When a Trombone player read music from the Treble Clef How does he/she reads it, does he/she reads middle C an Octave down?

  • Why don't you look at a trombone "fingering" chart? Jul 21, 2016 at 12:06

2 Answers 2


There are two possibilities. He may be reading "brass band treble", a major 9th higher than sounding pitch. In this case the part would be in treble clef throughout, and the musical context would be a British tradition brass band. Or he may be reading a concert pitch part which has ventured into treble clef from its usual bass clef.

  • Two comments: (1) The reason "brass band treble" exists is so that a Bb trumpet player can pick up a baritone/euphonium and use the same fingerings (similar to how saxophone parts are written.) (2) Having played trombone for many years, I would say that I have come across brass band treble many times more often than true non-transposing treble clef. However, this may simply be a function of the type of music I play. Jul 21, 2016 at 14:25
  • As this is a brass band thing, probably it would be a cornet player, rather than a trumpeter. I've only seen literal treble clef in jazz and commercial music. Those guys seem to run scared of tenor or alto clef, which an orchestral player would be familiar with. Tenor clef is brass-band-treble (for a Bb instrument) plus two flats. And bass clef is brass-band-treble (for Eb bass) plus three flats. The brass-band Bass Trombone reads non-transposed bass clef. Even when the old G bass trombone (the one with the handle on the slide) was used, it still read non-transposed bass clef.
    – Laurence
    Jul 21, 2016 at 21:50

There's no adjustment for Octave. Middle C is still C4.

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