There is no need to learn clefs, staffs, ledger lines, note heads and flags and other visual sheet music notation as this method reads the actual tone and timing without having to know its placement on paper. Whether used for voice, keyboards, guitar, strings or woodwinds, it gives musicians a common verbal language of communicating their music score to one another. Musicians listen to their sheet music being read verbally in the same manner as you would use an audio book. Readings can be saved any audio method such as MP3, CD or audio cassette.
No-C-Notes Listen to a sample reading of piano JS Bach Minuet No. 1
No-C-Notes Listen to a sample lead sheet reading from Auld Lang Syne
No-C-Notes Listen to a sample reading of violin Frere Jacques
Verbally reading music note by note is nothing new. Many piano teachers of visually challenged students have their own way of naming tones and timing while repeatedly playing a piece for memorization for their students. There is no common audio music reading method being used in the United States and no audio music scores to purchase or borrow. England’s RNIB (Royal national Institute for the Blind) has Talking Scores, and the Netherlands’ SVB has Spoken Music offered through their loan services for the blind. The U.S. National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped has an excellent collection of Braille music scores and large-print sheet music...but nothing to “read”’ verbally the music score as it is written.
By the early 1990’s I was able to start using email and the internet for research on audio reading methods. I joined newsgroups for the handicapped, researching with blind musicians, agencies, schools, music therapists, teachers and parents of blind children. I developed and offered a demo cassette to anyone who wanted to try audio music reading, asking only for their experience with it and suggestions in return. By 1995, I published my first No-C-Notes Instructional Cassette and began accepting transcription orders nationwide.
No-C-Notes is an audio music reading method giving tones and timing shorthand names, and a format for how sheet music should be read. For example, the tone ‘middle C’ is C4, which is the 4th C tone on the piano going from the lowest tone up. This follows midi format naming, naming middle C C4 and giving it the number 60. Another example is the tone A above middle C is A4 no matter what instrument the score is written for. Timing has its own similar sort hand terms.
For the first two decades of No-C-Notes, sheet music has been read on an audio cassette player for the blind, index tones are used to identify the beginning and ending of song phrases and songs, so the musician can always rewind or fast-forward to find their place on the tape. Now, music is read and saved in MP3 format for CD download. This method can be used for reading vocal or any instrument with the exception of percussion.
No-C-Notes is becoming recognized as the standard for audio music score. Publishers - just as with audio books, audio described music score can bring your sheet music to a broader market. Teachers - bring a more accessible method of music reading to your classroom and lessons by using No-C-Notes. Musicians - whether used for your own compositions or reading music score, No-C-Notes provides a common and easy to use language of music notes. Contact for information on licensing, training or support of the No-C-Notes method.
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© 1988-2012 Christina Cotruvo.
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