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Why even bother to learn music notation?

why Music notation is a language and there are various reasons why people learn it. There are on the other hand also reasons guys don’t bother with it at all, but it certainly can’t hurt to look at the pro’s and cons of learn notation before making a decision which camp your to be in. Do we actually need to learn the stave and its language to be valid guitarists and musicians? The answer is, I don’t know, but I do know you don’t need to know music notation to play guitar and be in a successful band. Music notation has allsorts purpose and just as many benefits, yet there seems to be only one thing that stops some people learning it, and that’s time. Guys I know either don’t have the time or don’t want to spend time to learn it. The excuse is that it’s precious time that can be spent on other more useful parts of music theory, songs or technique. Some reasons there are for us to learn it are as follows; Work To earn money as a guitarist takes skills, teaching guitar often needs to be accompanied with some notation skill especially if you end up working in education like schools or college. Session musicians often need site-reading skills and an ensemble or jazz gig will often involve musical notation. Writing If we are going to write our music so others can read it or to preserve on paper for using later then we will need to able to write notation. Tablature is the guitarists best friend when it comes to writing but its limiting as there are no rhythmic values or note lengths to follow. Transcribing If we are going to learn other people’s music then we’ll be far better able to find resources that are unusual or better than what’s available in standard tablature. If we need to transcribe it out for reference or teaching then notation is necessary again. Just copying stuff to memory is valid and useful but very limiting. Other instruments Sometime we can find ourselves branching out from the stringed instrument and if we do expand into other instruments the again notation is going to essential for this. Why limit yourself? Programming If you ever want to use midi software, drum programming or other instruments then you’ll definitely need to know the note values and rhythmic values which is half the battle done. Although the programs don’t use the stave but a graphical grid you aren’t far off knowing the rest if you can use that already. To understand music theory jokes Well actually this joke is not about notation but it is kind of interesting and funny plus you WILL need to know music theory to even understand it JOKE C, an E-flat, and G go into a bar. The bartender says: "Sorry, but we don't serve minors." So, the E-flat leaves, and the C and the G have an open fifth between them. After a few drinks, the fifth is diminished: the G is out flat. An F comes in and tries to augment the situation, but is not sharp enough. A D comes into the bar and heads straight for the bathroom saying, "Excuse me, I'll just be a second." An A comes into the bar, but the bartender is not convinced that this relative of C is not a minor. Then the bartender notices a B-flat hiding at the end of the bar and exclaims: "Get out now! You're the seventh minor I've found in this bar tonight." The E-flat, not easily deflated, comes back to the bar the next night in a 3-piece suit with nicely shined shoes. The bartender (who used to have a nice corporate job until his company downsized) says: "You're looking sharp tonight, come on in! This could be a major development." This proves to be the case, as the E-flat takes off the suit and stands there au natural. Eventually, the C sobers up and realizes in horror that he's under a rest. The C is brought to trial, is found guilty of contributing to the diminution of a minor, and is sentenced to 10 years of DS without Coda at an upscale correctional facility. On appeal, however, the C is found innocent of any wrongdoing, even accidental, and that all accusations to the contrary are bassless. The bartender decides, however, that since he's only had tenor so patrons, the soprano out in the bathroom, and everything has become alto much treble, he needs a rest and closes the bar. GUITAR ADDICTION CHATTER ON THE SUBJECT Scottwork Stirling I personally know very little about what I play - I wish I had learned theory when I was younger and my brain was more tactile and pliable - I feel musically dyslexic now at my age and trying to learn seems really difficult, but it would be nice to actually know what I'm doing when I do play something right so I can apply it again in the future and in the right context rather than having to rely on my ear pointing out all my mistakes first. Blaž Hrovat I know my scales and harmonies and notes, modes and a lot of theory, but I've never read a single line of the classic musical notation. it's so useless for guitar, especially since we have tabs instead. Theory is very important. The classic notation isn’t. At least not for guitar. but I’m sure other instruments have other, more convenient ways of writing down music too. Justin Shelton It's just such a useful thing to know. And it's very important if you ever want to take your abilities outside of just your one instrument or if you want to delve into classical guitar and lute music. Tyson Bastick I know a lot of theory about scales and such like, but notation I always thought was a waste of time! Could be more constructive with my time wink emoticon Steven Peters it's not useless or a waste of time if you ever want to be a professional musician and work with other professional musicians. Fabio Siddi I play classical guitar so I know how to read classical notation. And classical requires so much more skill than electric. Dave Thompson Classical requires a different skill set than electric, it's not "much more skill". Learn to read. It won't ever be a hinderance. Peter Wessell I can read music because it helps. Fabio I also play classical and flamenco and electric and fretless and violin and shakuhachi , when you get to a certain point all require a lot of skill none more so than the other, just different. Joe Smith Because its the language of music/musicians...it can make you money..because most people read"tabs"...tabs are not the language of other instruments...it puts you on par with the rest of the music world..and many Great tunes are not in Tab. Michael Dolce having a great ear and spending time training your ears is more valuable to me than reading dots. Dave Thompson Ear training > reading for me as well, reading is still valuable however Peter Wessell the dots are only there to help. Once you learn how to read them, which doesn't take that long anyway, it is a lot easier to learn something and it takes the guess work out of a piece so you concentrate on perfecting the piece. DJoshua Richardson I use it for writing harmonies, transposing and makeing parts fit on other instruments ie. Cello, Violin, piano Jody Samuel Lynch The same reason literacy is important in life otherwise. Communication and a tool to educate oneself. Jared Arnott I made it to grade 5 royal conservatory piano, and I view guitar as shapes on the fingerboard. Andy Gelband I'll turn the argument on its head - if you could make a wish and magically know your theory and be able to sight read any piece, would you? Of course you would. So it's an issue of priority and opportunity. I have SO far to go but through GA have moved well along the path. And that's the only reason I forgive Mark for encouraging my GAS! Jeff Luvmygirlz Martin The literacy factor is there, but among other things, not being able to read limits your learning resources. You will only ever be able to learn something that has been tabbed out. I have tons of books that aren't tabbed, and i would hate for me not to be able to access those depths. James Adams For the same reason a physicist should learn mathematics Edan Z. Hollombe Because it makes you a better overall musician Steven Peters It is quite important if you want to be a professional musician and work with other professional musicians that play other instruments. In that situation knowing only Guitar Tablature is not really going to cut it. Kristian Gårdhus Wichmann As someone who knows standard notation pretty well and is still a rather bad sight reader, I think it's important to make that distinction between those two. Knowing how standard notation works is a lot less work than being able to sight read! Michael Dolce I just want to clarify that becoming a professional musician does not require you to read music . Been a professional for 20years and have never lost a gig to reading constraints. There's so many fields in this industry look for them you'll be surprised. I've taught myself to understand my own method of writing charts that most people wouldn't understand or be able to read but it works perfectly for me Jonathan ? Graham Opens up more opportunities work wise. Good sight readers that are guitar players seem to be much less common, Dave Price It depends on what your goals are. Most professional gigs I have done required reading standard notation so it makes sense to learn it if you are considering it as a career. It's really not that hard to learn. It just takes a little time and regular practice.
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