Guitar Tablature – the ‘Hows’ and ‘Whys’

musicLet’s get back to the topic of guitar tabs for a minute. Even though I published a post on the topic some time ago, I think that the insight presented by James (the author of this post) can still help a lot of guitarists.

Reading music and playing almost any musical instrument can be an immensely satisfying pastime. Whether one wants to become a professional musician, or are simply interested in pursuing an interest or a hobby, playing the guitar, for instance, can be an extremely rewarding way to spend time.

One of the ways in which to pick up this instrument easily is to go in for something known as guitar tablature. Guitar tablature is nothing but a series of lines that form something known as a stave or staff, which is pretty similar to standard notation. Each of these lines – 6 in total – represents one string of the guitar.

The top line of this guitar tablature is symbolic of the first string or the highest pitched string of the guitar and so on. Normally these lines are numbered from 1 to 6 where one represents the high E string.

Apart from the strings, there are also specific tablature symbols that represent specific techniques. Techniques such as slide up, right hand, hammer on and legato slide to name just a few can also be represented with guitar tablature.

It is also interesting to note that guitar tablature does not follow standardized or conventional norms and you can get many variations from different publishers of sheet music.

Advantages of Guitar Tablature

One of the biggest advantages of guitar tablature is the fact that it enables easier and quicker learning of this wonderful musical instrument. The biggest difference between using guitar tab and standard or conventional music notation is the fact that guitar tab uses a combination of keyboard characters and ordinary numbers to enable people to easily understand music.

In today’s day and age of the computer, guitar tab comes across as an extremely user-friendly way of learning about guitar music. In simple layman terms, guitar tab lets the player have a visual understanding of where to place their fingers since it pictures the fret board of the guitar directly.

Guitar tablature is nothing but sheet music that denotes the notes that are being played on the guitar and also the chords. Therefore, it becomes extremely easy to read and understand guitar. One can probably even start playing the guitar pretty fluently almost immediately. Interestingly, the internet is a great source to get hold of free guitar tablature for all kinds of music and all genres of music. If you so choose, you can also invest in a few good guitar tablature books and enjoy learning the guitar in a much more easier fashion.

One of the easiest ways to use guitar tablature is to get onto the internet and use your favorite search engine and enter terms such as the song title that you looking for and guitar tab in the search term.

For instance, you could search for “Black Velvet guitar tab” and scan through the results and find what you are looking for. There are also some very useful videos that you could access which will teach you how to read guitar tablature and become a pro at playing the guitar in a shorter frame of time.

James is a writer and blogger with 5 years of experience.


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