#1
When playing through any given scale it is recommended that you should say out loud the notes as you play them.

Going up (C D E F G A B C) is fine, however dropping down (C B A G F E D C ) gets tricky as my brain is unfamiliar with the reversed alphabet.
This causes my finger work on the fretboard to outpace my verbal note recitation.

Does this become 2nd nature after a lot of practice?

While playing fast, do the pros say in their head each note as they make mince meat out of the fretboard?

Or, they don't need to recollect as it is common knowledge to them, because they learnt the fretboard layout by verbalising the note whilst practicing scales etc.

I think the latter.
#2
Quote by Elplater
When playing through any given scale it is recommended that you should say out loud the notes as you play them.

Going up (C D E F G A B C) is fine, however dropping down (C B A G F E D C ) gets tricky as my brain is unfamiliar with the reversed alphabet.
This causes my finger work on the fretboard to outpace my verbal note recitation.
Slow down then. No sense in your fingers moving faster than your brain. Who's in charge here?
Quote by Elplater

Does this become 2nd nature after a lot of practice?
Yes. That's the purpose of practice, after all.
Quote by Elplater

While playing fast, do the pros say in their head each note as they make mince meat out of the fretboard?
No. Because it's become second nature. Like, when you're speaking, you're not spelling out every word as you say it, are you?
You could spell them correctly if you were writing, of course. But there the analogy is with grammar. When you write (as when you speak) you don't have to think of the correct word order. You learned all that way back, probably before you can remember.

Playing music is the same, more or less. Certainly improvising is very like having a conversation, or making a speech on a topic you're reasonably familiar with. You might have to think consciously about what you want to say, in broad terms - what your opinion or attitude is - but the words themselves come out automatically once you have your ideas in place. (And while rock solos are often written, like speeches that have been prepared before and read from notes, jazz solos are always off the cuff - improvised.)
Quote by Elplater

Or, they don't need to recollect as it is common knowledge to them, because they learnt the fretboard layout by verbalising the note whilst practicing scales etc.

I think the latter.
You're right. But it's not just about learning the note names. That's important and useful, but they are only labels. It's more important to hear how they relate to the other notes, especially the root of a chord, or the keynote of a scale. Eg., if instead of saying C-D-E-F-G-A-B-C as you play, try saying "1-2-3-4-5-6-7" - because that's transferable to other keys. (A B C# D E F# G# A is also "1-2-3-4-5-6-7" in terms of sound.)
In a C major chord, what matters about the B note is not that it's called "B", but that it's the "major 7th", with that specific sound. So - on guitar anyway - being able to visualise where that maj7 is in relation to a chord shape is more useful than knowing the note name.

A useful analogy is that the note names are like street names or signs in a city. Good to know, but only as far as they help you find your way around. Once you know your way around, you can visualise it all, and don't need the names or signposts any more. Unless you're giving someone else directions...
Last edited by jongtr at Nov 8, 2016,
#3
So with time and an effective practice schedule anyone is able to memorise every notes location on the entire fretboard ?

Obviously people without memory disorders.
#4
Elplater
1-2-3 -5-6-7 sounds better. That way I can get used to each notes interval name I guess.
#5
Quote by Elplater
So with time and an effective practice schedule anyone is able to memorise every notes location on the entire fretboard ?
Sure. The more effective your practice (the more disciplined you are), the quicker it will be, but you'll learn them all eventually anyway.
My tip would be to use chord shapes too (as well as scales and any other method). Chord shapes are easier to remember than scale patterns, and you just need to know the notes in each chord. Plus, you develop the note-chord links which are essential for improvisation and composition.

The note patterns up each string are also useful. If you know the ABCDEFGA formula, you can work out any note on any fret, just by counting up from the open string. The more methods and approaches you have, the quicker it will be, because they all support each other.
Last edited by jongtr at Nov 8, 2016,
#6
Does each note on the guitar have a unique lable?
For example;
Lowest E being 2 then the next being E3 and so on.
#7
Quote by Elplater

Does each note on the guitar have a unique lable?
For example;
Lowest E being 2 then the next being E3 and so on.
Yes. That's "octave designation", but you don't really need to know those numbers. Just knowing where all the E's are is the main thing.
Obviously, with most notes in the range of guitar, there are different places you can play them. So, "middle C" (C4 if you want its designation, 261Hz if you want its frequency ) can be played on string 2 fret 1, string 3 fret 5, string 4 fret 10, etc. But all you really need to know is that those frets are all "C".

One other thing you might find useful is where the pitch known as "middle C" is written on guitar music. It's on the 3rd space up, an octave higher than it's written in piano music. Again, the octave difference from "concert" pitch is a side issue. The main thing is that if you see that note, you know where to play it (B string fret 1, or G string fret 5, etc.).

IOW, the note positions on notation are more useful to know than the octave designation numbers.
#8
Sounds like you have a good understanding of the theory aspect.

How long have you been playing for?
#9
Don't just say the note - sing it.

More important than knowing the note name, is knowing the sound. If you don't know what the name of the note you want but you know the sound and where to find it then you don't need to know the note name.

Play through intervals and say and sing them as well.
Si
#11
Quote by Elplater
Sounds like you have a good understanding of the theory aspect.

How long have you been playing for?
I've been playing for just over 50 years (since I was 16). It took me a long while to learn this theory stuff, but it's like climbing a mountain. At the bottom it's tough, and you can't see very far. The higher you get, the further you can see, and everything starts to fall into place. (The slope gets gentler as you go, and you get fitter, but you never reach the top. At some point you just die of old age. )

Another metaphor is a jigsaw. When you start it's just a hopeless jumble of pieces. But the more you manage to put together, you start to see the "big picture"; and then it becomes much quicker to see how all the other pieces fit. (You might still die before you get it finished, but at least you know what the big picture is - you find your place in it.)

Metaphor #3 (which I think I described above): the map. Theory is a map of music. Many people find their way around without it, but most like to look at a map at some point. But the map is not series of instructions, telling you where to go, or what you can and can't do. It just has the names of the places you come across, and shows you suggested routes for getting to other places.

In all cases, it has to be a process you enjoy for its own sake - precisely because you never "finish". There are marker points along the way that you can treat as achievements if you want, but they're a side issue. You're not in this to pass exams. And you're not exploring this territory in order to prove the map right or wrong. You're here because you like the scenery - and hopefully the natives too .
Last edited by jongtr at Nov 11, 2016,