#1
How did you guys first learn to sight read? I can read the notes on the staff, not very fast, but I can do it. I've started to integrate this onto guitar as a way of learning the fretboard better and obviously being able to sight read with the guitar. I love both classical and jazz, so this is a major goal of mine. So... what kind of tips do you guys have to learn to sight read more efficiently? I have the modern method for guitar, book 1 by william leavitt though I find it pretty boring, I'm looking for something similar that has classical pieces to practice. Since I already know the notes on the fretboard a bit, and know how to read notes on at least a beginner level would it be better to just buy a classical guitar songbook with easy pieces?( If so, which one(s) ? ) And also, for those who have studied classical guitar seriously at a conservatory or something along those lines, what books do they use to teach sight reading? Alright I know that's a lot of questions, if anyone has any insight at all that would be awesome. Thanks.
#3
I'm currently going down that road. I've made several attempts, in the past, but none of them really stuck because I never found a way to make it fun.

My plan is to use software/games to isolate elements (rhythm and pitch), learn them very well, and then combine them and go from there. Here's what I'm currently using:

This app allows me to concentrate on rhythm notation alone. ReadRhythm iphone app:
https://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/rhythm-sight-reading-trainer/id396302174?mt=8

I'm using this one to really ingrain the staff:
https://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/fret-tester-learn-notes-for/id442144977?mt=8

I'm planning to get this very soon to start working on sight reading (and not looking at the fretboard). Think Rocksmith but with standard notation:
http://www.songs2see.com/index.php/en/

Hope that helps.
#4
Played a wind instrument since second grade. Back in the days when I purchased
a cassette of how to play like Randy Rhodes. The notes weren't tabs

Most of the time my music sheet was upside down when I march in a parade..
actually You don't really march...march. You skip over horse shit and play at
the sametime...And you want me to read music too?

It actually helped later. I can hop around and play my guitar at the sametime.haha
I don't site read with my eyes anymore. I read by ear.

I actually had a very talent music teacher while in middle school.
He taught music history from different generations. From classical to blues, rock..ect
He also used me as experiment.hahaaaa.
I had my regular marching band class, music history class...and one on one private
lessons with him everyday. He used to make go out in the middle of the school yard
and play my flute. So playing the lead guitar is just an extension of that.
looking back at that...that's thousands of dallors of free music lessons.lol
I play the guitar since I was 8. My father is also a musician, singer, actor.
My uncle plays a mean banjo. My GF played piano. I spend hours with her messing
around on the keyboard every week.

In HS, I had regular marching band class, jazz band class and classical guitar class.
Everyday....

I personally think you're better off learning various plucking patterns.
In my HS guitar class. Back when...Most of it was classical music.
You get the idea it's just various picking patterns over different chord progression
with different scale fills every now and then.
At least those music scores had TIMRP. It tells you want fingers to pick what notes.
Last edited by smc818 at Feb 10, 2014,
#5
Okay two things are essential. The first is memorizing the notes without having to count up or down the scale. Use flash cards. Practice sight reading easy scores slowly at first after lots of practice you will speed up. Buy lots of sheet music also.
#6
Look over a piece and look for any trouble spots that might trip you up to give yourself a heads up.

In the same vein, look at the key signature to the right scale under your hands, and also look for any accidentals, similar to my previous point.

Say out loud the notes you are playing as you play them. Even better if you sing them.

Learning to sightread is boring and tedious work, and you will often feel that you're past a certain level, but fight that feeling. You really do have to do it "until you don't get it wrong" before going into more complex stuff.
^^The above is a Cryptic Metaphor^^


"To know the truth of history is to realize its ultimate myth and its inevitable ambiguity." Everything is made up and the facts don't matter.


MUSIC THEORY LINK
#7
Yea Book 1 from William Leavitt is good, and then I'd recommend doing book 2 also. For classical, there are some etude books that are really good. Etudes focus on specific techniques so they're really beneficial to your reading. Also for jazz the king of all books is the Real Book. If you get that I'd recommend just sitting down and learning a song out of it...then another...over and over and over until you've read through pretty much all the songs.
Think of it this way....the best way to get good at reading is to read a lot of material, so just start devouring books. You can do it!
http://www.amazon.com/Mel-Bay-Complete-Studies-Guitar/dp/1562229478 (Etudes)
http://www.halleonard.com/product/viewproduct.do? itemid=240221&lid=0&seriesfeature=REALBK& (Real Book)
http://www.amazon.com/Classic-Guitar-Technique-Volume-1/dp/0898985722 (These technique books are used in some schools for classical training)
Hope that helps
-Conrad

https://www.youtube.com/user/ConradAbbottGuitar/videos
Last edited by ConradAbbott at Sep 29, 2015,
#8
Books will get you only so far. If you want to get really good, don't just read a piece of music. Read it in an awkward position on the fingerboard, read it backwards, flip the page around, up an octave, down an octave, pretend its transposed it Bb and in Eb, pretend its in bass clef, pretend its in alto clef etc.
#9
Quote by ConradAbbott
the best way to get good at reading is to read a lot of material
This.
The more you read the same piece of music, the more your fingers are learning it, so in the end you're not sight-reading any more (except as a reminder maybe).
So you always need to be working with music you've not read before.

Or - as GG says - take a familiar piece and try to transpose it as you play.
(It's a slightly different skill, but just as worth practising, because it can be a common scenario. You'll have a piece of music but then a singer wants it in a different key.)
#10
I started playing trumpet in the 4th grade and played it all through high school and a little beyond so I learned to sight read early. I also took some piano lessons (not much) and that stuck with me quite a bit. It's just practice a repetition. Yes it is boring unless you are playing actual songs. Get a book with actual songs in it. Simple songs, nothing complicated, old standards, stuff you are familiar with even though you may not like it. This way you can immediately hear when you play something wrong.
Yes I am guitarded also, nice to meet you.
#11
Quote by GoldenGuitar
Books will get you only so far. If you want to get really good, don't just read a piece of music. Read it in an awkward position on the fingerboard, read it backwards, flip the page around, up an octave, down an octave, pretend its transposed it Bb and in Eb, pretend its in bass clef, pretend its in alto clef etc.


this is great advice if you ever plan on doing studio work..I have met guys at this skill level..

Now there is a great difference between "reading" and "sight reading" reading is what most of us do..and its usually slow and not always accurate..like reading one word at a time..sight reading is like reading an entire sentence at a time..then a paragraph..(reading several bars ahead-at tempo!)this usually takes quite a while to achieve this skill..and you have to REALLY want to do it..
play well

wolf
Last edited by wolflen at Sep 29, 2015,
#12
Quote by GoldenGuitar
Books will get you only so far. If you want to get really good, don't just read a piece of music. Read it in an awkward position on the fingerboard, read it backwards, flip the page around, up an octave, down an octave, pretend its transposed it Bb and in Eb, pretend its in bass clef, pretend its in alto clef etc.


Sounds daunting but this is really the level you have to read at to consider it a professional skill. Of course you can be perfectly good guitarist without it, but having that skill will get you a lot more paying work than just sounding good by itself. The challenge in sight reading isn't just getting the notes at the right time, but being able to read and hear the melody before you get to the notes.

Nice thing about the guitar is that it's really easy to read in transposition compared to other instruments.

There are a lot of trained jazz and classical players who can read so well you'd think they had the piece memorized and rehearsed. It's totally doable, but it's a skill like anything else you do and it takes a lot of practice. Whether it's worth the time investment to get that awesome at sight reading depends entirely on your goals.

All that said, I would learn to read regardless, even if you don't get good at sight reading. It's an extremely useful way to learn, remember, and organize music.
#13
Think how someone learns to read text. We begin by understanding sound of letters, sound becomes a word, words combine for sentence, sentence becomes paragraph, paragraphs makes the story. Think of how reading the pictures on a page of musical notation lead to a story being told (song being played).

"Reading music" to me means you can hear what is written on the page before you play it. Grab a copy of something like The Real Book and read it by trying to hear what you see rather than trying to read then instantly playing it on an instrument.

This will take a while to get proficient, but didn't reading text take a while as well?
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