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Music Transcription


Steve’s interest in music transcription began when he was in high school. Learning to play jazz vibraphone and piano as a teenager, Steve began transcribing jazz solos and arrangements for groups he was playing in. Later, while studying music at the University of Michigan, Steve accepted his first paid job transcribing music from recordings. Since that time, Steve has transcribed thousands of pieces of music in a wide variety of genres and now frequently works an “on-site” music transcriber, creating or adapting on-the-spot charts for live shows and recording sessions.


Having perfect pitch, an extensive knowledge of orchestration and music theory, and a background as a drummer/percussionist and keyboardist, Steve can transform nearly any piece of music from an audio or video recording into playable sheet music. He is often called upon to recreate sheet music from recordings for which the printed sheet music has been lost or to transcribe improvised performances and songwriter demos. In addition, Steve is an expert at transcribing audio recordings to MIDI for music production instead of sheet music.


Music Copying / Engraving


Visually beautiful, clear and easy-to-read sheet music can help ensure the success of a performance or recording session. Older printed or handwritten music can be newly-inputted into modern notation software to incorporate revisions, correct errors, and facilitate new performance possibilities.


Whether the source is a handwritten score, a MIDI file, or a previously published work, a fresh new score and parts can be created with a clean, well laid-out design. Wrong notes can be corrected, page turns can be optimized, cuts and repeats can be properly indicated, and bowing / performance techniques can all be clearly notated.


Delivery of completed work can be as print-ready PDFs, notation software files in any desired format (.sib, .musx, .dorico, MusicXML), MIDI files, or as professionally printed and bound sheet music.


Orchestration, Arrangement and Adaptation


Steve has orchestrated, arranged or adapted thousands of pieces of music for recording sessions and live performance. He works with composers’ rough sketches and/or MIDI arrangements to create performance-ready parts for musicians.




An often overlooked but important task is transposing and adapting an existing piece of music into another key. While this can often be as simple as moving everything up or down a half-step, in some cases, partially re-voicing an entire score is necessary to maintain playability and musical clarity. Transposition can be done with existing printed sheet music, PDFs, software notation formats, MIDI and audio files.


Past orchestration, transcription, and composition projects include:



  • The Greatest Showman

  • Masterminds


  • MasterClass

  • Google

  • Amazon.com

  • BECU

  • Hellmann’s

  • Manner

  • Samsung


  • Long Lost Family

  • The A.V. Club

  • Ozzy and Jack’s World Detour

  • Who Do You Think You Are?

  • Hey Arnold The Jungle Movie


  • Harry Styles

  • Santana

  • Tom Morello

  • Paramore

  • Jimmy Eat World

  • Morrissey

  • Young The Giant

  • Steve Martin

  • Bright Star (Broadway Musical)

  • David Foster

  • Nate Ruess

  • Andrea Bocelli

  • Caroline Campbell

  • William Joseph


  1. Contact Steve with the details of your request and include any necessary materials (audio file, YouTube link, etc).

  2. Prospective clients will receive an exact quote and guaranteed date of delivery. Because the complexity and time involved with transcription varies greatly, pricing is project-specific rather than a “per-minute” or “per-page” basis.

  3. Once the project is complete, clients will receive a link or media folder to download/access their transcription.

Transcription Services offered

  • Lead sheets (i.e. Piano/Vocal, Melody/Chords, etc.)

  • Master Rhythm (all rhythm parts together or as separate parts)

  • Solo piano

  • Solo instrument / voice

  • String quartet, chamber music

  • Big band

  • Pit orchestra

  • Full orchestra

  • MIDI transcription (translate sequenced MIDI into playable parts)

  • Professional, publishing-quality engraving from handwritten music

Testimonials From Clients

"I can't believe you were able to transcribe that crazy piano part! You saved the day." - Dave M.

"Thank you again for your prompt and excellent work..!" - John S.

"Thanks so much for all the work you did on this! Made the string recording very seamless." - Steven M. 

"Your charts made playing this very difficult music a breeze! Thanks so much." - Alan K.

"The session went great! Thanks for the flawless charts!" - Carol B.

"The orchestra rehearsal went so smoothly thanks to the new parts. Bravo!" - Bernhard W. 

Examples of Transcription work

contact us today!

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Selected credits

Some of the artists Steve has had the privilege to work with either as a live performer, producer/arranger, or as a studio musician.

John Williams
Nate Ruess
Jason Mraz
David Foster
Peter Asher
Paul Simon
Peter Cetera
Michael Bolton
Tobias Jesso Jr.
Dylan Gardner
Jim Adkins / Jimmy Eat World
Becky G
Don Was
Steve Gadd
Justin Meldal-Johnsen
Jeff Bhasker
Sam Means
Bill Murray
Steve Martin
Edie Brickell
Roger Joseph Manning, Jr.
Young the Giant
Emile Haynie
Randy Newman
Brian Wilson
Andrew Wyatt
Colin Blunstone
John Grant
Kenneth "Babyface" Edmonds
Ruben Studdard
Brenna Whitaker
Mark Masri
Kelly Levesque
Fernando Varela
Graham Nash
Kenny Loggins
J.D. Souther
Katherine McPhee
Stevie Nicks
Cobra Starship
Chris Isaak
Lyle Lovett
Paul Anka
Tony Bennett
Andrea Bocelli
Natalie Cole
Reba McEntire
Patrick Stump
Shawn Colvin
Michelle Branch
Boz Skaggs
Spencer Davis
Sean and Sara Watkins
Micky Dolenz
The Webb Sisters
Raul Malo
Neil Sedaka
Michael Feinstein
William Joseph
Katherine Jenkins
Peter and Gordon
Gerry and the Pacemakers
Cody Karey
Classical Nouveaux
Monica Mancini
Kenny Endo
BeBe & CeCe Winans
Tom Scott
Joe Chiccarelli
Chad and Jeremy
Patti Austin
Clay Walker
David Benoit
Dick Hyman
Matthew Wolcott

recent projects

Nate Ruess's official lyric video for 'Brightside' from the new album Grand Romantic. Orchestra arranged by Roger Joseph Manning, Jr., orchestration and conducting by Steve Aho.

Steve Aho playing timpani and percussion with Adele at the 2013 Oscar Academy Awards

Live at the Hollywood Bowl with Andrea Bocelli. Violinist Caroline Campbell. Composed by Leonard Bernstein, arranged by Raimundo Penaforte, adapted by Caroline Campbell, orchestrated by Steve Aho.

"11-ish" - Feat. Steve Aho, recorded and filmed at Brick and Mortar Studios in Los Angeles. With Peter Kaster on bass.

Performance of William Joseph's "Kashmir" 60 feet in the air at LACMA. William Joseph, piano, Caroline Campbell, violin, Steve Aho, drums and Trevor Gorton, bass.

Recored at Brick & Mortar Studios, Melrose Avenue, Los Angeles on Feb. 24th 2012 Produced by Peter Kastner. Bass: Peter Kastner Drums: Aram Zarikiam Guitars: Sebastian Rossboeck, Blake Straus Keys: Steve Aho Lapsteel: Critical Jim Vocals: Laura Baruch, Michael Bleiweis, Jesse Bradley, Andreya Triana Writen by Lennon/McCartney

Featuring William Joseph on piano, Pauline Kim Harris on violin, Alisha Bauer on cello and Steve Aho on drums. Composed by David Foster and William Joseph.

Official music video for Becky G's "Break A Sweat" with Steve Aho in the drum line.

Amazon Prime commercial - drums, additional orchestration and programming by Steve Aho.

United Airlines commercial featuring Steve Aho playing timpani in business class

Provided to YouTube by Warner Music Group Be Honest (feat. Inara George) · Jason Mraz · Inara George ℗ 2012 Atlantic Recording Corporation for the United States and WEA International Inc. for the world outside of the United States. Steve Aho - vibraphone.

Provided to YouTube by Sony Music Entertainment Go Where The Love Is · Edie Brickell · The Gadabouts ℗ 2013 Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation Released on: 2013-06-28 Associated Performer, Composer, Lyricist, Vocal: Edie Brickell Associated Performer: The Gadabouts Associated Performer: Edie Brickell and The Gaddabouts Drums, Producer: Steve Gadd Congas, Percussion: Steve Aho Percussion, Producer, Vocal: Paul Simon / 保羅賽門 Percussion, Producer: Peter Asher Piano: Jeffrey Alan Ross Guitar: Hugh McCracken Guitar: Jeffrey Mironov Bass: Neil Jason Grossman Accordion: Adrian Simon Recording Engineer: Andy Smith Recording Engineer: Nathaniel Kunkel

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