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adsala
Budwized
Join date: Oct 2005
111 IQ
#1
I've been playing for a long time pretty much by ear. I just decided to take lessons for about a year now. My teacher is very musically inclined and he keeps pushing me to learn all the notes on the fret board. He knows them so well, he can make chords instantaneously, play just about any scale and look at a tab or a solo on sheet and play it right out. I know this takes a long time to learn this stuff but he tells me that soloing and improvising will come very easy if you know where the notes are. I believe him as I've seen him prove it to me over and over again. It's not like I don't know any notes. I can pull out a note in a few seconds but this isn't good enough.

So far he has told me to learn the major scales up and down. Learn the natural notes first. And write out the tab as I play them. I believe that learning notes so they become second nature will help my playing in a great way. I'm stuck with the scale patterns but not really knowing the notes. I've tried fretboard learning software. But I don't think this is the answer. Having the guitar in your hands is different. I've been playing my scales talking out the the notes. And trying to say them out backwards is always difficult. And I've tried other various things with bad results. When I go back I have to almost start over again. Why is this so difficult?

It would be interesting to see if there are any good methods for learning the fretboard notes so well that they really stick. Like riding a bike. Can anyone help me?

Any help is appreciated.

By the way this is my first post.
Dean
InSaynePig
defacing public servants
Join date: Jun 2004
368 IQ
#2
yeah ive been wondering the exact same thing. my idea is to get some of those tiny white dot stickers, write the note letters on them, and stick them on the frets under the strings. that way, you see the note names constantly as you play and they begin to stick. i haven't actually tried this yet; anybody think it will work or have a better idea?
crazee201
Registered Car
Join date: Jun 2005
2,255 IQ
#3
i dont think stickers r gonna work, unless you're gonna stick with just noting one string at a time..

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jessejames1414
Registered User
Join date: Jan 2005
418 IQ
#4
just learn the notes

A - B C - D - E F - G -

and there's no split note between BC and EF

just memorize that and know the notes of your string
when played open

the 12th fret is another octave so it repeats again

memorize the 5th 7th and 9th

Play like that often and it'll come really quick to your head later

Like top string and bottom in standard tuning

Open is an E, 12th is E again, 3rd is a G, 5th is an A, 7th is B, 9th is C sharp or D flat depending on what scale you're playing in

using the fret inlays helps alot..


gah I hope Im talking about what you wanted to know...
vaifan666
Registered User
Join date: Jul 2005
33 IQ
#5
i think the best way is to write down the notes on a piece of paper and say them as you play though it. also if you look up the CAGED sequecnes that help out a lot of people i know that are in your spot
adsala
Budwized
Join date: Oct 2005
111 IQ
#6
I've been wondering about the sticker thing as well. But there are two issues here. One, how do you keep them there. A couple of string bends will wipe them right off. And two. You might aquire a dependency on them.

Thanks keep them coming.
Dean
InSaynePig
defacing public servants
Join date: Jun 2004
368 IQ
#8
A couple of string bends will wipe them right off.


true, hadn't thought of that...
Jandy
Lost in Theory
Join date: Jul 2005
872 IQ
#9
You could do it, but it would require almost inlaying them. I've thought about this too.

What you may want to try is to get a map of the fretboard with every single note listed on it and lay it down as you play. Go through scales and call out each note off the sheet then play the scale again without the sheet calling them out. Kind of killing two birds with one stone.

Also knowing your intervals helps quite a bit.... if you know where the root is you will always know that the 5 is one string down and two frets toward the bridge (except the b string)

a------7
e--5----

A, E.

The 4th is always below the root (except the b string)

a--5--
e--5--

A, D

etc
Corwinoid
UG Monkey
Join date: Nov 2004
435 IQ
#11
... read sheet.

Honestly, the best way to learn the fretboard is to not look at it, learn it by sight/sound association with paper.
Quote by les_kris
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I'm not even God-like... I've officially usurped the Almighty's throne.
Click here to worship me.

Member #3 of the Corwinoid Fan Club
Ins
Spoons hero
Join date: Jun 2005
89 IQ
#12
I started by finding the pattern it follows, like.. find every F note. memorize that pattern, then say you want to find G, do the same pattern just start on G. I found it helped me get atleast more associated with the fretboard at first, I really started to understand the logic behind it.
The patterns pretty simple, and like say you want to find all the E's, you find the first set of the pattern, then from fret 12 to whatever, its the same pattern again.

Bare in mind this wasn't the only thing I was doing, it's just how I started to memorize it, the pattern can be a crutch if you rely on it, because you'll have to make you're way through it.
adsala
Budwized
Join date: Oct 2005
111 IQ
#13
I guess I should mention to that I do know all the strings. (E A D G B E) And I know varations on how to map one string to the other to find notes. I also, know how to resite the C, G, D, A, E majors and I am working on more from the circle of 5ths. I've studied many things in the last year about music theory. My problem is memorizing the notes on the fret board. Like I said, I can find the note but not very quickly. Sure, I can go to the 5 fret second string and play the D major scale from there. But is it's because I know one pattern to play it in. Assuming I know the notes in a D major, I would like to go to any "D" on the fretboard and play it's major scale in all the possible patterns not because I know the patterns but because I know the notes on the fret board. Patterns come second.

jessejames1414 mentioned to memorize the 5th 7th and 9th frets. I will try this.
Thanks.


Yes Corwinoid,
My teacher has told me that reading sheet is best way too... Start with mary had a little lamb, then on to Yankee doodle etc etc. I have started to do this and it helps. I just need to be more consistent at it as it's very slow and boring. No other way I guess.

Thanks for all friendly comments
Dean
Corwinoid
UG Monkey
Join date: Nov 2004
435 IQ
#14
^ Pick up a -good- beginning classical book; like the Shearer book. It'll give tips on sight reading, and the music is a lot more interesting than children's songs, but not much harder to play.
Quote by les_kris
Corwinoid is God
I'm not even God-like... I've officially usurped the Almighty's throne.
Click here to worship me.

Member #3 of the Corwinoid Fan Club
John Kimble
Banned
Join date: Dec 2004
340 IQ
#15
Berklee guitar method volume 1 by William Leavitt is a very good book to start to learn to sight read.
Nome
of the cabbagy face...
Join date: Sep 2004
376 IQ
#16
google search something called "fretboard warrior", it's a cool little free flash program that has helped me a lot...
tHewHiteHendrix
strat abuser.
Join date: Oct 2004
445 IQ
#17
ooo the inlay thing gave me an idea. a neck solely made to improve ones scale memory/ knowledge. a neck w/ interchangable inlays. every fret has 6 interchangable inlays, one for each string. most inlays are wood colored, others are white. place the white ones in the slots of the scale you want to learn. IM A GENIOUs. patent this and i will eat your colon. twice.
Meddling Idiot
Banned
Join date: Oct 2005
40 IQ
#18
well i learned all the notes for the E and A strings cuz that was i would know the names of all the bar chords and i forget how i memorized it but yea it comes pretty naturally once you know the order of the notes and the strings..
adsala
Budwized
Join date: Oct 2005
111 IQ
#20
Well, so far we have three post saying sight read. And thanks for the material suggestions.

Guess my teacher was right too. He has been trying to give me alternatives but when you get down to it, sight reading may be the only real way to make it stick. I am thinking that note inlays would be just a good shortcut. Then when you remove the inlays what happens? Just like Fret Board Warrior. I was using it till I could nail every note within split seconds, but when I picked up the guitar, and ran some scales, I got lost.

It's really amazing watching my teacher whip out great melody because he knows where he is at on the fretboard. He tells me that even speed can dramatically increase with note awarness. . It's not like I don't know any fret board notes. Of course I do. Especially on the E and A strings. But going backwards on scales is always a problem and the B and G strings is where I really have the problem. I guess I'm a little impatient. It does take time.

Thanks for all the comments

Dean
Jandy
Lost in Theory
Join date: Jul 2005
872 IQ
#21
Quote by tHewHiteHendrix
ooo the inlay thing gave me an idea. a neck solely made to improve ones scale memory/ knowledge. a neck w/ interchangable inlays. every fret has 6 interchangable inlays, one for each string. most inlays are wood colored, others are white. place the white ones in the slots of the scale you want to learn. IM A GENIOUs. patent this and i will eat your colon. twice.


Interchangeable inlays? Could be possible, although difficult to play.

But it's probably been done. I had the great idea couple years back to have a guitar solely for teaching where the fretboard inlays were leds and would light up to show you scales/chords/notes etc. The thing could even have a build in drum machine and speaker to demontrate a lick or scale or chord and then you could play it back. Built in metronome, and chord finder, all that good stuff.

I opened up a guitar magazine at barnes and noble and there was an ad for Fretlight guitars motherf'er I could have been rich.
aprescott_27
Friggatriskaidekaphobic
Join date: Nov 2004
859 IQ
#22
Quote by rageandlove04
Learn to sight read

i had to play a musical on guitar back in april. i didn't really take a look at the music ahead of time (i did, but it wasn't that extensive) because i figured that since sight reading trombone (yes, i also play trombone) was easy. i forgot that you have possibly six notes at a time to worry about on guitar (aside from the fact that i didn't know all the notes on the guitar fretboard.) my point? sight reading requires learning notes and chord structures first!

and i completely use patterns. that's how i memorize anything.
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Diabolic Clown
Saucerful of Secrets
Join date: May 2005
660 IQ
#23
Well, here's the notes. This is really the complete basics of music theory, and it's very simple to memorize once you see how it works. The scale repeats twice, two different octaves. I haven't read the other posts yet, so I don't know if it's been posted yet but..
"All religions are the same: religion is basically guilt, with different holidays. "

-Cathy Ladman
aprescott_27
Friggatriskaidekaphobic
Join date: Nov 2004
859 IQ
#24
Quote by tHewHiteHendrix
ooo the inlay thing gave me an idea. a neck solely made to improve ones scale memory/ knowledge. a neck w/ interchangable inlays. every fret has 6 interchangable inlays, one for each string. most inlays are wood colored, others are white. place the white ones in the slots of the scale you want to learn. IM A GENIOUs. patent this and i will eat your colon. twice.


that's not a bad idea, except six pieces for each fret? why not just take it down to 1 piece per fret and say that you have to learn in standard tuning. and give more sets of inlays for alternate tunings (like dropped d, open g, open d)
METAR KTIK 040043Z COR RMK TORNADO 1W MOV NE. EVACUATING STATION
hoolan
UG's local asshole
Join date: Jul 2005
12 IQ
#25
learn the notes in music in order and the open note of the strings and all the frets go in order from the open string hope you understand that
squire strat
fender frontman 15g amp
PurpleMonkeyDW
Close your gee!
Join date: Feb 2004
358 IQ
#26
A good way to learn is by learning the notes on the fretmarkers first. Learn the notes at the 3rd, 5th, 7th, 9th, and 12th frets. You can then go on to learn the notes in between them by going relative to the notes you just learned. When you have this reasonably well in your head, start calling out random notes and finding them on that string without counting up the frets. After you can do this effortlessly do the next string. When you have two strings learned then do the same test with the two strings: call out a random not the find it on one string and the same note (in the same octave) on the next string. Repeat until all strings are learned. Gets harder as you go along though.
Quote by jimtaka
i'd say your guitar is out of tune, or you are accidentally muting strings that you aren't trying to, or your right hand isn't strumming at the same time that your left hand is fretting, or you could be reading the tab upside down...
rageandlove04
Get it?
Join date: May 2005
395 IQ
#27
Quote by aprescott_27
my point? sight reading requires learning notes and chord structures first!


Uhh...no. You don't need to know where all the notes are before you learn to sight read, that's stupid. You just need to know how to find the notes and if you practice reading sheet, you'll guadually learn where the notes are and not have to spend time figuring out where they are. Furthermore, your example didn't help your point, on the contrary, it hurt it. I mean, are you really willing to admit that you thought sight reading on guitar would be easy because you can do it on trombone (in a different clef??!?!!). Brilliant.

edit: And chord structures? Why would you have to know those to read off a sheet of music? If you have a four note chord, you'll realize that you need to use four strings and you'll learn to quickly figure out the best place to play all four of those notes.
...to give your love no matter what is what she said...
GuitarMauler
Registered User
Join date: Jun 2005
32 IQ
#28
I'm trying my darndest to learn the same thing. What I do is when I'm sitting there drilling away just going up and down the neck, the first thing I do is I stare at a picture I found of every note on the fretboard, and I sit there on each position of the drill I'm doing and keep slowly plugging away at drill while saying each note I play out loud until I don't have to think about it too hard or look up at the picture very often.

I do a lot of drills that require a lot of chromatic movements, so I can usually figure out what the notes are if I know the note on first fingering of that position.
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gmsje
Registered User
Join date: Aug 2004
104 IQ
#29
Quote by John Kimble
Berklee guitar method volume 1 by William Leavitt is a very good book to start to learn to sight read.

I second this recommendation. Not only did it get me to read music for the first time where teachers had failed to get me to do so, but I also started hearing where notes are for melodies/scales.

Edit - PurpleMonkeyDW's suggestions are similiar to the way I learned to read music from the Leavitt book. The first lesson is in C major. I learned the notes on the sheet for the open strings first, and then was able to fill in the other notes relative to the open string notes while looking at the sheet and without looking at the fretboard.
Last edited by gmsje at Nov 1, 2005,
comma
Registered User
Join date: Nov 2005
14 IQ
#30
Quote by adsala
It would be interesting to see if there are any good methods for learning the fretboard notes so well that they really stick. Like riding a bike. Can anyone help me?

Any help is appreciated.

By the way this is my first post.
Dean


"The Bead Method of Fretboard Mastery" uses the CIrcle of Fifths to help you see everything you want on the fretboard. You can name your notes and key using this method. It works like this. Take a look at the Circle of Fifths and it is aranged in 4ths if you go backwards.

Bb-Eb-Ab-Db-Gb-B-E-A-D-G-C-F

Look at the 3rd fret. You can use the circle of fifths to name all the notes. G-C-F-Bb drop down one fret Eb-Ab. Practice looking at the fretboard this way and you will have the whole neck down by site. The book probably explains it better but I think you can see how to do it.

Mark Frelkie
sirpsycho85
selfstyled voice o reason
Join date: Feb 2004
858 IQ
#31
yeah learn to read music, and sight read even if you start verrrry slowly.

i'd also say instead of doing just those scales with letter names, do arpeggios and random repetitive patterns, that way you don't just get into a habit of moving fingers and saying the next note in the alphabet. if you do different arpeggios and chord voicings in different keys, you'll have to pay attention more to the note you're playing.
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Any day now, any day now I shall be released"

Know any good teachers in NY, especially skilled in teaching ear training? Tell me
Jawshuwa
Sex With Six Strings
Join date: Jul 2006
310 IQ
#32
I'm working on memorizing the fretboard as well, and I read somewhere that you should learn the natural notes first, and the accidentals will fall into place quite easily afterwards.

So, scales -- since this is everyone's double-edged sword -- with all natural notes:
C Major.
D Dorian.
E Phrygian.
F Lydian.
G Mixolydian.
A Aeolian.
B Locrian.

Take your pick (l0l, guitar joke) and memorize the scale, horizontally along every string and vertically up all strings all across the fretboard. Once you're comfortable with what you've memorized, call out a note name and find each note on every string.

In concept, it's not that hard to pull off (...I'm on a roll) and get down. It's boring, though, can't deny that.
steven seagull
not really a seagull
Join date: Oct 2006
1,064 IQ
#33
Quote by Jawshuwa
I'm working on memorizing the fretboard as well, and I read somewhere that you should learn the natural notes first, and the accidentals will fall into place quite easily afterwards.

So, scales -- since this is everyone's double-edged sword -- with all natural notes:
C Major.
D Dorian.
E Phrygian.
F Lydian.
G Mixolydian.
A Aeolian.
B Locrian.

Take your pick (l0l, guitar joke) and memorize the scale, horizontally along every string and vertically up all strings all across the fretboard. Once you're comfortable with what you've memorized, call out a note name and find each note on every string.

In concept, it's not that hard to pull off (...I'm on a roll) and get down. It's boring, though, can't deny that.

Wow, way to necropost

Also, what you're recommending is pointless - you just said to learn the exact same thing 7 times over...where's the logic in that?
Actually called Mark!

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mjkshreds
guitarprod
Join date: Apr 2008
422 IQ
#34
well the way i got good at knowing all my notes was by learning the scales because they contain all the notes and if you learn them all over the fingure board not only will u be able to improvise u will be able to know all the notes which will help u with everythin
ILoveGuitar07
Registered User
Join date: Mar 2005
2,005 IQ
#35
theres no real easy way out. Sit down and do them everyday until u got em all.
.
gmsje
Registered User
Join date: Aug 2004
104 IQ
#36
After years of staring at scale books, I finally noticed a pattern for finding where all the repetitions of any note are on the fretboard.

Say you want to find all the E notes. Start with the low E string. 1. To find the next E go up two strings (D) and up two frets. 2. From that position, to find the next E go up two strings (B) and up three frets. 3. From that position, since you can't go up two strings anymore, to find the next E, reverse the last procedure and go down three strings (From the B to the A) and up two frets.

If you use the A string to start and end up on the high E at the 5th fret, of course all you have to do is go back to the low E on the same fret to continue finding the same note farther up the fretboard.

So, whatever note you pick anywhere on the fretboard, depending on which string you are starting with, you can plug in the above formula and find the same note everywhere on the fretboard. If you start in the middle of the fretboard and going up the strings leaves you on the B or high E string, just make sure to always go up three frets.

The formula is basically 2 strings up + 2 frets up; 2 strings up + 2 frets up; 2 strings up + 3 frets up; -3 strings down +2 frets up (from the B string) or back down to the low E string on the same fret (from the high E). I finally noticed this pattern looking at a scale all over the neck with the root notes depicted as a hollow circle and the other notes as filled in circles.
Last edited by gmsje at May 18, 2008,
Andrewkrippner
Registered User
Join date: Feb 2009
10 IQ
#37
Well the reason you know the E and A strings well is because that's where you find the roots
for power chords. But the other strings are foreign to you because they are in the middle of the chord and are mostly used within individual notes rather than a root of a chord. The obvious solution now would be to use those notes for the root of a power chord and use those chords in songs you know, instead of the chords used starting on the E and A strings. When you actually use them in songs rather than staring down the fretboard for hours, you actually get something out of it. Worked for me hope it does the same for you.
tagergat85
Registered User
Join date: Jan 2008
123 IQ
#38
I'm in the process of teaching myself all the notes on the neck. I made a simple diagram of the neck with blank circles to fill in the notes. Whenever I'm bored I fill one out, alternating from the top of the neck and the bottom so I memorize it forwards and backwards. I'm not sure if this method will work for me, I just started doing it but it seems to be helping. Also once in a while playing the notes and calling them out as others have suggested is a good idea.
qoody
Registered User
Join date: Apr 2009
14 IQ
#39
Naming notes as you play them seems to be a good way to learn. Another great alternative to naming the notes is picturing the note on the staff... should help with sight reading
troll2
Registered User
Join date: Nov 2009
32 IQ
#40
I used a "C.Parkers Omnibook" to learn the notes. It took some months but the learning was quite straightforward and easy. I think there are some flash games on some sites that can teach notes on fretboard. But for OPs initial post - there is fretography, guitargrid, bead method, neckmapping, CAGED systems and what not.
Last edited by troll2 at Nov 8, 2009,