Lyrics & Chords

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On every Song Arrangement page you'll find a simple button that packs a lot of power. The Lyrics & Chords button allows you to create PDFs for lyrics, chord charts (we'll even transpose it for you), numeral charts and number charts. This is also how Projector gets lyrics for slides.

Lyrics & Chords Overview

Here's what you'll see when you open the editor:

  1. This is where you'll type out or paste in your lyrics or chord chart. Dont' forget to tell us what the Original Key is. Doing this allows us to automatically provide the right PDF when you Add New Keys.
  2. The Preview Window of the PDF that will be exported.
  3. These are shortcuts to optional codes and styles that can be applied.
  4. Changing this options will show change the preview window the the new key.
  5. Auto-Refresh is on by default. When you stop typing, we'll refresh the Preview area. If disabled, we won't refresh your changes for you.
  6. Each of these can be checked independently. This determine which PDFs will be available for download.
  7. The first button allows you to edit the song sequence. The middle button changes page options (columns, font, size, etc). The last button will download the chart in the Preview screen.
  8. Clicking this arrow will take you back to the Song Arrangment screen.

If you have chords entered in the Lyrics & Chords editor, we'll automatically transpose those into the correct key any time you Add a Key to an Arrangment.

When your users are in a plan, they can hover over the files link for any song, and any Planning Center created chord chart will have a Transpose button when you hover over it. Click it and they'll get options to download that chart in any key, including numbers or numerals.

Why use ChordPro?

Our Lyrics & Chords editor supports two different formats for chord charts: Standard and ChordPro. With Standard Chords, you can place your chords on a separate line above the lyrics. This is simpler, but if you change fonts, or change keys, chords can shift a little and not always stay aligned with the correct syllable. With ChordPro, you can enter your chords inline with your lyrics by placing the chords in brackets. This ensures your chords always align perfectly with your lyrics even after you transpose or change fonts.

How to Use ChordPro - The Basics

Place your chords inside of brackets ([ and ]) in your lyric lines to "lock" chords to syllables or words in your chord chart so that there won't ever be a shift.

You can mix and match your chart with regular and ChordPro lines, so you don't have to redo the entire chart to have this option, just the chords or parts where there's a big shift.

Because Planning Center supports this option, any square brackets [ ] will be treated as special chord characters. Any chords or text entered into these brackets will be treated as a chord related object and added to their own line in the chart or removed from the lyrics sheet.

Advanced ChordPro Codes
Lyrics & Chords
  • SECTION HEADING - Type section headings, like CHORUS 1, or INSTRUMENTAL in all caps.
  • [ Chord ]  - Chords in square brackets are Chord Pro and will be transposed and be placed on the line above the corresponding lyrics. Anything in square brackets will only appear in Chord Chart PDFs. If it is on the same line as a SECTION HEADING, it will still be shifted to the line above, so make sure NOT to use the ChordPro brackets in this header.
  • :: - Double colons start a new line for Projector slides. The double colon symbol will not show up in any PDFs or slides. If your chord chart line is long and you want split it into 2 lines just for Projector slides, add a double colon :: where you want the line break to go.
  • --- If you want dashes removed for Projector slides, make sure there is a space around the dashes. Glo --- ria in lyrics will become "Gloria" on slides, but Glo---ria will stay "Glo---ria" on slides.
Key Changes
  • TRANSPOSE KEY +1 - To insert a key change but still type chords in the original key, add TRANSPOSE KEY plus or minus the number of half-steps. (When choosing a key, it will use the following scale: Ab, A, Bb, B, C, Db, D, Eb, E, F, F#, G.)
  • REDEFINE KEY +1 - To insert a key change where you have already typed the chords in the new transposed key, add REDEFINE KEY plus or minus the number of half-steps. For chord charts, this does not transpose chords, but for Number and Numeral charts, it remaps the numbers to the new key. (When choosing a key, it will use the following scale: Ab, A, Bb, B, C, Db, D, Eb, E, F, F#, G.)
Number and Numeral Charts

Number charts are commonly used by studio musicians who show up and need to be ready to play a song in any key. Instead of having 12 chord charts all in different keys, you only need one number chart. Chords are replaced by numbers based on the scale of the key you are in. In D, 1=D, 2=E, 3=F# and so on. Then just by saying you are now in E, the musicians see 1 and now play E instead of D.

Numeral charts are a little different, though very similar. In a number chart, it really is as simple as replacing chords with numbers. In a numeral chart, it goes one step further. If your chord is major, the numeral is uppercase, but if the chord is minor, instead of showing the 'm', you use a lowercase numeral. In the key of C, II would be D major, but ii would be D minor.

For both numbers and numerals, if you ever use a chord or note that is not in that key, it will always be represented using flats. So in the key of C, if you have a G#, it will show as b6 or bVI instead of #5. Likewise, E/G# would be 3/b6 or III/bVI.

When creating your charts, you can enable Number or Numerals right next to the button to enable Lyrics. These files are attached to your arrangement, meaning they're available no matter what key you choose for the song. You can even preview number or numeral charts in the new chord editor.

When you have a C2 chord, we'll put the 2 in superscript to make it clear this is a 12 chord and not a 12 chord. Superscript chord suffixes on number and numeral charts make it easy to tell what is the chord and what is the suffix.

  • { note } - Text in single curly braces is a note that will show in Chords Chart PDFs and Lyric PDFs. Unlike square brackets, it will not be shifted up a line.
  • {{ note }} - Text in double curly braces is a note that wil only show in Chord Chart PDFs and will be removed from Lyric PDFs and Projector slides
  • COLUMN_BREAK  - starts a new column
  • PAGE_BREAK - starts a new page

To have a column or page break only apply to chord charts and not lyrics, put it in double curly braces. {{ PAGE_BREAK }}

  • <b>Bolded Text</b> - Text placed between <b> and </b> will be bolded for Lyric & Chord PDFs
  • <i>Italicized Text</i> - Text placed between <i> and </i> will be italicized for Lyric & Chord PDFs
  • <strong>Bolded Text</strong> - Text placed between <strong> and </strong> will be bolded for Lyric & Chord PDFs
  • <em>Italicized Text</em> - Text placed between <em> and </em> will be italicized for Lyric & Chord PDFs

The codes in this Style section wil not be applied in Projector.

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