#1
I've been thinking and it seems that the bass clef (as well as all other clefs besides treble) are just a useless creation. Does it serve any purpose beside making you memorize another set of notes?
#2
Just is just one example, but if piano just read off of the treble clef, there would be lots of ledger lines making it almost impossible to read. It is much easier to read treble and bass clef then it is to read lots of ledger lines.
#3
I think bass clef is okay, but the dumbest clef is alto. I mean violas, really?
#4
Well if you play piano, without the bass clef you would have a shit ton of ledger lines lol. As for alto clef, and the other ones I can't think of right now... I don't think so.
#5
Well with an instrument that can span multiple octaves (such as the piano) it makes perfect sense or there would be like 15 ledger lines for every bass note which would be both a) incredibly difficult to read, especially quickly, and b) would make the sheet music look like a muddled mess
#6
It's useless up until you play an instrument with a range of notes lower than C4, then it kinda becomes important.

Edit: Also I play viola and it alto clef is needed because you cant put the lowest note of a viola, C3, onto a treble clef without many ledger lines, and you can't put the higher notes on a bass clef for the same reason.
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Last edited by TrabenBassist22 at Apr 3, 2012,
#8
Bass clef is essential. Alto and tenor? Eh, they've become outdated with a few small exceptions like the viola. But there are quite a few instruments other than the guitar, TS.
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#9
Try writing a tuba part for someone only in treble clef. Then try reading it. Then come back and tell me that bass clef is useless.
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#10
Option 1: Memorize another set of notes (oh the humanity!)

Option 2: Have to deal with a crap load of ledger lines
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#12
you don't really have to memorize another set of notes. depending on the type of gig, i have to be able to read bass or treble at any given moment. treble is the same as bass except up a third (or up a line if you want to think of it that way, as i do). bass is GBDFA. treble is EGBDF. see what i mean? when i read treble i just shift it up by a line in my eyes. alto clef is just between the two. on bass C is the second space from the bottom. on treble, C is the third space from the bottom. on alto, C is the line in the middle between where it is on bass and treble. so you can think of it as a notch down or up depending on what you usually read.

the only thing i don't like which is tenor clef. which is great because lots of solo string bass literature is in tenor or switches in and out of tenor and bass. it's a good thing classical is just a hobby i suck at.
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#15
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BLARGH.

I honestly don't see the need for the tenor or alto clef though, those are just annoying to read.



Historically, the purpose of these clefs is to cover the most if not all of the normal vocal ranges of different singers without having to use more than one set of ledger lines either side of the stave. As such there's soprano, mezzo-soprano, alto, tenor, baritone C-clefs besides the usual treble and bass clefs, and a few other G and F clefs. A lot of these clefs exist because instruments and/or voices weren't expected to play such extreme ranges, and one clef could cover most of the music written for them. As time went on, and more technical demands were made on both players and instruments, a lot of these became superfluous as music started having more ledger lines in it anyway, so it made sense to do away with some of the clefs and deal with ledger lines instead of inventing more clefs.

However, alto clef still definitely makes sense today, and I don't know why cellists, trombonists etc. use tenor clef instead of alto to cover their mid-high range, but I guess it's some historical reason, and it's not exactly a huge leap from learning one to learning the other.
#16
I guess it's all perspective..

If you play tuba, the Treble Clef, is pretty much useless...

If you want to learn guitar, the treble clef is your main tool... BUT.. if you want to learn "Music" you have to use all of the tools...

Look at it this way... If you work at Jiffy Lube, you can get by with a couple sockets and an oil filter wrench... The rest of the tools are useless and would just take up space...

If you work for a Nascar team as their Master Mechanic, you'd better have all the tools in your tool box...
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#17
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you don't really have to memorize another set of notes. depending on the type of gig, i have to be able to read bass or treble at any given moment. treble is the same as bass except up a third (or up a line if you want to think of it that way, as i do). bass is GBDFA. treble is EGBDF. see what i mean?


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