I've just started reading music notations recently, just becase I thought it'd help me with theory a lot better, and it has.
So here's my question.
I'll first post a bit of background because if I just asked the question, it'd sound vague.
ok. I recently bought a book on Teaching yourself Guitar Theory, just because I didn't get the whole music theory just from reading on the internet so I decided to actually get a book. The whole book only dealt with the first four frets of the guitar including the open strings.
So now that I'm done the book I started looking at anthology books from different bands.
Now I'm asking, how do I know when to move higher into the frets like 5-12 fret area when I'm reading sheet music. I downloaded Guitar Pro and looked at Famous Last Words by My Chemical Romance. Most of the song is uses frets 5-12, but I've only learned to distinguish the first four frets of the guitar.
This probably sounded confusing, but yeah, I'm wondering when to move down the neck since any song can be played anywhere.

I'm trying to get away from just relying on tabs
sorry if its confusing
well, I don't see a question mark, so...
what is the question?
It depends on your own personal preference - use whatever position seems most efficient.
What do mean by position? As in scale position?

And my question was How do I know where to start on the fret board when you're reading sheet music since the guitar has many places you can start from.
^ You just play at whatever area fits the song best, in the context of all the chords and notes you'll need to be playing.
So it doesn't really matter where I start on the guitar? As long as I play the right fret and string corresponding with whatever is written on the staff then?
As long as the notes themselves sound the same, you can play them wherever feels best. Its not like a piano where you have one place for each note and no other options.
Quote by Vantastic!
the position of the note on the staff tells you.

No it doesn't.

Let's put it this way: you can play the note anywhere you want as long as you are hitting the right note. If the staff says to play an E (on the high E open string), you could play the open string or you could hit the 24th fret on the low E. It might not be very convenient in this example, but my point is just...as long as you are playing the right note.
Yes, playing from standard notation is fairly open to interpretation for where you want to play a song. The position of the notes will tell you whether a note is higher or lower, but as you know you can play the same note in various position on the fretboard.
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I can't read too well, but I know enough to give you some advice for starting.

First, learn all the notes on the fretboard to at least somewhat competent degree. This isn't as hard as it sounds.

Second( this'll sound really dumb and maybe a little condecending, so bare with me), but, when you see an E thats just on the bottom line of the staff, they mean the E either on the 12th fret low E string, 7th fret A string, 2nd fret D string. That'll give you a good reference point.

For actual sight reading, I'd just get used to reading everything in a general area of the fretboard( like, say, the 4th-9th frets or something). When I'm reading something that starts on, say, the E at just the bottom of the staff, I'll play it on the A string 7th fret.

And also, learn the circle of 4ths( or, some people call it 5ths, which is just the circle of 4ths backwards) and key signatures. Very important.

Geez, I hope that didn't confuse you.
"Isn't it amazing anything's accomplished
When the little sensation gets in your way
Not one ambition whisperin' over your shoulder
Isn't it amazing you can do anything " - Gord Downie

From the song " Fireworks"
Thanks I actually understood everything you just said. O.o; Learnnig does work.
Btw what does the circle of fifth do anyways?
Well, circle of 4ths( I know it better that way) goes like this.

Its a handy tool for findinfg keys and modes and such. But I'll start with keys.

Starts at the top with C. Now the key of C is simple, it has no accidentals( sharps, flats), so its easy to read in. I'll just give you the rest of the keys in order( The notes after the key letter are the accidentals in the key, the rest of the notes in the key aren't accidentals... I'm too lazy to write the non accidentals)

F: Bb
Bb: Bb, Eb
Eb: Bb, Eb, Ab
Ab: Bb, Eb, Ab, Db
Db: Bb, Eb, Ab, Db, Gb
Gb: Bb, Eb, Ab, Db, Gb, Cb
F#( same thing as Gb except in sharps): F#, G#, A#, C#, D#, E#
B: C#, D#, F#,G#, A#,
E: F#, G#, C#, D#
A: C#, F#, G#
D: F#, C#
G: F#

So if you see a key signature with 3 flats, its the key of Eb. That means when you see a B, an E or an A on the staff, you play those as flats.

Why is it called the Circle of 4ths? Well, F to Bb to Eb? Thats just going up in... 4ths!
"Isn't it amazing anything's accomplished
When the little sensation gets in your way
Not one ambition whisperin' over your shoulder
Isn't it amazing you can do anything " - Gord Downie

From the song " Fireworks"
Last edited by Mikeoman at Mar 19, 2007,
Part of theory is learning to see phrases, and phrase groupings. You want to figure out how each phrase is built, and learn to read down from the highest note in a phrase group, so that the highest note in a phrase is placed on the high-e string, and the other notes are as low on the neck as possible (where intonation is best, and the strings sound the best). You also want to minimize position changes, but the more complex the music gets the more often you can't.
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