SongBook Songs and Chords

Chordpro Format

SongBook stores songs in the chordpro format, a simple format for notation of lyrics together with chords. Using your Internet search engine you can find huge collections of songs in chordpro format in the Word Wide Web.

In the chordpro format chords are denoted in square brackets [] in the text, e.g.

[Em]Alas, my [G]love, you [D]do me [Bm]wrong,

SongBook will render this as

Em       G         D     Bm
Alas, my love, you do me wrong,

In addition to the chords in square brackets, the chordpro format defines several control sequences in curly brackets {}. Songbook understands the following control statements:

{title: ...} or {t: ...}

Song title. This is displayed in the song list screen and in the title bar.

{subtitle: ...} or {st: ...}Song subtitle, typically the interpret or composer. This is displayed in the song list screen and in the title bar.
{c: ...}Comment, e.g. Repeat 2x or Chorus. Comments are rendered inverse.
{soc} and {eoc}

Start and end of chorus. A chorus is marked by a black line to the left (or indented or shaded)

{sot} and {eot}Start and end of tab. A tab (tablature) section is rendered in a fixed width font.
{soh} and {eoh}Start and end of highlight marker. Use {soh #rrggbb} for highlighting in arbitrary web colors (e.g. {soh #00FF00} to highlight with green background).
{define ...}Used to define a special chord for this song. The chord format is
<chord name> <base fret> <string 6> ...<string 1>, i.e.
G 1 3 2 0 0 0 3
#Lines starting with # are comment lines and are ignored in the song view.
SongBook specific controls
{tempo: ...}Defines scroll speed used for auto-scrolling. Device-specific as tempo-iphone, tempo-ipad or tempo-android. The value is 1 to 400, with 1=1s/pixel and 400 = 0.025s/pixel
{time: mm:ss}(iOS/Android/Mac) Total playing time of song, used for auto-scrolling independent of zoom-factor. Supersedes {tempo:...}
{pause: ...}(iOS/Android/Mac) If this line reaches the top of the screen, auto-scrolling will pause for the specified number of seconds (also works on beginning of song)
{metronome: ...}(iOS/Android) Defines the metronome tempo for this song (beats per minute)
{key: ...}Key of the current song, used e.g. for transposition. If not set, SongBook uses the first [chord] in the song as key.
{capo: ...}Indicates usage of a capo (negative transpose and shown as comment).
{zoom: ...}Zoom size for current song. Device-specific as zoom-iphone, zoom-ipad, zoom-android. 1 is original size (depending on font preferences).
{tag: ...}an arbitrary tag for a song (e.g. *** for favorites, or In Progress). Can be used multiple times.
{instrument: ...}(iOS/Android/Mac) Load specific instrument only for this song
{tuning: ...}(iOS/Android) Song-specific tuning (with {instrument: ...}), e.g. {tuning: D A D G B E}
{musicpath: ...}

Path to a music (MP3) file relative to the SongBook directory which can be played with the song

SongBook will also recognize hyperlinks in the song text, e.g.,, file://path/to/file etc.

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