#1
Hey UG. I have these two questions, which have been bothering me for quite some time. It might seem simple, but i've searched a lot of places without luck.
So my first question is:
Compared to the piano and/or singing, how are notes on the guitar fretboard? Basically, what i mean is that whenever i hear a note in a song, how am i supposed to find it on my guitar? It's not that i don't know the notes on my guitar, because i do know most of them. (E-F-F#-G-G#-A-A#-B-C-C#-D-D#, on the 6th string)
But how do i locate: A5, E2 or C4?
My question might acutally be: How do i determine the pitch of the notes?

Secon question:
I'm going to play "More Than a Feeling" by Boston, but the key/pitch is too high for our singer, so he wants me to lower it by a minor third. I know that a minor third is 3 frets on the fretboard, so the most obvious would be to lower the tuning from standard (EADGBE) to GCFA#DG. Is that correct?

I apologize for the newbie questions, hope someone will help me though.
Thanks in advance
#2
i think the guitars 3rd fret on the A string iin standard tuning is middle C on a piano but i could be wrong
#4
the notes on the guitar fretboard are the exact same as on the piano or voice. the only real difference is that we can sing and play notes on the guitar that are not precisely reproducible with a perfectly tuned piano, but i don't think that has any relation to what you were asking.

how do you determine the pitch? if you have perfect pitch, you're set. if you don't? you're going to need a lot of ear training. and i mean a lot. an excellent ear isn't something you can acquire in a few months -- possibly even in a couple of years. the sooner you start disciplining your ear, the better.

2 - no. that would be RAISING the tuning a minor third. and just to be with consistency, G to A# is not a minor third. it's an augmented second - G to Bb is the minor third. even though A# and Bb sound the same, they're completely different notes.

try again, and this time, lower the pitches by a minor third.

alternatively, as a good exercise, you could stay in standard tuning, but learn to play the song in a different key. i strongly advise doing this; it'll help you know your fretboard, and grow as a musician -- because, let's be real, if you had to play something in a key a minor third lower than the original on piano, you wouldn't really call in a tuner to lower the pitches of your piano by a minor third each, would you?

and middle C (C4) is the first fret of the B string. in NOTATION for guitar, since guitar is a transposing instrument, written middle C would be played on the third fret of the A string. but in concert pitch, that's C3, not C4.
Anfangen ist leicht, Beharren eine Kunst.
Last edited by AeolianWolf at Apr 10, 2011,
#5
1) Truth is, there is no special way to have pitch-perfect ears. The only way to get better is (as usual) to practice like a loser. The best way is to focus on changes - once you know the root (ie C), listen to what a I-IV (C-F) sounds like compared to a I-V (C-G). Bookmark this site: http://www.bbc.co.uk/schools/gcsebitesize/music/elements_of_music/ It's targeted at students doing GCSE music, and has a heapload of samples to help you recognise everything in a piece of music from instrumentation to chordal cadences and everything in between.

2) I think that if you lower your tuning by a step and a half would a) be bad for the neck, and b) sound awful.
A better method would be to go through the song chord by chord, and move each one down a minor third (three frets). It'll take a while, but you should pick it up quite quick, and the end result will be a perfect match for the lower key.
call me ziggy.
#6
To lower a pitch by a minor third, you go down 3 half steps. So I guess if you wanted to lower your guitar by that much, you could go Db, Gb, B, E, Ab, Db. But also, (i think its in D?) i might be wrong, but you might be able to just play it in the key that is a minor third down, so in the key of B major? So you would sharp F,C,G,D, and A. But im not sure on that one. And Middle C IS on the 3rd fret A string.
#7
oh i see Guitar Pro has a transposing tool that will rewrite the tab in the key that you want. So in this case you would go under Tools > Transpose, then go -3 semitones.
#8
Quote by KrisHQ
Hey UG. I have these two questions, which have been bothering me for quite some time. It might seem simple, but i've searched a lot of places without luck.
So my first question is:
Compared to the piano and/or singing, how are notes on the guitar fretboard? Basically, what i mean is that whenever i hear a note in a song, how am i supposed to find it on my guitar? It's not that i don't know the notes on my guitar, because i do know most of them. (E-F-F#-G-G#-A-A#-B-C-C#-D-D#, on the 6th string)
But how do i locate: A5, E2 or C4?
My question might acutally be: How do i determine the pitch of the notes?

Secon question:
I'm going to play "More Than a Feeling" by Boston, but the key/pitch is too high for our singer, so he wants me to lower it by a minor third. I know that a minor third is 3 frets on the fretboard, so the most obvious would be to lower the tuning from standard (EADGBE) to GCFA#DG. Is that correct?

I apologize for the newbie questions, hope someone will help me though.
Thanks in advance


The tuning isnt the problem, the chords are the problem.

The Key is D, so you'd play in B. Because the riff and intro are distinctive, you'd have to transpose the melody to make it work and that might take some time, but that's what you'd have to do. Down a Min 3rd is the same Note (not interval pitch) as up a Major 6th because of Interval Inversion principles.

In the other question, knowing the notes on the neck is the answer and being able to access that information in real time. This is something I teach, in case you are out there wanting to find a number of options for doing this, this may be one possibility.

That's not to say that what we teach and how we do it, is the best way for you, you'd have to decide that. If I can answer any questions on this let me know, or check my link below and check out the tour video tab.

Best,

Sean
Last edited by Sean0913 at Apr 10, 2011,
#9
Quote by evh2112
To lower a pitch by a minor third, you go down 3 half steps. So I guess if you wanted to lower your guitar by that much, you could go Db, Gb, B, E, Ab, Db. But also, (i think its in D?) i might be wrong, but you might be able to just play it in the key that is a minor third down, so in the key of B major? So you would sharp F,C,G,D, and A. But im not sure on that one. And Middle C IS on the 3rd fret A string.


C#, F#, B, E, G#, C#. you're lowering it by minor thirds. not minor thirds and augmented seconds. i mean it really doesn't matter here, but if you make that mistake here, you're bound to make it where it counts.

and if you think middle C is 3rd fret A string, your ears must not be that great. if you have a keyboard, synthesizer, piano, or can find a way to get middle C on the internet, i strongly recommend testing it out. you'll find that the C at the 3rd fret of the A string is an octave below middle C in pitch.
Anfangen ist leicht, Beharren eine Kunst.
#10
I think some of you have misinterpreted my first question. I do not wanna achieve perfect pitch, or actually i do, but that wasn't my question
My questions is a lot more simple than that. Let me try with an example:
Im going to determine my vocal range, so I'll grab my guitar because it contains all of the required notes. It's easy for me to match notes while singing, so it won't be a problem to figure out if i can sing the G note (3rd fret, 6th string) or not. However, I don't know what octave this G note is, so how do i figure that out? Isn't there some chart, that can show me where the different octaves begin and end? For example. Where on the fretboard will i find a note in the forth octave ex. C4? (This was just a fictional example)

Related to my second question: Sorry for my mistake in the lowering of the pitch, i usually play in drop tuning, so i don't know how i got it to be GCFA#DG.
Major fail..
Though the answers regarding transposition were quite useful. But i've never done it before, are there any good tutorials on youtube?

EDIT I was actually just looking for a table similar to what Cisco444 posted! Sorry i didn't see that the first time around.
Last edited by KrisHQ at Apr 10, 2011,
#11
Quote by KrisHQ
I think some of you have misinterpreted my first question. I do not wanna achieve perfect pitch, or actually i do, but that wasn't my question
My questions is a lot more simple than that. Let me try with an example:
Im going to determine my vocal range, so I'll grab my guitar because it contains all of the required notes. It's easy for me to match notes while singing, so it won't be a problem to figure out if i can sing the G note (3rd fret, 6th string) or not. However, I don't know what octave this G note is, so how do i figure that out? Isn't there some chart, that can show me where the different octaves begin and end? For example. Where on the fretboard will i find a note in the forth octave ex. C4? (This was just a fictional example)

Though the answers regarding transposition were quite useful. But i've never done it before, are there any good tutorials on youtube?


you know, not everything can be answered by a tutorial on youtube. transposition requires knowledge of keys, intervals, and chords. so if you don't know theory, transposition will be close to (but not quite) impossible for you. that's why it'd be better to start sooner rather than later.

i recommend checking this out: http://cnx.org/content/m10668/latest/

as far as scientific pitch notation goes, here are some reference pitches:

open E string: E2
open A string: A2
open D string: D3
open G string: G3
open B string: B3
first fret, B string (middle C): C4
open e string: E4
12th fret e string: E5
24th fret e string: E6

if you're a guy, chances are your vocal range will be covered within the range of E2 and B5 somewhere (possibly higher; if you're a bass, you may even be able to sing pitches below E2 -- i'm a baritone and i can manage to hit Eb2).

honestly, you're better off doing this on a piano. much easier. but if you really don't have access to one (or to a keyboard) then best of luck to you.
Anfangen ist leicht, Beharren eine Kunst.
#13
Quote by KrisHQ
I'm going to play "More Than a Feeling" by Boston


Although a little off topic, has your singer considered singing something easier? There are few singers that I know who could pull that song off, and I know quite a lot of the "top" singers in my area.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
Soundcloud
#14
Quote by AlanHB
Although a little off topic, has your singer considered singing something easier? There are few singers that I know who could pull that song off, and I know quite a lot of the "top" singers in my area.


That's exactly what I was thinking ha ha. Brad Delp was talented.
www.miraclemaxmusic.com

"Punk is not dead. Punk will only die when corporations can exploit and mass produce it."
Jello Biafra

(so is it dead?)
#15
Quote by supersac
i think the guitars 3rd fret on the A string iin standard tuning is middle C on a piano but i could be wrong


It is written as middle C. but guitar is not written at concert pitch otherwise a fair amount of it would be in the bass clef.

Concert middle C is at the first fret of the B string.

But guitar is not the go to instrument for concert pitch anyway -- for the simple reason that it is uncomfortable to play closed voicings in most cases -- guitarists favor open and spread voicings -- often dropping notes (such as the 5th) or doubling notes to accommodate the fretboard.

As for the OP's question .. a guitar is 12 mini-pianos -- playing it that way is insane -- because it is completely uneconomic to be jumping up and down the fretboard. But, once you know where the notes are and what sort of shapes correspond to intervals, scales and common chords, you are ready to rock.

I was working with a sax player on a tune in Eb and he asked me if I was ok with that -- his previous experience with guitar players is that they all wanted to play in E, A, G or D major. Damn -- I learned movable chord forms as a kid -- I knew I wanted to get away from root position chord grips because I could see that people playing theater gigs were following the piano and singer.

Do not retune your guitar to move a minor third down -- that is insane .. learn movable chord grips .. simple major and minor barre chord shapes are a great start.