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Lilypond problems

From: Holtrop Sheila
Subject: Lilypond problems
Date: Wed, 29 Jun 2005 20:34:17 -0700 (PDT)

To whom it may concern,

I was intrigued by Lilypond and the Mutopia project. As a sign of support I attempted to use Lilypond to engrave the following four Ragtime piano pieces: Magnetic Rag, Weeping Willow, Pineapple Rag, and Topliner Rag.


Unfortunately, using Lilypond I was unable to mimic the existing piano engraving and layout on any of this music. This makes your software and the Mutopia project a philosophically noble enterprise that can’t be implemented. It needs to be possible to easily mimic common music notation (and without resorting to any kludges) within your language framework.


There were two major problems in the Lilypond software for me in engraving these piano pieces:

Problem 1: Slurs and ties cannot be properly implemented in many cases. I have attached a small Lilypond file that demonstrates the problems I have encountered. These measures are cut from the various songs I tried.

1.) Slurs and ties can’t be tied to different voices (Measures 1 and 2).

2.) Ties that defy normal engraving. (Measure 3). This measure was copied directly from a song where the tie from the b arched upwards. Here is arches downwards.

3.) Ties clashing with other engraving. (Measures 4 and 5).

4.) Ties don’t carry into a second part of your repeat volta structure (Measure 6 and 8)


Problem 2: Lack of control over measure length and layout. Many piano pieces are laid out so that a repeat-volta structure ends at the end of a page to eliminate page turning. This may necessitate some stretching or compressing in other measures to achieve this. This results in a more aesthetic and more playable (eliminating page turning) engraving. There needs to be a way to easily set the number of measures per page and per line to achieve this.


Good luck on your software. 


\version "2.5.25"

\header {
 title = "Slur and Tie Problems"

  footer = "Mutopia-2004/02/03-263"
} % end header

mkinvis = { \override NoteHead
                #'transparent  = ##t
               \override Stem
                #'transparent = ##t }
mkvis = { \revert NoteHead #'transparent
                 \revert Stem #'transparent }

top = \relative c' {
 \override Voice.TextScript  #'padding = #2

 \key bes \major
 \time 4/4
 \clef treble
  \override Staff.NoteCollision  #'merge-differently-headed = ##t

  s2 s8 c8( des8 d8 |                                   %1 
     {ees8 c'8 ees,8 f8 ~ f8 aes8 bes8 c8) |} \\        %2
       {c,4. des8 ~ des4 fes4 |}                                %2

   <bes, ees g>2 ~ <bes ees g>4 <des ees bes'>4 |               %3
    {bes'1 |} \\                                                        %4
    {s4 \stemUp <bes f'>8 bes' <bes, e> bes' <bes, ees> bes' |} \\              
    {\stemDown d,,4
     \set followVoice = ##t
     \change Staff= bottom
     \stemUp aes'4 (g4 ges4)}
  <bes d bes'>4 r4 <bes d f bes>^> r4_\markup{\italic { Fine}} |        %5

  \repeat volta 2 {                                              %Stanza B      
   <cis, g'>2 <c d fis a>8 <c d fis a>4 <b d g>8 ~ |             %6
  } \alternative {   
    {<b d g>4 <d' d'>8 <d d'>8 <d d'>4 <d eis b'>4 | }           %7
    {<b, d g>4 ~  <b d g>4 ~ <b d g>16 
       g'16 a16 b16 |   }                                       %8

 \bar "|."
} % end top
bottom = \relative c {
  \key bes\major
  \time 4/4
  \clef bass

  s2 s8 r8 r4 |                                         %1  
   <aes ees'>4 <des aes'>4 ~ <des aes'>4 <des aes'>4 |          %2

  ees,8(g8 bes8 ees8) bes4(g4) |                        %3
  <<{ <bes' bes,>1 ~ \tieDown |                 %4 
      \stemDown <bes bes,>4 r4 
      \stemUp <bes, bes,>4^> r4 | }             %5
     f'4  s4 s4 s4 |                            %4
     \stemUp f'4 s4 
     \set followVoice = ##t
     \change Staff= top
      \stemDown bes4 s4 |}                      %5

  \repeat volta 2 {                             %Stanza B

    <a, a,>4 <e e,>4 <d d,>2                    %6
  } \alternative {   
    {<g g,>4 r4 <b b,>4 <gis gis,>4  |}         %7
    {<g g,>4 d4 e4  | }                 %8

  \bar "|."
} % end bottom

\score {
  \context PianoStaff <<
  \context Staff = "top"
  \context Staff = "bottom"
\midi { \tempo 4 = 80 }
\layout {
   textheight = 240.\mm
} % end score

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