Stem direction in score not matching value in the Inspector

• Jan 29, 2021 - 19:39
Reported version
S4 - Minor
needs info

I'm not sure how to reproduce this, other than to edit this score. This is the first time I've seen it. In several measures (8. 16, 28) there are some note stems that are "down" which I would like to be "up". When I manually adjust these in the inspector, the value in the inspector window changes (i.e., shows "up") but the note stem still shows "down" in the score. I don't know if this related to another issue or not.

Attachment Size
You_Don't_Know_What_Love_Is.mscz 28.78 KB


Status active needs info

The issue is that note and stem direction can be in disagreement, and on top of that, the beam had been manually adjusted in terms of its position/shape. Probably it shouldn't be possible to get into this situation exactly, so if you can tell us exactly how you think it happened, we can investigate further.

Meanwhile, it's simple enough to fix, just select those notes and hit Ctrl+R to reset them to defaults. Really, there seem to be a lot of questionable manual adjustments in this score - did it come from MusicXML import? Anyhow, I'd personally recommend Ctrl+A to select all, then Ctrl+_R to get everything back to sensible defaults. And then perhaps Tools / Regroup Rhythms, as there are some oddly notated rhythms as well.

Thank you for the super-helpful comments! I basically just downloaded it from, and then said "yes" when it asked if I wanted to automatically update the typesetting to version 3.6 standards. Some of the manual adjustments may have resulted from my trying to "fix" the stem directions.

In terms of workarounds, I did what you suggested, and it totally fixed everything! Much gratitude. I'm thinking that it's probably a good practice to perform the Ctrl-A, Ctrl-R sequence on anything downloaded from I'm learning!

If iI literally just open the downloaded score and transpose it, I don't get anything like these problems. But I don't think that's possible - there are tons of other differences. Notice the difference in time signature, the missing start repeat, the difference in the composer info, etc - maybe you downloaded a different score?

Ok, maybe it wasn't this one. I will look again. What's strange is that I was having trouble finding the score I downloaded yesterday, even though at that point, it was literally the first one to come up in the search. I will search again more thoroughly and update you. My apologies for being a nuisance!

It is not at all difficult to get into this situation. The thing to be aware of is that the beam direction will override the stem direction. The stem seemingly has its own direction, but it is obtained from the "stem direction" of the chord, which, as I have said, is separate from the beam direction. It can be confusing, sure, but it is the way it was designed. Regardless, you can always flip the stem (or beam) direction by selecting a note, stem, hook, or beam, and pressing the x key. Edit: I shouldn't have said "always". The position of the beam can be manually adjusted such that the effective direction is opposite to its "direction" property. In this case, it will not necessarily respond to flipping via the x key. But if you then select the beam and untick "Custom position" in the beam inspector, it should work like expected.

Right, the stem confusion is not unusual. But there are other strange things in this score that go beyond that, and I'm trying to understand how they happened. It appears some beams had their position manually adjusted, probably before a transpose operation that changed stem directions, then the original adjustment no longer makes sense. But it would be good to verify.

I'm sorry that I can't seem to be more helpful. I downloaded a lot of scores the same day that I downloaded this one, and for some reason I can't seem to retrace my steps. Here's what I do know: I've never visited I did download the original score from I think it was this one: . I downloaded it, then opened it in Musescore 3.6, and when I went to transpose it, it got "stuck". It wouldn't complete the operation. So I saved it in a different location, and then opened it again. This time when I transposed it, it worked.