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Do you make your own charts?

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  • Do you make your own charts?

    How many people use CCLI charts? I'm finding that there are discrepancies at times or no intros and some of my older team members have trouble following the chart because of font, but also because how the song skips back and forth rather than reading from top to bottom.
    I've heard of leaders making charts from scratch and I also read about "Rockin' With the Cross" recently - just wondering what some of you are doing at your church. Responses are appreciated! Have a great day!

  • #2
    We occasionally use the CCLI charts but mostly create our own. Some of the reasons are due to what you've stated. Something that I'm not sure most know is that CCLI only gives people what the artist has submitted (ever look for a popular song and it's not there or it's there but there's no chart?). So what tends to happen is that the artist (or some artist's rep) submits the chart info but something changed between that and the recording of it. You've probably seen this happen with lyric notes in CD covers where a lyric will get tweaked after the printing. Same thing.

    I don't like that CCLI doesn't include intros and the song map can be way different. Another thing I don't like is that many times it will wind up on two pages. I like my musicians to only need one per song. Another thing is that the print is not realizable. I can write a chart with 16 or 18 pt. font, bold the chord names, make particular play/lick notes on the chart and all of that be on one page. I have to lengthen the phrasing so that it fits on one line rather than two and widen my margins but it usually works brilliantly. For instance, rather than:

    Everyone needs compassion
    A love that's never failing
    Let mercy fall on me

    I'll write that on one line (don't know how this will end up looking when posted):

    Everyone needs compassion, love that's never failing, let mercy fall on me.

    Sometimes this helps the chord progression become more memorable as you can see it across the whole verse on the page easier and the repeated patters become obvious.

    Hope this helps!

    Comment


    • #3
      Pretty all of the time at our church we use our own chord charts. We use the CCLI license, but not the chord charts or any of the extras. Sometimes I'll use the chords from the artist's site if they happen to have them. These are a few that I've gathered (I'm pretty sure they're all free, some of them are individual artists and some are other sources):

      http://charliehall.com/chord-charts/
      http://www.worshiptogether.com/
      http://www.wordworship.com/songs
      http://www.tomewing.net/downloads/in...p?file_fc_id=3
      http://calebnei.com/chord-charts/
      http://www.jesusculture.com/music/chord-charts
      http://www.leadworship.com/song-charts/
      http://www.bethelmusic.com/chord-charts
      http://www.brianandjennjohnson.com/chord-charts
      http://www.mattredman.com/chordcharts
      http://thecityharmonic.com/chords/
      http://www.insideworship.com/categor.../chord-charts/

      Also, there's a guy in my area (Dave Helmuth) who does chord charts on his website for free, and they look really well formatted. He also has a nice podcast on the same website:
      http://davehelmuth.com/#/find-resources/chords

      When I do it myself, I usually try to get everything on one page, whether that involves multiple columns. The best thing I found out when typing up enough chord charts is to use a fixed width font like Courier New. That way the chords will always line up where I want them to line up, even if I change the font or chords.

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      • #4
        We Make Our Own Charts

        Like everyone else has said so far, we do our own charts 99% of the time. I usually do them to match up with the version we're doing, but we don't try to duplicate what's on the recording.

        When I'm in a hurry, I may download a chart from somewhere.

        Our guitarist refers to the combination of fonts that I use as the "Levitical format". He has taken the Levitical format and used it for charts for his secular music gigs.

        Comment


        • #5
          Thanks for these sites! I knew of a few of them, but this is much appreciated

          I also do many of my own charts- for newer songs, I often use slashes so that older musicians who struggle with the rhythms can follow easily- for instance: (in preview, I noticed that this shifts when I hit reply, so imagine that the correct words are under the correct chords)

          Bm / / / / / | / / / A/C# / / | D / / / / / | / / / / / / |
          From the highest of heights, to the depths of the sea

          One thing that frustrates me when trying to find chord charts is that music charts have been dumbed down- on one hand, it's great because it makes it accessible, but it also makes it impossible to learn a song unless you listen to the song and learn it that way. Also, usually, as someone else mentioned, I think, there are no interesting chords- it's all very plain, so I try to add some interesting rifts when possible.
          I'm trying to figure a way to meet somewhere in the middle of actual sheet music and chord charts.....

          Thanks!!

          Comment


          • #6
            We use CCLI charts, but more as a reference point than anything else. We go by 90% of what's there and may tweak a couple things.

            It's too labor intensive to build our own for the wide variety we have in our repertoire, but someone may make notes on their sheet, even in a step up or down, depending on when we use the song (one time may be in C, next time may be in D, depending on what the other songs in the set are).

            As far as 'interesting' chords, at least in the songs we do from CCLI, there are a lot of 7th, sus, chord/bass note combinations in the songs.

            IMO there is a balance between too 'plain' and trying to over-fancify it. Make up for 'plain' with technique/attack, etc. as another way to add some depth to it.
            If we want to go places we haven't been, we will have to do things we haven't done.

            Comment


            • #7
              We make our own charts also. When I can, I will go the route euzmike goes and look for charts to copy and paste from the artist web sites; even these may still need to be massaged with intros written out, instrumentals notated, roadmaps specified, etc.

              One word of caution: charts made available by the artist should not necessarily be considered covered by your CCLI license. If you are going to reproduce and distribute lyrics or chords, you still need permission from the copyright holder or a license. That said, most churches have a CCLI license, but rarely take time to read or understand the terms and limitations (e.g., knowing what songs are covered, alteration of lyrics, reproduction activities that require additional permission or licensing, etc.).
              "Rock On" (Matt 7:24-25)

              Dave Brown
              facebook.com/7.Funk.7.Master.7
              twitter.com/funkmaster777

              Comment


              • #8
                These reponses has helped everyone - thank you!

                Originally posted by funkmaster777 View Post
                One word of caution: charts made available by the artist should not necessarily be considered covered by your CCLI license.
                You mean if I find a song chart off of an artist's site that I like better than what is offered on CCLI that I'm not necessarily covered?

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by guitar_goob View Post
                  You mean if I find a song chart off of an artist's site that I like better than what is offered on CCLI that I'm not necessarily covered?
                  No. Regardless of the resource for your lyrics and chords (Song Select, artist website, Dave Helmuth, Rockin' With The Cross, etc.) you still need to verify the song is covered by your license. Song Select material should be covered for CCLI licensees. You would need permission from the copyright holder to reproduce material not covered by your license.

                  For CCLI holders, song coverage verification is done here: http://www.ccli.com/LicenseHolder/Se...ghtSearch.aspx
                  "Rock On" (Matt 7:24-25)

                  Dave Brown
                  facebook.com/7.Funk.7.Master.7
                  twitter.com/funkmaster777

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Hmm... I understand the basics of copyright law, but if the artist has the song available on their website in a downloadable PDF could it be that the artist and the copyright holder have an agreement that this would be available to the public?

                    As an example, I went to Kristian Stanfill's site and he has several PDF chord charts available. I can click on them and download without an EULA, to me, that implies the intent is to be free and available to everyone.

                    In my line of work, my company has scores of copyrighted documents anyone can print off and distribute for free. We do that for product support. Perhaps these artists make these charts available as a marketing tool- they track how many copies of each song downloaded, use it as incentive to sell albums, etc.

                    I wouldn't think that these artists/promoters and their teams of lawyers would intentionally and blatantly violate copyright laws. The songs I looked at on the site mention ASCAP- maybe he has an ASCAP license agreement structured to make the chord chart available?
                    If we want to go places we haven't been, we will have to do things we haven't done.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      It is probably a fine point, but the copyright holder is the one who decides how works are to be copied and distributed. An artist could have any number of reasons to post material for download on their website. The copyright holder is still the only entity that can legally determine how those copies are further distributed. The only assumption that is fair to the artist is that the copies are made available for personal worship. Anything further, absent specific permission or licensing is an assumption of what the copyright holder intended to do.

                      In my experience, getting permission (for songs not covered by CCLI) is not difficult. I have personally corresponded with the artist explaining the intended use of the charts and lyrics; I have always received a response providing approval. This approach protects the artist, protects your church, and protects The Church. Again, it is not in every case; only those where the work is not covered by our license. Given the potential penalties under Title 17 and the potential reputational damage, it is simply good stewardship.
                      "Rock On" (Matt 7:24-25)

                      Dave Brown
                      facebook.com/7.Funk.7.Master.7
                      twitter.com/funkmaster777

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        In my 40 plus years in the music industry I've only rarely come across charts that accurately reflect the music as recorded. That's because the music charts don't typically have production notes in them. And that's why you're seeing overwhelmingly that most people make their own charts. Production notes are things like accents within the music, intro's, outro's, where instruments drop out or come in, dynamics of the song, etc. So to have accurate charts you have to find a way to incorporate such notes within the charts...not to mention the inaccuracies of the music notation you often find in publicly available charts.

                        What I do is develop my own charts using my own production notation conventions that everyone is aware of, and I do it from listening to the original recorded material taking into account that we may not have the same instrumentation as the original arrangement, so I'll improvise to come close. Personally, I use a program called 'Chordastic' which is really good at aligning chords with lyrics, and is pretty decent for maintaining a library of charts.
                        The Posse Band live performance tracks can be heard by CLICKING HERE

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by guitar_goob View Post
                          How many people use CCLI charts? I'm finding that there are discrepancies at times or no intros and some of my older team members have trouble following the chart because of font, but also because how the song skips back and forth rather than reading from top to bottom.
                          I've heard of leaders making charts from scratch and I also read about "Rockin' With the Cross" recently - just wondering what some of you are doing at your church. Responses are appreciated! Have a great day!
                          Though I use a number of charts from CCLI, I've found the charts at PraiseCharts to be significantly more detailed & accurate, overall.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I prefer to make my own when I can --- I like to create ours in PlanningCenter, but regardless of where you build them, I like to include arrangement notes. Adding arrangement notes like "no bass until v2", etc ... helps minimize rehearsal time and gives everyone a roadmap.
                            Fred McKinnon, Pianist/Composer/Worship Leader
                            blog: www.fredmckinnon.com

                            Please check out my piano/instrumental music at:
                            www.soundcloud.com/FredMcKinnonMusic
                            www.youtube.com/c/FredMcKinnonMusic

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              If you guys make your own charts you have to check out SongSheet Generator. SongSheet Generator is a Chordpro reader/creator. You'd use Note Pad to create a txt file with the chords included into the lyrics. e.g. A[C]mazing [F7]Grace how [C]sweet the [G7]sound. It shows up with the chord above the word in the program so you don't need to line up the chords everytime you change something. Key changes are automatic with a few clicks. It's free but donations are welcomed. (Not a sponsor!)

                              Anyways, I use praisecharts.com and sometimes I create my own charts from them. The church buys a subscription every year and I try to keep in budget. Praisecharts.com has good road maps that match the recordings and the chords are correct too.

                              Sent using Forum Runner.

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