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How To Create a Bass Tab in MuseScore

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How to create a bass tab in MuseScore teaches you the steps to take to transcribe notes played on stringed instruments into tablature.  One of my email subscribers asked for a bass tab of a song.  In this article, I break down the steps to create tablature in Musescore.

You’ll need to start by downloading Musescore for either Mac or Windows.  You’ll like the fact that it’s open source and doesn’t cost money like other transcription software.  The best way to use the program is with a sound card and a midi keyboard.  But part of its power is that you don’t require either to get up and running.  The documentation to get up and running is better than I’ve seen elsewhere.

Here are 11 Steps on how to create a bass tab in MuseScore.

  1. Click on the “+” at the top of the screen to create a new tab.
  2. Click “Continue” after filling out the requested information.
  3. Select “Solo”, then “Guitar + Tablature”
  4. Select the Key Signature or click “Done”
  5. Find “Tabs” under the “clefs” palette.
  6. Use the menu on the top of the screen to find “Edit”.  Select “instruments”.
  7. For the bass tab, go to “Strings – Plucked”.
  8. Select “bass Guitar”.  
  9. Notice the Staves window.  Click the button to “Add to Score”
  10. To make sure the notes you enter in the staff will appear on the tab, click “Add Linked Staff”.  A checkmark will appear.
  11. If needed, you can change the order by selecting the staff name, (for example “Bass Guitar”), and clicking on the up and down arrow on the right side of the window.
I Just Fall In Love Again by hear-write-play

From the chart above remember you can play this right from this page, and print or download it too.

Is being able to transcribe music really worth the time it takes to learn how to do it?

That’s a fair question.  It seems everywhere you go there are really talented people who can play by ear.  They listen a few times to a recording and they can pretty much play it back perfectly or very close, and certainly good enough that most of us can’t tell the difference.  Check out this article to learn why transcription is a good skill to know and practice.

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