Drum Kit Groove Notation Using Voices

Hey Y’all. Thinking about switching from Sibelius which I’ve been using for years. Dorico seems to have a lot of potential. I’ve also noticed Sibelius going downhill. I’m a drum set educator and make all of my own sheets. I like using “layers” in Sibelius to create a beat. I do the hands in one layer and the feet in a second layer so the bass drum rhythms are independent from the snare and hi hats. This is how most drum grooves are written. In Dorico I find they call layers “voices” – is this correct? If so, I can’t figure out how to write out a standard drum groove like I described earlier. If keeps making the hi hat one voice, and then the kick and snare a 2nd voice. Any tips?

Welcome to the forum, @realitybeatslive. Dorico’s approach to drum set notation is a bit different to Sibelius’s, in particular the way it handles voices. The way the drum kit itself is set up determines how the notes are split between voices. You can use the Edit Percussion Kit dialog to specify whether e.g. snare should be in the up-stem voice with the hi-hats or in the down-stem voice with the kick drum. Once you’re used to Dorico’s way of inputting drum set notation, I think you’ll find it’s quicker and easier than Sibelius.

You might also want to check out this Discover Dorico session on YouTube, which covers drum set notation in some detail.

Thanks for the tip. That makes sense! How do I enter engrave mode? I was trying to change the notehead font.

Also, for the life of me I cannot figure out how to expand the player menu so I can make those changes.

There’s a little disclosure arrow next to the player, in the left panel of Setup mode. Click it. Engrave mode is the third tab along the top of the Dorico dialog.

@realitybeatslive If you don’t see the button for Engrave mode at the top of the Dorico window, you’re using either Dorico Elements or Dorico SE, in which case you can still change to e.g. the handwritten font using the Edit > Music Fonts dialog.