Key (also known as key signature or scale) refers to the relevant set of pitches and notes that have been used in a song. It describes the formulation of notes in the melodic and harmonic elements of a song and helps define a song’s tone and emotional response.
If you’re a vocalist, a DJ or a musician of any kind, you would know that identifying the key of a song is important for many reasons. It allows you to understand the function of each note within a piece of music and makes it possible to know which notes are going to be present throughout a song.
Here are five strategies that will help you find the key of any song without having to know anything about music theory.
- | Method 1: Tunebat Online Key Analyzer
- | Method 2: Google It
- | Method 3: Check Digital Music Stores
- | Method 4: Mixed In Key Software
- | Method 5: Find The Sheet Music
Without further ado, let’s get started!
| Method 1: Tunebat Online Key Analyzer
Tunebat is a free key and tempo analyzer tool that instantly displays the key and BPM of any track from your computer. Simply drag & drop your audio files into the file area or click the file area and select an audio file from your computer to get started. The Tunebat AI will quickly analyze the song and display its key & BPM estimates, as well as additional data depending on your plan.
You can also find a song’s key by searching Tunebat’s huge database of songs, albums and artists. Type in the name of a song or artist into the search bar at the top of the Tunebat window, then locate the key listed beside the track’s title.
| Method 2: Google It
A great way to quickly find the key of a song is to simply google it. Type in the name and artist of a song, then add “key” to the end of the search. Most of the time, you will be able to identify the song’s key in the descriptions of the websites listed. This method works particularly well for more popular songs.
| Method 3: Check Online Music Stores
Another way to find the key of a song is by searching online music stores. Stores like Beatport show the key of a song on its download page. Visit your preferred digital music store, then type in the name of the song into the search bar. Click on the correct version of the track and look for its key in the information section.
| Method 4: Mixed In Key Software
Mixed In Key is a useful software for Mac and Windows that analyses the key of your MP3 or WAV files. Although this method requires you to download and install software, it’s a quick and easy way to find the key of all the songs on your computer. We recommend using this method if you are looking to find the key of a collection of songs or songs in a particular key.
| Method 5: Find The Sheet Music
If you have access to the sheet music of a particular song, finding its key is simple. The key of a piece of music is determined by the combination of sharps or flats displayed at the beginning of its sheet music. The chart below shows how the different major and minor key signatures are represented in sheet music.
If the song has a happy or a positive effect on the listener, it will likely be in a major key. In contrast, if the song has a sad or less positive effect on the listener, it will likely be in a minor key.
(Image by Musicnote)
Want To Know More?
Here at Live Aspects, we have dozens of useful lessons and tutorials created to enhance your music production skills and help speed up the learning process. You can access our huge range of music theory lessons and production tips and tricks here.