Figured bass

You can easily enter figured bass with the Finale Numerics font, a font introduced in Finale 2012. The Finale Numerics font was designed to offer all the characters required to produce figured bass, including zero-width, stackable characters, musical characters, and more.

To add figured bass to a document without lyrics

Noteman says: The Expression tool also offers other options for entering figured bass. For example, you could define expressions using the Finale Numerics font and assign them to notes using Metatools. See To create an expression and To program an Expression Metatool.

  1. Choose the Lyrics tool icon.
  2. Choose Lyrics > Auto-Number and confirm Verse, Chorus, and Section are unchecked.
  3. Choose Lyrics > Lyric Options. The Document Options - Lyrics dialog box appears.
  4. Uncheck Use Smart Hyphens.
  5. Document Options - Lyrics dialog box with Use Smart Hyphens highlighted
  6. Click Word Extensions. The Word Extensions dialog box appears.
  7. Uncheck Use Smart Word Extensions. Click OK.
  8. Click OK to close the Document Options - Lyrics dialog box.
  9. Choose Fonts. The Document Options - Fonts dialog box appears.
  10. Select Lyrics: Verse and click the Set Font button. The Font dialog box appears.
  11. Document Options - Fonts dialog box with Lyrics dropdown and Set Font button highlighted
  12. Choose Finale Numerics and click OK.

    If your font selection shows font characters, is displayed.

  13. Click OK to close the Document Options - Fonts dialog box.
  14. Choose Lyrics > Type Into Score.
  15. Select the layer that the numerals will be attached to. (Choose View > Select Layer > [desired layer] or select the desired layer from the Layer selection buttons in the lower left corner of your screen).
  16. Click the first note you would like to add figured bass to. A blinking cursor appears beneath the staff. Use the table below to enter the required zero-width characterStackable font characters used to create inversions for figured bass and harmonic analysis.. The keystrokes are listed by position-top, middle, and bottom. See Finale Numerics font to find additional characters.
  17. Keystroke Character Keystroke Character
    SHIFT+1
    1
    ALT+0161
    Example of the 1 character positioning based on the keystrokes SHIFT+0
    0
    ALT+0186
    Example of the 0 character positioning based on the keystrokes
    SHIFT+2
    2
    ALT+0153
    Example of the 2 character positioning based on the keystrokes SHIFT+w
    w
    Text > Inserts > Symbol > 290
    Example of the x character positioning based on the keystrokes
    SHIFT+3
    3
    ALT+0163
    Example of the 3 character positioning based on the keystrokes SHIFT+x
    x
    Text > Inserts > Symbol > 302
    Example of the # character positioning based on the keystrokes
    SHIFT+4
    4
    ALT+0162
    Example of the 4 character positioning based on the keystrokes SHIFT+y
    y
    ALT+0165
    Example of the natural symbol positioning based on the keystrokes
    SHIFT+5
    5
    Text > Inserts > Symbol > 293
    Example of the 5 character positioning based on the keystrokes SHIFT+z
    z
    Text > Inserts > Symbol > 267
    Example of the flat symbol positioning based on the keystrokes
    SHIFT+6
    6
    ALT+0167
    Example of the 6 character positioning based on the keystrokes SHIFT+u
    u
    ALT+0168
    Example of the double flat symbol positioning based on the keystrokes
    SHIFT+7
    7
    ALT+0182
    Example of the 7 character positioning based on the keystrokes SHIFT+l
    l
    ALT+0172
    Example of the + character positioning based on the keystrokes
    SHIFT+8
    8
    ALT+0149
    Example of the 8 character positioning based on the keystrokes SHIFT+m
    m
    ALT+0181
    Example of the - character positioning based on the keystrokes
    SHIFT+9
    9
    ALT+0170
    Example of the 9 character positioning based on the keystrokes    

    Enter SHIFT+6 for a first inversion (this is one of many zero-width characters that can be stacked three numerals high; SHIFT+6 places the number in the top row). To put a number beneath the 6, simply enter the number (e.g. For enter SHIFT+6, 5). If you need to place a character to the right of the figure, enter ` (grave), then enter the character. (e.g. For , you would enter SHIFT+6, ` (grave), SHIFT+y). Use the table below for other common inversion examples.

    Keystroke Character Keystroke Character
    SHIFT+6, 4, ALT+0153 Example of a 6, 4, 2 figured bass stack based on the keystrokes SHIFT+6, 5, ALT+0153, ` (grave), SHIFT+y, y Example of a natural 6, natural 5, 2 figured bass stack based on the keystrokes
    SHIFT+7, x Example of a 7, sharp third figured bass stack based on the keystrokes SHIFT+4, 2, ` (grave), SHIFT+l Example of an augmented 4, 2 figured bass stack based on the keystrokes
  18. Press SPACEBAR to move to the next entry.

To add figured bass to a document with lyrics

  1. Choose the Lyrics tool icon.
  2. Choose Lyrics > Auto-Number. One of the options, Verse, Chorus, or Section, must be unchecked.
  3. Choose Lyrics > Specify Current Lyric. The Specify Current Lyric dialog box appears.
  4. Select a Type that did not require Auto-Number to be selected in Step 2. Enter a number to select a verse, chorus, or section that does not contain lyrics and click OK.

    For example, if there are auto-numbered lyrics in Verse 1 and 2 but the Sections are not auto-numbered, select Sections and enter 3 in the Number field. This allows you to enter your figured bass directly under your existing lyrics. Alternatively, enter any number and use the positioning trianglesSeveral tools provide four positioning triangles to the left of the score that allow you to vertically adjust the baseline for items in the adjacent staff. These triangles can be used to position lyrics, chords, and expressions. The leftmost triangle positions items for every staff in the score in all systems. The second triangle from the left positions items in the adjacent staff. The third triangle from the left positions items in the adjacent staff in the adjacent system only. The fourth triangle from the left specifies the vertical positioning for the next item entered. on the left to adjust the horizontal positioning as needed.

  5. Select the layer that the numerals will be attached to. (Choose View > Select Layer > [desired layer] or select the desired layer from the Layer selection buttons in the lower left corner of your screen).
  6. Choose Lyrics > Type Into Score.
  7. Click the first note you would like to add figured bass to. A blinking cursor appears beneath the staff.
  8. Choose Text > Font. The Font dialog box appears. Choose Finale Numerics and click OK.

    If your font selection shows font characters, is displayed.

  9. Use the table above to enter a zero-width character.
  10. As you add your figured bass, you will need to delete automatic word extensionsA red underline that is used to indicate that a syllable is being sustained through more than one note. In Finale, word extensions expand and contract along with the music as you enter additional lyrics and modify the page layout. individually. To do so, choose Lyrics > Edit Word Extensions, then click the word extension handleA small square which appears on currently "selectable" elements in the score. Handles allow you to select, edit and adjust musical elements in the score. and press DELETE.

Entering multiple figures under one note

Occasionally, two or more figures are required under a single note of an extended duration. The second figure, entered as a lyric syllable, doesn't have an accompanying note in the staff directly above. Because lyric syllables are always attached to a note in the staff above, this situation must be handled as a special case.

You can accommodate this situation, depending on your music spacing requirements. If you do not require exact spacing, after the first figure is entered, enter ` (grave) multiple times until the cursor appears in roughly the desired position and enter the second figure. If you do this, and the system is not locked (see Utilities/Lock Systems), subsequent automatic music spacing changes may adjust the positioning of notes, changing the relative positioning of the figured bass within the measure. To affix an orphan figured bass syllable to a measure position that will adjust with Finale's Automatic Music Spacing feature, use the steps below to use hidden notes or rests as anchors.

To enter multiple figures under one note

  1. Enter the first figured bass syllable under the extended note using the steps in the To add figured bass section above.
  2. Choose the Simple Entry tool icon.
  3. Select Layer 4. (Choose View > Select Layer > Layer 4 or select Layer 4 from the Layer selection buttons in the lower left corner of your screen).
  4. Enter Layer 4 rests in the measure, and ensure a rest is entered at the beat directly above your desired figured bass syllable position. (For example, if you want to place your figured bass syllable on beat 4, you could enter a dotted half rest and then a quarter rest.)
  5. CTRL+click the rests and press H to hide them.
  6. Choose the Lyrics tool icon and click the hidden rest to display a cursor below the staff, then enter the figured bass figure. Now, your figure will be aligned with the hidden rest after any Automatic Music Spacing changes.
  7. To resume adding lyrics in Layer 1, select Layer 1. (Choose View > Select Layer > Layer 1 or select Layer 1 from the Layer selection buttons in the lower left corner of your screen).

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