How do you make the actual key of a project that of a transposed project?

I have a sketch of a song using virtual instruments.

The chord progression for the song was laid out using a chord track.

However, the vocal for the song requires a different key.

I’ve set the root key for each VI midi event (not drums etc). So now I can either use a transpose track or the project root key to transpose everything easily to find the best key.

So, now I’ve found the best key for the vocal, how do I now make this the actual key for midi data and the project?

And, how do I get Cubase to reflect this in the Chord Track?

Incidentally, is there a way to get the Chord Track to indicate transpositions like you can in te midi key editor?

On the Chord Track Select all of the Chord Events. When you look at the Info Line it will show the Root value of the very first Chord on the Track. Change that to whatever the Root of the first Chord is in the new Key. All of the Selected Chords will also change their Roots relative to the first Chord. If you have a Scale Event on the Track remember to change it too.

For changing the MIDI Note data there are multiple ways with different pros & cons. The easiest would be to Select all the MIDI Parts in the Project Window that you want to change. Then on the Info Line there is a Transpose Field. Enter a number in half-steps for how much you want to raise or lower the MIDI Notes during playback. When you open a Part in the Key Ed it will still be in the old key - just the playback gets Transposed.

If you wanted the Notes in the MIDI Parts to be in the new key that would be more work, although there are ways to help somewhat alleviate that.

No not directly. However the Chord Track supports Track Versions. So you could copy your Current Version to a New Version. Then Transpose the Chords on this New Version. Now you can flip back and forth between the old & new keys. You can take it even further by Selecting all your Transposing Instrument Tracks plus the Chord Track to create New Versions of them all at the same time. Because they were created together the Version ID Number will be the same for all the Tracks. This will let you change all the Tracks at once between the two keys. You can rename the Versions to be more informative about what they are there for

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Change that to whatever the Root of the first Chord is in the new Key.

Thanks for the reply. This was a step I was getting wrong, as I thought this referred to the key overall. It was confusing as the first chord, in a mock up project I have done in C, is Am. I thought it was showing me C as the relative minor in that info line, and so when I changed that, I thought I was changing the overall key. I thought it wasn’t logical and didn’t make much sense!

The easiest would be to Select all the MIDI Parts in the Project Window that you want to change. Then on the Info Line there is a Transpose Field. Enter a number in half-steps for how much you want to raise or lower the MIDI Notes during playback. When you open a Part in the Key Ed it will still be in the old key - just the playback gets Transposed.

If you wanted the Notes in the MIDI Parts to be in the new key that would be more work, although there are ways to help somewhat alleviate that.

I’d like all the midi notes to change on the non-chord midi tracks, too, when I change key via the Chord track. I’ve not been able to get this to work. I tried using follow chord track, selecting scales but that didn’t work.

Can this be done?

No not directly.

That’s disappointing. I’ve use transpose tracks before but not used chord tracks much until recently. But if I use a transpose track with the chord track, then the chord track does not reflect the correct key, which is not great, especially when coming back to a project after a time.

However the Chord Track supports Track Versions.

How do I do that with the Chord Track?

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Track version example

To see a larger version of an animated gif on the forum open in a new Window or Tab.

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Thanks for the video/gif, very helpful.

You have a track called ‘Melody’ - does that transpose all the midi notes correctly when you change the chord track chords?

I’m a bit confused, I thought it wasn’t possible with the chord track?

It is actually 3 different steps I’m taking to Transpose everything. The order doesn’t really matter but in the gif I did this:

  1. Change the Scale Event on the Chord Track by selecting it and changing it from C to D on the Info Line
  2. Change the Chord Events on the Chord Track by selecting them all and on the Info Line change the value of the 1st Chord from C to D. If the 1st Chord had been Am then I’d have changed it to Bm.
  3. Change the MIDI Parts that you want to be Transposed by selecting them and entering “2” in the “Transpose” field which will cause the Parts to play back 2 half-steps higher. Note: if you have Parts for say drums you likely would not want to transpose them

And because I initially created a copy Version of all the Tracks and made all the Transposition Edits on those copies I have 2 different Versions of the ‘song’ one in C and the other in D which can be flipped back & forth between them.

None of this is using Transpose Track.

Ah right, so the MIDI parts you are transposing manually - in the sense that they are not being transposed automatically by the Chord Track?

Also, on this bit, when I select the Scale Event, it does not allow me to change it on the Info Line.

Is the Chord Track Locked or Disabled?

Can you post an image showing the Chord Track’s Inspector, Scale Event selected and the Info Line.

Not locked

Was I right in saying the MIDI parts you are transposing manually - in the sense that they are not being transposed automatically by the Chord Track?

I can’t tell for sure without seeing the Inspector but I’d guess you have Automatic Scales enabled. This will create un-editable Scale Events based on the Chords on the Chord Track.

image

I’d kind of forgotten about it. I have this disabled in all my Templates because I find it super annoying. In the example you posted it looks fine (and is). But that’s because all your Chords are naturally in the key of C Major. But if you have a chord substitution or a tension that introduces a non-scale tone then Automatic Scales will create a new Scale Event. So every accidental causes a Scale change.

Yes you are correct. By default changing the Chords on the Chord Track does not effect the MIDI Parts. Which is why in my example I selected all the Parts and shifted them +2 half-steps.

However you can set a Track in its Inspector’s Chord Tab to follow the Chord Track. Check the manual for details on that. You can even set it up so when you play a keyboard controller all the bum notes get shifted into the Chord or Key.

Yes , that was it, Automatic Scales was enabled in mine.

It’s a shame the transpose can’t be done automatically just by changing the key for the chord track. If the original key of the MIDI event is set, once a new key is selected on the Chord track, the number of semitones needed to transpose is known, so it could be done and that would really help with writing songs and finding the best key for a vocalist. It’s handy to have the chords for the song visible by name as the chord track provides.

Yeah, I have the tracks with chords on following the chord track.

Be great if I could just change the key in the Chord track and it just works.

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I also hope there was easy way just render/flatten all transpose track events in one command.