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#1
thanks tosites like UG tab for almost any song is now freely available and normally pretty good. even if it's only been out a couple of weeks you can normally find a tab of the riffs or even the solos.

but has this made people lazy? when playing from tab, i normally find songs that i can pick up pretty quickly and just play through with them on the second or so time occasionally pausing for the trickier bits. but i never really learn or improve that way. the songs i really learn from are the ones i take the time to transpose and learn properly. i can see the younger generation becoming more and more reliant on tab as it's so easy to find, forming a new generation of cover bands?

so is tab actually hindering peoples playing? turning us into boring drones who don't write music?

thoughts?
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#2
That doesn't make sense. First off, a way to write down musical inventions can't hinder creativity. Secondly, what you're trying to say (as far as I can gather) is that because we have access to songs more easily now, we're losing our ability to write music? I don't see the correlation.
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#3
Quote by doive
turning us into boring drones who don't write music?

If you chose to have a cover band that's up to you. As for me, I prefer actually making something new.
#5
I think what he's talking about is how you can just go online and find a tab easily, as opposed to earlier generations having to actually sit down and figure songs out by ear.
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#6
Well, i look at tabs a lot because i really don't have a ton of time to try and figure out songs, and it helps my playing ability tremendoulsy. I'm still playing the guitar.
#7
haha - you're right i'm not making a lot of sense - beer and 2am doesn't help that :p

what i meant to say is that cos tab is so easily available it's easy to be lazy and never properly learn from others phrasing etc. so therefore becoming less creative with our own
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#8
Tab is killing ear training... but thats about it
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#9
No, I don't think it is killing creativity.

Sometimes you just can't figure out that solo or don't know what tuning is being used. That is why you look up a tab.
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#10
Quote by DaddyTwoFoot
That doesn't make sense. First off, a way to write down musical inventions can't hinder creativity. Secondly, what you're trying to say (as far as I can gather) is that because we have access to songs more easily now, we're losing our ability to write music? I don't see the correlation.


i agree 100% with the thread starter, the correlation is that, the songs that you would normally have to actually be at least near the creative level of the song writer to figure out, or have a good enough ear is now all null and void.

you simply have to read numbers and play the thing, all the while gaining next to nothing truely musical from it. this hinders musical ability greatly.
#11
Quote by F'ingguitarnoob
you simply have to read numbers and play the thing, all the while gaining next to nothing truely musical from it. this hinders musical ability greatly.

Unless you analyze what you're playing.
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#12
In some ways yes, kids are getting lazy and kids are learning the wrong songs for their skill level. However, reading and playing tabs have drastically improved my improvisation skill and my abilty to play all around. In my band if my bass player shows me something I can just wait until I get the feel for the time and I can come in with a part that fits and keeps up. I'm not just mindlessly going up and down the neck looking for a good chord. Tabs helped me realize what notes sound good together, what chord shapes make a cool sound, etc. If all someone reads and plays is tabs, as long as they're having fun then so be it. As for me, I wanted to start writing my own matierial and I already had an idea (even though it was pretty sketchy) of what to play.
Reading tabs can help you start playing, in my opinion, but you're going to have to grow out of them someday.
Last edited by BenMags at Feb 7, 2009,
#13
I use tab because I havent devolped my ear yet I can tune by ear and get it very close, Im self taught off tabs anyway I consider myself decent, but I write my own songs too using what little bit of theroy I know so I disagree but thats just my opinion
#15
Tabs are probably the reason most people have terrible ears.

The same can't be said for standard notation, they're completely different.
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#16
Quote by chimpinatux
Tab is killing ear training... but thats about it



I dont think it kills but it helps the ear trainin since you've learned how does the note you hit sounds like from the other songs you learned.
#17
Tab is convenient, but it has caused a lot of guitar players to never bother to learn how to read music, which really hinders you when you need to play with a band, write music, solo over changes etc.
#18
Quote by doive

so is tab actually hindering peoples playing? turning us into boring drones who don't write music?

thoughts?


No. That's ridiculous.

As with anything that's imagined to increase your personal value and get some attention, tabs have just made it easier for more to get a foot in the door with guitar. Some will benefit from it. If they think that by managing to play (sort of) bits and pieces of tabs makes them a good player, they'll find the guitar can be very humbling. That's a very good lesson there if you can learn it. Probably most won't/can't and will eventually just be weeded out. Those that stay will have benefited if it's tabs that helped their initial interest.
#19
I think in a way, we are getting a little lazier. All of the old greats transcribed solos by ear; we learn them from some guy's tab. In that sense, we are becoming lazier.

However, that is not to say that it's entirely possible to transcribe everything we hear by ear. I have reasonably good pitch and can figure out the main riffs, but the bass parts underneath are lost on me. And listen to some of the solos and riffs from modern bands; (readies flame shield) Trivium, As I Lay Dying, and many other artists use far more advanced riffs than what used to be the standard. If Kirk Hammet had heard Trivium playing and no idea what he was doing, he may well have chucked the thing out his window. So in the sense that more technically demanding music would inhibit otherwise high potential musicians, tabs make that goal more reachable.
#20
You know what, even classical musicians read music on paper. Have you ever seen an orchestra play something they had to learn by ear? No, they're reading music on paper. Sure it's more detailed than numbers on lines but they still follow the principle of reading music instead of listening and mimicking.
#22
Quote by JessicaGonzo
i think guitar pro might be but not tabs.


That makes absolutely no sense at all.
Someones knowledge of guitar companies spelling determines what amps you can own. Really smart people can own things like Framus because they sound like they might be spelled with a "y" but they aren't.
#23
i think tab is a great tool....and the internet is a greater tool.

But in training your ear to figure out music, some people may take the easy route when in a rut.

I think its more good than bad tho.
hmmmm
.
#24
Quote by pwrmax
You know what, even classical musicians read music on paper. Have you ever seen an orchestra play something they had to learn by ear? No, they're reading music on paper. Sure it's more detailed than numbers on lines but they still follow the principle of reading music instead of listening and mimicking.
Consequently, all they can do is play things people put in front of them. Like robots.
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We confide - so we're deceived
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#25
Quote by ramm_ty
Consequently, all they can do is play things people put in front of them. Like robots.


Where did you get that idea?
Someones knowledge of guitar companies spelling determines what amps you can own. Really smart people can own things like Framus because they sound like they might be spelled with a "y" but they aren't.
#26
yeah thats a little too much. weather your play from a tab or just normal notation its just different ways to play a piece of music the way you make it sound standard notation is a bad thing too. I will admit though alot of people do get wrapped up and covers and never try to write thier own stuff. I know people that have crazy skills but sit them down to make their own song and they are hopeless.

as for ear training i think its up to people tabs arent stopping anybody from learning how to play by ear if a person really wants to they will learn what they are playing and tabs can help with that especially the tab and standard notation combo.
#27
Quote by doive
thanks tosites like UG tab for almost any song is now freely available and normally pretty good. even if it's only been out a couple of weeks you can normally find a tab of the riffs or even the solos.

but has this made people lazy? when playing from tab, i normally find songs that i can pick up pretty quickly and just play through with them on the second or so time occasionally pausing for the trickier bits. but i never really learn or improve that way. the songs i really learn from are the ones i take the time to transpose and learn properly. i can see the younger generation becoming more and more reliant on tab as it's so easy to find, forming a new generation of cover bands?

so is tab actually hindering peoples playing? turning us into boring drones who don't write music?

thoughts?


hmmm id say yes and no. i mean, there has always been ways of writing music for others to play. so this isnt really any different.

however, i think in a way tabs have made people not focus enough on actually learning to play. for example, i cant count how many times people will write on youtube "tabs please" for something that was improvised. i think people shouldnt focus so much on learning solos as much as learning the principles of playing. i know a lot of people who can play everything by everyone but they dont really know what to do when it comes to playing something on the spot.

now tabs are good though because it can be used to find certain principles for playing. you can use tabs to learn licks and phrases and that can be pretty useful.

so i guess its not tabs's fault, its the people who use it. if you can do anything unless its printed out in tab, thats your fault.
#28
Quote by Archeo Avis
Where did you get that idea?

actually, ive met a lot of classical musicians who can only play if they can read it first. for some reason they can really play anything on the spot. i wouldnt call them robots though and im sure they arent all like that.
#29
Quote by Archeo Avis
Where did you get that idea?
Well I'm sure some of them have more than zero ability to improvise...but I've yet to meet one.

Most of them are great players and not great musicians.

edit: In my somewhat biased opinion
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#30
Quote by ramm_ty
Well I'm sure some of them have more than zero ability to improvise...but I've yet to meet one.

Most of them are great players and not great musicians.

edit: In my somewhat biased opinion

Pretty much all classical exam boards require knowledge of pretty much all useful scales at the higher grades, making musicians who have done these grades able to improvise in any key. There are also lots of arpeggios which have to be learnt and which can be incorparated into improvising.

And the fact that a decent level of theory is needed to do the more advanced exams means that players will already know how to play in key, how to modulate and countless other useful improvising tools.

Also, most players in good orchestras will have been exposed to a lot more complex rythms than the average guitar player. Orchestral pieces have rythms such as septuplets, nontuplets and eleven (I don't know the right prefix) tuplets (which are 6 notes in the time of four, and nine and eleven notes in the time of 12, respectively) and many more, which will be a lot more complicated than what even a high level of rock guitarist would have experienced.

They also have to be able to play in time, and aural tests in exams will mean they reasonably good ears while sight singing tests will mean they will have some level of relative pitch. Also, orchestral musicians know exactly what notes they are playing, as opposed to lots of guitarists who rely on shapes.

All of these things can be used when improvising and that's why I'd bet that the average orchestral player would be able to improvise a lot better than the average guitar player.

The thing that makes orchestral players seem bad at improvising is that they have never done it and, for some, have never even considered it. That's why if you ask a kid who plays violin to improvise he might just stare blankly or tell you he can't.

I think that classical players should be encouraged to improvise more because, as you can see, they have all the skills to do it really well.
#31
i would say no, as my favorite player/songwriter is steve morse.

there are very little tabs up for his music, and i had to figure many out.

plus, if you really want to create music and something beautiful, you will do so and put your heart into it, learn theory, etc.

people who dont care about making music and just play other's songs for a hobby, tqabs are great for them.
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#32
That reminds me. Socrates used to say that writing anything down was diminishing for mind(or something along those lines anyway)
#33
^ i can add to that
socrates used to say that writing anything down was diminishing for mind and based off his saying i used to say memorizing anything is less diminishing for the mind and then i said thinking up stuff on the spot IS THE LEAST diminishing for the mind



So thats my final conclusion
If you're a lazy bastard use tabs (hobbyists)
If you're a smart ass and you wanna learn more transcribe (professional players + above average hobbyists)
If you're an elitist learn and improvise stuff on the fly (asian people who speak tonal languages and have enhanced hearing + jazzers + beethoven?)
Last edited by amd123 at Feb 8, 2009,
#34
I think that although tabs are a great learning method i think you shouldn't over look standard notation either, it very important if you want to do any educational things such as university with it, but no i don't think they hinder your playing, you just as to pick the songs that will challenge you to reach that new level if not then your not really learning anything tabs standard notation or by ear even.
#35
Quote by 12345abcd3

Also, most players in good orchestras will have been exposed to a lot more complex rythms than the average guitar player. Orchestral pieces have rythms such as septuplets, nontuplets and eleven (I don't know the right prefix) tuplets (which are 6 notes in the time of four, and nine and eleven notes in the time of 12, respectively) and many more, which will be a lot more complicated than what even a high level of rock guitarist would have experienced.


-Guthrie Govan
-Satch Legato lines.
-John Petrucci's guitar riffs + dance of eternity.
-Vai's tapping lines and phrasing in general + his work with zappa.
-Steve Morse's stuff with the dregs.
-Paul Gilbert
-Some of Marty Friedman's stuff.
-Michael Romeo's stuff with Symphony X
-Meshuggah's Rick Thorendal.
-Buckethead.
-Bumblebee.
-Jason Becker

I can go on like this for another few minutes, but I won't lol.

They are advanced rock guitarists, and play the most odd time signatures and/or polyrhythms, and some stuff goes beyond what any average classical musician can play.

And don't come with "They are shred". Shred is not a "true" genre, but more an approach to playing; they are rock and/or metal.

You also have classical shred like Paganini.

TO TS;

I don't think that tab's themselves kill creativity. I think ONLY using tab kills creativity, and can result in trusting them too much. They should be more of a guide to a song, but you must be able to hear when something is tabbed wrong, and this is a skill often overlooked.

I think the easyness of tabs hurt creativity, cause you will thinking to much "in frets" and not with ur ear.

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Last edited by xxdarrenxx at Feb 8, 2009,
#36
-Guthrie Govan
-Satch Legato lines.
-John Petrucci's guitar riffs + dance of eternity.
-Vai's tapping lines and phrasing in general + his work with zappa.
-Steve Morse's stuff with the dregs.
-Paul Gilbert
-Some of Marty Friedman's stuff.
-Michael Romeo's stuff with Symphony X
-Meshuggah's Rick Thorendal.
-Buckethead.
-Bumblebee.
-Jason Becker

I can go on like this for another few minutes, but I won't lol.


The majority of the music written by the majority of the guitarists on your list is, rhythmically, extremely simple. The tuplets played by most of them are incidental properties of the music, and the guitarist playing them would most likely be completely lost if confronted with the concept on paper. Thorendal is probably the only truly good example on your list.

Anyway, even if we accept your statement, you haven't really refuted 12345abcd3's point. Presenting a handful of talented guitarists doesn't somehow negate the fact that most (the vast majority) of guitarists are musically uneducated compared to members of an orchestra.
Someones knowledge of guitar companies spelling determines what amps you can own. Really smart people can own things like Framus because they sound like they might be spelled with a "y" but they aren't.
#37
Quote by Archeo Avis
The majority of the music written by the majority of the guitarists on your list is, rhythmically, extremely simple. The tuplets played by most of them are incidental properties of the music, and the guitarist playing them would most likely be completely lost if confronted with the concept on paper. Thorendal is probably the only truly good example on your list.

Anyway, even if we accept your statement, you haven't really refuted 12345abcd3's point. Presenting a handful of talented guitarists doesn't somehow negate the fact that most (the vast majority) of guitarists are musically uneducated compared to members of an orchestra.


It doesn't matter. If you go see an orchestra or a guitarist it's about the sound, not if you read em of paper or not. The musical output is the same.

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#38
Quote by xxdarrenxx
It doesn't matter. If you go see an orchestra or a guitarist it's about the sound, not if you read em of paper or not. The musical output is the same.


Do you even understand what this argument is about?
Someones knowledge of guitar companies spelling determines what amps you can own. Really smart people can own things like Framus because they sound like they might be spelled with a "y" but they aren't.
#39
Quote by Archeo Avis
Do you even understand what this argument is about?


I don't know?

You say confronted on paper with the rhythms. I say it doesn't matter.

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#40
Quote by Archeo Avis
The majority of the music written by the majority of the guitarists on your list is, rhythmically, extremely simple. The tuplets played by most of them are incidental properties of the music, and the guitarist playing them would most likely be completely lost if confronted with the concept on paper. Thorendal is probably the only truly good example on your list.

Anyway, even if we accept your statement, you haven't really refuted 12345abcd3's point. Presenting a handful of talented guitarists doesn't somehow negate the fact that most (the vast majority) of guitarists are musically uneducated compared to members of an orchestra.


I doubt that Steve Vai, Guthrie Govan and Michael Romeo would be "lost" if confronted with theoretical concepts on paper.
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