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Miscellaneous Learning to play sheet music on guitar.

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I have been struggling to learn to play the guitar for about a year now. Fortunately, it brought me back to my first love - the alto saxophone :sax: Unfortunately, this hasn't helped my guitar playing at all :( My problem has always been that because I can read notes and am accustomed to playing the melody, I find chords and rhythm guitar extremely boring. I realize their importance, so I am trying to fight this tendency by learning to play the notes and then learn the chords by note combinations.

As I know next to nothing about keyboards and chords, I find fretboard diagrams to be confusing, as there are a number of positions to play the same notes on a guitar. I am looking for a straight forward fingering chart for note readers. I assume this would be a tabulature. Unfortunately, the ones I have found don't seem to be systematic and work at the top end of the fretboard, but instead jump all over. Does anyone have any suggestions? A Spanish/classical guitar book/website they can recommend that covers this? Similar guides with the notes and tabs for major scales would be useful as well.
 
I have been struggling to learn to play the guitar for about a year now. Fortunately, it brought me back to my first love - the alto saxophone :sax: Unfortunately, this hasn't helped my guitar playing at all :( My problem has always been that because I can read notes and am accustomed to playing the melody, I find chords and rhythm guitar extremely boring. I realize their importance, so I am trying to fight this tendency by learning to play the notes and then learn the chords by note combinations.

As I know next to nothing about keyboards and chords, I find fretboard diagrams to be confusing, as there are a number of positions to play the same notes on a guitar. I am looking for a straight forward fingering chart for note readers. I assume this would be a tabulature. Unfortunately, the ones I have found don't seem to be systematic and work at the top end of the fretboard, but instead jump all over. Does anyone have any suggestions? A Spanish/classical guitar book/website they can recommend that covers this? Similar guides with the notes and tabs for major scales would be useful as well.
Is the info here Guitar Fretboard any use - recommends a book too?
 
My wife plays classical guitar, so I asked her. She asked what you've tried to learn from already and what style of music you're trying to play, as well as how you want to play it.

A good classical site/forum is delcamp.net, you'll need to register, she said the forum seems to have quite a few people who know what they're talking about.
 
I have been struggling to learn to play the guitar...


freeguitarvideos.com has a good variety of genres to choose and short free lessons .
I really like the jazz man, Guy Fenocchi, who puts up lines bringing out various theoretical points. His premium lessons, at about $5 a 20 minute lesson, are usually 5 examples, say 2,5,1 chords with the jazz lines over them. All sorts including lines in the style of various jazz guitarists. I just liked playing the lines by themselves, and learnt a lot about fingerings and note relationships with 5 variations on a short line of maybe just 4 bars. They give both tablature and dots and I got nowhere with the dots until I started sax 2 years ago. Tablature chord diagrams are usefull but don't try and learn to 'read' them. They're easier to see than either tab or dots notes written into 5 or 6 line notation.

Maybe I've been lucky but I find seeing the dots in terms of sax fingerings has opened up my guitar playing, and I'm beginning to name the notes on the frets.
Jody Worrell covers country music for this site and is very helpful for understanding the moves up and down the fingerboard - lessons on exactly that. And there are some very sophisticated guitarists in country music these days.
Take a look at those if you can.
And Jamie Andrea -guitarprinciples.com is a very verbal educator, who is the biz for getting physically comfortable with your guitar and avoiding rsi in the future.

I wish you lots of luck - playing 2 different instruments can be very positive and creative. Also having 2 different guitars will help you get what it is that hangs you up as you learn.
And finally, all the fuss guitar players make about the little finger being so difficult to train, disappears when you play sax - probably because no-one ever mentions it...
 
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Is the info here Guitar Fretboard any use - recommends a book too?
This looks interesting. Seen from my perspective, it looks like it is possible to play every note on the guitar, by going from 6th. string open, down to and including the fourth fret, then moving to the 5th string, continue down to the 4th. fret, etc. until the 1st. string, where you keep moving until you get down to the 19th. fret... ?
 
My wife plays classical guitar, so I asked her. She asked what you've tried to learn from already and what style of music you're trying to play, as well as how you want to play it.

A good classical site/forum is delcamp.net, you'll need to register, she said the forum seems to have quite a few people who know what they're talking about.
So far I have been dealing mainly with rock rhythm guitar, but have also tried my hand at a little bossa nova. It has all been chord based, while my natural instinct is to go for the melody line. I have both a classical and western acoustic guitar, as well as an electric guitar.
 
Guitar is a very flexible and versatile instrument. You can play rhythm and lead at the same time, all on your own. With an Electric and enough pedals you can be the whole band. If you find playing the instrument boring I would say it's more about the way you're playing it than the instrument itself. The world of rhythm is vast and fascinating. The world is full of it and not just in music.

Each string has more than an octave available and are mostly a Fourth apart, which means that there are lots of places on the fret board you can play the same note. As with the saxophone , the way you finger a note will depend on where you're going next or the timbre required.

Scale practice is as applicable to guitar as it is to woodwind, or any other instrument. The layout of a keyboard should be familiar to every musician. The notes are there to see and chords and intervals are easier to perceive and comprehend. Their names make more sense on a keyboard.

With guitar , the notes are all there in front of you. Each fret is a semitone so it's easy to work out where everything is from the notes you tune the strings to. E A D G B E. Remembering where they are is a part of the skill you have to learn. The dots on the fret board will help you count and negotiate the fret board.

Personally I find playing the guitar frustrating and illogical. Six strings and four fingers. Tuned in fourths apart from that bit just there. I like to use open tunings and strum. I like Bar chords on an electric and playing/singing the blues is uplifting and entertaining. For me. You wouldn't want to listen ...for long

As popular and ubiquitous as the guitar has become, there are simpler stringed instruments out there. The Mando family, four pairs of strings tuned in fifths with the option of widening the range by dividing a pair with octave stringing like a 12 string guitar or Bazuki and the tenor Banjo with four strings tuned in fifths are some popular alternatives The Ukulele is making a big come back and some of the larger ones sound quite pleasing. The number of ukulele groups springing up is amazing. They are a cheap and entertaining night out with the added bonus of learning something about harmony, chords and such and possibly musical theory.

Guitar isn't for every one.
 
:)
This looks interesting. Seen from my perspective, it looks like it is possible to play every note on the guitar, by going from 6th. string open, down to and including the fourth fret, then moving to the 5th string, continue down to the 4th. fret, etc. until the 1st. string, where you keep moving until you get down to the 19th. fret... ?
Yes, that's right :) Well except two of the strings have a smaller interval between them - the 4th and 5th string, if you count the thickest as 1.
 
freeguitarvideos.com has a good variety of genres to choose and short free lessons .
I really like the jazz man, Guy Fenocchi, who puts up lines bringing out various theoretical points. His premium lessons, at about $5 a 20 minute lesson, are usually 5 examples, say 2,5,1 chords with the jazz lines over them. All sorts including lines in the style of various jazz guitarists. I just liked playing the lines by themselves, and learnt a lot about fingerings and note relationships with 5 variations on a short line of maybe just 4 bars. They give both tablature and dots and I got nowhere with the dots until I started sax 2 years ago. Tablature chord diagrams are usefull but don't try and learn to 'read' them. They're easier to see than either tab or dots notes written into 5 or 6 line notation.

Maybe I've been lucky but I find seeing the dots in terms of sax fingerings has opened up my guitar playing, and I'm beginning to name the notes on the frets.
Jody Worrell covers country music for this site and is very helpful for understanding the moves up and down the fingerboard - lessons on exactly that. And there are some very sophisticated guitarists in country music these days.
Take a look at those if you can.
And Jamie Andrea -guitarprinciples.com is a very verbal educator, who is the biz for getting physically comfortable with your guitar and avoiding rsi in the future.

I wish you lots of luck - playing 2 different instruments can be very positive and creative. Also having 2 different guitars will help you get what it is that hangs you up as you learn.
And finally, all the fuss guitar players make about the little finger being so difficult to train, disappears when you play sax - probably because no-one ever mentions it...
Thanks for the very positive input. I am still looking at them, but I am not sure that those sites are what I need.
 
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:)
Yes, that's right :) Well except two of the strings have a smaller interval between them - the 4th and 5th string, if you count the thickest as 1.
Isn't it only the 4th. string between the 1st. and 4th. frets? I ordered the book, so I will see when it arrives, but I feel that I am still lacking two things:
  1. Similar diagrams that show the notes on the fretboard for each major chord available between the 1st. and 4th. frets.
  2. A similar diagram for each major scale.
 
Isn't it only the 4th. string between the 1st. and 4th. frets? I ordered the book, so I will see when it arrives, but I feel that I am still lacking two things:
  1. Similar diagrams that show the notes on the fretboard for each major chord available between the 1st. and 4th. frets.
  2. A similar diagram for each major scale.

This seems to have those diagrams and various minor scales too. The major chords are just notes 1, 3 and 5 of the major scale.

Because mostly the strings are a 4th apart, you play 'open string, notes up to the 4th fret, onto the next string' - allowing for sharps and flats in the scale, except for between strings 4 and 5, where you play 'open string, notes up to the 2nd fret, onto the next string' because strings 4 and 5 are only a 3rd apart.

So - for example, to play Emajor, ie starting on the thickest open string, you would play:

string 1 - open, 2nd fret, 4th fret
string 2 - open, 2nd f, 4th f
string 3, first f, 2nd f, 4th f
string 4, first f, 2nd f
string 5, open, 2nd, 4th f
string 6, open
 
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You could always try Renaissance 6 course lute (usually in G) :mrcool You then have a choice of English/French, German, or Italian tablature... that gives you the fingering and flags above the tablature indicate the rhythm >:) Just the small matter of buying a lute... :rolleyes:

Some viol music is written in lute tablature - the English/French system is I think the most straightforward.

I know almost nothing about guitars, but would guess that a similar system must be in use, as well as staff notation, particularly for classical.

Good luck.
 
Even the most basic( cheapest)version of Band In A Box has been able to show simultanious Tab Fretboard positions and Treble and Bass staves on the fly, ie in real time playback mode for as long as I can remember. I don`t know if there is a demo out there? but anyway. It`s pretty well a "must have" piece of software round these parts and although it has a lot of silly shortcomings is still ideal when it comes to guitar/any transposition requirements.

bIAB GRAB.png
 
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Hi. I am a long time overdue on this thread, just saw it. I think you need to think about the guitar differently. Like the difference between watching cricket and football. One is flowing and one is one ball at a time. Dont compare guitar to sax. There are only the same number of notes as on a sax, but they repeat. Get a fretboard diagram, there are hundreds on line and look at where they repeat. Learn where the octaves between strings occur. Learn what effect the weird string (#3, G) has on the octave and on the intervals. Most of all, unless you are one of our fab ear players with instant grasp, learn some scales. Unlike the sax, there are different ways to play scales, but they all follow the rules of the intervals. So, G major scale starting at third fret sixth string becomes A major if you repeat the thing exaclty two frets up. You can start the scales on any string and the pattern will be mostly different for each one, but for the root note on the same string, the pattern is the same as you go up the fretboard or down the fretboard so changing the name of the scale.

As for reading fretboard digrams, you will just have to learn. Figure out which way up it is and name a note and carry on from there. Two frets a full tone, one fret a half. Usual half tone between E and F and B and C. Its the same music, just in different places.

You arent going to learn that fretboard in two weeks. Depending how much you practice it may take you two months or twenty years. I am currently at 50 years and I cant place every note instantly, but then I never did practice enough.

Learn chords, learn scales, learn the fretboard, explore and listen, learn the intervals and dont fall into the trap of thinking that because its not a sax it should be easy.

I imagine you have given up or become brilliant by now, but there you go.

Cheers
Mike
 

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