Why Should I Learn How To Read Music ?

More than any other instrument,  guitar players are notorious for not knowing how to read music.   We usually start out on our own getting bits of information from TABS on the internet and from tid bit someone we know who plays the guitar.  If we take lessons and have a teacher who teaches how to read music we usually get bored and quit or find a teacher who will just teach us what we want to know minus the reading.  That’s totally ok if you like simple music and just want to strum chords to you favorite songs and maybe sing a bit.  On the other hand, if you’re more serious about it and really want to get good, you should seriously consider learning how to read music.

At some point every aspiring guitarists gets to the point where they have the realization that it would be really beneficial if they actually new where all the notes are on the neck.   Next we set out on the hunt to look for some quick fix methods to help that don’t involve reading music.   Unfortunately, though you may be able to memorize the notes on the neck, it will only be about as useful taking a 101 class in a language you don’t know and then trying to communicate with someone who speaks that language fluently.   If you decide to take the dive into reading music the good news is that, like exercise, it sucks at first but then becomes strangely kind of pleasurable.  When you’re done your happy you did it.  You might even start to looking forward to doing it.  You become healthier, happier and more even capable with everything you do in life.

Reading music is the equivalent of exercising.  It’s benefits are numerous and it will help every aspect of your ability as a guitarist.  There are primarily to aspect in reading music: Reading note names and reading the note rhythms.  Then you have to transfer this knowledge to your specific instrument.

Here are some of the benefits of learning to read rhythms:

  • You will get better at playing on beat.  Music is nothing if you can stay together with the drummer or bassist, assuming that you have a good one!
  • You will make less mistakes because you will be able to actually look at the music and see correct way to play it.
  • Your playing will sound more polished and refined.
  • You also will have a way to remember difficult rhythms or songs you make up because you can write it down.  Music notation is the only complete and accurate way to do it. It has been used for hundreds of years!
  • It will give you the ability to teach yourself rhythms that you are,  by ear, not able to grasp.
  • It will also help in identifying, polishing and fixing problems with in the music when rehearsing a song with other musicians.
  • It will allow you to communicate with other musicians in an effective and efficient manner.
  • You will learn songs faster.
  • You will get better and picking up rhythms by ear.

Here are some the benefits of learning how to read notes:

  • For the first time you will start to really know, with out hesitation, where all the note are on the neck.
  • You will be able to pick up songs faster.
  • You will be able to communicate musical ideas to other musician regardless of which instrument they play.
  • If you also understand music theory you will be able to find and create your own chords and scale shapes.
  • You will be able to make more intelligent choices as to where you play things on the neck.  Most notes on the guitar can be played in multiple places.  A good knowledge of the neck will reveal better options that you never thought of.  This is invaluable as you play more demanding songs.
  • You will not be limited to low quality TAB’s any more and are vastly opening your options to the music you can buy and learn.

Reading is not an overnight process.  It takes diligent practice and time.  Remember music is a language and like any language you’ll only get fluent if you stick with it and use it religiously.  The longer you stick with it the better and more numerous the benefits become.

Coming soon!!! Why should I learn Music Theory?

Coming soon!!! Why should I learn to play by ear?

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