Showing whammy bends in guitar tab

Good afternoon - I have looked through the instructions on tablature and can see how to do bends and holds etc, but I’m not sure how to show whammy pitch changes. For example, in the attached picture, the top whammy move is supposed to be a long slow drop down and then back up again to the original chord, and the bottom one is supposed to show that the chords that are pre-bent with the whammy and then come up to their marked pitch. The example tab isn’t exactly great either, but I wondered how guitarists are showing these effects in Dorico? Many thanks for your help…

As one who knows very little about TAB notation, what do the 6 and 8 refer to in the top example?

Hi Derrek - They are supposed to show that the faster dive goes down 6 notes and then continues more slowly to the octave. This tab was done in a hurry by my guitar teacher so should not be seen to be definitive at all. The description in words in my original post is probably a better guide to what I’m trying to represent. The actual effect goes on over several bars and then comes slowly back to the original pitch.

Hi - is it the case that the only option I have for showing whammy bar bends is to notate them as normal bends with a “W-Bar” text label?

dangermike, I know of no in-house Dorico ways of doing it, but you could easily add the bends to a PDF export of your score in Adobe Illustrator and the like…

Thank you, inthefold!

For a guitarist’s view on the Dorico 3 updates, the link from Doug Gibson that Daniel posted in the “Dorico in the news” thread is well worth a watch.

The real-life tab examples that Doug shows in the second half of the review, such as the Guns N’ Roses tab, are typical of what electric guitar players will want Dorico to be able to do.

I hope that the suggestions made in the video are taken up in the next releases of Dorico, particularly:

  • the ability to show a more flexible and concise range of slides and bends
  • a dedicated electric guitar section in the player and toolbox sections
  • further common notations as standard (rather than manual) options such as the labeling of hammer-on and pull-off slurs, whammy effects, tapping, palm muting etc

These improvements will be particularly useful in conjunction with the promised updates on playback of tab effects and import of tab from MusicXML files.

Apologies if I’m still missing where some of these features are in the existing version…

I’d love to hear from electric guitar players on the dev team or forum about how they go about using Dorico or what planned enhancements are in the pipeline.

Dorico does not yet have any dedicated support for vibrato arm/whammy bar notations, but it’s something we are working on at the moment.

Thanks Daniel