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How To Read Guitar Tablature - Basics To Reading Guitar Tabs

If you do not know how to read musical notation, but lets say you want to learn how to jam the new Fall Out Boys song on your guitar. You will first need to learn how to read guitar tablature. Don't worry though, because learning guitar tabs is very easy once you know all the basics.

Guitar Tab Basics

A standard tablature staff would look something like this:

e-------------------------------------------------
B-------------------------------------------------
G----...

how to read guitar tablature, how to read guitar tabs, guitar tablature, reading guitar tablature

If you do not know how to read musical notation, but lets say you want to learn how to jam the new Fall Out Boys song on your guitar. You will first need to learn how to read guitar tablature. Don't worry though, because learning guitar tabs is very easy once you know all the basics.

Guitar Tab Basics

A standard tablature staff would look something like this:

e-------------------------------------------------
B-------------------------------------------------
G-------------------------------------------------
D-------------------------------------------------
A-------------------------------------------------
E-------------------------------------------------

When you look at this, you have to visualize that each line and letter represent each string on a guitar. Starting from the bottom to the top they are:

E – the 6th string (thickest)
A – the 5th string
D – the 4th string
G – the 3rd string
B – the 2nd string
e – the 1st string (thinnest)

Now you will see that there are numbers written into the the staff. Each number represents what fret you push down and on what string. In the following tab example , each number is lined up on the A string (5th string) one after another which tells you that they should be played one after another. The 0 means that you pluck the A string open (without pushing on the string),1 – move to the 1st fret pluck, 2 – move to the 2nd fret, 3 – move to the 3rd fret.

E-------------------------------------------------
B-------------------------------------------------
G-------------------------------------------------
D-------------------------------------------------
A-------------------------------------------------
E----0--1--2--3-----------------------------------

Chords are represented with numbers written on top of each other.
Here is what a C Major chord would look like:

E------------------------------------------------
B----1-------------------------------------------
G------------------------------------------------
D----2-------------------------------------------
A----3-------------------------------------------
E----0-------------------------------------------

You will notice that the 1st string (e) , and the 3rd string (G) have no numbers, this means that you do not strum those strings. They are in a basically just muted and not played.

The biggest disadvantage to tablature is the the fact that you are not able to accurately define how long each not should be held for. The best way to figure this out is by listening to the actual song that you are trying to play. This is actually the best way to use tabs.

Find the tab to the song you want to learn
Play that song on a radio, or your computer, or whatever means you have
Break the song into sections, starting with whatever is easiest for you
Slowly begin to put each section together
Although tablature does not give you the exact timing, they do give you some idea by spacing the numbers out. An example would look like this:

E------------------------3-------------------------
B--------------------------3-----------------------
G--------------------------------------------------
D--------------0---------------------0-------------
A------------2--------------------------2----------
E----3-------------------------------------3-------

You will also come across symbols that are use to represent certain actions.

h - hammer on ----2h3----
p - pull off ----3p2----
b - bend string up ----5b7----
r - release bend ----5b7r5----
/ - slide up ----5/7----
\ - slide down ----7\5----
v - vibrato (sometimes written as ~) ----3v---- or ----3~----
x - muted, struck string ----000--xxx--000---
pm – palm mute

 

How To Read Guitar Music

It is never too late or too early to learn how to read guitar music. Many guitarist start off by teaching themselves guitar music after studying a piece of music on the radio or on a CD. This is a great starting point and will allow you to understand different notes and cords.

learn guitar

It is never too late or too early to learn how to read guitar music. Many guitarist start off by teaching themselves guitar music after studying a piece of music on the radio or on a CD. This is a great starting point and will allow you to understand different notes and cords.

Basic Elements

On a guitar, the tab staff has 6 horizontal lines. Each one of these horizontal lines represents a string on the instrument. The line on the bottom of the staff is the lowest “E” string on the guitar. The next line up from the bottom line represents the “A” string and so on. These are the basic elements when you learn how to read guitar music.

Chords

When your guitar tab displays numbers stacked vertically in a series, this is an indication to play these notes at the same time. When the guitar tab displays numbers in a series gradually on an incline, this is indicating these notes should be played one at a time. These are the first things you should know when you learn how to read guitar music.

Rhythmic notation

Rhythmic notation is how the songs rhythm should be heard when played. When you first learn how to read guitar music you should try songs you can access on a CD or radio so you can hear the rhythm before you commence learning the chords. Hearing the rhythm will make learning much easier.

A Major chord

An A major chord is the first chord you will learn to play and the first chord you will see when you learn how to read guitar music. An A major chord contains only 3 different notes. No more then 3 notes are used in an A major chord and these can generally be repeated more then once.

Discipline

The key when you learn how to read guitar music is discipline. Learning good techniques and having an excellent teacher will ensure you get the most out of your lessons. Once you have learned the basics of guitar music, you will find it easier to progress onto advanced guitar music.

Writing guitar music

When you learn how to read guitar music it is important to watch how the music is written. Take notice of the use of the chords in different sections of the music and take note of how easy the chords flow. When you become more advanced and start to write your own guitar music, these techniques will help you.

 

How To Fix A Guitar

The following four adjustments can be made to all kinds of guitars to fix them. These adjustments will fix all guitars and make them playable. The adjustments are the amount of relief in the neck using an adjustable truss rod, the string height at the saddle, the string height at the nut and the intonation.

These adjustments should be made at least once on every guitar. Most manufacturers do not take time to properly do these adjustments. A manufacturer only does these adj...

how to fix a guitar

The following four adjustments can be made to all kinds of guitars to fix them. These adjustments will fix all guitars and make them playable. The adjustments are the amount of relief in the neck using an adjustable truss rod, the string height at the saddle, the string height at the nut and the intonation.

These adjustments should be made at least once on every guitar. Most manufacturers do not take time to properly do these adjustments. A manufacturer only does these adjustments for the average player, but not for the individual player.

How do you adjust the amount of the neck bow? It is supposed to be simple. Every adjustable truss rod shares the same principles of operation. Every truss rod has a threaded nut tightened on a threaded metal rod. The tension in the rod changes the curvature of the neck in which the the rod is embedded. To adjust the rod, you need to tighten or loosen the nut on the rod. When tighten the nut, the tension increases the tension in the rod as well the amount which the rod counteracts the pull of the strings. This should reduce the bow in the neck.

As far as adjusting the saddle height, you can do this either before or after adjusting the string height at the nut. You should start by measuring the distance from the top of the twelfth fret to the bottom of the sixth string. You should do this when the guitar's strings are at full strength. You should measure laying a 6-inch ruler, on edge, adjacent to and parallel to the string.

The ruler is supported at one end of the twelfth fret and along its length by adjacent frets, eleven, ten, nine, etc. You can use other methods to measure from the top of the twelfth to the bottom of the string.

Another thing that you might have to fix is the string height. You can start by using elementary geometry. You will find that the change in the string height at the twelfth fret needs to be about twice the of change at the saddle. If a string height at the twelfth fret is 4/32" and the desired measurement is 3/32", the change in height will have to be lowered by 1/32" at the twelfth fret is about 2/32".

After taking measurements, you should calculate the amount that each string needs to be lowered at the saddle. You should make adjustments the saddle must project at least 1/16" from the top of the bridge. This should make sure that the strings exert a sufficient downward force on the saddle to stop the strings from vibrating side-to-side on the top surface of the saddle. If you cannot maintain this 1/16" projection, it will be necessary to reset or shave the bridge. This should be done by a professional repairer or a skilled amateur. The last adjustment that you should make is to the string height at the nut.

The required tools are a short straight edge (ruler), a standard set of feeler gages, a set of calibrated nut files, an X-acto saw and a tear-drop needle file. You should start by measuring the height of the first fret. You measure the first fret by placing a straight edge on the top of the first two frets so it straddles on the first and second frets. The slide feeler gages should be place between the fingerboard and the straight edge until the gages fill in the space between the fingerboard and the straight edge. When it doesn't fit the required measurement for a string height at the nut, you should adjust it.




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