Collapse Multiple Consecutive Single-Measure Repeat Measures into one Single Measure Multi-Repeat

• Oct 5, 2016 - 23:04
Reported version
S5 - Suggestion
won't fix

Often time drums in pop or jazz might have a repeated ostinato in drum or bass, for instance on a vamp. Example 2 from has a single measure repeat with a number 5 on top to indicate that the previous measure is repeated 5 times:

I would say that this should be treated in a similar way to Multi-Measure Rests, and be toggleable via "M" on keyboard. Maybe have a checkbox option in preferences to disable/enable collapsing.

I don't know how common this notation is, though. And I worry that a number above can also sometimes refer to a courtesy count, as in #127391: display courtesy counter when have consecutive measure repeat simile symbols. Regardless if both of these feature are implemented, they must make sure to not conflict with each other. I would say the courtesy counts should be in parenthesis, while a collapsed single measure repeat should display the number without a parenthesis.


I've never seen this, look extremely nonstandard to me and probably not worth implementing natively unless someone provides evidence to the contrary. After all, you can do this manually easily enough already - you just won't get the expected playback. Which, I dare say, is the same you could say about what to expect when you hand such a score to a human musician.

Are you sure he was commenting about the number specifically? My guess is he just meant the use of the repeat measure symbol in general. I have *never* seen the notation you refer to, and I've seen an awful lot of drum music from a large number of different publishers.

Status (old) active won't fix

oh, I see, it is possible he wasn't commenting on that specifically...Sorry RobFog if it took your comment out of context.

Well I'll tentatively set this as won't fix...If some people find examples of this is published music, please post here.

In reply to by Marc Sabatella

Consider this a +1 from me. Just a question, though - what would be the alternative to this notation?

I find this compresses well for the 1-page performance sheets. Using any other type of repeat marks is just adding more noise compared to this method.

> "what would be the alternative to this notation"

I've seen drummers make handwritten charts by doing things such as writing "x8" or even just the number alone next to the rhythm, without even using the percent sign. I don't think there is an official standard on this though.

In reply to by ericfontainejazz

That's what I started doing just recently. Now I'm using slashes and a number above the bar. Seems a bit easier to spot the rhythm changes as well as have the song structure. Still not completely happy, though.
Screenshot from 2019-01-16 00-16-05.png

When I asked about the alternative, initially I had in mind the explanation for rejecting this proposal. But anything that can result in a clean sheet with song structure and all the key elements would work for me.

Regression No
Workaround Yes

A workaround I used as a drummer friend of mine requested a "more readable" sheet from me, was to use the repeat measure sign once, delete all the subsequent repeated measures so they become rests and thus condensed automatically, turn this one condensed measure invisible and finally copy the number of Repeats as a text above the repeat measure sign. This leaves a rather ugly, utterly empty measure right behind on the exported pdf, but other than that works like a charm :)