I’m quite new to Dorico, and overall I’m liking it so far. I searched on the forum to see if anyone else was discussing this topic, and could not find anything. Please forgive me if I missed it.
I am trying to notate combinations of bends and holds, such that I can indicate via notation, and control during playback, the timing of the bend vs the hold. For example, a plucked note that is held for a dotted quarter and then bent up over an eighth note, or (in the images below), a bend where a note is plucked, quickly bent up, held, then quickly released.
I’m not certain what the standard notation is for such a bend (if there even is one), but my approach in the past is to use explicit note duration and ties, so as to approximately represent the desired “held” portion, versus the bend. For example, if I want a slow, continual bend, I might use a half note with a bend. Alternatively, if I want to hold and then release, I might use a dotted quarter note tied to an eighth note, and only put the bend on the eighth note - thus indicating my intent: hold for a dotted quarter, and release over the duration of an eighth.
I’m coming from GuitarPro, where that is the approach used, and whilst a bit heavy handed, it works well, both in notation and playback.
In Dorico, the notation appears to work correctly with this approach. The bend is only notated for the final note of a tie chain, both in standard notation and tablature, and a hold line is drawn (if enabled) for the earlier bend, leading up to the release. Forced note duration allows me to control, explicitly, the duration of the bend-hold-bend in the notation:
That’s all well and good. However, in playback, both of these bends play in the exact same way:
The release occurs slowly, over the duration of a half note, regardless of how it is notated.
On one hand, this playback makes sense - there’s only the one note, and it’s bent, so bending over it’s duration is a logical decision. On the other hand, in the notation there is clearly a difference in duration between the bends - especially in the tab notation, where you can see a hold vs. no hold. It would be nice if there was some way to have this respected in Play mode.
As I could not find a way to automatically control the playback duration of bends, based on how the notation appeared, I thought maybe I could override the pitch bend data, in Play mode, and draw in the desired bend (not ideal, workflow wise, but it would be better than nothing). Unfortunately, it appears you cannot overwrite the pitchbend data generated from the bend notations? When I enter new automation, both the original and my entered automation is present, and the playback gets very strange (with both automation lines competing with each other)
So, I guess I have a few related questions:
Does anyone know if there is a standard way to notate the duration of a bend-hold-release? I’m not convinced what I’m doing is technically correct. It works, but it feels like a hack. I typically don’t like forcing note duration (as it hinders rhythmic readability, versus the recommended notation based on the meter etc), but I’m not really sure of another way to notate it? I’m open to suggestions!
Is there another way in Dorico to specify the duration of the bend-hold-release portions of a complex bend like this? One that works for both notation (the bends in the tab are where I’m most interested in duration being accurately notated) and playback?
Is there a way to override the bends in Play mode, replacing the automatic pitch bend data with my own manually entered data?
Any other thoughts/ideas on how I can achieve this?