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So I know what both of them are but I find identifying/naming the notes in a particular interval or triad... not difficult, but slow. Intervals are easier since they're just two notes but with triads, it's a bit more thinking and I can't name them off as fast as I want to. Are there any tricks to help with these? Or is it simply just repetition? I was going to memorize all of the scale degrees for all 15 major/minor keys because I feel like that would help (with this and a lot of other things).

Thoughts?
Think of the intervals between the notes in the triad. A major triad is M3 + m3, minor triad is m3 + M3, diminished is m3 + m3, augmented is M3 + M3.
Quote by iforgot120
So I know what both of them are but I find identifying/naming the notes in a particular interval or triad... not difficult, but slow. Intervals are easier since they're just two notes but with triads, it's a bit more thinking and I can't name them off as fast as I want to. Are there any tricks to help with these? Or is it simply just repetition? I was going to memorize all of the scale degrees for all 15 major/minor keys because I feel like that would help (with this and a lot of other things).

Thoughts?

Are you trying to accomplish something like I do in this demonstration?

If you are trying to learn according to intervals, then I agree, its very slow, as you've already observed, however it's also clear that many people DO manage to learn it well that way, so I'm not knocking it.

If you are trying to determine which notes are used as far as letters, think alphabet - so let's say you're looking for the third of something, and the note you are at (the 3rd) can be called either C#/Db. (That's not exactly what I'm using in the demonstration, but the alphabet principle is still true)

So for example:

If the starting note is B, then 3 letters away from B is D (B C D ....) so do the Db

If it's A then 3 letters away is C (A B C....) so do the C#
Last edited by Sean0913 at Dec 24, 2009,
^^Yeah, I basically want to be able to that, except I also want to be able to just look at a chord and say what it is. I find the latter to be harder than the former, but I need to work on both.

What method are you using in the demonstration? You go really fast.
Quote by iforgot120
^^Yeah, I basically want to be able to that, except I also want to be able to just look at a chord and say what it is. I find the latter to be harder than the former, but I need to work on both.

What method are you using in the demonstration? You go really fast.

He won't divulge any methods without you paying him. Don't bother asking him.

For most people, we just learn the musical alphabet, enharmonic spellings (the third or C♯ chord is E♯ rather than F), and the formulae for each chord type. That provides the tools needed to work out each triad. Working with them, the actual notes in each chord will slowly become more and more automatic, so you have it memorized (but also understand it), and no longer need to work it out.
What I do for naming triads quickly is I memorized them for C Major (since there are no sharps and flats, it's just easier for me that way) (tonality included!) and then I alter them as I need.

Say, for example, I want to find out what chord has the notes G - Bb - Db. The first thing I do is look at what my GM chord is. I know my GM is G - B - D (because that's what it is in C Major) and I know that to go from a Major chord to a Minor chord I just lower the third once, therefore giving me the Bb I need to get to the final. Then to go from Minor to Diminished I have to lower the 5th giving me the Db, and my final chord.

This is what I do for finding chords quickly, and, so far, it works good for me (as long as I'm thinking ;] )
I like the whole starting from C and altering as needed trick. It's very simple.

I've started imagining the major staff in my head and that's starting to work really well with all of the possible notes just laid out like that. I think with those two and some memorization that'll make things a lot faster.
Quote by iforgot120
I like the whole starting from C and altering as needed trick. It's very simple.

I've started imagining the major staff in my head and that's starting to work really well with all of the possible notes just laid out like that. I think with those two and some memorization that'll make things a lot faster.

There you go, whatever gets you there. you know, and one other thing you might do is, memorize only the ones you need. I mean there are a lot of triad possibilities. But simplify it pick a few keys and go about it that way, and that might be all you need, you might not need to even go to the degree that I do. Best of luck to you, sounds like you have it down.
Quote by Sean0913
There you go, whatever gets you there. you know, and one other thing you might do is, memorize only the ones you need. I mean there are a lot of triad possibilities. But simplify it pick a few keys and go about it that way, and that might be all you need, you might not need to even go to the degree that I do. Best of luck to you, sounds like you have it down.

But once you have the knowledge of what the intervals between any two pitches are (which is important to know all of), and what intervals are in each chord, it takes less than thirty seconds to figure out the notes of a triad, and you'll eventually know them all without sitting down to memorize them. And then, when you start extending your chords, you'll just need to learn the formula for each quality, and be able to figure them out starting on any root. I wouldn't be able to list off the notes in all the 7(♯9,♭5) chords, because I don't use them enough, but if they came up more, I would quickly enough learn it all, just by using them.
Learn how to form triads (the intervals inside them, like pwrmax said), and even better tie it into learning about keys, then when you play a chord on guitar think about the notes you are playing. So if you see an A major chord think A C# E.

If you do this enough remembering the notes in triads (or working out the triad from the notes) will become pretty effortless. I can think of a triad now and just know the notes that form it, not because I work it out (although I can), but because I've thought about them/played them so much that they've become ingrained into my memory.

It doesn't take that much effort, just make sure you know what notes you are playing for every chord you play.
Quote by isaac_bandits
it takes less than thirty seconds to figure out the notes of a triad, and you'll eventually know them all without sitting down to memorize them.

Less than thirty seconds is too slow, though. I want to be able to figure out triads in five seconds max. I'm not there yet, but... soon, hopefully!

The general consensus seems to be a mix of learning how triads are formed, learning the notes in the various scales, and simple repetition.
Quote by iforgot120
Less than thirty seconds is too slow, though. I want to be able to figure out triads in five seconds max. I'm not there yet, but... soon, hopefully!

The general consensus seems to be a mix of learning how triads are formed, learning the notes in the various scales, and simple repetition.

The thirty seconds figure is for a triad you've never encountered before. Play for a month, and always think of what notes are in the triads, and that time will quickly go down to under five seconds for the chords you use alot. It speeds up really quickly.
Quote by iforgot120
Less than thirty seconds is too slow, though. I want to be able to figure out triads in five seconds max. I'm not there yet, but... soon, hopefully!

The general consensus seems to be a mix of learning how triads are formed, learning the notes in the various scales, and simple repetition.

For example, if you see a Db major chord, instead of working out a M3 and then a m3, you can just think very quickly "D major has the notes D F# A, so to get Db I can just flatten every note giving me Db F Ab". With this method (assuming you know the notes in D major) it can be worked out in seconds.

This method works every time. What about an F#m? Well I know Fm is F Ab C, so F#m must be F# A C#.

The same thing can be done when thinking about keys (eg. G major has one sharp, F, so Gb major will have 6 sharps and one natural, F) and it is a very useful trick for working out chords (and keys) that you don't come across very often, like Gb, quickly.
Quote by iforgot120
Less than thirty seconds is too slow, though. I want to be able to figure out triads in five seconds max. I'm not there yet, but... soon, hopefully!

The general consensus seems to be a mix of learning how triads are formed, learning the notes in the various scales, and simple repetition.

Yes, the basic challenge is to do so in a way that allows the brain to store and retrieve the information in as few steps as possible. Think of it like a file cabinet with folders. The more folders the more processing time. You may do it with 16 folders, I do it with 4, for example. But the point is, relative to the number of folders you have, is the degree that you have to memorize the information. By the time you have 16 folders for the brain to go through, that's when you start feeling the strain and the need to feed that process through repetition.

As people say, "eventually" you'll get it. Depending on how you go about it, it will be an undetermined requisite amount of reps, coupled with a practice strategy, that will ultimately get you there. It sounds like you'll be there soon, but this is why I suggested if you use any of these guys strategies, to "take what you need", which is certain keys youre prone to play in more than others, and gradually built upon that way. You might hit the .5 to 1 second recall faster that way, like I demonstrated. But you'll have it where you need it most, and that's the 2-3 keys that you might play in most the time.

As for my approach, Isaac is right about my method costing. But there are plenty of other ways for free out there that might suit you just fine.
I just start from the major triad and alter any note I need to - so if its diminished I start with the notes of the major triad and flatten the 3rd and 5th. Works pretty quick if you know your key signatures. Especially combined with 12345abcd3's trick of starting from a simpler chord for more comples ones - so for Gb dim I'd say G Maj = G B D, so G dim is G Bb Db, so Gb dim = Gb Bbb Dbb. Which took about as long to work out as it did to type it.
Last edited by zhilla at Dec 26, 2009,
Quote by zhilla
I just start from the major triad and alter any note I need to - so if its diminished I start with the notes of the major triad and flatten the 3rd and 5th. Works pretty quick if you know your key signatures. Especially combined with 12345abcd3's trick of starting from a simpler chord for more comples ones - so for Gb dim I'd say G Maj = G B D, so G dim is G Bb Db, so Gb dim = Gb Bbb Dbb. Which took about as long to work out as it did to type it.

Explain please, why and how knowing your key signatures makes it "work pretty quick"?

I'm not challenging your claim at all, but it would probably help if you could point out the correlation, say, he goes to learn the key signatures, what would he do next, to apply that key signature knowledge, to "make it work pretty quick"?
Quote by Sean0913
Explain please, why and how knowing your key signatures makes it "work pretty quick"?

I'm not challenging your claim at all, but it would probably help if you could point out the correlation, say, he goes to learn the key signatures, what would he do next, to apply that key signature knowledge, to "make it work pretty quick"?
If you know your key signatures, you know what sharps/flats are in the scale without even thinking about intervals - so you know the 1st, 3rd and 5th degrees of the major scale without having to work anything out. Other than possibly counting to 5 So ... if you are in G Maj you know you've just got one sharp, so your G Maj triad is G B D. If you are in B Maj you've got 5 sharps, so your B Maj triad is B D# F#...so your B min triad has a b3 - B D F#, B dim has a b3 and b5 - B D F etc
Wait, would a major triad always be the 1st, 3rd, and 5th degrees of the root note's key? I have a feeling it is, but I've never heard anyone say that directly.
Quote by iforgot120
Wait, would a major triad always be the 1st, 3rd, and 5th degrees of the root note's key? I have a feeling it is, but I've never heard anyone say that directly.

In a major key, yes.
Quote by zhilla
If you know your key signatures, you know what sharps/flats are in the scale without even thinking about intervals - so you know the 1st, 3rd and 5th degrees of the major scale without having to work anything out. Other than possibly counting to 5 So ... if you are in G Maj you know you've just got one sharp, so your G Maj triad is G B D. If you are in B Maj you've got 5 sharps, so your B Maj triad is B D# F#...so your B min triad has a b3 - B D F#, B dim has a b3 and b5 - B D F etc

OK sooo..., is there an easy way to know what ones in a key are sharp and flat, not just sharps and b's but which letters of the alphabet are sharp and flat, in every key, in a way that's very easy to memorize and recall easily?

For example let's take the first 3 keys

G has a # its F#
D has 2 #s F# and C#
A has 3 # F# C# G#

So whats the trick for not only memorizing the number of sharps and flats in a Key sig, but also identifying or memorizing each key and exactly which notes in that key are sharp or flat?
Quote by Sean0913
OK sooo..., is there an easy way to know what ones in a key are sharp and flat, not just sharps and b's but which letters of the alphabet are sharp and flat, in every key, in a way that's very easy to memorize and recall easily?

For example let's take the first 3 keys

G has a # its F#
D has 2 #s F# and C#
A has 3 # F# C# G#

So whats the trick for not only memorizing the number of sharps and flats in a Key sig, but also identifying or memorizing each key and exactly which notes in that key are sharp or flat?

The circle of fifths....
Quote by isaac_bandits
The circle of fifths....

Exactly, and that rounds out hopefully what he needs to learn as to what letters in any key are are sharp and flat and how many in a key. Both the sharps and flats and the key signatures themselves are determined around the circle of 5ths/4ths.l
Once you understand how to form triads in all inversions, you need to practice them.

Some of the ways I've done it are:

1. Practice diatonic triads on 3 string combinations (6-5-4, 5-4-3, 4-3-, 3-2-1). Start with strings 6-5-4 the root on the 6th string and play from the I chord to the vii dim chord. Then do the same with the root on the 5th string, then root on the 4th string. Move on to the next 3 string combo and do the same.

2. Choose a position and key, say C major at the 5th fret and play diatonic triads. C root on the 8th fret, Dm root on the 5th fret A string, etc. Then do this exercise in other positions on the fretboard.

3. Get a fake book and play the songs using triads. You can play all the roots on one string, same inversion or combine string combinations/inversions. Force everything to triads, so if the chord is Bmin7, play B minor. The next step is to incorporate the melody into your playing and let that dictate the inversions you use, keeping the melody line on top of the chord.

Practice these exercises in all keys. Of course, you have to know all of the notes on the guitar to do this, but you should already be working on that if you currently don't know the notes. Exercises like this will definitely help you learn the fretboard and see new posibilities as well as help you learn triad forms.
I actually found the circle of fifths to be really slow and use the calculation method instead. It's incredibly fast.

@^: What's a "fake book"?
But, yeah, I should probably start learning how to play all these on a guitar now.
Last edited by iforgot120 at Dec 26, 2009,
Quote by iforgot120
I actually found the circle of fifths to be really slow and use the calculation method instead. It's incredibly fast.

@^: What's a "fake book"?
But, yeah, I should probably start learning how to play all these on a guitar now.

Yeah I found it to be incredibly slow, but when you get to sight reading, its a good thing to have in your pocket.

A fake book is a lot of songs with musical notation usually in a given key so that you can practice. They call it fake because sometimes they are not in the original keys, but they give you a good basis for sight reading and chord practice and a number of benefits. They are pretty thick and pricey.

Do you know your Notes on the Neck really well? Its highly recommended.
Quote by Sean0913
Exactly, and that rounds out hopefully what he needs to learn as to what letters in any key are are sharp and flat and how many in a key. Both the sharps and flats and the key signatures themselves are determined around the circle of 5ths/4ths.l

Another cool thing to notice, is that when moving between two keys that differ by one accidental in the key signature, it is always one of the notes that forms a tritone in that scale which moves. So in C major, B and F form a tritone. If you add a sharp to get G major, F is sharpened. If you add a flat to get F major, B is flattened.
Quote by Sean0913
Do you know your Notes on the Neck really well? Its highly recommended.

I'm slowly getting it down. I just use the basic guidelines of 12th fret = open, 10th fret = 2 strings up, 5th fret = 1 string up (except for when the 2nd and 3rd strings are involved, of course). Aside from that, I'm just trying to get the notes ingrained in my mind via repetition. I'm using that one music theory site everyone seems to know about that has the guitar fretboard trainer.
Quote by Sean0913
OK sooo..., is there an easy way to know what ones in a key are sharp and flat, not just sharps and b's but which letters of the alphabet are sharp and flat, in every key, in a way that's very easy to memorize and recall easily?

For example let's take the first 3 keys

G has a # its F#
D has 2 #s F# and C#
A has 3 # F# C# G#

So whats the trick for not only memorizing the number of sharps and flats in a Key sig, but also identifying or memorizing each key and exactly which notes in that key are sharp or flat?
Father Charles Goes Down And Ends Battle for sharps, and go back 2 from the name of the key for how many sharps there are (so say for D go back 2 words to C for Charles - so D has 2 sharps), and for flats Battle Ends And Down Goes Charles' Father, and go on 1 from the name of the key for how many flats there are - so F has 1 flat, Eb Maj has 3 flats etc. Its basically the circle of fifths in mnemonics.

I learnt my key sigs like that - along with the rest of my violin group - when we were top infants, so that would be 6 to 7 year olds. And we wouldn't have dared take more than a week over it with our scary-ass teacher lol
If your goal is instant recall of intervals and triads I would suggest breaking this down into smaller goals and working consistently and methodically toward achieving each step until you reach your overall goal.

Then learn your intervals. - don't worry about key signatures etc to start with just learn the intervals. To do this start with one interval - the most important interval apart from the octave is the perfect fifth. Start there.

Learn to name a perfect fifth above and below any given note. Spend at LEAST ten to fifteen minutes a day on it EVERYDAY. If you have more time waiting for a bus or whatever then go over the spelling of the fifths. Make sure you study the spellings above and below (get the spellings correct too). Learn the shapes and the sound of the perfect fifth too.

Spend a week just studying P5ths and you should have them down, it might not even take a week, or it might take two. It's an extremely important interval so take your time and make sure you have it right.

Then when you have them down go on to Major and minor thirds. Then Perfect Fourths, then Major and minor sixths then 2nds and 7ths. It get's easier as you go, and by the time you've done your sevenths you will pretty much have the augmented diminished and tritone intervals down pretty good to by inference.

In all it should take a month - maybe two - could take longer but remember learning is not a race it's about quality. Your focus should be on learning it WELL not learning it FAST.

Like all learning you have to put in the work, there are no shortcuts. It takes time and effort.

By the time you can do the intervals as above - triads are a piece of cake. You just recall more than one interval at a time from a given root. For a major triad you simply recall a major third and a perfect fifth from the root. For a minor triad you recall a minor third and perfect fifth. For a half diminished seventh chord you simply recall the minor third diminished fifth and minor seventh above a given root.

If your goal is instant recall of intervals and triad spellings you really don't need to learn key signatures and the circle of fifths. That information is valuable though and may be something you progress toward.

And beware of people who sell shortcuts to learning. Unfortunately it is such a common scam that it has become too difficult to tell the real deal from the cons these days, they all say the same thing and swear to be the real deal. Personally I feel the best course of action is often just to ignore them all. There may be some good one's out there but it is so hard to tell sometimes is it really worth risking your hard earned money? Instead you might try a few one on one sessions with a professional accredited and recommended teacher? If you know going in what you want you will get a great deal out of it.

TOP TIP: Knowing where you want to go is half the battle. To get there be methodical and be consistent; plan and follow through.
Si
Last edited by 20Tigers at Dec 28, 2009,
if I find a triad, or a 7th chord, or something more obscure, I'll play the notes within that chord, refer to my major scale, and use that scale to determine what intervals the chord consists of.

once you can do that, I guess you also need to know why a chord is given a certain name. Like, a chord is minor if the major 3rd is flattened by a semi-tone. Learn what you have to do to a major chord in order to produce a dominant 7th, or a sus4, etc. Use a major chord as a reference and then use your knowledge of intervals to build and identify other chords.

learning the notes on your neck is useful. I suggest revising the CAGED theory for this. Understand where the root notes and octaves lie in each of the 5 chord shapes. If you can do that, then the only notes you need to memorise are the notes on the low E and A strings up to the 12th fret. Once you know these, you can just use one of the 5 shapes to find any note on the guitar neck.

learning the major scale is useful.
I really don't know if it's possible to learn how to identify intervals and build chords without knowing your major scale.

yeah, i dunno if what i said helped you in any way, or if it was even what you were looking for in an answer but, w/e.

tl;dr if you want to quickly identify note names within a chord, revise the CAGED theory. If you want to recognize intervals quickly, learn the major scale, and then practise identifying intervals by ear using musictheory.net
Quote by jemjabella42
People look too much into body language. Sometimes I don't make eye contact with people because they are ugly.
Last edited by flea's trumpet at Dec 27, 2009,
Bad advice only costs those who listen to it, the person who gives it, loses nothing.

I think 20Tigers post as far as an approach to learning intervals is generally helpful.

However his caveat about there being no shortcuts to learning is patently incorrect, prejudiced, opinionated and shortsighted. It is presumptuous to make a statement, without having been versed in all of them. At best, its presumptuous, at worst ignorant.

There are no shortcuts to practice. Practice is essential, but there are tons of shortcuts to learning, some known, some not as widely. Under his assessment though, you would think that every approach has been covered, and anything that purports to be different should be avoided and lumped in as a scam - that's reckless and irresponsible advice.

Well from what I understand, the CAGED system was first given in a presentation by Joe Pass in 1980. Today it is widely recognized. A gentleman from Berklee teaches a New Method in his book "Advanced Improvisation For Guitar" His name is Jon Finn. Both approaches are innovative.

By his assessment, had any of these appeared for sale on the site, they'd have been wholesale dismissed as "scams".

Do you truly believe there are no more innovations left for teaching or short cuts to making learning easier on the guitar?

Have all possible methods been exhausted and listed for free here through this site or over the Internet, so we can well shut the book on progress and innovation?

Things are constantly in a state of evolution, and advances are being made every day in every known field to man, but somehow guitar just got left out?

I understand his point to avoid scams, but disagree with the all methods for sale are the scammer boogeyman approach. A more reasonable approach is this: Do your homework, ask questions, do your research, and then when you've had your questions answered, if you feel the risk to reward ratio is acceptable (this is expressed as the willingness to invest in something that may help, and you are paying to find that answer, on the chance that if it does, it will be a positive step towards your goals), then take that risk if you wish.

Be diligent and do your homework on any claim and method, but don't dismiss them all wholesale. Just because it's not available on the "free market" doesn't mean its not helpful or viable, or a helpful short cut to learning. What is a short cut to learning really, but a way to save time and confusion. Nothing wrong with either of those. But, there is no short cut to personal practice, or should I say, substitute.

Best,

Sean
Last edited by Sean0913 at Dec 27, 2009,
I appreciate that you are an accomplished guitarist and teacher, no doubt have lots of successful students. Your posts are generally helpful.

However, the reason you seem to rub people up the wrong way is that you generally appear to be here to get people to go to your 'academy' rather than help for free (which is what everybody else does). This is an academy that charges \$30 to teach the notes on the fretboard. \$30??! I cant imagine how you can refute that being a scam.

There are several other regulars who own or are affiliated with online learning resources and none of them post what are effectively sales pitches. I certainly know which online resource i would use if i was going to use one, and it doesn't cost \$30 for the notes on the fretboard.
Quote by Sean0913

However his caveat about there being no shortcuts to learning is patently incorrect, prejudiced, opinionated and shortsighted. It is presumptuous to make a statement, without having been versed in all of them. At best, its presumptuous, at worst ignorant.

There are no shortcuts to practice. Practice is essential, but there are tons of shortcuts to learning, some known, some not as widely. Under his assessment though, you would think that every approach has been covered, and anything that purports to be different should be avoided and lumped in as a scam - that's reckless and irresponsible advice.

Well from what I understand, the CAGED system was first given in a presentation by Joe Pass in 1980. Today it is widely recognized. A gentleman from Berklee teaches a New Method in his book "Advanced Improvisation For Guitar" His name is Jon Finn. Both approaches are innovative.

By his assessment, had any of these appeared for sale on the site, they'd have been wholesale dismissed as "scams".

Do you truly believe there are no more innovations left for teaching or short cuts to making learning easier on the guitar?

Have all possible methods been exhausted and listed for free here through this site or over the Internet, so we can well shut the book on progress and innovation?

Things are constantly in a state of evolution, and advances are being made every day in every known field to man, but somehow guitar just got left out?

I understand his point to avoid scams, but disagree with the all methods for sale are the scammer boogeyman approach. A more reasonable approach is this: Do your homework, ask questions, do your research, and then when you've had your questions answered, if you feel the risk to reward ratio is acceptable (this is expressed as the willingness to invest in something that may help, and you are paying to find that answer, on the chance that if it does, it will be a positive step towards your goals), then take that risk if you wish.

Be diligent and do your homework on any claim and method, but don't dismiss them all wholesale. Just because it's not available on the "free market" doesn't mean its not helpful or viable, or a helpful short cut to learning. What is a short cut to learning really, but a way to save time and confusion. Nothing wrong with either of those. But, there is no short cut to personal practice, or should I say, substitute.

Best,

Sean

I think you need to stop being so paranoid that every post is aimed at tearing you down for your previous advertising, and desire to make some money off of teaching theory. We realize you have an academy, and as long as you follow the rules here, it doesn't matter.

His comment was more of a "You can't just all of a sudden know it. You have to learn it somehow." The stuff your listing is still learning, its just using a different method. Your method may be shorter for some, and longer for others. You also can't claim to have tried all of the methods to teach every person, so you can't really say its a shortcut. Its just a different route, which you believe to be faster, but that can't really be proven.

Either way, you have to learn the triads. You can't just get zapped all the information into your head or anything. Your method still takes time and effort. His statement was more of just a "if you want to learn it, you have to put stuff in. We can't just post stuff on here, and have you all of a sudden know your keys.". Its like everything in life: You get out of it what you put into it.
Quote by isaac_bandits
The circle of fifths....

1) and/or, memorize the order of #'s and b's

2)

for # keys: last # + up 1 letter name = key

example: Key of A = ...... 3 sharps (F# C# G#)...... last # is G.... next letter name = A

for b keys: 2nd for last flat = key

example: key of Eb = 3 flats (Bb Eb Ab).......... 2nd from last b = Eb... key = Eb

3) familiarize yourself with key signatures via experience reading standard notation.

you see it a few times...... you recognize it....... you know it.
shred is gaudy music
Last edited by GuitarMunky at Dec 27, 2009,
Quote by GuitarMunky
and/or, memorize the order of #'s and b's

That order is the circle of fifths.
Quote by isaac_bandits
That order is the circle of fifths.

Yes it is.

Different ways of internalizing the same information.

heres another...

Quote by zhilla
Father Charles Goes Down And Ends Battle for sharps, and go back 2 from the name of the key for how many sharps there are (so say for D go back 2 words to C for Charles - so D has 2 sharps), and for flats Battle Ends And Down Goes Charles' Father, and go on 1 from the name of the key for how many flats there are - so F has 1 flat, Eb Maj has 3 flats etc. Its basically the circle of fifths in mnemonics.

I learnt my key sigs like that - along with the rest of my violin group - when we were top infants, so that would be 6 to 7 year olds. And we wouldn't have dared take more than a week over it with our scary-ass teacher lol

^ this is good 2
shred is gaudy music
Last edited by GuitarMunky at Dec 27, 2009,
Quote by branny1982
Order of sharps-
Father - Charles - Goes - Down - And - Ends - Battle

Order of flats-
Battle -Ends - And - Down - Goes - Charles' - Father

^ yep. That mnemonic is a good way to memorize the order.

I actually just memorized the fact that the order of flats spell a word (bead) + 3 letters (GCF).

and the #'s are ofcourse the exact opposite, so if you have one memorized, you also have the other.

So all I really have memorized is..... BEAD GCF
and I would just practice reversing it in my head for the sharps.

From then on I could identify any key sig within seconds. (if not instantly)
shred is gaudy music
Last edited by GuitarMunky at Dec 27, 2009,
Quote by GuitarMunky
Yes it is.

Different ways of internalizing the same information.

heres another...

^ this is good 2

That's again the circle of fifths.
Quote by Dodeka
That's again the circle of fifths.
Yup. They are just different ways of remembering it.

I'd never heard of the circle of fiths when I learned my key sigs tho - in fact I never realised what the circle of fifths was at all until about 6 months ago!
Last edited by zhilla at Dec 27, 2009,