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#472035 - 05/09/18 08:17 AM [Beginners Forum] Repeats
Narayano Offline

Registered: 02/13/18
Posts: 36
I am entering the chords for an Irish tune in the format A B where part A is played twice then part B is played twice. So after entering the 16 bars of part A, I then ask for a repeat from bar 1 to bar 16. The tune repeats but then keeps on repeating, not just the one repeat that I ask for. Also, is it possible to repeat certain parts of the tune?
I'm also not sure about the 1/2nd endings settings.

Thanks to everyone for the great help available here without which I would now be suffering from the screaming weebjabs smile


#472044 - 05/09/18 08:55 AM [Beginners Forum] Re: Repeats [Re: Narayano]
Matt Finley Offline

Registered: 07/12/00
Posts: 17205
Loc: Hudson Valley & Lake George NY
It’s only possible, to my knowledge, to repeat one part of a song. You are describing two.

What I would do is copy the first 16 bars so you have A, A. This is a total of 32 bars. Then do B twice also, same way. All of that becomes once through the whole song. Then the number of choruses (default 3) means, three times through the whole song, each of which is AABB.
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#472047 - 05/09/18 08:59 AM [Beginners Forum] Re: Repeats [Re: Narayano]
Noel96 Offline

Registered: 10/31/08
Posts: 13046
Loc: Australia

Rather than trying to set a song out in BIAB as if it were sheet music, I lay it out from start to finish without repeats. This is exactly the same as an orchestra score. It's usually the simplest way of getting the job done and it also allows for much more control with part markers and bar settings which I use to develop arrangements.

Repeats are essentially a notation device and allow people to print music on the minimum number of pages.

With copy and paste in BIAB, it's very easy to enter a few bars, then copy them and paste them.

Also... make sure that your number of choruses is set to "1".

If you want to investigate repeats in more detail, have a look at the thread below. A little way through the thread, I go into more detail on repeats and give examples.



#472058 - 05/09/18 09:29 AM [Beginners Forum] Re: Repeats [Re: Matt Finley]
Narayano Offline

Registered: 02/13/18
Posts: 36
Many thanks for that.

#472060 - 05/09/18 09:30 AM [Beginners Forum] Re: Repeats [Re: Noel96]
Narayano Offline

Registered: 02/13/18
Posts: 36
Thanks Noel. I was thinking that might be what I need to do so I shall go ahead with it.


#472085 - 05/09/18 11:33 AM [Beginners Forum] Re: Repeats [Re: Narayano]
Matt Finley Offline

Registered: 07/12/00
Posts: 17205
Loc: Hudson Valley & Lake George NY
You'll find a split of opinion on this general topic. Some like to lay out the whole song without using repeats. I use the repeats, but to do that you have to know that BIAB considers one chorus to be once through the whole song form.

If you lay it out as one long song, you just have to be aware of BIAB's limit of 255 measures.
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#472103 - 05/09/18 12:09 PM [Beginners Forum] Re: Repeats [Re: Narayano]
Jim Fogle Offline

Registered: 08/20/11
Posts: 3716
Loc: Winston-Salem, NC USA
Another way to accomplish your goal is to use the Song Form Maker. The Song Form Maker is available from the Tools toolbar > the double arrow to display more options > Song Form > Song Form Dialog. You use the dialog to divide the song project into discrete blocks or sections. You then join the blocks or sections together to create the song form.
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#472118 - 05/09/18 12:58 PM [Beginners Forum] Re: Repeats [Re: Narayano]
Kent - PG Music Offline
PG Music Staff

Registered: 11/05/08
Posts: 764
Hi Narayano,

You can use repeats to do what you've described, but without seeing the song file, it's hard to say what went wrong. I'm guessing you didn't check the "Generate (insert) new bars" checkbox when making the repeat, and can confirm this if you send the song file to

We have a great tutorial on repeats here if you're interested:

PG Music

#473080 - 05/16/18 06:56 AM [Beginners Forum] Re: Repeats [Re: Narayano]
Guitarhacker Offline

Registered: 04/03/09
Posts: 5606
In a simple A/B format...well actually in any song format, I opt to UNFOLD the song into one big chorus.

I edit with copy and paste to get what I want. Then the song plays straight through top to bottom with no repeats. I tried to use the musical road signs when I first started but really found it awkward to get the structure I wanted...easily.

Since I stated using the UNFOLDED song form, there have been no issues at all.

Yeah, there's a limit to the number of measures, but in all honesty, I have never come close to exceeding the limit.... I think it 255 measures. Since most songs are between 100 to 120 measures, and run in the 3 to 4 minute in length range, it's not a big issue.

If I need a repeat of the verse/chorus, I simply copy and paste it where it needs to go. Add measures to the song as needed or delete if that's needed.

This method is very simple and straightforward and works well for me.
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#473199 - 05/17/18 05:49 AM [Beginners Forum] Re: Repeats [Re: Guitarhacker]
Dave Offline

Registered: 07/17/00
Posts: 399
Loc: Burlington, Ontario, Canada
My process is similar. I build the song in linear form, by direct input of notes and chords, and by copy / paste. Most of my songs have lyrics, so this is the place to insert them. Again direct input and copy / paste. Once it is built and sounds the way I want, I save the result.

Then I can add repeats, 1st / 2nd endings, DS al coda, and whatever else I want. since this is a essentially a print function, if you mess it up, you can fix it, or go back to the saved version. Using repeats here does not change how the song plays, only how it is displayed.

You can have repeats within repeats, endings within repeats. BIAB doesn't care.

The key is the linear development of the song.
BIAB for Windows Version 2018 (516)
Windows 10

#473232 - 05/17/18 09:00 AM [Beginners Forum] Re: Repeats [Re: Narayano]
jford Offline

Registered: 12/20/00
Posts: 10361
Loc: Pensacola, Florida
I prefer to input songs linearly, as well. I do my notation in a dedicated notation program, so I'm less worred about BIAB notation. Also, by doing it linearly, all the bar numbers match up when I bring it into RealBand (or any other DAW). That makes it easy when I need to make some changes between the two (perhaps I got a chord wrong). I generally have both BIAB and RealBand versions of the songs. I usually use the BIAB version for casual play-along, because it's quick and easy, but then use RealBand for when I actually want to ultimately create a recording of the song.

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