Chord Symbols and Cut time: an observation

I’ve spent the past few days copying across around 40 songs, the vast majority of which were in cut time. The songs all had chord symbols, almost all of which were above either quarter, half or whole notes (I think just a couple were above eighth-notes).

The songs in 4/4 time were simple for Chord Entry, I just had to use the indent or space bar to shift position. Cut time was different - those keys only enabled access to notes on the beat; quarter notes either side of the beat could only be accessed by using the arrows. That made it a three key process and one that inevitably required hitting the arrow keys twice (as above, eighth-notes were rarely used). All in all, more fiddly.

I suspect it was done this way by design - the thinking being that chords generally appear on the beat. Bearing in mind that is a generalisation, I think that’s true of 4/4 (and 3/4) - but it’s not true of cut time when there were many (hundreds) of examples of chords appearing off the beat.

Personally, I found myself wondering whether the space bar should progress Chord Entry to the next beat, or the next quarter note. In cut time, the latter approach would certainly make entry easier.


You should be able to use the right arrow key to get to the next position according to the grid setting, and not have to use any other key for navigation in those instances where you want to add intermediary chords. In other words, Shift-Q “D7”, right arrow key, “A”, etc. You can freely use arrow key, spacebar, tab (for next measure) as you wish, which will each give you increasing distances. The key point is to set the grid for the most used or desired “distance” to avoid having multiple right arrow key presses.

Alternatively, you could input your music and chords in 4/4, then switch to Cut time.

I do see your point about Cut Time - perhaps an optional setting that would enable it to “pretend” that it is in 4/4 for Chord Entry and Dynamics would be helpful. :slight_smile:

One option is to input in 4/4 then change the time signature after.

Thanks Musicmaven and Steve - much appreciated.

The 4/4 restated after Chord Entry as cut time seems to work perfectly. I should have asked the question earlier!!